Category Archives: Greenhouse gas emissions

Budget is vital test of UK government’s green credentials

Analysis: Ministers urged to show global leadership as Britain prepares to host UN Cop26 climate talks

The budget this week will be a vital test of Boris Johnson’s green credentials, with campaigners watching keenly to see whether plans match up to the government’s repeated claims to be creating a “green industrial revolution”.

After this week, there are no more formal budgets to come before the UK hosts the vital UN Cop26 climate talks in Glasgow later this year. Meanwhile several of the government’s flagship green policies are in difficulties.

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Denmark’s climate policies ‘insufficient’ to meet 2030 target

Report says country set to cut carbon emissions by 54% compared with 1990 levels, not 70% as planned

The Danish government’s efforts towards meeting the country’s ambitious target of reducing emissions by 70% by 2030 have been judged “insufficient” by the body tasked with monitoring its progress, with measures so far announced only likely to take it a third of the way.

In its first annual status report, the Danish Council on Climate Change said new laws, inter-party agreements and initiatives announced since the country’s climate law came into effect last June would reduce emissions by the equivalent of 7.2m tonnes of CO2 by 2030, which is only enough to reduce Denmark’s emissions by 54% compared with 1990 levels.

Related: The Danish climate minister closing down the oil industry for good

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Recent Australian emissions cuts likely to be reversed in recovery from Covid and drought

Scott Morrison says Coalition is ‘getting on with’ reductions, but analysis finds end of lockdowns and drought will reverse trend

Most of the reduction in Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions last year is likely to be wiped out as transport rebounds after Covid-19 lockdowns and farming recovers from the long-term-drought, according to an audit of national climate data.

Scott Morrison told the National Press Club earlier this month the government was “getting on with” reducing emissions, citing official data that found emissions were down 3% in the year to June to their lowest levels since 1998. He declared “these are the facts”.

Related: Spinning emissions: Australia’s climate projections are not what they seem

Related: By 2020 standards, Angus Taylor’s low-emissions technology statement is not really a climate policy | Adam Morton

Related: Soil carbon: what role can it play in reducing Australia’s emissions?

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Australia was the first casualty of the big blackout lie blaming wind power – the US could be next | Ketan Joshi

As climate impacts intensify, power grids stuffed with ageing fossil fuel infrastructure crumble

Climate change is full of surprises. We were warned about heatwaves, hurricanes and high-intensity firestorms. What we didn’t see coming was a cynical, cyclical economy of blackout bullshit. As climate impacts intensify, power grids stuffed with ageing fossil fuel infrastructure crumble. Those blackouts are usually blamed on wind and solar – and used to extend the lifespan of existing fossil fuel generators. Opportunity costs increase, climate impacts worsen and blackouts intensify. It’s an accelerating death spiral.

Last week Texas suffered an outage likely to be the worst on record in the US. Millions of people were without power for days, initially at a scale roughly equivalent to all of eastern Australia going dark at once. A burst of winter weather froze vital components at power stations, gas supplies were limited by frozen pipelines and, consequently, a third of the state’s thermal power stations were offline (mostly gas). An unspecified proportion of wind turbines were disabled due to icing and low-temperature shutoffs, but “gas and coal were actually the biggest culprits in the crisis”, Eric Fell, director of North America gas at Wood Mackenzie, told Bloomberg.

Related: Why the cold weather caused huge Texas blackouts – a visual explainer

Related: Green giants: the massive projects that could make Australia a clean energy superpower

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Why oil giants are swapping oil rigs for offshore windfarms

The fossil fuel giants need to find new ways to reduce emissions, generate growth and maintain their share price

The world’s biggest oil companies are no stranger to UK waters, but by the end of the decade they will be running more offshore wind turbines than oil rigs.

BP has already made a splash with a record-breaking bid to build two giant windfarms in the Irish Sea. The company beat established renewable energy players by offering to pay the Crown Estate £900m a year to develop the sites, more than 15 times the price paid for similar deals in the past.

Related: Queen’s property manager and Treasury to get windfarm windfall of nearly £9bn

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