The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has warned that going beyond 1.5 degrees C will increase the frequency and intensity of climate impacts.
The report notes 2020 is a critical year for climate action, with the UN climate change conference in Glasgow aiming to determine the future course of efforts to avert crisis, and countries expected to significantly step up their climate commitments.
Download the full report HERE. (Source: UN Environment Programme, Dec., 2019) Contact: UN Environment Programme, www.unep.org
More Low-Carbon Energy News UN Environment Programme , Climate Chanmge, Carbon Emissions,
Global Permafrost covers an area almost equal to Canada and the United States combined, and holds about 1,500 billion tonnes or carbon -- twice as much as in the atmosphere and three times the amount humanity has emitted since the start of industrialization.
According to the UN's scientific advisory body for climate change, the IPCC, global permafrost areas show a decrease of 24 pct by 2100. The IPPC also notes that 70 pct of permafrost could gradually disappear if fossil fuel emissions continue growing over the next 50 years and release 60 to 100 billion tonnes of carbon by 2300. This is in addition to the 200 billion tonnes of carbon expected to be released in other regions, according to the study.
(Source: Arctic and Alpine Research, Nature, AFP, Feb., 2020) Contact: INSTAAR, Merritt Turetsky, (303) 492-6387,
(303) 492-3287 - fax, www.colorado.edu › innovate › institute-arctic-and-alpine-research
More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions, Climate Change, Permafrost,
An Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report released last year found that many scenarios capable of reducing the threat of climate change relied heavily on bioenergy, predicting that energy from biomass could make up 26 pct of primary energy in 2050 -- up from 10 pct in 2020 -- and predicting that solar and wind combined would likely only account for 22 pct. Those scenarios often relied on significant use of bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS), which involves growing trees across a large area of land to produce wood pellets burned for energy, then capturing and sequestering the carbon emissions. In its analysis, though, the IPCC found significant challenges associated with a high reliance on bioenergy, noting in particular that the vast areas of land required to produce biomass for energy would compete with food production and other human needs.
The Global Change Biology assessment examine a flurry of recent reports that suggest even more problems with large-scale bioenergy projects reliant on large tracts of land, and also show that more cost-effective alternatives will be available in the coming decades. Pulling from these recent studies, the authors establish three reasons why large-scale bioenergy must and can peak and decline in the next 30 years:
The assessment comes at a time when the bioenergy industry is ramping up worldwide, with the EU in the lead. Bioenergy currently accounts for 10 pct of the world's energy, and 50 pct of our renewable energy. In the EU, bioenergy accounts for two-thirds of all renewable energy (nearly half from wood). Two-thirds of the EU's "20 pct Renewable Energy by 2020" target depends on bioenergy. And the bloc is also about to greenlight the conversion of five large coal plants to bioenergy plants that burn imported wood pellets from overseas forests.
Land-intensive electrical power projects in particular are picking up steam as governments and industry leaders seek to transform disused coal factories into new profit centers. Between 2006 and 2015, the production of wood pellets for biomass energy use quadrupled to 26 million tons. Worldwide, demand for globally traded wood pellets destined for use in phased-out coal plants or new dedicated bioenergy plants is expected to rise 250 pct by 2027.
The study lays out a bioenergy trajectory that policymakers can use to encourage sustainable bioenergy while also opening the door for new technologies to replace land-intensive bioenergy in the very near future. These recommendations include improved accounting of the actual carbon emissions associated with the use of biomass, favoring biomass from waste, residues or land management practices that enhance carbon storage, and providing incentives for energy storage, direct air capture technologies, and low-carbon alternatives to fossil fuels. Above all, the authors argue that bioenergy projects should be avoided if they involve natural forests, such as converting natural forests to bioenergy plantations, or use land best suited for food crops. And the authors caution that claims that bioenergy projects are a zero-carbon form of energy should be met with skepticism.
The Packard Foundation through 2020, will have awarded nearly $1 billion in grants to reduce carbon emissions, one of the its greatest program commitments in its 55-year history.
(Source: David and Lucile Packard Foundation, Dec., 2019) Contact: David and Lucile Packard Foundation, Walt Reid, Director Conservation and Science Program, Report Author, 650-948-7658, www.packard.org
More Low-Carbon Energy News Bioenergy, CO2, CCS, Biofuels, Carbon Emissions,
The report recommends Queensland stop burning coal for power by 2030 to play its part in keeping global heating to 1.5 Celsius under the UN's Paris Agreement targets, agreed to by Australia in 2016. The report also notes hitting the necessary emissions reduction target would spell the end of Queensland thermal coal exports by 2040, as part of a "rapid and almost complete global phase-out" of coal for electric power genearation.
Queensland is Australia's biggest carbon-emitting state and will blow its total "carbon budget" of 1.2 gigatonnes by 2031 if its CO2 emissions remain at their 2017 rate, the report found.
The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has forecast that 70-90 pct of coral reefs worldwide will be lost at a 1.5C rise, with more than 99 per cent lost at 2C.
