The UK is widely seen as a climate leader. Its Climate Change Act, which passed into law ten years ago, is the envy of the world. It has targets for carbon reduction enshrined in law, and recently, the government hinted that it would adopt a target of zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 (the current target is an 80 per cent reduction). Four years ago, the government, with cross-party support, announced it would phase out coal-fired power generation by 2025. And yet, at a planning committee meeting in the northern English county of Cumbria, where I live, local councillors have voted unanimously to approve a new deep coal mine, Britain’s first in three decades. The mine would extract nearly three million tonnes of coal a year, primarily for the steel industry rather than power generation. According to Scientists for Global Responsibility, this would result in more than nine million tonnes of carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere, every year for 50 years – that’s equal to the emissions from a million households. How can a country with such strong ambitions to reduce carbon emissions, approve a plan to increase them so significantly? My research, which is based on interviews with MPs and looks at how politicians understand and respond to climate change, suggests why such a contradictory situation could have arisen.
Business Green 22nd March 2019 read more »
THE Oil and Gas Authority (OGA) has announced it is exploring the potential for a more integrated offshore energy sector, including ways to build closer links between oil and gas production and offshore renewables. The OGA confirmed it had secured a £900,000 grant to begin the project, which will look at the mix of energy sources storage solutions required for the transition to a low-carbon economy. These solutions could include powering offshore oil and gas platforms from renewable sources, monetisation of offshore-produced gas via in-situ power generation, offshore hydrogen production and transportation and carbon dioxide capture, transportation and storage using legacy oil and gas infrastructure.
The National 23rd March 2019 read more »