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2020–The Climate Turning Point

May 4, 2017

By Paul Homewood

 

h/t Robin Guenier

 

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http://www.mission2020.global/M2020%20press%20release.pdf

 

 

Christiana Figueres has not been twiddling her fingers since stepping down from the UNFCCC. Instead, she is at the forefront of the campaign group, Mission 2020.

They have recently issued this press release:

 

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http://www.mission2020.global/M2020%20press%20release.pdf

 

The report on which these recommendations are based was called “2020: The Climate Turning Point”.

So how realistic are its findings?

 

 

It starts by underlining just how meaningless the whole Paris shebang was in terms of reducing emissions.

 

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http://www.mission2020.global/2020%20The%20Climate%20Turning%20Point.pdf

 

As we are all aware, the declared aim of Paris, to keep warming below 2C, was not met by actions. Even if we assume that CO2 emissions have any significant effect on temperatures, emissions would have to fall off the edge of a cliff after 2030 to meet that target.

 

Mission 2020 want drastic action to start before 2020, in order to make this plummet not quite as steep!

These are their main recommendations:

 

 

 

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They don’t seem to have grasped yet the utter inability of wind and solar power to supply the world’s demand for reliable energy.

They claim that a target of 30% is achievable, saying that in 2015 renewables were already up to 23.7%.

However, this is dangerously misleading. BP data shows that, out of this 23.7%, hydro power accounts for more than two thirds. There is very little prospect of substantially increasing hydro capacity, given competing needs for land.

Bio energy also accounts for about a tenth of the renewable figure. But burning more forests rather seems to conflict with item 4 on their list, restoration of forestry.

In reality, wind and solar still only account for 4% of the world’s electricity.

Given the rapidly increasing demand for electricity, not least to power all of those electric cars and heating systems currently using fossil fuels, it is difficult to see how renewable energy can be more than a sideshow for many years to come.

 

As for the demand that no new coal plants are built, and that existing ones are rapidly shut down, one can only wonder what planet they are on.

Do they really think that China, India and the rest of the developing world are going to throw away billions of pounds, by closing perfectly efficient and modern power stations that they have just built, just to suit Christiana?

We are often told that economics trumps everything else. What is absolutely clear is that countries like China and India, who have plentiful reserves of coal, are not going to suddenly switch to other sources of energy, whether natural gas or renewables.

Such a move would be disastrous both for their economies and for their energy security.

 

 

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According to  the Electric Vehicle World Sales Database, electric cars still only supplied 0.86% of global sales last year. This accounted for 774,000 sales.

Meanwhile, global car sales increased by 4.7 million, to 77.31 million. No matter how many new electric cars enter the market, they are dwarfed by the numbers of conventional vehicles being added to the world’s fleet.

This fact won’t change until electric car technology improves out of all recognition, and becomes competitive with petrol.

Demands for better fuel efficiency simply reflect what has been happening for many years, without the need for intervention from the UN. This helps to keep the lid on petrol consumption, but the likely continued growth in global car sales will ensure that demand for oil remains robust.

 

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https://www.statista.com/statistics/200002/international-car-sales-since-1990/

 

 

 

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All very worthy, I’m sure. But how do they plan to feed the world?

(And I dare not even mention biofuels!)

 

 

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Again, they are knocking on an already open door.

Heavy industries have been improving their energy and other efficiencies since the year dot. Yet, as they point out, such energy savings are offset by higher production.

Developing countries now want their share of the wealth, and this will push industrial output up much more.

Mission 2020’s targets can only be met by drastically reducing standards of living.

 

 

 

 

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And so we come down to the nitty gritty, what this is really all about – the MONEY.

 

$1 trillion a year.

And we all know just who will end up paying for this.

 

They talk about green bonds and corporate disclosure. What is pretty clear is that our banker and big corporate friends will make big money out of this themselves.

It is worth noting that one of the Mission 2020 panel members is Helena Morrissey, until last year CEO of Newton Investment Management, and now Head of Personal Investing at Legal & General.

Morrissey has long campaigned for more women on company boards.

It is a pity she does not spend more time concentrating on her day job of looking after investors’ money.

 

 

 

Have Global Emissions Peaked?

 

It has been claimed, for instance by Fatih Birol, that global emissions have flattened off in the last three years, and should soon start coming down fast. But that is to totally misrepresent what the data is telling us.

For a start, it is important to note that the rapid growth in primary energy consumption, which was seen in the first decade of the 21stC, has now tailed off.

This is primarily due to the slowdown in China’s economic growth in the last three years.

 

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http://www.bp.com/en/global/corporate/energy-economics/statistical-review-of-world-energy.html

 

But just because energy consumption has flattened off does not mean it will suddenly plummet.

And if we look at the changing energy mix, we can see that the main factor in the standstill in emissions has been the replacement of coal by gas.

 

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http://www.bp.com/en/global/corporate/energy-economics/statistical-review-of-world-energy.html

 

We may well see a continued shift away from coal to natural gas in coming years, as long as the economics stack up. In turn, that would help to stop CO2 emissions from rising as fast as they otherwise would have done.

