General / Off-Topic Recycle or Die! (the elite environmental thread)

Exactly as i was saying. 'Dirty' CO2 energy production is decreasing (and has been for a few years now), clean/renewable energy production is increasing, and not just in china.
Only half of that statement is true.

The IEA shows us that global renewable energy production is indeed increasing (~450TWh) but Coal & Gas production also increased and by a larger overall degree (~500TWh).

You may have meant Mtce of consumption (Megatonnes of Coal Equivalent, which has been decreasing), but that doesn't mean energy production. It also caters for things like direct consumption in domestic and industrial environments. The thing that's enabled coal to be removed from these settings aren't renewables, but gas.

Direct quote from the IEA reporting on their findings for 2018:

"Coal grew more than any other single source of generation in 2018, accounting for 26% of total additional generation. With a 38% market share, it remains the largest source of electricity generation. The highest increase in coal power generation took place in China, followed by India. These countries more than offset significant reductions in the United States, Europe and Japan.

Natural gas was the second-largest single source of global electricity generation and grew by almost 240 TWh, nearly as much as coal. Most of the increase came from the United States, where gas-fired generation rose by 15% to overtake coal as the largest source of generation."

You might also be interested in the IEA's projections for Coal going forward.
 
An example.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_subsidies#Subsidies_by_country

We have the dirtiest oil that used to be called tar sands, but are now called oil sands. Marketing works i guess.
These companies come in, promise to restore the land when they've finished, rake in tax incentives, destroy the land, claim bankruptcy, close shop, leave land and water tables unfit to support any animal life.
Nowhere do bonds or other insurances come into play. It's a bad joke.
I can't speak to specific instances and I should be clear that I'm not trying to pretend that fossil fuel companies are saintly. If a company or group of companies have done what you've claimed then I'd imagine they'll be on the end of a legal action at some point, and rightly so.

At the same time, there's some self-serving demonisation of them going on and I don't think that tallies with the facts when you look past the rhetoric.

Let's look at the types of subsidy from your link - tell me which of these you do think fossil fuels get and renewables don't? Then tell me which renewables get and fossil fuels don't. Then let's compare the amount of that subsidy compared to it's contribution to the energy mix. From your wiki page:
  • Direct financial transfers – grants to producers; grants to consumers; low-interest or preferential loans to producers. [both get]
  • Preferential tax treatments – rebates or exemption on royalties, duties, producer levies and tariffs; tax credit; accelerated depreciation allowances on energy supply equipment. [both get]
  • Trade restrictions – quota, technical restrictions and trade embargoes. [renewables at the expense of fossil fuels]
  • Energy-related services provided by government at less than full cost – direct investment in energy infrastructure; public research and development. [renewables at the expense of fossil fuels]
  • Regulation of the energy sector – demand guarantees and mandated deployment rates; price controls; market-access restrictions; preferential planning consent and controls over access to resources. [renewables at the expense of fossil fuels]
  • Failure to impose external costs – environmental externality costs; energy security risks and price volatility costs [both get, renewables more so in the UK]
  • Depletion Allowance – allows a deduction from gross income of up to ~27% for the depletion of exhaustible resources (oil, gas, minerals). [fossil fuels get]
We can do numbers and details if you want, but to preempt what I'll be able to show; the alledgedly massive subsidies that the fossil fuels get are really down to the following two elements;
  1. most countries apply a reduced VAT/Sales Tax to energy (also benefits renewables but looks like a big pro-fossil subsidy because they supply the majority of energy)
  2. arbitrarily determined "failure to impose external costs" through the application of a social cost of carbon
It short, at best these massive subsidies are (at a global level) highly debatable and at worst complete nonsense.
 
The UK is claiming that all its coal power plants will be closed by 2025, which will just leave gas as the last fossil fuel for electricity generation.
In France, the government confirms the 2022 deadline for the closure of coal-fired power plants.

However, coal removal is not yet enshrined in the law. :rolleyes:
 
Read about EU plan to retire 2/3 of Coal mines by 2030 - which will cost 160 000 jobs.
Still pointless if Asia isn't on board, this won't make much of difference, other than they will have a lot of Coal rotting in the ground.

Also i find it ironic, that they are promting Renewable energy, at the same time promoting Climate Change, which this Renewable Energy is dependant on. Basically creating an Unstable Energy Sector.
 