Queensland accounts for 24 pct of Australia's energy and industry emissions and is targeting zero-net emissions by 2050.
(Source: Climate Analytics, Australia Broadcasting Corp., 27 Oct., 2019) Contact: Climate Analytics, Bill Hare, Director, +49 (0)30 259229520, www.climateanalytics.org; Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, Josh Thomas, CEO, www.gbrmpa.gov.au; Great Barrier Reef Foundation, www.barrierreef.org
More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Analytics, Carbon Emissions, Coal, Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority ,
The letter, which noted that the "carbon benefits of sustainable forest biomass are well established", cites a report from UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPCC) which notes: "In the long term, a sustainable forest management strategy aimed at maintaining or increasing forest carbon stocks, while producing an annual sustained yield of timber, fibre or energy from the forest, will generate the largest sustained mitigation benefit. Demand for wood helps keep land in forest and incentivizes investments in new and more productive forests, all of which have significant carbon benefits."
Reviewing more than 30 years of scientific research on forest biomass utilization, scientists from Yale, Harvard, and Georgia to Washington, Idaho, Berkeley and others identified four fundamentals for science-based decision-making on biomass energy production:
The first is an energy pathway set by current and planned policies. The second is a cleaner climate-resilient pathway based largely on more ambitious, yet achievable, uptake of renewable energy and energy efficiency measures, which limits the rise in global temperature to well below 2 degrees C and closer to 1.5 degrees C above pre-industrial levels and is aligned within the envelope of scenarios presented in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 degree C.
This report outlines the role of wind power in the transformation of the global energy system based on IRENA's climate resilient pathway, specifically the growth in wind power deployments that would be needed in the next three decades to achieve the Paris climate goals.
The report lays out how we can build the 100 pct Clean Future in two parts. First, it highlights successful climate action by governors and legislatures in nine states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico that have committed to 100 pct clean goals. CAP recommends building on that success at the national level by embracing three key pillars from some of those states: an ambitious 100 pct clean target; a worker-centered approach to ensure good paying, quality jobs; and a plan that is committed to reductions in legacy pollution that has disproportionately affected economically disadvantaged communities and communities of color.
The second part of the report considers emissions by sector and recommends achievable benchmarks to guide a sustained, concerted, and urgent policy program to achieve a 100 pct Clean Future by 2050:
CAP offers policy recommendations to accomplish these benchmarks and deliver additional emission reductions throughout the report, including a combination of sector-specific deployment policies, direct federal spending, a broad price on carbon pollution, and mandatory emissions reductions in communities historically overburdened by pollution.
Download the A 100 Percent Clean Future report HERE.
Download CAP fact sheet HERE.
(Source: Center for American Progress, PR, Oct., 2019) Contact: Center for Amercian Progress, Neera Tanden, CEO, Sam Hananel, 202-478-6327, www.americanprogress.org
More Low-Carbon Energy News Center for American Progress, Climate Change, Clean Energy, Carbon Emissions,
The Exmooor National Park Authority noted it has already cut its carbon emissions by 30 pct by: improving energy efficiency within Authority-owned buildings; installing renewable energy along with a scheme to facilitate installation of 73 new renewable energy systems in local communities, farms and houses across Exmoor; the restoration of nearly 2,500 hectares of peatland in the National Park through the Exmoor Mires Partnership, with plans to extend this to at least 3,000 hectares.
Peatlands are the UK's single most important terrestrial carbon store, containing 20 times more carbon than all UK forests.
A functioning bog absorbs around 0.87 tpy of carbon per hectare year while dry peatland releases CO2 -- degraded peat in England is emitting an estimated 11 million tpy of CO2. (Source: Exmoor National Park Authority, Somerset County Gazette, 6 Oct., 2019) Contact: Exmoor National Park Authority, +44 1398 323665, www.exmoor-nationalpark.gov.uk
More Low-Carbon Energy News Peatland, CO2, Carbon Sequestrartion, Carbon Emissions, Carbon Sequestration,
Download the report HERE. Source: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Yahoo Finance, 26 Sept., 2019) Contact: IPCC, www.ipcc.ch
More Low-Carbon Energy News Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Renewable Energy, Solar, Wind ,
The study, published August 5 in the journal Nature Geoscience, found that accounting for phosphorus-deficient soils reduced projected CO2 uptake by an average of 50 pct in the Amazon, compared to current estimates based on previous climate models that did not take into account phosphorus deficiency. The Amazon Basin is critical to help mitigate climate change due to its trees absorbing around a quarter of the CO2 released each year from the burning of fossil fuels.
According to Berkeley Lab research scientist and study co-author Jennifer Holm, "Most predictions of the Amazon rainforest's ability to resist climate change are based on models that have outdated assumptions; one of those is that a sufficient supply of nutrients such as phosphorus exist in soils to enable trees to take in additional CO2 as global emissions increase," said . "But in reality the ecosystem is millions of years old, highly weathered, and therefore depleted of phosphorus in many parts of the Amazon."
