Uk emissions fell slightly last year, so why is Rishi Sunak trying to encourage a new generation of gas power plants?


This is a particularly odd behaviour. It is significantly cheaper to generate electricity by virtually any form of renewable electricity. We are making great progress in cutting our carbon emissions (in 2022 UK emissions fell by 3.5%, but this progress will be delayed for some time, and unable to drop as far as they need to) and these power stations will last for 20-30 years, which means that even on the low end, these power stations will be still running in 2050.

As can be seen from all of the renewable sources of electricity, their costs are declining fast. The cost of gas is already more expensive than wind, and that does not account for catching the carbon from it (which will hugely increase the cost per kilowatt hour. Likely making it more expensive even than nuclear power. 

While Rishi Sunak has suggested that we need gas to power the UK, that is rubbish. We have 25 years. Furthermore, renewables are always cheaper over their lifetime, which means that by 2050 we will already have saved money overall. I am confused as to who wins – though given Sunak has included this in the conservative manifesto, suggesting that this is in some way a political move.

We can only hope (at least on this front) that the polls do not change, and Conservatives are pushed out of power. This is thought that in 2022 14% of carbon emissions came from the gas powered power stations we have. Whether Labour will do the right thing and reverse this decision, we will find out in the future.

So you think that only the poster child of climate change – the polar bear, is threatened by the changing climate? Think again – now rhino?

White Rhino

Rhino are unable to sweat, which means that as temperatures increase, both black and white rhino are more and more reliant on finding shade, in order to keep their huge bodies within safe temperatures – will there come a time, where this is impossible? What other species might be at risk, even far from the poles.

Continue reading “So you think that only the poster child of climate change – the polar bear, is threatened by the changing climate? Think again – now rhino?”

The telegraph has put out an article suggesting that homegrown food has 5 times greater carbon footprint than conventional: is that right? Should we all end our allotments?

Looking at the busy mass of growing green, it is hard to see how this is the most inefficient way to grow food…

The study that the article is based on comes from the university of Michigan, and is frankly badly, badly made. It is the quintessential study, where this is the answer, now how do we get there, sort of study.

So, what did they do? Well, they put gardens into 3 different categories

  • Backyard gardens – single occupancy
  • communal gardens (like the above)
  • Urban farms

Your backyard garden has about as small a carbon footprint as it is possible to have, it is possible that fruit or veg from here actually has zero carbon footprint. Community gardens can be a bit different – you have a small area, so you might use more compost or fertilizer, and it is possibly further from where you live, so you might drive to it. However, this kind of place also has a low carbon footprint.

It is essentially just the Urban farms which are a problem here: growlights and watering and temperature controls all add up to large quantities of energy.

This video shows this is an easy way to understand.

Do not be put off! If you have an allotment or a vegetable patch in your garden, this is almost completely carbon free food, it does bring down your carbon footprint.

It is unfortunately the kind of study you can find in a newspaper like the Telegraph; I do not think it would be a surprise for any readers to hear, that this is not the place readers go to find out about the new scientific studies of this kind.

Late last year Exxon spent $60 billion to by a shale gas giant – the deserve to go bankrupt

Exxon is like many other oil companies – they have buried their head in the sand, and have continued to deny the science.

There are still oil rigs littering our coasts, do we really want another rush to build more equipment, which will last long after the shale gas runs out?

What astounds me, is that, over the last 3 years, the price of Exxon shares has gone up 3 times over. This means that the majority of people who are investing in the market, believes either that there is a killing to be made from Exxon before it goes out of business, or climate change is wrong (it is true that investment in Exxon 3 years ago would have tripled, but a long-term investment is unlikely to be successful, as Exxon has to completely change its business model.

So, why is Exxon buying a shale giant?

Clearly, it thinks that there is money to be made, before the world transitions. The problem is that should Exxon be right, the world will suffer more global warming.

We already need to leave much of our known reserves of fossil fuels in the ground, Shale gas, is just more,

We need to be moving away from fossil fuels as fast as we can.