I'm pretty sure the EU is not 'promoting Climate Change' (can you actually do that even?). However as we cover in this very thread since it started, the vast majority of science on the subject of AGW (man made climate change) agrees we (humans) are driving the CO2 increases that have been attributed to climate changes events and affects. And when i say the vast majority of the science, i mean from all over the globe, so not just the EU. Even in countries that have governments hostile to renewable energy (like the USA and Australia), the majority of their own scientists are in agreement with the general concensus.

However a very small, and predominately funded by the Oil Industry, group of scientists and politicians are putting 100% effort in confusing the issue and that gets reported on quite widely in most right wing press (which is the majority of western media outlets: Fox News, The Times, The Economist, The Daily Mail, The Sun etc).

The EU is obviously a key player in the renewable energy sector as that offers the best future prospects to reduce AGW effects (increased CO2 output) and provide their own energy production security.

Natural gas was the second-largest single source of global electricity generation and grew by almost 240 TWh, nearly as much as coal. Most of the increase came from the United States, where gas-fired generation rose by 15% to overtake coal as the largest source of generation."
The Trump effect in action i guess? It will take the USA a while to 'recover' from his administration (on many fronts!), and the 'world' a little longer in terms of the AGW wrecking ball he represents.
 
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Read about EU plan to retire 2/3 of Coal mines by 2030 - which will cost 160 000 jobs.
France closed its last mine in 2004, last British mine closed in 2015, Germany and Spain closed theirs in 2018.
Remaining mines are in eastern Europe, mostly Poland.
As seen in Greece and Cyprus, Brussels doesn't really give a **** about people. Might be interesting to see the miners march on Brussels but I wouldn't expect them to make much impression.
In Poland the power generators are state owned (PGE) so make their position known via the government. The Unions are more vocal, Konfederacja Związków Zawodowych Górnictwa w Polsce.
 
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I'm pretty sure the EU is not 'promoting Climate Change' (can you actually do that even?). However as we cover in this very thread since it started, the vast majority of science on the subject of AGW (man made climate change) agrees we (humans) are driving the CO2 increases that have been attributed to climate changes events and affects. And when i say the vast majority of the science, i mean from all over the globe, so not just the EU. Even in countries that have governments hostile to renewable energy (like the USA and Australia), the majority of their own scientists are in agreement with the general concensus.
To reiterate something I've mentioned a few times on this thread;

The consensus as described by Cook et al. (the origin of the 97% consensus claim) is:

a) the Earth has warmed.
b) Human has significantly contributed to that warming.

That's it. Anything that you deem to be part of the science beyond those two statements (including the statement "CO2 is a primary driver in the global climate") is not part of the consensus.

However a very small, and predominately funded by the Oil Industry, group of scientists and politicians are putting 100% effort in confusing the issue and that gets reported on quite widely in most right wing press (which is the majority of western media outlets: Fox News, The Times, The Economist, The Daily Mail, The Sun etc).
You're confusing your ideology for a scientific consensus. And a scientific consensus means nothing in science anyway, especially when the real number is 32% (rather than 97%) of the self-selecting Cook et al study which spawned it.

The fact is, there is considerable uncertainty in the science as it stands and it's accompanying policy path/s. Oil-related conspiracy theories are not needed to explain opposition to extremely expensive policy paths based on weak science. If you have specific stuff you want to point out that's weak (which I'm sure there will be plenty of) then crack on and lets discuss it - but by and large what you're really complaining about here are media outlets willing to disengage from "groupthink" - which overall is a good thing in my opinion. People at least get to make an informed choice between opposing arguments.

Only the RCP8.5 scare-stories even lend CAGW credence and they are, as I recently pointed out, extremely weak tools to base public policy on. Massive de-industrialization/de-carbonisation are non-sequitur from the acknowledgement of AGW. The fact that, despite 54 pages of discussion in this thread, you can't comprehend that and boldly state that any opposition to any such proposed change must be funded by bad actors is;
  1. logically flawed - can you argue against any rebuttal points or is the accusation of Oil funding enough to discredit people? I recall you making that accusation against Bjorn Lomborg without actually arguing against any of his points (which, for ease, are that whilst AGW is real there are far, far better things for us to be spending money on).
  2. deeply cynical and conspiracy theorist - how do you explain people pointing out the errors who aren't funded by Oil? Could it be that they've seen something that you haven't? Why aren't you considering that?
The EU is obviously a key player in the renewable energy sector as that offers the best future prospects to reduce AGW effects (increased CO2 output) and provide their own energy production security.
Actually truth here. Once you accept that AGW and it's relationship to CO2 emissions are de-facto issues, the EU has been consistent on the issue and it's approach (at least with regard to the energy sector). Energy security is absolutely a part of this.

The Trump effect in action i guess? It will take the USA a while to 'recover' from his administration (on many fronts!), and the 'world' a little longer in terms of the AGW wrecking ball he represents.
Erm, no. If your goal is to reduce CO2 emissions in a way that the economy can sustain then this is, by any measure, the best way to tackle the first stage of it. That you don't know/can't see that doesn't do you credit. The overall decrease in US emissions since 2007 has completely been built on a coal-to-gas platform. Without that, no emissions reduction.
 
I know you are not a fan of what people generally use when they say 'scientific consensus on AGW'. We've been back and forward over that, and ultimately it boils down to your own prejudices on the issue. You have your opinion on the matter (strong ones) and any evidence (and we are talking about a global spread of scientists that agree on what 'they' mean about the consensus on AGW) you refute and make an argument on semantics. I'm very happy using 'scientific consensus' in relation to AGW concerns as i can point all through this thread to such evidence for one.

Yours is a harder task as you literally need to contact all the scientists involved in AGW research and get their personal assurance they are not part of this 'consensus' that is widely talked about and used in most reports, that is your burden of proof (which i don't envy you!). Here is a recent article yours is the burden of proof to dispute in the use of 'consensus':





There are many other links (many in this thread!) i could put here showing usage of 'scientific consensus' and what it is widely held to mean in repsects to climate change effects.
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Anyway some more good news on the UK going in the right direction over energy production:

'Britain in two-week coal-free record':


Britain has not used coal to generate electricity for two weeks - the longest period since the 1880s. The body which manages the way electricity is generated said coal was last used at 15:12 on 17 May.

Fintan Slye, director of the National Grid Electricity System Operator (ESO), said the British record for solar power had also been broken this month. Britain broke the record for a week of no coal earlier this month, which Mr Slye said would be a "new normal".

The government plans to phase out the UK's last coal-fired plants by 2025 to reduce carbon emissions and Mr Slye said there was "still a lot of work to do". But he added: "As more and more renewables come onto the system, we're seeing things progress at an astonishing rate."
The guardian also covered it in a little more detail, but as i'm just happy the BBC has started to do these reports again i thought they deserved the link.

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Also an interesting analysis looking at the cost of lobbying against action on climate change:


Political lobbying in the US that helped block the progress of proposed climate regulation a decade ago led to a social cost of $60bn, according to a new study.

Environmental economists Dr Kyle Meng and Dr Ashwin Rode have produced what they believe is the first attempt to quantify the toll such anti-climate lobbying efforts take on society.

The pair say their work reveals the power firms can have in curtailing government action on climate change, in the face of “overwhelming evidence” that its social benefits outweigh the costs, which range from reduced farming yields to lower GDP.

Crucially, they found that the various fossil-fuel and transport companies expecting to emerge as “losers” after the bill were more effective lobbyists than those expecting gains.

The authors say their results, published in Nature Climate Change, support the conclusion that lobbying is partly responsible for the scarcity of climate regulations being enacted around the world.
 
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Anyway some more good news on the UK going in the right direction over energy production:

'Britain in two-week coal-free record':

Coal mines became unprofitable already in the 1950s, and began mass closing ever since, because in England, mining coal became much more expensive than importing it.
From over 1 million jobs in 1920 to 700 000 jobs in 1950s, to 50 000 jobs in 1990, and down to 10 000 in 2000.

I would say this is a very bad sign, because you have Coal reservers which you can't use or sell because it's to expensive to mine it. That's just a waste of natural resources and massive job loss.

The more i look at it, the more Europe turning in to Service sector for common workers. Feels like this lack of diversity in job sector will become our undoing in the future. Economy which is to expensive to employ it's own population. Now that's more troubling to me than CO2 levels.
 
The more i look at it, the more Europe turning in to Service sector for common workers. Feels like this lack of diversity in job sector will become our undoing in the future. Economy which is to expensive to employ it's own population. Now that's more troubling to me than CO2 levels.
It's an opinion for sure. The thing is we can build an economy on the renewable energy sector, the trouble is the main thrust of the economy (as it is) has been in the Big Oil sectors (and other damaging to the environment parts). We need to rethink and then rebuild the whole global economy to take sustainability and renewables into account. That is also an opinion, but i'd happily wager in 50-100 years most people are going to be looking back at 'us' and saying 'what the heck were they dragging their feet for? CO2 issues were obviously the biggest issues of the day!'

