1. South Australia going for broke
Malcolm Turnbull would call it a ‘reckless, irresponsible, ideological frolic’, but South Austria has been running 63% on wind and solar during the last few months, and is going for broke.
Giles Parkinson says SA must, and will, lead world on renewables.
The Weatherill and Koutsantonis strategy is to embrace new technologies, cheap wind and solar and storage, smart software and smarter management, and put into practice the sort of scenarios envisaged by the CSIRO, Energy Networks Australia and more recently by the storage review commissioned by chief scientist Alan Finkel.
All that can stop Weatherill and Koutsantonis is Nick Xenophon at the next election putting the LNP into office. Continue reading Climate clippings 118
The Australia Institute has looked at the penetration of renewables required in the electricity market to meet our Paris commitments, and come to the conclusion that we need from 66 to 75% renewables by 2030, rather than the weak 26-28% currently being assumed in relation to the Finkel review.
The basic issue is simple. If we don’t maximise the reductions in the electricity sector, we’ll have trouble meeting our overall Paris commitment, full stop. It will require a large and expensive effort in other areas such as agriculture. Completely decarbonising electricity was always the low hanging fruit. We appear to be ignoring this strategy completely, and the new report does not help all that much. Continue reading Are we serious about our Paris commitments?
Coal India, the largest coal mining company in the world, has announced it will close 37 mines because they are no longer economically viable. That’s around 9 per cent of the state-run firm’s mines.
The government has announced it will not build any more coal plants after 2022 and predicts renewables will generate 57 per cent of its power by 2027 – a pledge far outstripping its commitment in the Paris climate change agreement.
Continue reading Climate clippings 208
In August last year in Climate clippings 181 (Item 5) I linked to a report by Climate Analytics examining the impacts on Australia of limiting global temperature rise to 1.5°C and 2°C.
For me the crux of the report is this, from a discussion piece at The Conversation:
The report predicts that half of the world’s identified tipping points – such as the collapse of polar ice sheets and the drying out of the Amazon rainforest – would be crossed under 2C warming, compared with 20% of them at 1.5℃.
If we go to 2℃, we will have a very different climate and there is a good chance we won’t be able to stabilise there. The bad news is that if we just carry on we’ll reach 1.5C by 2024, and 2C by 2036. Continue reading Science shows the need for urgent climate action
Trump has announced that the US will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement and seek to negotiate a ‘better’ agreement. I liked Emmanuel Macron’s reaction – “Lets make the planet great again”. Germany, France and Italy have committed to carry on, China will relish the opportunity to move into the vacuum.
Paul Hawken, who knows more about climate change action than most (post coming up) recently said:
First of all, let’s be honest: The US has never led in this area. Ever. When they’ve tried on an executive level, they’ve never been supported by Congress. States have led, cities have led, but never the federal government.
Even so, he said people in the US think they lead in “this stuff”. They don’t, it’s Germany, China, France and Denmark. Continue reading Trump shoots himself in the foot on climate
A record 177 countries signed the UN Paris climate agreement in New York on 22 April. That was a record for signing any international agreement on one day.
A few short days earlier another record had been broken – for the first time on any day CO2 emissions exceeded 409 parts per million. If you want some perspective on how aggressively we are forcing the climate, take a look at this graph, albeit from 2013: Continue reading After Paris, how do we really tackle climate change?