Agriculture, forestry, and other types of land use account for 23 pct of human-caused GHG emissions, yet at the same time natural land processes absorb the equivalent of almost a third of CO2 emissions from fossil fuels and industry, according to the recently released International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report on land and climate interactions.
(Source: DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, PR, Eureka Alert, 20 Aug., 2019) Contact: US DOE
Office of Science, energy.gov/science; LBNL, Jennifer Holm, Research Scientist and Study Co-author, www.linkedin.com/in/jennifer-holm-265600b, www.lbl.gov
More Low-Carbon Energy News LBNL, Rainforest, CO2, Carbon Sink, Climate Change,
The report found that the accumulated emissions of burning wood pellets from these U.S. mills to produce electricity in the UK increases carbon pollution in the atmosphere for more than 40 years -- well beyond the time-frame identified by the IPCC as critical for carbon reduction.
Download the report details HERE. (Source: Southern Environmental Law Center, 12 Aug., 2019) Contact: Southern Environmental Law Center, www.southernenvironment.org
More Low-Carbon Energy News Biomass, Woody Biomass, Carbon Emissions, Southern Environmental Law Center,
The report will be a key scientific input into forthcoming climate and environment negotiations, such as the Conference of the Parties of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (COP14) in New Delhi, India in September and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference (COP25) in Santiago, Chile, in December.
The report notes that better land management can contribute to tackling climate change, but is not the only solution. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions from all sectors is essential if global warming is to be kept to well below 2 degrees C, if not 1.5 degrees C.
The IPCC assessments provide all levels of government with scientific information that can be used to develop climate policies and in international negotiations to tackle climate change.
The IPCC, the world body for assessing the state of scientific knowledge related to climate change, its impacts and potential future risks and possible response options.
Download the UN IPCC Land is Part of the Climate Solution report
HERE. (Source: UN IPCC, 8 Aug., 2019) Contact: IPCC, www.ipcc.ch
More Low-Carbon Energy News IPCC, Climate Change, Global Waming, Carbon Emissions,
Last year was also the hottest year on record for the world's oceans. Alarmingly, the air temperature over land is rising twice as fast as the global average, and has already risen more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, according to the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). (Source: IPCC, Aug., 2019) Contact: IPCC, www.ipcc.ch
More Low-Carbon Energy News IPCC, Climate Change, Global Waming,
Participating companies include: Acciona, AstraZeneca, Banka BioLoo, BT, Dalmia Cement Ltd., Eco-Steel Africa Ltd., Enel, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Iberdrola, KLP, Levi Strauss & Co., Mahindra Group, Natura &Co, Novozymes, Royal DSM, SAP, Signify, Singtel, Telefonica, Telia, Unilever, Vodafone Group PLC and Zurich Insurance, amongst others, collectively representing over one million employees from 17 sectors and more than 16 countries.
(Source: UN Global Compact, PR, COMTEX, 23 July, 2019) Contact: UN Global Compact, (212) 907-1301, www.unglobalcompact.org; Science Based Targets Initiative, +44 (0) 20 3818 3916,
Sarah.Savage@cdp.net, www.sciencebasedtargets.org; We Mean Business Coalition, Kristen King, (904) 608- 1745
More Low-Carbon Energy News Science Based Targets initiative, UN Global Compact, Carbon Emissions, Climate Change,
"We know that the Earth is warming; years ago it was covered in ice. Several times since it has gone through periods of being encapsulated in ice!!! Fifty-five thousand years old samples drawn from Antarctic core drills indicate the Earth was 2% warmer than it is today. The reason for this is that the proximity between the sun and the Earth is in a constant state of flux., "The United Nations has propagated an agenda that has a goal of establishing income equality between all countries. To reach that objective, they have decided on the 'Robin Hood' approach -- rob from the rich and give to the poor. Guess who the villain is -- that's right, the USA. How do they accomplish this? They develop a 'Chicken Little' narrative and generate a villain -- that rich country whose people live in luxury.
"Please humor me while we address the UN's narrative. They repeatedly reiterate that 97 pct of the scientists say that the earth is warming and it is caused by humans and the use of 'fossil fuels.' In 1988, The UN formed a committee, The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, (IPCC) 11,944 scientists were questioned. Of those, 66.4 pct (7,930) said they did not believe that was true. Of the other 4,014, 1,344 said they did not know leaving 2,670 that agreed, which is 22 pct, not 97 pct. That is the first big lie!!! The question I have is: How many of those 22 pct have a parochial interest in the warming equation? Bear in mind that our government spent $22 billion in 2016 to have this warming theory authenticated, with most going to academics.
"Next, let's address the fossil fuel cause. 70.9 pct of the Earth's surface consists of ocean water. The National Oceanographic Survey Department states that the average depth of the ocean is 12,100 feet, which means there are 351,600,000,000,000,000,000 gallons of water in the ocean.