Without a world you can live comfortably in, grow crops in, do business in, well you have nothing to build anything in then, economy or humanities prospects just down the line. The kids striking from schools currently, they are not wrong. What world are they going to be given to live and try to raise families in? We have to change, and soon.
 
It's an opinion for sure. The thing is we can build an economy on the renewable energy sector, the trouble is the main thrust of the economy (as it is) has been in the Big Oil sectors (and other damaging to the environment parts). We need to rethink and then rebuild the whole global economy to take sustainability and renewables into account. That is also an opinion, but i'd happily wager in 50-100 years most people are going to be looking back at 'us' and saying 'what the heck were they dragging their feet for? CO2 issues were obviously the biggest issues of the day!'

Without a world you can live comfortably in, grow crops in, do business in, well you have nothing to build anything in then, economy or humanities prospects just down the line. The kids striking from schools currently, they are not wrong. What world are they going to be given to live and try to raise families in? We have to change, and soon.
The thing is, that everyone expects the governments to solve this. I see the 'kids' as 20-something in our office don't give a flying biowaste about their consumption. The drink coffer from disposable mugs and they obviously take the unnecessary plastic lids. Instead of eating at the cantine, they take the food is plastic boxes to eat at the office kitchen. They are buying bottled water when tap water is tip-top and when drying their hands in the restrooms, they don't shake water off - better to tear tons of paper tissues! I.e. on a personal level they are worse than older generations.

I for one think, that
1. We won't avoid severe climate change, but parts of the world will continue to do surprisingly well
2. This problem will be 'solved' by things that just happen, rapid population growth decline (in fact India too will drop below reproduction rate), us not buying physical meda (but download it) and hip stuff like vegetable based meat

As about building on renewable energy industry in EU: when all the technology and scale of production of critical components like batteries, solar cells, etc. is coming from Asia, it is nigh impossible to become competitive.
 
The destruction of unsold non-food products, such as clothing, household appliances, hygiene or beauty products, will be banned in France in two to four years, Prime Minister announced on Tuesday, June 4. This measure will require those products to be donated or recycled.

That’s good for the ecology, no doubt.
 
«Record year» for organic farming in France in 2018, with two million hectares under organic cultivation in 2018. The activity now covers 7.5% of the country’s useful agricultural area, and 10% of farmers work in organic, according to the Bio Agency.

That’s good for the ecology, no doubt. :)
 
That is also an opinion, but i'd happily wager in 50-100 years most people are going to be looking back at 'us' and saying 'what the heck were they dragging their feet for? CO2 issues were obviously the biggest issues of the day!'
If most people can look back at a vaguely accurate record of history that's a hundred years old a hundred years from now and have a basic understanding of why their world is however it is, it will mean the worst case scenario was averted.

I'm not sure that very much of the world will be that well off.

The thing is, that everyone expects the governments to solve this. I see the 'kids' as 20-something in our office don't give a flying biowaste about their consumption. The drink coffer from disposable mugs and they obviously take the unnecessary plastic lids. Instead of eating at the cantine, they take the food is plastic boxes to eat at the office kitchen. They are buying bottled water when tap water is tip-top and when drying their hands in the restrooms, they don't shake water off - better to tear tons of paper tissues! I.e. on a personal level they are worse than older generations.
That's probably why they expect the government to do something.

Personally, I'd be pretty content if governments simply stopped exacerbating these problems.

I for one think, that
1. We won't avoid severe climate change, but parts of the world will continue to do surprisingly well
These are largely mutually exclusive statements.

Severe climate change doesn't have to happen everywhere for virtually everyone to suffer greatly because of it. Perhaps, a tiny handful will benefit at the expense of everyone else, but even people in the most idyllic climates are going to suffer from the mass migrations, wars over resources, and government crackdowns as the powers that be try to retain control over an increasingly chaotic world filled with increasingly desperate people.

2. This problem will be 'solved' by things that just happen, rapid population growth decline (in fact India too will drop below reproduction rate), us not buying physical meda (but download it) and hip stuff like vegetable based meat
Enough people dying will solve many of the survivors' problems, but that's little consolation to the dead, and plenty of damage will already have been done.

This measure will require those products to be donated or recycled.

That’s good for the ecology, no doubt.
Donated or recycled is often just another wasteful stage before being trashed.
 
In Europe, cruise ships pollute ten times more than all cars.

According to a study published on Wednesday, the world leader in luxury cruising, Carnival Corporation, alone emitted ten times more sulphur oxide around the European coast in 2017 than all the 260 million cars in the European park.
 
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