Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
  Energy News  




Subscribe to our free daily newsletters



THE PITS
Anti-coal drive at UN climate talks stalked by pro-coal White House
By Mariette Le Roux and Marlowe Hood
Bonn (AFP) Nov 16, 2017


Countries launched a coal phase-out initiative Thursday at UN climate talks in Bonn, offering an antidote to the defence of Earth-warming fossil fuels by US President Donald Trump's administration.

Spearheaded by Canada and Britain, the "Powering Past Coal Alliance" commits more than 20 nations, cities, and regions to weaning themselves off a commodity that produces 40 percent of the world's electricity -- a major contributor to global warming caused by greenhouse gas emissions.

The list includes Angola, Belgium, Finland, France, Italy, the Marshall Islands, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, and Mexico, the regions of Ontario, Quebec, and Alberta, and the city of Vancouver.

The state of Washington is the sole American signatory.

"This is another positive signal of the global momentum away from coal, benefiting the health of the climate, the public and the economy," said Jens Mattias Clausen of Greenpeace.

"But it also puts on notice the governments who lag behind on ending coal, or those who promote it, that the world's dirtiest fossil fuel has no future."

The Trump administration insisted Thursday it was "committed" to limiting greenhouse gas emissions, as long as this does not threaten energy security or the economy.

"Our guiding principles are universal access to affordable and reliable energy, and open, competitive markets that promote efficiency and energy security, not only for the United States but around the globe," US acting assistant secretary of state Judith Garber told the conference.

To this end, it would "support the cleanest, most efficient power generation, regardless of the source," she said.

Garber was the most senior US administration representative at the "high-level segment" of the annual UN climate huddle. Most other countries were represented by heads of state or ministers.

On Monday, White House officials drew the ire of observers and delegates in Bonn by hosting a sideline event defending the continued use of fossil fuels at a forum whose very purpose is the drawdown of carbon emissions.

- Protecting US interests -

Trump announced in June that the United States will withdraw from the climate-rescue Paris Agreement championed by his predecessor Barack Obama and endorsed by the world's nations to cheers and champagne in 2015. The rules determine that no country can exit the pact before November 2020.

Garber said Washington still intends to withdraw "at the earliest opportunity", but remained "open to the possibility of rejoining at a later date under terms more favourable to the American people."

An Obama-era official who helped deliver the agreement -- a feat that took more than two decades of tough negotiations -- lashed out Thursday at Trump's "wrongheaded" decision.

"Climate change is a huge challenge, we all know that," Todd Stern, who was Obama's special envoy for climate change, told AFP on the sidelines of the conference he attended as an observer. He left government in 2016.

"We are in a... race against time to transform the economy faster than the bad stuff of climate change. Trying to say it's a hoax, or it doesn't mean anything, or it's a terrible agreement and the rest of the world is laughing at us, is just so.. ridiculous," he said -- citing some of Trump's stated reasons.

The United States is the world's biggest historical greenhouse gas polluter, and second only to China for current-day emissions.

The US presence at the Bonn talks has not been universally welcomed, especially as it has taken a tough line on a demand from developing countries for a firmer commitment to climate finance.

Trump has also renounced an Obama-era promise to deliver $2.5 billion dollars into the Green Climate Fund.

Many question why the US is at Bonn at all, given its rejection of the Paris Agreement.

The State Department explained Washington wished to "ensure a level playing field that benefits and protects US interests."

- Three degrees -

The Paris Agreement commits countries to limiting average global warming to under two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over Industrial Revolution levels, and 1.5 C if possible, to avert calamitous climate change-induced storms, drought and sea-level rises.

Nations submitted voluntary emissions-cutting commitments to bolster the deal, but scientists say the pledges placed the world on course for warming of 3 C or more.

Since Monday last week, bureaucrats have haggled over a Paris Agreement "rule book", which must be finished next year and will specify how countries calculate and report their emissions cuts.

Energy and environment ministers descended on Bonn Wednesday for the final three days, tasked with resolving tough issues above the pay grade of rank-and-file negotiators.

"The Paris Agreement is a global pledge to hand over a healthy planet to future generations, and now the time has come to show that we will honour this pledge," European Union climate change commissioner Miguel Canete told delegates on Thursday.

THE PITS
Protest at open-pit coal mine near Bonn ahead of UN climate talks
Hambach Coal Mine, Near Niederzier, Germany (AFP) Nov 5, 2017
Environmental activists wearing hazard suits marched onto one of the world's largest open-pit coal mines, near Bonn, on Sunday, the eve of 196-nation UN climate talks in the west German city. Some two hundred protesters crossed a denuded no-man's land and lined up like guards at the edge of the 40-square kilometre (15 square mile) Hambach opencast coal mine, the biggest manmade hole in Euro ... read more

Related Links
Surviving the Pits


Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once


credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly


paypal only

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

THE PITS
Improving sensor accuracy to prevent electrical grid overload

Japan faces challenges in cutting CO2, Moody's finds

IEA: An electrified world would cost $31B per year to achieve

'Fuel-secure' steps in Washington counterintuitive, green group says

THE PITS
Study helps make microgrids a more reliable power source

A novel layered superconductor based on tin and arsenic

'Perfectly frustrated' metal provides possible path to superconductivity

Scientists design smart paper capable of detecting water, conducting electricity

THE PITS
End tax credits for wind energy, Tennessee Republican says

New York sets high bar for wind energy

Construction to begin on $160 million Industry Leading Hybrid Renewable Energy Project

A kite that might fly

THE PITS
China Saves the World, and America Too by Going Off-The-Grid

In Morocco, a blue tourist town is turning green

Learning from photosynthesis

Sunny future for renewables thanks to China: IEA

THE PITS
A fast reactor system to shorten the lifetime of long-lived fission products

France backtracks on nuclear power reduction target

AREVA NP introduces FORERUNNER robot to optimize steam generator inspections

Nuclear energy programs may not increase likelihood of proliferation

THE PITS
To find new biofuel enzymes, it can take a microbial village

Sandia speeds transformation of biofuel waste into wealth

Study identifies additional hurdle to widespread planting of bioenergy crops

Penn researchers mimic giant clams to enhance the production of biofuel

THE PITS
Fossil fuel investment spells 'unsustainable future': UN chief

Oil prices move lower in Russian fence-sitting

Iran reports strong gains in tax revenue from oil sales

BP learning to do more with less

THE PITS
Merkel, Macron to front diplomatic push at UN climate talks

Cooling in high and mid-latitudes led to aridification in Northern Africa

World leaders plead for climate action at UN forum

Scientists warn of 'giant leap backward' at climate talks




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News






The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement