Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Applying the Dharma for the preservation of planet Earth and its inhabitants
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Kim O'Hara
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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:52 pm

Germany to close all 84 of its coal-fired power plants, will rely primarily on renewable energy

Germany, one of the world’s biggest consumers of coal, will shut down all 84 of its coal-fired power plants over the next 19 years to meet its international commitments in the fight against climate change, a government commission said Saturday.

The announcement marked a significant shift for Europe’s largest country — a nation that had long been a leader on cutting CO2 emissions before turning into a laggard in recent years and badly missing its reduction targets. Coal plants account for 40% of Germany’s electricity, itself a reduction from recent years when coal dominated power production.

“This is an historic accomplishment,” said Ronald Pofalla, chairman of the 28-member government commission, at a news conference in Berlin following a marathon 21-hour negotiating session that concluded at 6 a.m. Saturday. The breakthrough ended seven months of wrangling. “It was anything but a sure thing. But we did it,” Pofalla said. “There won’t be any more coal-burning plants in Germany by 2038.” ...
:reading: https://www.latimes.com/world/europe/la ... story.html

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Wed Feb 20, 2019 12:04 pm

Business leaders are beginning to act, regardless of government policies.
Glencore moves to cap global coal output after investor pressure on climate change

... The Swiss-based resources giant said it would freeze coal production at current levels, and instead focus on commodities including copper, cobalt, nickel, vanadium and zinc, as part of its "global response to the increasing risks posed by climate change".

The company, headed by billionaire Ivan Glasenberg, acquired Rio Tinto's thermal coal business in 2017.

It said it would cap its global thermal and coking coal production at the current level of about 145 million tonnes after holding talks with the Climate Action 100+ initiative.

The group, whose global members collectively manage more than $US32 trillion in assets, includes a number of major Australian superannuation funds such as AMP Capital, AustralianSuper, Cbus, IFM Investors, QSuper and BT Financial Group.
[url]https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-02-20/ ... e/10831154[/url

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Wed Mar 27, 2019 6:06 am

Breaking down neoliberalism, one bit at a time -
How Insane is Global Trade?

The way trade works in the global economy can be insane – it wastes resources, worsens climate change, and undermines the livelihoods of millions of small-scale producers worldwide. Yet it is an almost unavoidable consequence of de-regulatory ‘free trade’ agreements and the billions of dollars in supports and subsidies – many of them hidden – that prop up the global economy.

To raise awareness about this issue, we’ve produced a short film and a fully-referenced factsheet that helps to explain how and why ‘insane trade’ happens:

Read our ‘Insane Trade’ Factsheet (PDF)

Watch and Share our 3-Minute Film ...
https://www.localfutures.org/programs/g ... factsheet/

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Sat Mar 30, 2019 11:07 am

The Coal Cost Crossover: Economic Viability Of Existing Coal Compared To New Local Wind And Solar Resources
March 24, 2019

America has officially entered the “coal cost crossover” – where existing coal is increasingly more expensive than cleaner alternatives. Today, local wind and solar could replace approximately 74 percent of the U.S. coal fleet at an immediate savings to customers. By 2025, this number grows to 86 percent of the coal fleet.

This analysis complements existing research into the costs of clean energy undercutting coal costs, by focusing on which coal plants could be replaced locally (within 35 miles of the existing coal plant) at a saving.

It suggests local decision-makers should consider plans for a smooth shut-down of these old plants—assessing their options for reliable replacement of that electricity, as well as financial options for communities dependent on those plants.

This report should begin a longer conversation about the most cost-effective replacement for coal, which may include combinations of local or remote wind, solar, transmission, storage, and demand response.
:reading: https://energyinnovation.org/publicatio ... crossover/

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:35 pm

Excellent news on EV's -
Batteries have been getting smaller and cheaper so much faster than expected that the experts at Bloomberg NEF (BNEF) have had to revise their own projections for electric vehicles every year.

BNEF projected in 2017 that “the crossover point when electric vehicles will be cheaper upfront than a combustion vehicle” would be 2026 (nine years), BNEF energy analyst Nathaniel Bullard tweeted last week.

But things have changed quickly since then and the timeframe has narrowed significantly: in 2018, it was 2024 (six years), and now, in 2019, BNEF projects the crossover point will be 2022 — just three years away.

Achieving parity for upfront, initial cost means that the buying decision for electric vehicles (EVs) is about to become a no-brainer. And that means decarbonizing much of the transportation sector is also becoming a no-brainer. ...
https://thinkprogress.org/electric-vehi ... 86bd2aebe/

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Sun Apr 21, 2019 10:38 pm

A very good explainer from Climate Reality on Natural Gas and fracking.
...

IS NATURAL GAS A CLEAN FORM OF ENERGY?

No.

See, that was easy.

When people make this argument, they’re (mostly) referring to one thing in particular that is indeed true of natural gas: a new, efficient natural gas power plant emits around 50 percent less carbon dioxide (CO2) during combustion when compared with a typical coal-based power plant, according to the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL).

To be sure, we should take seriously any source of energy that reduces our dependence on coal and oil, the primary sources of the carbon emissions that drive climate change. But let’s also engage in some real talk: 50 percent less CO2 isn’t zero CO2, and reaching net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by the second half of this century is essential to the long-term health of our planet and ourselves.

Plus, CO2 isn’t the only harmful GHG emission generated by natural gas development. Which brings us back to methane.

