This week might be remembered as one of the turning points in the fight against climate change as good news came from Canada, India and the European Union. The Paris Agreement will indeed come into force by the end of the year.
This could be another turnaround for the fight against climate change as the G7 is willing to eliminate subsidies for oil, coal and natural gas within the decade.
Now these are great news but there is a major catch, or perhaps two… The first one the date : by 2100, as in 85 years… The second one, they didn’t say even how they would cut emissions.
As odd as it might seem, oil prices at $60 are not making it any easier for Big Oil and the likes. The Financial Times published two articles on how coal, oil and gas are through tought times. Let us review them here.
As you know, the Russian city of Sochi is the host of the Winter Olympics since Friday. According to a brand new study, this might be the right time as it is most probable the city won’t be able to do so in the future because of climate change.
According to the climatologists from the University of Waterloo, Canada : ” Only six of the previous Winter Olympics host cities will be cold enough to reliably host the Games by the end of this century if global warming projections prove accurate ”
Even artificial snow making won’t be enough to provide snow for Winter Olympics by mid-century if rising temperatures were to continue unabated.
To Enerdata ” global wind capacity increased by 12.5% in 2013, reaching 318,137 MW. During the year, 35,467 MW were installed worldwide, which is almost 10 GW below capacity additions in 2012. “
” US installations were badly impacted by a policy gap created by the US Congress in 2012; in Europe, installations grew by a modest 8%, and were pulled by two countries, Germany and the United Kingdom. “
” Installations soared in China (+16.1 GW, i.e. +21% to 91.4 GW), in Canada (+1.6 GW, i.e. +26%, to 7.8 GW) and in Australia (+655 MW, i.e. + 25%, to 3.2 GW). “
We have seen in previous articles on how taxing carbon makes a lot of sense. Ireland and Australia have already implemented them with resounding successes. Both China and South Africa are planning to enact one by 2015.
Now the Economist and Grist published articles on a third example of a successful carbon tax implementation, and one pretty close to the United States as it is in British Columbia (Canada)
And it is pretty much astounding as overall emissions there fell by as much as ten percent between 2008 and 2011. Let’s hope it is continuing that trend.
Do you know Kickstarter, the world’s largest funding platform more used to fund video games and other similar projects ? Well, one of its recent successes is the Nanolight, perhaps the world’s most efficient light bulb.
Only consuming 12 W to offer the light of the traditional 100 W incandescent bulb, the Nanolight was developed by three students from the University of Toronto, Canada thanks to the +$240,000 they gathered (they wanted to gather $20,000).
This light bulb has many other great features including omnidirectional light, full brightness as soon as it is switched on and so on.
According to the most comprehensive research on the subject, soot – also known as black carbon – may have a significantly higher role in climate change than previously estimated.
According to a BBC article quoting the study : ” (soot) dark particles are having a warming effect approximately two thirds that of carbon dioxide, and greater than methane. “
Tackling its emissions – which come mostly from wood and coal burning as well as diesel engines in developed countries – would be easy to tackle.
Are we finally getting things right on climate change ? Not completely, but what happened last week may be a good omen for the Rio +20 conference. As I noted in a post published yesterday on Cleantechies : ” Further to the Camp David meeting last week, G8 leaders agreed to act on climate change … Read more