How is your family doing? As for us, we have bought a second had electric car, we have just installed our solar and thermal solar, and will in a couple of weeks, have a heat pump installed that will remove our last reliance on gas (these two moves, will have removed carbon from our travel and from our house running and heating – we also have zero carbon electricity). Obviously we still have a way to go, but we are making progress. Of course, from a finance point of view, it is a good move – it is true that our car was more expensive than anything we’ve had before, however, the purchase cost will only take 6-7 years to save back , and our house greening has a payback time of around 4 years- after that we should be several hundred pounds better off each month.

Exxon is still betting that there is more money to be made before the good times are over, however they are betting on our future.

It is foolish to invest in them, either they are right, and will make a fortune while the world suffers, or they are wrong, and this business venture will collapse.

In 2021 the USA emitted 13.49% of world emissions, but if Donald Trump gets re-elected, it can only get worse

Do Americans really want to go back to this for 4 more years?

In 2021, the year after Donald Trump left the white house, the USA emitted roughly 13.49% of the world emissions. To put that in context, it is over twice the emissions from the 27 members of the EU and the UK combined (this is despite the USA having a population of 330 million vs almost 500 million across these 28 countries). So, how could Donald Trump make that worse?

Well, in the first Trump term, he was largely finding his way, and by shunning anyone with experience, it took quite some time. This will not be the case during a second time.

So what has happened since he left the white house, and what can he do.

During the last 4 years, major climate legislation did a number of things. These include reversing a move to end a crackdown on governmental climate scientists (because you dont want expert advisors working for the government?) a frenzy of oil and gas drilling permets, and making sure that the Paris climate accords were not only dead, but buried.

So what is expected of Donald Trumps second term if he gets in?

Just to start:

  • Driving forwards on fossil fuel production (as electric cars and heat pumps make these cheaper and far more efficient)
  • Side-lining mainstream climate scientists
  • Undoing and eliminating any rules about reducing planet-heating gases including carbon-dioxide and methane among others.

He is also likely to undo all the good moves that have occurred under president Biden (perhaps of highest priority, getting rid of the Inflation reduction act, which cost 370 billion dollars and was there to support clean energy and electric cars – without a single republican vote, and looked on as the biggest defeat republicans have had.

The American first Policy Institute (pro trump) critisized Bidens “apocalyptic green fantasies” and said “Our nation needs a level regulatory playing field for all forms of energy to compete, Achieving this level playing field will require the repeal of the energy and environment provisions withint the Inflation Reduction Act”. The act has already been gutted by the house, which is currently controlled by the Republicans (this as republicans continue to turn up for ribbon cutting occasions paid for by the act in question). Thankfully, though, these projects are so popular, it would appear impossible to fully get rid of them.

The stupidity of this move – aiming to undo what little progress has been made, should mean Trump being elected would be impossible, though whether it will is another matter. Global warming will hit America hard, furthermore, Americans could each save thousands through taking on these new ideas.

It is also not true that there is a war on oil and gas production, with record levels reached under Biden last year.

It would be a clear shot in the foot, and would likely lead to the USA returning to being a Pariah on the world stage. Whether the American population will be able to hear and understand this is a different question.

Do not buy a hydrogen boiler!

The UK watchdog (amongst many other groups) have concluded that hydrogen boiler is a stupid idea. It is true that its only waste product is water and oxygen, but the cost of making the hydrogen is very high.

Should there be large quantities of hydrogen sitting around, then this might make sense – burning hydrogen is generally a very clean fuel. The problem is, that it is almost impossible to store or transport it without loosing much on route, and it is incredibly expensive to split water – the current form for the vast majority of the hydrogen on the planet. Fossil fuel companies are keen, because their old methods can extract and split hydrogen, but it will mean large carbon emissions as well, so is useless – there is a reason that it is called grey hydrogen. Green hydrogen is the only kind that will give us any profit as a world.

So why is the government supporting the switch (alongside gas focused industry). The department for energy security and net zero stated this week that the gas network ” will always be part of our energy system”. I am not sure why anyone would look at it, given an air-source heat pump is likely to be around price parity, and ground source heating even cheaper.

