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Europe’s climate change goals ‘need profound lifestyle changes’

February 17, 2016

By Paul Homewood  




Don’t say you have not been warned! From the Grauniad:


European countries should prepare for a far-reaching debate on the “profound lifestyle changes” required to limit climate change, according to a leaked European commission document.

The commission will tell foreign ministers meeting in Brussels on Monday that a Europe-wide debate is needed on how to limit global warming to 1.5C, according to a staff working document for ministers seen by the Guardian.

It was written in response to last December’s Paris climate summit, which agreed a plan for cutting emissions to net zero after mid-century, and an intent to peg global warming to 1.5C.

Temperatures have already risen by 1C since pre-industrial times and slamming the brakes on climate change “is by no means an easy undertaking”, the document says.

Negative emissions can refer to carbon capture and storage technology powered by biomass, geo-engineering of the atmosphere and oceans, or CO2 removal that sucks emissions out of the air.

A review of the ambition of the bloc’s pledge to cut CO2 emissions by at least 40% from 1990 levels by 2030 will be crucial, the paper adds. This will take place after a report is published by the UN’s climate panel, the IPCC, in 2018.

“There is no requirement that the EU updates its 2030 headline target as a result of this process in 2020, but the timeframe presents the EU with an opportunity to do so,” it says.

The decade’s end will be “the only significant political moment before 2030 to leverage more ambition from other major economies like China and India,” as well as the US and Brazil, the document states.

However, the European commission is known to already be developing scenarios for increased emissions cuts through energy savings and a new renewable energy directive. In that context, green groups said they were disappointed that action on the hard-won 1.5C target was being delayed.

“The EU has to redo its homework and set out a pathway to meet stricter energy efficiency and renewables targets,” said Greenpeace EU’s climate policy adviser, Bram Claeys. “We can’t have confidence in a plan that plays fast and loose with global warming and fails to accelerate Europe’s shift to 100% renewable energy.”

Wendel Trio, the director of Climate Action Network-Europe, said: “Like all other countries, the EU needs to ensure its policies are coherent with what was agreed in Paris, and needs to substantially increase its targets for 2020, 2030 and 2050. This discussion needs to take place now, and not be postponed for another three to five years as the European commission is proposing.”

EU leaders are expected to discuss the possibility of raising the EU’s 2030 target at a summit on 17-18 March. But powerful figures in the commission will try to ensure this happens through a revision of the bloc’s carbon market rules in 2023.

The EU’s climate chief, Miguel Arias Cañete, has already signalled that he would like the union to ratify the Paris climate agreement at a conference in New York on 22 April.

“It is in the EU’s interest to join early, alongside major economies such as the US and China, and alongside other ‘high ambition’ countries,” the paper says. Other legal scenarios could also allow the agreement to enter into force without the EU’s participation.

Decisions to increase climate ambition will be hard fought, with coal-dependent countries such as Poland likely to dig their heels in.

“The potential scale of such a deep transformation will require a wide societal debate in Europe,” says the document, which was jointly prepared by the European commission and its foreign office, the European external action service.

A 2C rise in global temperatures could have consequences including the migration of 20% of the world’s population from cities flooded by sea level rise, such as New York, London and Cairo, according to a study published this month.

  1. February 17, 2016 10:56 am

    I’m worried about a return to Little Ice Age conditions, or even worse. How is the EU preparing for such conditions?

  2. Ian Magness permalink
    February 17, 2016 11:07 am

    The answer is always he same Phillip – “More Europe”.
    We could sit here and laugh at all this tosh, safe in the knowledge that, after Brexit, we won’t need to worry about those idiots in Brussels get up to.
    Only trouble is, our even bigger climate fools want us to commit to even more.
    Beam me up Scotty.

  3. Robert permalink
    February 17, 2016 11:22 am

    Having got a quarter of the way through Geoffrey Parker’s Global Crisis (a difficult read because the actual weight of the book is like two bricks) I think we would be able to cope with 1.5C. The cure in this case is deadlier than the disease.

    • February 17, 2016 5:38 pm

      Your comment seems to indicate that CO2 as control of climate temperature increase. Balderdash. There is no climate crisis that needs a response.

  4. February 17, 2016 11:51 am

    No wonder greenies love the EU, it seems to be unshakably green, even if right-wing govts get elected in member states the EU will remain deep-green.

