EU Commission unveils ‘European Green Deal’ - Page 2 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#15058354
As the EU's carbon tax shows its first effects in Europe, a number of EU economies register a marked reduction in CO2 emissions.

Greenhouse gas emissions drop in Spain as power plants ditch coal

Spain has taken just one year to reach a goal that was expected to require a decade. The government had predicted that by 2030 coal would no longer be used in power plants to generate electricity, yet this objective was all but achieved last year. The country has dramatically reduced its reliance on coal-fired power, and as a direct result, carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from electricity generation fell 33.3% in 2019, according to figures that Red Eléctrica de España (REE), the national power grid operator, advanced to EL PAÍS.

For decades, coal-powered thermal plants have been one of the main sources of electricity. But in 2019 Spain turned its back on this fossil fuel, which when burned releases carbon dioxide – a primary greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming.

Coal mining in Spain came to an end on January 1, 2019, when Spain stopped providing state aid to its flailing coal mines in observance of European Union regulations and due to the poor profitability of national coal deposits. But it was expected that Spanish thermal plans that use imported coal – those which are located along the coast and have coal shipped in – would continue operating for some years to come. Indeed, the owners of these mines had invested millions of euros in adapting to the new EU standards on polluting emissions that came into effect this year.

But coal-fired electricity dropped dramatically in 2019 to its lowest point since REE began keeping records in 1990. Last year coal-powered thermal plants contributed less than 5% of all electricity generated in Spain – 85.6% less than in 2002, when coal power was at its peak. What’s more, there were five days (December 14, 21, 22, 24 and 25) when Spain did not need any coal-powered electricity at all.

There are many reasons why it is no longer financially profitable for electricity companies to maintain thermal plants. According to the expert group Carbon Tracker, the owners of these Spanish plants were expected to lose €992 million by the end of 2019. One of the main reasons is the EU emissions trading system, the world’s first major carbon market. After nearly 15 years, the EU agreed to set a price for releasing carbon dioxide that was high enough to discourage the use of this fossil fuel. During 2019, the price of a ton of CO2 was €25, meaning that in many European countries coal-fired electricity is not as profitable as other options like natural gas or renewable energy.

The EU emissions trading scheme has turned out to be a useful instrument in the fight against climate change in Europe. The problem is that there is still no agreement on a global system, which became apparent at the United Nations climate summit held in Madrid in December.

The drop in the cost of natural gas and the introduction of renewable energy have also contributed to the fall in coal-powered electricity. Green energy installations jumped by 10% in 2019. According to REE, 36.8% of the country’s electricity came from renewable energy sources, and 58.6% was free of carbon dioxide emissions (from both renewable and nuclear power).

Thanks to these factors, the Spanish power sector ended 2019 having released just over 43 million tons of carbon dioxide – 33.3% less than the 64.5 million tons released into the atmosphere in 2018.

The power sector accounts for 17% of the Spanish economy’s carbon dioxide emissions. The fall in coal-powered plants is expected to be reflected in a global fall in carbon dioxide emissions for 2019. But last year’s figures on the transportation sector (namely cars and trucks), which contributed 27% of greenhouse gases in 2018, and industry, which contributed 19%, have yet to be released. In recent years, the drop in power plant emissions has been compensated by the rise in transportation emissions.


Rising carbon prices led to drop in German emissions in 2019

BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s greenhouse gas emissions fell sharply last year, putting the country’s 2020 climate goal within reach again.

A report released Tuesday by the think tank Agora Energiewende found that emissions fell by 6.5% in 2019 compared to the previous year — equivalent to 50 million tons of carbon dioxide.

Analysts said the decline was driven by the rising price for carbon dioxide on Europe’s emissions trading system, which pushed utility companies to burn less coal.

Energy from renewable sources also hit a new high in 2019, meeting 42.6% of gross energy consumption in Germany compared with 38.2% the previous year.

Germany had been predicted to miss its 2020 target for cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 40% compared with 1990-levels, to just over 750 million tons of carbon dioxide. But the latest figures show Germany’s emissions reached 811 million tons in 2019, meaning a similar decline over the coming year could put Germany back on track to meet its short-term target.
#15058487
Decoupling GHG emissions from GDP growth will be an important task for the future, in other words, the ability of economies to achieve economic growth while, at the same time, reducing GHG emissions.

This chart compares GDP growth with GHG emissions for European countries. Eastern European countries are doing relatively well because they experienced high growth while substituting polluting Soviet-style industries.

Image
#15059382
The European Union intends to invest 1 trillion euros for the transition to a green economy. The money will go into low-carbon projects and the restructuring of regions that depend on coal mining, etc.

The money is in addition to what EU members decide to spend on the national level. Germany has already decided a plan to spend 40 billions for assisting mining regions to phase out coal.