Installation, at the cheap end will be far cheaper than a heat-pump, but this will be more than made up for over the lifetime of the device. Furthermore, with the grants currently available, you are far better off going straight to a heat pump. This is a waste of time and money, and it would not be remotely surprising, if you had to remove it before the end of its life,as it would be costing too much

Is the COP conferences a waste of time, if climate change deniers are able to lead it?

At the current time, countries in the region in which the COP is held will chose a president. In theory, that is fine, however, in practice if this is going to continue then the middle east should be banned from hosting the conference.

So, what precisely did Sultan Al Jaber say, which was so troubling?

Firstly, he claimed that a ‘phase-out of fossil fuels would not allow sustainable development “unless you want to take the world back into caves'”.

He then claimed that there is ‘no science’ to suggest phasing out fossil fuels is the only way to achieve 1.5C.

After being laughed at, over this utterly insane statment, he suggested that the comment had been misinterpreted. It should be noted, that this was in response to a question from a woman, which he was relatively rude about.

Do you think this woman misunderstood?

He even had the gall to suggest that the misrepresentation was undermining his desire to reduce carbon emissions (perhaps if this is true, it can start with his huge fossil fuel company can show this?). More than 100 countries are already supportive of this.

The worlds uptake of electric cars must accelerate. This is partly underway – last year around 67 million cars were sold, but 14% of these were electric, up from just 9% the previous year. The uptake is accelerating.

It should also be noted that apart from extreme heat in the UAE, continued global warming will also damage the UAE in extreme ways. The UAE economy is 0.5% of the global economy, in the end, places like this may refuse to accept the end of oil, and will have to be bankrupted, as cars move to 100% and many other industries clean up their act.


Is global warming true – YES, and expert shows

As if it is needed, here is a list of evidence that global warming is true, laid out by someone with a doctorate in the subject material. Do share with friends who have suggested that there is not. 

It is simple, the world is warming and we are causing it by burning fossil fuels. We are responsible and so we can do something about this.

At a time, when there is a high probability that someone who denies all obvious facts on this subject, is leading the race to return to the white house, we need to stop debating facts and fix the problem.

USA, you are currently a pariah around the world, because you cannot pass meaningful climate action. You have 4.23% of world population, emit around 16 tonnes per head on average – which amounts to 14% of global emissions or around 1/7. It is true that China  (29.18% of global emissions), however India emits just 7.09% of global emission. Yet the per capita emissions of these countries are 7.44 in China and just 1.89 tonnes in India.

The UK, a similarly developed country, only has emissions of 5.6 tonnes per head

We’re hoping to return to a more normal amount of blogposts in the near future. Time is currently going into building a database of species of the world.

Rishi Sunak is making a stupid decision – end of combustion car sales in 2030?

It was only 3 years ago that the government said from 2030 there would be no more combustion engine, yet his most recent decision rolls this back (though it should be noted that he is still aiming for 80% electric car sales by 2030) along with reducing the requirements landlords to insulate their homes so it is cheaper for their renters to heat their home.

Will this foolish back-track be undone after the next election? Will it be seen as a senseless foolish move in the future? I think that this government will struggle to claim climate responsibility in the future

Continue reading “Rishi Sunak is making a stupid decision – end of combustion car sales in 2030?”

UK could quit ‘Climate wrecking’ treaty’ – encouraging, must see more

The treaty in question is called the Energy Charter Treaty, and apparently if changes are not made by November we will look at exiting.

Under this charter, any coal power plant forced to shut could require the government responsible to continue paying the company for the lifetime that the power station could last.

What is in this egregious rules? Well, it would be run with a system of secrets of courts, and it would allow a company to sue any signature country should they bring an a law that might cut their profits in the future.

Given that any cuts in coal use, oil use, wood or many other things would impact many companies bottom line. Given that coal and oil use must cease within the next couple of decades, and only wood from land that would be replanted, the vast majority of companies would have their profits hit.

This foolish treaty would either lead to governments abandoning all carbon reduction targets, or paying large companies billions for all time.

This treaty is not centuries old, rather, it came into being back in 1998, at a time where we knew about climate change. France is similarly talking about quitting. Other countries are also looking at leaving, and it is thankfully likely to collapse.

It is strange how this possible became a treaty, as this plan is insane.

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