    Another reason to get out of the burning building.

  5. David Richardson permalink
    February 17, 2016 12:03 pm

    An amazing mass hysteria event, but the world is going to hell in a handcart because we say it is. Propaganda requires you to lie constantly and it becomes the truth, especially when the past truth gets “adjusted” as well.

    It is all to keep a political ideology afloat of course –

    “This is probably the most difficult task we have ever given ourselves, which is to intentionally transform the economic development model, for the first time in human history,” “This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution.”

    Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) said February 3rd 2015 during a press conference in Brussels.

    And we all thought it was about science.

    • NeilC permalink
      February 17, 2016 12:21 pm

      David, it has never been about science. The CO2 theory, may work in a lab, but it does not work in the real world. It is all about world domination by the UN. You just have to read Agenda 21.

      • Chichester permalink
        February 17, 2016 3:20 pm

        Also check out Agenda 2030!!

  6. CheshireRed permalink
    February 17, 2016 12:54 pm

    Almost every ‘crisis’ that the EU claims it needs to ‘tackle’ is entirely self-caused. Borders, immigration, terror, economic ruin across the southern med nations, the euro, Ukraine / Russia…on and on goes the list and every single issue has been triggered by EU imbecility. Oh look – the ‘solution’ is MORE EU and further power grabs. W****rs. Please God can we secure a Leave victory?

  7. Alex Emodi permalink
    February 17, 2016 1:57 pm

    I feel like I’m living in an alternative universe. Brussels is clearly off it’s head while Barack Obama has lost his also. The EU climate chief wants to join the US and China, while China clearly isn’t even taking this seriously. Good on them.


  8. emsnews permalink
    February 17, 2016 2:40 pm

    All of this with Europe being openly attacked by aliens who have said their goal is to destroy the EU. The elite solution: declare war on warm weather that everyone loves.

    BTW, it has been way below 0F here in NY off and on this month setting cold records. Wish I had more warm weather, big time.

  9. Ex-expat Colin permalink
    February 17, 2016 3:41 pm

    Greece will be dead interested in that coal thing…NOT! More threats..? And biomass is utter bollox.

    I noted BBC Countryfile the other week in a wood somewhere laying down log piles for insect thingys. Yeah, they had to nail and strap them down..get nicked you know?

  10. Kelvin Vaughan permalink
    February 17, 2016 4:09 pm

    How can you believe anything from person who depicts pollution by showing a picture of steam coming out of cooling towers.

    • RogerJC permalink
      February 18, 2016 8:18 am

      Steam is invisible, that is water vapour!

  11. Don B permalink
    February 17, 2016 4:17 pm

    The people of China and India intend to have profound lifestyle changes – by doubling and tripling coal consumption to improve their economies.

  12. February 17, 2016 5:26 pm

    But will the elites join in the lifestyle reductions? Will Gore give up a mansion, DiCaprio jetsetting and yachts? No and no.

    The lifestyle changes are all fine – for the little people. Greenpeace and the Sierra Club and Democratic politicians do not intend it for themselves. I don’t understand how the naked classism, racism, elitism and power-privilege doesn’t outrage the true believers and the MSN writers.

    It is bizarre. But so is all about climate alarmism.

  13. A C Osborn permalink
    February 17, 2016 6:29 pm

    Paul, you might be interested in this Post by Chiefio.

    He has dug up some “old” research which is now ignored, that both Oxygen and Nitrogen both radiate in the IR bands, as they make up much more of the Atmosphere than CO2 it makes a mockery of the whole CO2 is the control knob of Climate Change.

  14. February 17, 2016 7:00 pm

    How about “profound lifestyle changes” for Eurocrats and other useless parasites? Breaking rocks on Dartmoor comes to mind.

  15. The Old Bloke permalink
    February 18, 2016 11:02 am

    Please! I live on Dartmoor, I don’t want any Eurocrats down here breaking rocks or otherwise.

  16. February 18, 2016 5:30 pm

    To A.C.Osborne above.Thanks for Chiefio link.Somewhere in my dodgy filing system I have a similar one by a Japanese scientist.When I locate the paper I will let you know.
    Thanks again-from ex Vulcan systems chief.

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