But there is world of difference between that scenario, and the rapid decline in emissions that we are told is required.

 

 

 

Conclusions

 

The overall theme of the Mission 2020 report is that the world can take big steps to drastically reduce emissions, both quickly and painlessly.

However, none of their solutions stack up.

If their policies are followed through, they will be extremely costly and end up having very little effect.

One wonders if there is really a hidden agenda?

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37 Comments
  1. Gamecock permalink
    May 4, 2017 6:24 pm

    If we don’t make it by 2020, they’ll give us to 2024.

  2. Jack Broughton permalink
    May 4, 2017 6:35 pm

    Haven’t the clown price of wallies deadlines already past; even Flash Gordon can’t save the world now……. or did he?

  3. markl permalink
    May 4, 2017 6:43 pm

    Please, not another ultimatum to save the world ‘or else’. And this one coming from the person who touted China’s ability to tackle “Climate Change” as the answer to the world’s problem because they don’t have to be concerned with democratic process getting in the way of action. Her speech that “it’s all about changing the economy and nothing to do with the environment” will go down as the one of the most telling statements ever made by the IPCC.

  4. John F. Hultquist permalink
    May 4, 2017 6:51 pm

    Recall that Bill McKibben’s “350” has gone by the wayside.
    The “2020” turning point will soon be “2025” and then “2040” ….
    Christiana Figueres and fellow travelers have minds of mush.
    These things are funding schemes for wealthy socialists to maintain the lifestyle most of us might dream about if we were not busy making a living.
    How much does this crap cost the world? Maybe there is a better alternative!

    Because of these folks, we no longer make contributions to big organizations. Just today we are sending a small amount to the Cemetery where my parents are buried. We know the caretakers, and they know our family. Likewise, we help fund a couple of college students, contribute to a local agency that helps those in need with electricity bills, and so on.

  5. May 4, 2017 6:54 pm

    It’s very strange that there’s no mention of replacing fossil fuels with nuclear power as a means of providing all that electricity that we will need. I wonder why the only reliable, low carbon means of generating electricity (apart from hydro) doesn’t feature large in the mission statement?

    • John F. Hultquist permalink
      May 4, 2017 7:38 pm

      Because they haven’t figured out how to expand their own wealth via nukes.
      They are working on that, and will change when they have the solution.
      In the USA, some of the reasoning for ending Prohibition was for the taxes.
      Same is true now at the State level because States are supposed to balance budgets.
      At the National level, the USA lives on borrowing.

    • Curious George permalink
      May 4, 2017 9:11 pm

      Easy: They don’t own any shares in nuclear.

    • Ben Vorlich permalink
      May 5, 2017 7:24 am

      Even hydro can be affected by once a lifetime droughts so not as reliable as nuclear in decadal terms.

    • Sheri permalink
      May 8, 2017 1:38 pm

      Because nuclear power would not crush capitalism and that is the goal. We must use worthless wind and solar. Manufacturing declines and the government has to take over. Socialism is a necessity to avoid too much income difference, etc.
      To kill capitalism, you must return to an agrarian lifestyle that takes much human labor. Same for road building, etc. China used human beings to build roads—lots of cheap labor available. Pay is low for unskilled jobs. As use of human beings increases, products then cost more, fewer people have them and the desire for more wealth is squashed over time.

  6. May 4, 2017 6:59 pm

    Actually, according to the IEA, 2020 is three years too late. 2017 is the tipping point.

    2017 IEA Deadline

    “If internationally co-ordinated action is not implemented by 2017, we project that all permissible CO2 emissions in the 450 Scenario will come from the infrastructure then existing, so that all new infrastructure from then until 2035 would need to be zero-carbon. This would theoretically be possible at very high cost, but probably not practicable in political terms.”

    “If we do not change course, by 2015 over 90% of the permissible energy sector emissions to 2035 will already be locked in. By 2017, 100%.”

    “We can still act in time to preserve a plausible path to a sustainable energy future; but each year the necessary measures get progressively tougher and viciously more expensive. So, let’s not wait any longer!”

    Maria van der Hoeven
    Executive Director
    International Energy Agency.
    World Energy Outlook 2011
    https://www.iea.org/publications/freepublications/publication/WEO2011_WEB.pdf

    • Jack Broughton permalink
      May 6, 2017 6:21 pm

      Doom-sayers always sound so righteous and caring as they save us from ourselves. Convictions and dogma can always beat science until the proof becomes indisputable; as with the earth going round the sun etc…

    • Sheri permalink
      May 8, 2017 1:39 pm

      We can stop bothering to do anything now. It’s too late. Everyone go home and live life however you want.

      • May 8, 2017 2:24 pm

        Well, prudent policymakers should prepare for future periods both colder and warmer than the present. Cold is the greater threat to the biosphere and to human life and prosperity. Priorities should be building robust infrastructure and providing affordable reliable energy. This approach is called adapting to natural events.