EU to unveil trillion-euro ‘Green Deal’ financial plan

The European Commission will propose on Tuesday (14 January) how the EU can pay for shifting the region’s economy to net-zero CO2 emissions by 2050 while protecting coal-dependent regions from taking the brunt of changes aimed at fighting climate change.

The EU executive is to unveil details of its Sustainable Europe Investment Plan, aimed at mobilising investment of 1 trillion euros over 10 years, using public and private money to help finance its flagship project – the European Green Deal.

The “Green Deal” is an ambitious rethinking of Europe’s economy, transport and energy sectors aimed at turning the EU into a global leader on the clean technologies that will shape the coming decades.
[...]
Green campaigners, for their part, have welcomed that the proposed €7.5 billion fund will be available only for projects that are low-carbon and climate-resilient, including re-skilling programmes for miners, jobs in new economic sectors and energy-efficient housing.

In order to access EU money, countries will need to propose territorial just transition plans, in line with the bloc’s climate goals, that will be vetted by the European Commission.


Increased awareness of the danger of climate change has also motivated travelers in Germany and Scandinavian countries to switch from airplanes to trains.

More Germans are swapping planes for trains because of climate worries

While the cynics are still running their obscene defamation campaigns against school children, the Greta effect shows it first results.

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The national German railway company plans to spend 95 billion euros for modernizing and expanding its railway network to make train travel more attractive. The government also decided to increase taxes on domestic flights.

Germany Goes Greener With $95 Billion Push for Train Over Plane

The 10-year plan is not only to upgrade rails, bridges and carriages but also build out capacity and electrify more routes so as to lure passengers from cars and planes. The federal government will finance 62 billion euros and state-owned Deutsche Bahn AG is to come up with 24 billion euros.

“It’ll be the decade of the rail,” Transportation Minister Andreas Scheuer said at a ceremony in Berlin.
#15059384
It is better you call it "Communist manifesto of European Union". You steal people's money under name of taxation and spending it without their approval.

You were asking why British are running away from Europe. If you are still asking why, then this is your answer. British capitalists are smart enough to know when to escape from authoritarian Europe.
#15061381
Scotland, whose southern city of Glasgow was named last September as the host for the 26th Conference of Parties (COP26), has a goal to source the equivalent of 100% of its electricity demand from renewable energy sources by the end of this year.

Scotland to reach 100% renewables in time to host 2020 climate summit

Most of Scotland's energy now comes from wind turbines. Installation of a new type of floating off-shore wind turbine will substantially increase the potential for renewable energy. While fixed off-shore wind turbines can be installed at a seabed depth of up to 30 meters, floating off-shore wind turbines can be installed at seabed depths of up to 1 km, where winds are stronger and more constant.

The potential for wind energy generation is 5 to 10 times of the total global energy need. More than two thirds of the World's wind energy is now generated in Europe. The two designs for floating off-shore wind turbines in Scotland and Portugal were partially funded by the EU. Moreover, by paying high energy prices, Europeans are pioneering renewable energy which will reduce cost and enable poor countries to transition to renewable energy without having to shoulder the initial development costs.

Hywind floating off-shore wind farm in Scotland

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Construction of floating off-shore wind farm in Portugal

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Just in case you still have any doubts about wind energy, just refer to Donald Trump "who knows windmills very much and who has studied them better than anybody"



:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Why did Americans elect a stand-up comedian for president?
#15094963
@Atlantis

I have written about this before but meeting climate change targets requires to force countries like India, China, many countries in Africa to go Green. What is your opinion on that? What do we do if they do not want to do it? Do we invade with the military?
#15095128
JohnRawls wrote:@Atlantis

I have written about this before but meeting climate change targets requires to force countries like India, China, many countries in Africa to go Green. What is your opinion on that? What do we do if they do not want to do it? Do we invade with the military?


Why should they not want to go green? Why should anybody in his/her right mind not want to have free energy that can be produced at home instead of having to waste foreign currency on fossil fuel imports?

Anyways, the countries you mentioned have all signed up to the Paris Agreement. The one notable exception is the US. The way to enforce compliance with the agreement is a border carbon tax to be applied by all signatories on goods and services from countries violating the agreement.

Trade and climate change are linked. Even today, trade deals like the EU's FTA with Mercosur have provisions for environmental protection and climate change. Thus, we'll be able to build a global trading network around the Paris Agreement. The single market is the most advanced trading relation in existence; and based on the experience of more than a hundred trade deals with almost all countries, the EU is well placed to assume a central role in such a global network on the basis of its pioneer role in the fight against climate change.
#15095131
Atlantis wrote:Why should they not want to go green? Why should anybody in his/her right mind not want to have free energy that can be produced at home instead of having to waste foreign currency on fossil fuel imports?