"Salt water weighs 8.5 lbs. per gallon. One pound of water uses 1 BTU to raise the temperature 1 degree Fahrenheit. All countries combined in 2015 produced 9 billion tons of coal. The heat factor of the Pittsburgh seam of coal is 12,000 BTU. Using the 35/65 pct factor with 35 pct used to generate electricity and 65 pct lost to the stack gases, allowing for 0 pct dissipated to the land masses or the atmosphere, all heat being transferred to the ocean, it would take 21,610 years to raise the temperature of the ocean 1 degree Fahrenheit!
"We (the U.S.) are the only industrialized country that has cut CO2 emissions since 2005. Following is a list of coal-fired power plants in several other countries: Europe has 480 and is building 27 more; Turkey- 56 and building 93; South Africa-79, building 24; India- 589, building 446; Philippines- 19, building 60; South Korea- 58, building 26; Japan- 90, building 45; China- 2363, building 1171; and the USA- 359, building 0 . Totals: 4,075 existing and 1,892 under construction not including Russia, North Korea and Eastern Europe, with most of their electric generation being coal fired.
"My fellow Americans, the most outrageous hoax that has ever been attached to any group of people since the beginning of mankind is attempting to be heaped on the United States of America -- all in the interest of taxing this country into oblivion.
They are trying to do what two World Wars, communism and socialism could not accomplish, but it is being condoned and sanctioned from within by progressive liberals who apparently have had lobotomies, or missed a good chance, and our own politicians who gush with delight at the unending stream of $$$$ coming from this potential 'Cash Cow'"! (Source: WCWV, Exponent Telegram, 26 May, 2019) Contact: Exponemt Telegram,
Mr. Phil Southern, (800) 982-6034, www.wvnews.com/theet/news
More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions, Coal,
Assessments by the IPCC show that these approaches are essential parts of the technology mix needed to limit global warming to less than 2 degrees C.
In Europe the largest potential to store CO2 is located offshore in deep saline aquifers and other sub-seabed geological formations of the North Sea where over 10,000 oil and gas wells have been drilled. At many of these wells, methane gas from shallow biogenic deposits is leaking into the environment because the surrounding sediments were mechanically disturbed and weakened during the drilling process. The study notes that CO2 stored in the vicinity of these wells may leak and ultimately return into the atmosphere.
"We have performed a release experiment in the Norwegian sector of the North Sea to determine the footprint and consequences of such a leak", explains study lead author Dr. Lisa Vielstadte from GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel.
In the study, CO2 released at the seabed in 82 meters of water was tracked and traced using a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) equipped with chemical and acoustic sensors and additional measurements on board of Research Vessel Celtic Explorer. The resulting data showed that CO2 gas bubbles were completely dissolved close to the seafloor and the pH value of ambient bottom waters was lowered from a background value of 8.0 to a more acidic value of 7.0 at the release site as a consequence of the dissolution process. This bottom water acidification has detrimental effects on organisms living at the seabed", However, strong bottom currents induced a rapid dispersion of the dissolved CO2 such that the area at the seabed where potentially harmful effects can occur is small.
Accordingly, the study tentatively concluded it is possible to store CO2 safely in sub-seabed formations if the storage site is located in an area with a small number of leaky wells, the report summarizes.
(Source: Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel , PR, 14 May, 2019) Contact:
GEOMAR - Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research Kiel, Dr. Lisa Vielstadte, +49 431 600-0,
Fax:+49 431 600-2805, www.geomar.de/en
More Low-Carbon Energy News CO2, Carbon Emissions, Carbon Sequestration, CCS,
"We, the undersigned 4,520 Amazon employees, ask that you adopt the climate plan shareholder resolution and release a company-wide climate plan that incorporates the principles outlined in this letter.
"Amazon has the resources and scale to spark the world's imagination and redefine what is possible and necessary to address the climate crisis. We believe this is a historic opportunity for Amazon to stand with employees and signal to the world that we're ready to be a climate leader.
"Climate change is an existential threat. The 2018 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report predicts that a warming of 2 degree C, which we're currently on track to surpass, will threaten the lives of hundreds of millions of people and put thousands of species at risk of extinction. We're already seeing devastating climate impacts: unprecedented flooding in India and Mozambique, dry water wells in Africa, coastal displacement in Asia, wildfires and floods in North America, and crop failure in Latin America. Vulnerable communities least responsible for the climate crisis are already paying the highest price.
"Amazon's leadership is urgently needed. We're a company that understands the importance of thinking big, taking ownership of hard problems, and earning trust. These traits have made Amazon a top global innovator but have been missing from the company's approach to climate change. For example: We (Amazon) haven't disclosed a company-wide plan to reach zero carbon emissions within the timeline required; Shipment Zero only commits to net carbon reductions; We have an AWS for oil & gas initiative devoted to helping fossil fuel companies accelerate and expand oil and gas extraction; We donate to climate-delaying legislators (Amazon has joined a variety of sustainability organizations like the Corporate Eco Forum and the American Council on Renewable Energy, we donated to 68 members of congress in 2018 who voted against climate legislation 100 pct of the time) ; and our sustainability goals lack context. "For example, we've set a goal of at least 50 solar installations in warehouse facilities by 2020. This represents only 6 pct of buildings in our global fulfillment network and a fraction of our overall carbon footprint .
