In this post I’d like to identify a few technologies that are under development which go beyond the standard wind and solar. However, first I’ll link to a Climate Institute report prepared around the time of the Paris climate talks last year, which showed that in 2013 for the first time more new energy capacity was created in the form of renewables, rather than coal, gas, oil or nuclear. Back in 2001 renewables only accounted for 19% of new capacity. Now the proportion has reached 58% and is climbing steeply: Continue reading Clean power for the future
1. The scientific consensus remains solid
Suzanne Goldenberg in The Guardian has the story. A study led by John Cook of Skeptical Science fame considered the work of some 29,000 scientists published in 11,994 academic papers between 1991 and 2011.
Of the 4,000-plus papers that took a position on the causes of climate change only 0.7% or 83 of those thousands of academic articles, disputed the scientific consensus that climate change is the result of human activity, with the view of the remaining 2.2% unclear.
The survey found that the consensus has grown slowly over time, and reached about 98% in 2011.
Of the papers which specifically examine the contributors to global warming, they virtually all conclude that humans are the dominant cause over the past 50 to 100 years.
2010 possibly the worst ever for extreme weather
That’s according to über-meteorologist Jeff Masters posting at Climate Progress.
The year was extraordinary, featuring the hottest year on record equalling 2005, the most extreme winter Arctic atmospheric circulation on record, the warmest and driest winter on record for North America-Canada, the lowest volume of Arctic sea ice on record and 3rd lowest in extent, a record melting in Greenland, the second most extreme shift from El Niño to La Niña, the second worst coral bleaching year, the wettest year over land, the Amazon rainforest experienced its 2nd 100-year drought in 5 years and, it must be said, we had the lowest global tropical cyclone activity on record. Here’s the precipitation graph: Continue reading Climate clippings 33
Severe weather alert: a busy hurricane season
That’s the forecast for 2011.
The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting a 70 per cent chance of 12 to 18 named storms, six to 10 of which are likely to reach hurricane force – with wind speeds of at least 119 kilometres per hour.
Renewables need consistent policy
From Climate Spectator:
Andrew Garrad, the founder of Garrad Hassan, the world’s largest renewable energy consultancy, has an interesting way of describing Australia’s stop-start renewable energy policy. It goes something like this, in binary code, where nought represents a step backwards, and one represents an advance: 100101100101011010010. The point he’s making is that, more than anything, renewables need consistent policy. And in Australia, and elsewhere in the world, that has been clearly lacking.
The rest of the article is worth reading. Greg Hunt shows what it would be like to have a climate change minister who is interested in climate change.
The Koreans show how to pick winners:
he suspects the future may be dominated by the Korean companies who have become household names in electrical appliances. The likes of Samsung and Hyundai are investing huge sums into clean-tech. “They are going to do things, very fast and well.”
Hunt picks algae as a winner “echoing predictions that it could emerge as a $20 billion industry.” Continue reading Climate clippings 26