Methane is a very, very powerful greenhouse gas. In the atmosphere, compared to carbon, it’s fairly short-lived: only about 20 percent of the methane emitted today will still be in the atmosphere after 20 years. However, when it first enters the atmosphere, it’s around 120 times more powerful than CO2 at trapping heat and 86 times stronger over a 20-year period.

“While methane doesn't linger as long in the atmosphere as carbon dioxide, it is initially far more devastating to the climate because of how effectively it absorbs heat,” according to the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF).

Bottom line: We’re still talking about a fossil fuel here, one that still contributes to climate change when burned.

Period.

PERSONAL KNOWLEDGE IS PERSONAL POWER

So what do we do? We fight back. ...
https://www.climaterealityproject.org/b ... ossil-fuel

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Mon Jun 10, 2019 10:22 am

Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is plunging $500 million into an effort to close all of the nation's remaining coal plants by 2030 and put the United States on track toward a 100% clean energy economy.

Addressing the Massachusetts Institute of Technology commencement, Bloomberg laid out his plan, which in many ways bypasses the top national politicians even though, as he told MIT's class of 2019, "climate change is now first and foremost a political problem, not a scientific quandary or even a technological puzzle."

Bloomberg said he'd work with states and utilities to shutter "every last U.S. coal-fired power plant by 2030." It's a goal he says is achievable -- "we're already more than halfway there," he said ...
:reading: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/michael-bl ... s-by-2030/

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Virgo » Sun Jun 16, 2019 7:23 pm

A nice hour long video of Paul Beckwith at the Kanata-Carleton Green Party Nomination Meeting:


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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Mon Jun 17, 2019 10:39 am

Meanwhile, South of the (Canadian) Border ...
Leading carbon price proposals: A bipartisan dialogue
Featuring U.S. Sen. Chris Coons and U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney

Economists overwhelmingly recommend a price on carbon as a way to control the risk of climatic disruption. A fee on carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions would shift the relative prices of different sources of energy and other goods by an amount that depends on how damaging they are to the earth’s climate. A well-designed, economy-wide approach could help the United States achieve its emissions targets under the Paris Accord, lower conventional air pollutants, supplant more costly and less effective regulation, incentivize investment and innovation, and obviate a proliferation of disparate state-level measures. It could also help pay for infrastructure investments, rebates to households, deficit reduction, and other priorities.

Lawmakers from both parties are increasingly proposing new legislation with a price on carbon at its center. This event will showcase the policy ideas of two such climate thought leaders in Congress, U.S. Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) and U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney (R-Fla.), to explore the potential for common ground on the polarized but critical issue of reducing the risk of dangerous climatic disruption. We will discuss such questions as how best to use the revenue from a carbon price, how to protect emissions-intensive trade-exposed industries, and how to build enduring bipartisan support for climate action. ...
:reading: https://www.brookings.edu/events/leadin ... -dialogue/

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Thu Jun 20, 2019 5:50 am

More for American friends -
Seawalls to protect US against rising oceans could cost $416bn by 2040

Defending against rising seas could cost US communities $416bn in the next 20 years, according to a new report.

Spending on seawalls alone could total almost as much as the initial investment in the interstate highway system, the authors said. And the billions involved will represent just a fraction of adaptation efforts governments in coastal states will have to fund if they do not want to simply retreat. ...

“I don’t think anybody’s thought about the magnitude of this one small portion of overall adaptation costs and it’s a huge number,” said Richard Wiles, executive director of the Center for Climate Integrity (CCI), which published the report.

Estimates of how much sea-level rise will cost often focus on impacts by 2100, Wiles said, adding that people will be paying for the climate crisis much earlier.

“You’re looking at close to half a trillion spent over the next 20 years and no one has thought about that. So the question is, who’s going to pay for that? Is it really going to be taxpayers? The current position of climate polluters is that they should pay nothing, and that’s just not tenable.”

According to the report, Florida faces the highest costs, $76bn by 2040. Louisiana comes in second at $38bn and North Carolina third at $35bn. ... Many places are starting to pay such bills. Staten Island in New York, for example, is planning a $615m, five-mile seawall to withstand a 300-year storm. ...
:reading: https://www.theguardian.com/environment ... ost-report

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Re: Climate change mitigation and adaptation - omnibus thread

Post by Kim O'Hara » Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:10 am

Chennai water crisis in India leaves millions reliant on filthy wells and expensive trucked-in supply

Millions of people in the South Indian city of Chennai, the country's sixth largest metropolis, are facing an acute water shortage as the main reservoirs have dried up after a poor monsoon season. Some schools in the city have cut working hours and dozens of hotels and some restaurants have reportedly shut down due to the shortage.

The city of more than 4.5 million has been left to rely on wells and water brought in by truck. Thousands of wells dug across the city are leading to a rapid drop in the ground water level, and raising even further the concerns of environmentalists.
New wells are being dug as deep as 1,000 feet. Much of the water they produce isn't even fit to drink. ...

All four of the primary reservoirs that supply water to the city have dried up, either partly or completely.

On Tuesday, K. Palaniswami, chief minister of Tamil Nadu state where Chennai is located, acknowledged the crisis would continue for about five more months [which is when the next rains season is due]. "Until then we have to meet the requirements only from groundwater sources," he said. ...
:reading: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/chennai-wa ... 019-06-20/

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