"Our customer obsession requires climate obsession. This necessitates an immediate company-wide plan addressing climate change that demonstrates the following principles: Public goals and timelines consistent with science and the IPCC report ; A complete transition away from fossil fuels rather than relying on carbon offsets; Prioritization of climate impact when making business decision; Reduction of harm to the most vulnerable communities first; Advocacy for local, federal, and international policies; Fair treatment of all employees during climate disruptions and extreme weather events.
"In our mission to become 'Earth's most customer-centric company,' we believe our climate impact must be a top consideration in everything we do. We have the power to shift entire industries, inspire global action on climate, and lead on the issue of our lifetimes. We ask that you, as leaders responsible for our strategic direction, adopt the climate plan resolution and release a company-wide plan that incorporates the six principles above." (Source: Amazon Employees for Climate Justice, April, 2019)
More Low-Carbon Energy News Amazon, Climate Change, Renewable Energy,
According to UN IPCC climate experts, climate engineering could represent a temporary "corrective measure", the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment notes the country would prefer not to rely on a "risky emergency solution". Nevertheless, it is necessary to have as many options on the table as possible to address climate change and accordingly is calling call for an international dialogue to "better understand the risks and opportunities and to assess the need for a supervisory authority".
Climate geo-engineering interventions could include the installation of giant mirrors in space to reflect solar radiation reaching the Earth and increasing the reflectivity of clouds and atmosphere through the introduction of aerosols into the stratosphere using aircraft, projectiles or balloons.
The agency also raises the difficult questions of Who decides which technology to use? Who will take political responsibility and who will have technical control? Who will be held accountable for unforeseen collateral effects? These are some of the questions surrounding geo-engineering which could have long-term global impacts. (Source: Swiss Federal Office for the Environment, swissinfo.ch. Mar., 2019) Contact: Swiss Federal Office for the Environment, +41 58 462 93 11,
+41 58 462 99 81 - fax., firstname.lastname@example.org,
More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,
BIMCO wants the next IMO study to ignore Scenarios 1 and 5 of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Shared Socio-economic Pathways (SSP) because they are based on unrealistic short- to mid-term economic growth projections. According to BIMCO, "The previous [IMO] study's most pessimistic projection of a 250 pct increase in CO2 emissions from shipping has since proven to be totally unrealistic, given the actual and projected economic development of the world, Unfortunately, the 250 pct projection has frequently been used as a stick against the shipping industry and to shape regional policy. BIMCO wants to avoid that happening again."
BIMCO claims a new report by the CE Delft consultancy uses a more realistic GDP growth forecast to project a reduction of 20 pct against a goal of 50 pct by 2050. Acknowledging the 30 pct shortfall in emissions reduction "We will need new solutions, in addition to traditional efficiency measures, to reach the 2050 target. But to pick the right solutions, we need realistic projections." BIMCO says.
BIMCO has 2,000 members in more than 120 countries representing shipowners, operators, managers, brokers and agents.
(Source: Baltic and International Maritime Consultative Organization, Project Cargo Global, Feb., 2019) Contact: BIMCO Lars Robert Pedersen, Deputy Sec. Gen., +45 44 36 68 00,
+45 44 36 68 68. email@example.com, www.bimco.org
More Low-Carbon Energy News BIMCO, IMO, Maritime Emissions,
The report highlights how the urgency and scale of the climate crisis are being exploited to push ideas like carbon dioxide removal (CDR) and solar radiation management (SRM) -- once relegated to the fringes of the climate debate -- into the mainstream. It examines the fossil fuel industry's long history and continued role in the development and promotion of key geoengineering concepts and technologies, and it exposes the numerous ways these technologies serve to protect the industry and promote new emissions from fossil fuels. Among its findings:
The report also exposes how current industry support of geoengineering fits into a pattern of denial and opposition to action by the fossil fuel industry and a network of well-funded think tanks and front groups. With surprising consistency, geoengineering proponents argue that economic, technological, ethical, and environmental realities of geoengineering technologies should be assumed away, even as they argue that scaling up existing and proven renewable technologies is unrealistic.
Faced with the urgent realities of climate change, even committed activists and researchers are exploring the possibility that humanity can mask climate impacts with new and profoundly risky technological fixes. Both abundant evidence and history show that this approach is at best a risky distraction and at worst profoundly dangerous for people, ecosystems, and the planet.
Access the report HERE. (Source: Center for International Environmental Law, Public Release, 13 Feb., 2019) Contact: CIEL, Carroll Muffett, Pres., Amanda Kistler, Report Author, (202) 742-5832, firstname.lastname@example.org, CIEL HQ, (202) 785-8700, Fax: (202) 785-8701,
email@example.com, www.ciel.org; Heinrich Boell Foundation, Lili Fuhr, International Environmental Policies Division, www.boell.de/en
More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change, Fossil Fuel,
More recently, the Government published its £420 million construction sector deal, outlining a course for halving building energy use and emissions by 2030.