Anyways, the countries you mentioned have all signed up to the Paris Agreement. The one notable exception is the US. The way to enforce compliance with the agreement is a border carbon tax to be applied by all signatories on goods and services from countries violating the agreement.

Trade and climate change are linked. Even today, trade deals like the EU's FTA with Mercosur have provisions for environmental protection and climate change. Thus, we'll be able to build a global trading network around the Paris Agreement. The single market is the most advanced trading relation in existence; and based on the experience of more than a hundred trade deals with almost all countries, the EU is well placed to assume a central role in such a global network on the basis of its pioneer role in the fight against climate change.


Well, why aren't all people of the same ideology? Why are some left and some right? Why do some believe climate change and some don't?

But the general answer could be that fighting Climate Change costs money that people do not want to spend or have. Even with the US, it is a bit weird. So what is your plan for places that just ignore climate change? You mearly misdirected the answer and not answered the question.

P.S. I am not arguing against climate change. I am for fighting climate change in a reasonable manner which can include nuclear and even gas on top of renewables if it helps us decrease emissions and is economically proper depending on the scenario.
#15100731
JohnRawls wrote:P.S. I am not arguing against climate change. I am for fighting climate change in a reasonable manner which can include nuclear and even gas on top of renewables if it helps us decrease emissions and is economically proper depending on the scenario.


The boat has rather sailed on the economic argument.

We are currently in the bizarre situation where oil and gas costs more to extract than the market price but production continues because it's the only way to cover the cost of the rising debt.
#15100848
BeesKnee5 wrote:The boat has rather sailed on the economic argument.

We are currently in the bizarre situation where oil and gas costs more to extract than the market price but production continues because it's the only way to cover the cost of the rising debt.


Wrong. Cost to extract in SA/Middle east is around 10 USD if not less. Shale oil nowadays is around 25 USD along with Russian oil. So cheap oil and gas is something that will hamper renewable implementation exactly because it costs a lot more compared to those 10 and 25 usd. Your argument is bizarre to be honest. Economic ship is ALWAYS relevant. The only reason why we are not 100% renewable right now is because gas and oil is much cheaper. Supply and demand fixes the rest.
#15101052
JohnRawls wrote:Wrong. Cost to extract in SA/Middle east is around 10 USD if not less. Shale oil nowadays is around 25 USD along with Russian oil. So cheap oil and gas is something that will hamper renewable implementation exactly because it costs a lot more compared to those 10 and 25 usd. Your argument is bizarre to be honest. Economic ship is ALWAYS relevant. The only reason why we are not 100% renewable right now is because gas and oil is much cheaper. Supply and demand fixes the rest.


Oil prices have to be higher than the simplistic extraction price you are quoting in order for it to be viable. Mainly because the oil extracted is being used to pay debt rather than being invested in future extraction.

See page 3 of this report

https://mufgresearch.com/MUFGShowDocument.aspx?id=79321

"The fiscal budget breakevens of >USD45/b signals that neither Saudi Arabia or
Russia can afford low prices for a sustained period of time. Indeed, the
comprehension of fiscal breakevens for oil producers within OPEC+ remains central
to anticipating medium-term oil policy movements and goes someway to
understanding the frictions between Russian and Saudi oil policy agendas – Russia’s
2020 fiscal breakeven is USD30-35/b lower than Saudi’s at ~$50/b"

For example
US shale needs prices above $45-55 for fiscal breakeven. While prices stay low, profit for investors disappears and debt consumes them.
https://www.investors.com/news/us-shale ... evolution/
"Chesapeake Energy (CHK), once the No. 2 gas producer, has lost 99% of its value as it struggles under $9 billion in debt. Shale gas development has been "an unmitigated disaster" for investors, says Steve Schlotterbeck, former CEO of No. 1 natural gas producer EQT, whose stock has fallen 90% from its mid-2014 peak."

The reason we are not at 100% renewables is because it is only in the last 2 years that their price has become competitive and that storage is not yet a fully mature technology. I expect renewables to continue increasing their share of generation and once they are exceeding demand at their peak then storage will come into play, reducing fossil fuel use at other times. Oil and Gas are in a vice, lower prices and they are uneconomic, higher prices and renewables outcompete, the net conclusion can only be that they will lose market share .
Last edited by BeesKnee5 on 18 Jun 2020 11:21, edited 1 time in total.
#15101053
The political storm over green targets will be even bigger than Brexit

Our PM's eco-strategy is at disastrous odds with 'levelling up'

Just when we thought the war was over, it is starting to dawn on some London hacks that it has only just begun. Beyond the Red Wall are rumblings of a new revolt, utterly unanticipated by No 10 and overlooked by a liberal media still shell-shocked by the election. With its drive to “green” the economy at any cost, the Tory party has seemingly decided to celebrate its populist landslide by bogging down the country in zero-carbon paternalism. And so we career towards another People vs Establishment conflict that could be more explosive even than that sparked by the referendum.

