Petersburg Dialogue Speeches.
German Federal Ministry for the Environment 28th April 2020 read more »
Officially, governments need to submit a new NDC before the end of this year, according to the timetable set out by the Paris agreement. So far, just eight countries have done so. Japan, one of the eight, hasn’t even increased its ambition. Moreover, those countries represent less than 3 per cent of emissions. Nicholas Stern at the London School of Economics says: “I do think the more we can get strong NDCs through this year the better.” He says the EU will be key to influencing what China does. He adds that, while it would be good if the enhanced NDCs are delivered on time, it would be a worthwhile trade-off if they came a little late, but strong.
Fix the Planet 30th April 2020 read more »
The global transition to limiting global temperature increases to 1.5C by 2050 has been labelled as a “daunting task”, that would require unprecedented levels of decarbonisation for key sectors, with the world currently on course to exceed its carbon budget by 2031. A new in-depth report from global analysis firm McKinsey outlines “rigorous, data-driven snapshots” at how the world can reach the 1.5C ambition of the Paris Agreement, through three different pathways. A rapid scenario would require all sectors to have abated at least 30% of their 2016-level CO2 emissions by 2030. This rises to 76% for the power sector. Slower decarbonisation transitions are also possible but would require some sectors to go beyond net-emissions and for mass-scale reforestation and carbon capture to offset emissions from hard-to-abate areas. Keeping to 1.5C would require limiting future net-emissions from 2018 levels onwards to 570 gigatonnes (Gt), and reaching net-zero emissions by 2050, the report notes. However, the world is currently on a trajectory to exceed that target in 2031.
Edie 30th April 2020 read more »
The unprecedented collapse in oil prices suggests we’re on the brink of an energy revolution. The theory goes as follows: thanks to advances in green technology and net-zero targets there is a real prospect that, far from exhausting all the oil in the ground, we may end up leaving most of it where it is. We are getting a sneak preview of post-oil courtesy of the global lockdown, and it is quite the spectacle. With cars stuck in garages and factories on standby, global energy demand has plummeted at a record-breaking rate. That has coincided with plentiful supply of wind and solar power, meaning oil and refined products like gasoline are so abundant that the US is running out of storage space. There is a chance, of course, that post-oil turns out to be yet another dodgy theory. Indeed, in most recessions environmental investments are the first things to be cut. But consider that in the last recession a decade ago new solar farms cost more than $300 for every megawatt hour generated. These days the cost can be as low as $30. This staggering improvement in price and efficiency means you no longer have to be an environmentalist to plump for renewable power. Indeed, onshore wind is now the cheapest form of electricity generation in this country, and for that matter the US and Germany — even without subsidies. Still, renewable power isn’t much use without battery storage for the days when the wind isn’t blowing, and today’s lithium ion batteries simply aren’t good enough: too inefficient, slow to charge and prone to spontaneous combustion. But the man who invented the lithium ion battery, 97-year-old John Goodenough, has now invented a solid-state battery which is far more stable, has three times the capacity and can charge in a fraction of the time. Better still, his glass battery could be made without lithium or cobalt, which involve mining in some of the world’s conflict zones, but with sodium from sea water. The oil industry is being out-innovated and outmanoeuvred at every turn. So perhaps it’s no surprise that Royal Dutch Shell has cut its dividend for the first time since the 1940s. It’s not just about Covid-19; they need all the money they can get to transition to net-zero by 2050.
Times 1st May 2020 read more »
The ongoing transition to low-carbon energy sources may accelerate as economies recover from the impact of the coronavirus crisis, the head of oil and gas company Royal Dutch Shell said on Thursday.
Reuters 30th April 2020 read more »