Even so, several industry bodies and corporations have argued that wider progress towards low-carbon infrastructure has been too slow -- particularly in light of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) global warming report's conclusion that the world must achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 to avoid catastrophic climate change.
(Source: Greater Manchester Combined Authority, edie News, 7 January 2019) Contact: Greater Manchester Combined Authority, +44 161 778 7000, www.greatermanchester-ca.gov.uk
More Low-Carbon Energy News Building Carbon Emissions, Carbon Neutral, Net-Zero Carbon Emissions,
"The IPCC special report is a stark acknowledgment of what the consequences of global warming beyond 1.5 degrees will mean for billions of people around the world, especially those who call small island states home. This is not good news, but we cannot afford to ignore it." -- UN secretary general Antonio Guterres commenting on the slow progress of the COP24 talks centered on devising a rule book for implementing the 2015 Paris agreement and raising countries' level of ambition to counter climate change.
More Low-Carbon Energy News IPCC, Paris Climate Agreement, COP15, COP24, Climate Change,
From 2014 to 2016, CO2 emissions from energy production and industries held reasonably steady at stable limits and the global economy saw a modest growth. Emissions rose by 1.2 pct in 2017, pushed by greater GDP. Although this number nay be small, it isn't as far as IPCC report about keeping global temperature rise below 1.5C is concerned.
Presently, the Earth is heading towards a 3.2C rise by the end of the century. By 2030, global greenhouse gases emissions must be reduced by 55 pct and countries must increase their emissions reduction targets five-fold.
To meet the COP15 Paris climate change goals, global emissions must peak by 2020, which is unlikely even by 2030 when the current rise in emissions is taken into account.
But according to the report, all hope isn't lost. Non-state actors like high education institutions, businesses, regional, local and city governments can make major contributions to solving the problem. About 6,000 companies and over 7,000 cities from 133 nations have pledged to take action with revenue worth $36 trillion. With more than 500,000 publicly traded companies around the world, more can be done. This sector has the potential to cut down CO2 emissions by 19gigatonnes equivalent every year by 2030, keeping the world on the 2C path. Carbon trading systems and taxes cover just 15 pct of global carbon output, according to the UN report. (Source: UN, Industry News Network, Mary Bronson, 6 December, 2018)
More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions, CO2, Greenhouse Gas,
In October, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned that the world has only 8 years left to limit climate change catastrophe and that drastic cuts in carbon emissions will be needed if the world is to reach the COP15 pledge of keeping temperatures between 1.5C and 2C. Unfortunately, CO2 emissions hit a record high in 2017.
Although Poland has reduced its share of coal in power generation, the country still gets close to 80 pct of its electricity from the fossil fuel. Even so, Poland is planning construction of another major coal-fired power plant that the Environment Ministry promises will be the last.
However, some observers are skeptical since the the country's most recent energy plan would basically see the amount of coal in the energy mix remain unchanged at 80 pct until 2030, when coal reserves are expected to run dry.
Even so, Polish authorities are calling for a "just transition" for fossil fuel industries like coal which are facing closures as part of efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
(Source: REMI rfi, Others, Dec. 3, 2018)
More Low-Carbon Energy News Paris Climate Agreement, COP24, Coal, Climate Change,
"Not even the Trump Administration's own climate assessments can deny the severity of the climate crisis, as well as the risks for future generations. They can try to bury the findings of this report by releasing it quietly the day after Thanksgiving with hopes that people won't notice, but the realities of the climate crisis are stark and being felt by communities all over the country and the world right now.
"This report (National Climate Change Assessment) acknowledges much of what was outlined in the UN's IPCC report, noting that current efforts to mitigate climate change are not meeting the scale of the crisis. Yet, the report falls short of calling out the true culprit of the climate crisis: the fossil fuel industry. Meanwhile, the Trump Administration continues to roll back climate policy and prop up Big Oil, offering the fossil fuel industry tax subsidies at the cost of creating further conditions for devastating climate impacts.
"All the reports released this year point to the need for bold climate action now. For any shot at averting further climate catastrophe, all elected officials must reject dirty fossil fuel money and fight for a Green New Deal that puts climate and communities first. It's not enough to acknowledge the reality of climate change -- we need our members of Congress to walk the talk and support equitable solutions to this global crisis that lead to 100 pct renewable economies with no new fossil fuel projects."
350.org is U.S.-based, not-for-profit international environmental organization addressing climate change with the goal of reducing atmospheric carbon dioxide to 350ppm from the current level of 400 ppm.
Download the National Climate Assessment report HERE (Source: 350.org, 23 Nov., 2018) Contact: 350.org, (413) 678-5160, www.350.org.com
More Low-Carbon Energy News National Climate Change Assessment, Climate Chane Assessment, Climate Change,
"We've always been really clear that we support a carbon price -- obviously there's different ways a carbon price can be designed but from our perspective a carbon price is a really important part of a long term and effective response to climate change. I think in the Australian context what we'd really like to see is a really well integrated climate and energy policy which looks at affordability, reliability and emissions reductions, and that's what we're aiming for. At the moment we don't have a long term and effective climate and energy policy," Dr Wild says.