A savvy politician like Boris Johnson can still reverse No 10’s green strategy, which moved on this week from banning petrol and diesel cars to the revival of onshore wind farms. He must – all the ingredients for another seismic uprising are already simmering.

First is the drift towards disaster at the Treasury. With the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, reportedly poised to end the freeze on fuel duty for all motorists, voters are referring to zero carbon as “the new austerity”.

Indeed, the message to voters is sonorously clear – elites have learnt precisely nothing from the past 10 years. In 2008, people paid the price for dysfunction in the banking industry; today they must foot the bill for shortcomings in the energy industry, which is further away from a carbon-free breakthrough than it should be. Still, why tackle the source of problems when you can administer “tough medicine” to the masses?

Second is the rising sense that the UK is still being sabotaged by the zealotry of unaccountable elites. Just as the EU establishment derives its legitimacy from the teleological assumption that the future is borderless universalism, the green establishment poised to take its place sees the planet rather than the people as the highest authority. As a result, the country is heading in a direction at odds with the ambitions of ordinary people.

In particular, it is becoming disturbingly apparent that the Government prizes green targets over “unleashing” Britain’s potential. The cast-iron case for a road-building revolution, for example, clangs a little too harshly against the hollowness of eco-politan sensibilities. Whitehall is genuinely convinced that Red Wall utopia is cycling to work from a rabbit hutch on the outskirts of Birmingham. They find the idea that people might actually aspire to drive to their downtown office from their semi-detached in Dudley, and at the weekends cruise, sunroof down, to the Bullring for shopping, completely ghastly.

The gulf in understanding was ever thus. As innovation professor James Woudhuysen alludes to in his writings, after decades of post-war policymaking hostile to the very concept of cars, what with them disrupting the working classes’ “community cohesion” and causing urban sprawl, in the Blair era there was the glimmer of intellectual breakthrough. Politicians finally recognised, at least in principle, that post-industrial towns can only be revived if they are an attractive commute from thriving cities.

But there was a catch: elites could not bear to prioritise hard logic over their whimsical blueprints for car-free city centres and visceral disdain for the selfish individualism of the open road. Mr Johnson’s green-era promises to be equally irrational. There will be no relief for congested roads. A Cummings-style plan to connect the rustbelt tech hubs of tomorrow with superhighways is for the birds.

The green agenda is also botching public transport. The epitome is HS2, a serpent-shaped monstrosity which slithered from the depths of a conniving political mind to appease the environmental lobby. True, it’s not exactly common knowledge that, in 2009, Andrew Adonis persuaded the then transport secretary, Geoff Hoon, to announce a high-speed railway to placate eco-activists spitting venom over a third Heathrow runway. But with former Brexit Party campaigners organising once again, it won’t take long for people to realise that green tape is suffocating our potential on a scale that rivals red tape from Brussels.

All the more so given how quickly the project to “level up” the country has descended into fatuous virtue signalling. There is a joke going around the North that you can predict the metropolitan mayors’ latest gimmick about solar panels and cycling routes based on whatever nonsense Sadiq Khan has tweeted three weeks before in London. Architecture firms hungry for contracts are churning out plans for triple-glazed “affordable” homes too expensive to build on a mass scale, and offices with bike basements. One source told me that, all the while, “disenchanted employees squint at each other in meetings waiting to see if anyone dares to speak out”.

Naturally, a new managerial language to mask the tiresome insanity of all this is delightfully burgeoning. Reports flatulate about “spatially just transitions to zero carbon” and “harnessing environmental assets”. Meanwhile, policy decisions that punish the poor are wrapped in doublespeak worthy of Ursula von der Leyen. The idea that onshore wind is now so competitive it should be able to apply for subsidies again being a most glorious example.

People did not vote to "take back control" only to hand that control over to a new generation of fanatical and autocratic elites. If Mr Johnson wishes to win again, he has no option but to U-turn.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/20 ... er-brexit/
#15101057
Sivad wrote:
Just throwing it out there so when the pain sets in people know that hucksters like you are the ones to blame.


But what does it prove other than the fact that people with no scientific background or evidence are entitled to an opinion?

I see this as the current problem. People thinking that their opinion trumps facts and evidence.
#15101063
BeesKnee5 wrote: facts and evidence.


lol

All you got is junk science and propaganda and none of it is gonna mean shit when this massive energy debacle cripples the economy. Reality will assert and when it does that'll just be more fuel for the populist uprising.

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