Dr. Wilds added, "We accept the IPCC's assessment of climate change science that warming of the climate is unequivocal, the human influence is clear and physical impacts are unavoidable. We believe that the world must pursue the twin objectives of limiting climate change in line with current international agreements while providing access to affordable energy."
Dr Wild also noted that "under all current plausible scenarios, fossil fuels will continue to be a significant part of the energy mix for decades."
(Source: BHP, AFR, Financial Review, 22 Oct., 2018) Contact: BHP Billiton, Dr. Fiona Wild, VP Sustainability and Climate Change, +61 3 9609 3333, www.bhpbilliton.com, www.bhp.com
More Low-Carbon Energy News Fiona Wild, BHP, Carbon Tax, CO2 Emissions, Climate Change,
Midpen, which stewards more than 63,000 acres of public open space, including redwood forests which store large amounts of carbon, is targeting a reduction in emissions of 20 pct below its 2016 baseline by 2022, 40 pct by 2030 and 80 pct by 2050. To that end, Midpen will reduce emissions from vehicles, equipment, employee commutes, business travel, offices and tenant residences, using renewable diesel fuel, installing electric vehicle chargers,and others. The plan also identifies strategies for reducing or offsetting emissions from livestock grazing in Midpen's open space preserves, enhancing carbon sequestration, reducing preserve visitor transportation emissions and increasing staff and visitor awareness of climate change.
This goal is in line with the Golden State's climate change policy and the Paris Climate Agreement, which aims to limit global warming to two degrees Celsius.
The Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District is a public agency committed to acquiring and preserving open space and agricultural land of regional significance, protect and restore the natural environment and provide opportunities for ecologically sensitive public enjoyment and education. (Source: Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, Siliconner, 13 Oct., 2018) Contact: Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District, Ana Maria Ruiz, Dir., (650) 691-1200, (650) 691-0485 (fax), firstname.lastname@example.org, www.openspace.org/climate
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Exxon notes its $1 million commitment is in keeping with its longstanding support for an imposed carbon tax rather than an array of environmental regulations that already drive up the cost of fossil fuels.
Exxon's support marks the first such initiative by a major oil company.
(Source: Exxon Mobil, Bloomberg, Various Media, Oct., 2018) Contact:
Exxon Mobil, William M. Colton, VP Strategic Planning, www.exxonmobil.com; Americans for Carbon Dividends, www.afcd.org
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"We ought to be talking about the things that we can do and still maintain a strong economy, because we're not going to be able to address it unless we keep a strong economy." -- Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D)
"It was given to me, and I want to look at who drew it because I can give you reports that are fabulous, and I can give you reports that aren't so good. But I will be looking at it, absolutely." -- Pres. Donald Trump
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The Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5C was approved by the IPCC on Saturday in Incheon, South. Korea. It will be a key scientific input into the Katowice Climate Change Conference in Poland in December, when governments review the Paris Agreement to tackle climate change.
"With more than 6,000 scientific references cited and the dedicated contribution of thousands of expert and government reviewers worldwide, this important report testifies to the breadth and policy relevance of the IPCC," said Hoesung Lee, Chair of the IPCC. Ninety-one authors and review editors from 40 countries prepared the IPCC report in response to an invitation from the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) when it adopted the Paris Agreement in 2015.
The report highlights a number of climate change impacts that could be avoided by limiting global warming to 1.5C compared to 2C, or more. For instance, by 2100, global sea level rise would be 10 cm lower with global warming of 1.5C compared with 2C. The likelihood of an Arctic Ocean free of sea ice in summer would be once per century with global warming of 1.5C, compared with at least once per decade with 2C. Coral reefs would decline by 70 -- 90 percent with global warming of 1.5C, whereas virtually all (99 percent) would be lost with 2C. Limiting global warming would also give people and ecosystems more room to adapt and remain below relevant risk thresholds.
The report also examines pathways available to limit warming to 1.5C, what it would take to achieve them and what the consequences could be. The report finds that limiting global warming to 1.5C would require rapid and far reaching transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities. Global net human-caused emissions of CO2 would need to fall by about 45 pct from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching net-zero around 2050. This means that any remaining emissions would need to be balanced by removing CO2from the air.
Allowing the global temperature to temporarily exceed or 'overshoot' 1.5C would mean a greater reliance on techniques that remove CO2 from the air to return global temperature to below 1.5C by 2100. The effectiveness of such techniques are unproven at large scale and some may carry significant risks for sustainable development, the report notes.
The report was prepared under the scientific leadership of all three IPCC working groups. Working Group I assesses the physical science basis of climate change; Working Group II addresses impacts, adaptation and vulnerability; and Working Group III deals with the mitigation of climate change.
The Paris Agreement adopted by 195 nations at the 21st Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC in December 2015 included the aim of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change by "holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2C above pre-industrial levels and pursuing efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels." As part of the decision to adopt the Paris Agreement, the IPCC was invited to produce, in 2018, the attached Special Report on global warming of 1.5C -- the first in a series of Special Reports to be produced in the IPCC's Sixth Assessment Cycle.
The IPCC is the leading world body for assessing the science related to climate change, its impacts and potential future risks, and possible response options.
Download the IPCC Report on
(Source: IPCC, PR,
8 October 2018) Contact: IPCC, +41 22 730 8208 / 54 / 84, Fax. +41 22 730 8025 / 13, Sec@wmo.int,
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"Even if it is technically possible, without aligning the technical, political and social aspects of feasibility, it is not going to happen. To limit warming below 1.5 C, or 2 C for that matter, requires all countries and all sectors to act." -- Glen Peters, Center for International Climate Research in Oslo.
"The report paints a very gloomy picture. Time is of the essence and there must be action behind the political ambitions if we are to succeed in slowing down climatic change to a manageable level." -- Lars Lilleholt, Denmark Climate Minister
"We are at a crossroads. The next 10--15 years will be critical." -- Jens Mattias Clausen, Climate & Climate Advisor, Greenpeace. (Source: CPH Post, 8 Oct., 2018)
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The report considers what it will take to prevent the Earth's average surface temperature from rising beyond 1.5C (2.7 degrees F) above pre-industrial levels.
The report notes with "high confidence" that at current GHG emissions levels we will pass the 1.5C marker around 2040. The report adds that to have at least a 50-50 chance of a 1.5 C world, the global economy must, by 2050, become "carbon neutral" and CO2 emissions peak not later than 2020 then fall dramatically.
The 22-page Summary also details the amount of CO2 we can dump into the atmosphere and still stay under the 1.5C threshold.
The report also identifies scenarios on the best way to ramp up the fight against climate change: adoption of new technologies to radically reduce energy needs; major reductions in energy consumption habits; removing massive amounts of CO2 out of the air, either though large-scale reforestation, use of biofuels; and direct carbon capture. The report notes the share of primary energy coming from renewables would have to jump to at least 50 pct by mid-century, and the share of coal drop from about 28 to between 1 and 7 pct.
Download the Sumary for Policymakers HERE.
(Source: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, PhysOrg, Various Media, Oct., 2018) Contact: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, www.ipcc.ch
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A carbon offset is a reduction in emissions of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gases made to compensate for an emission made elsewhere. (Source: IPCC, Public Service News Australia, 17 June, 2018)Contact: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, www.ipcc.ch; Climate Neutral Now initiative, https://unfccc.int/climate-action/climate-neutral-now; UNFCCC, https://unfccc.int
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The CCUS initiative will seek to support and accelerate existing CCUS projects such as those undertaken by the Carbon Sequestration Leadership Forum, the International Energy Agency (IEA), the IEA's Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme, Mission Innovation, and the Global CCS Institute.
The US, Saudi Arabia and Norway will lead the project, with international partners including Canada, China, Japan, Mexico, and the UK.
The technologies are predicted to play a key role in global decarbonization efforts, with nuclear set to make energy-intensive processes such as desalination, hydrogen production and energy storage carbon neutral.
Following the Paris Agreement, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and IEA predicted that CCUS would be essential to limiting global warming to 2 degree C. (Source: US DOE, Power Tech, 31 May, 2018)
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USC researchers used a catalyst called H-SAPO-34 derived from a class of nanoporous crystals (zeolites) to convert methane directly to ethylene and propylene, or olefin. The USC method replaced traditionally difficult, expensive and inefficient processes that add greenhouse gases to the atmosphere. The majority of ethylene and propylene is produced from petroleum oil and shale liquid cracking, which consumes enormous amounts of energy. Contact time is the key for this effective and simple catalyst to produce usable fuel from methane.
While similar in structure and name, methane is not directly interchangeable with methanol, although most methanol is synthetically produced from methane. The USC scientists have reduced the steps necessary to efficiently convert methane to olefins.
The research was made possible with the support of the USC Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute and the U.S. Department of Energy. (Source: University of Southern California News, 5 Feb., 2018) Contact: (USC) Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute (213) 740-5962, loker.usc.edu
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"The increase in greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere are having an effect. Our ability to predict that effect is very limited." -- US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson
"I would not agree that [carbon dioxide] is a primary driver to the global warming that we see." -- US EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt
When asked whether carbon dioxide is the main driver of climate change: "No. Most likely the primary control knob is the ocean waters and this environment that we live in." (Climate change is) "one contrived phony mess." -- US Secretary of Energy Rick Perry
"We don't know definitively, in my opinion, what is causing climate change." -- US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue
"An invisible, harmless trace gas in the Earth's atmosphere, CO2 is a plant food." -- Kathleen Hartnett White, Trump Nominee to lead the Council on Environmental Quality
"I'm still open-minded. Nobody really knows. Look, I'm somebody that gets it, and nobody really knows. It's not something that's so hard and fast. I do know this: Other countries are eating our lunch." -- U.S. President-elect Donald Trump discussing climate change.
More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change, Donald Trump,