  7. martinbrumby permalink
    May 4, 2017 7:01 pm

    Figueres:-
    “As we are all aware, the declared aim of Paris, to keep warming below 2C, was not met by actions.”

    As WE are all aware, Figueres famously admitted that HER declared aim is to destroy Capitalism.

    Surely she must have given an update on how that project is progressing?

  8. May 4, 2017 7:04 pm

    I thought that Ms Figueres had made her agenda perfectly clear.
    “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.”

  9. Dave Ward permalink
    May 4, 2017 8:32 pm

    What, pray, is “Zero emission transport”? ALL forms of transport involve energy usage, both in construction (which they’ve clearly forgotten all about), as well as the actual power needed to move them. Saying “Zero emission” without including “At the point of use” is lying, but as my own experience with the Advertising Standards Authority proves, one that will continue to be trotted out unchallenged…

    As for pretending that electric cars (plus buses, trucks, trains & aeroplanes) will be able to do that the existing fossil fuelled fleet do purely on wind & solar is delusion. Pretending that all the materials that go to make them can be synthesised from unicorn farts (presumably ?) and this bountiful supply of “renewable” electricity is UTTER delusion…

    • Christina Figueres in drag permalink
      May 5, 2017 7:32 am

      Stuff Off Dave. You and sat friggin Anglais Newtons Thermodynamics Laws agen. Vee has our own Laws. Ze Green Laws.
      Law 1. Ze crisis is always present.
      Law 2. Greens can cure it if they start now and get in massif action by 3-4 years time.
      Law 3. Its going to take UGE amounts of other peoples monet. An we will manage all that for you.

      Dont mek me write to you agen about zis. Christiana Figueres.

  10. DMA permalink
    May 4, 2017 8:37 pm

    The point I have been hammering on lately starts with that graph of emissions and the slowdown in the last three years. It’s not that emissions have peeked it’s that the rate change is sizable and it has had no effect on atmospheric CO2 growth rate. Look at Humlum’s site climate4yoy.com. This is what he and Salby and Segalstad and others have been telling us for years. Our emissions are lost in the natural cycle noise and have no measurable effect on the atmosphere. How then will 1 trillion dollars worth of reduction and economic pain change anything except who has the money?

  11. Harry Passfield permalink
    May 4, 2017 8:55 pm

    Ahh…2020 – must be that ‘vision’ thing. (Trouble is, they haven’t a clue where they’re going and can’t see the trees for the wood pellets)

    In any case, Figueres doesn’t give a fig for climate change, only regime change.

    • Rowland H permalink
      May 5, 2017 8:43 am

      2020 has a great ring to it. Check out ID2020 which is actively working on issuing unique numbers to everybody in the world i.e. basically barcoding us all! Individual freedom is to be trampled on by some “caring” world authority. They will start on the most poor and vulnerable. Freedom is about going about one’s business in complete anonymity, without fear or favour under natural law without causing harm to any thing or person.

  12. May 4, 2017 10:00 pm

    We don’t actually know that Helena Morrissey CBE is one of the bad guys , she might be working on the inside trying to talk sense to the loonies
    ..but I doubt it so I won’t let any of my money go anywhere near Legal & General group ..until I get some reassurance.

    She is pro-Brexite, but if she is logical about Climate and policy ..then she’s doing a hell of a good job of masking that on her Twitter

    “Shell chairman ” is in with the 2020 Group

    • Russ Wood permalink
      May 5, 2017 4:42 pm

      Well, it IS an assurance company. From ‘orrible experience (in South Africa) with ‘investing’ in almost ANY product of an insurance company, one might as well just stuff your money under the bed. Investment products such as policies or unit trusts are almost always guaranteed to grow slower than the regular payments one puts into them.

  13. May 4, 2017 10:14 pm

    Paul I mentioned this 2020 before on April 10th
    cos it came up in the ECIU stuff behind the Fake News story “Nation proves economy can expand while emissions fall.”
    Article ends
    “report was launched to coincide with Mission2020 an initiative by Cristiana Figueres”

    As ever with these guys PR trumps truth.

  14. Mike permalink
    May 5, 2017 6:06 am

    Surely none of this discussion is related to climate change in reality. It is all about the money. Preferably as Christina says in the text, the movement of money from public sources/governments plus trillions from the commercial sector/super funds etc to specific projects which better suit their objectives which includes centralised control. Bit of a worry for investors.
    If I may quote from a post by tonyfromct on 27Aug16 which explains this very eloquently encl.

    tonyfromct permalink
    August 27, 2016 12:25 am
    As reported by Joseph D’Aleo in his article “Climate: “The Real Worrisome Trend” ” (currently on icecap.us):
    *****************
    “Last year, UN Climate Chief Christiana Figueres stated bluntly:
    Our aim is not to save the world from ecological calamity but to change the global economic system… 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.
    In simpler terms, she intends to replace free enterprise, entrepreneurial capitalism with UN-controlled, centralized, socialized One World government and economic control. ”
    In November 2010,
    IPCC official Ottmar Edenhofer presented an additional reason for UN climate
    policies.
    “One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental
    policy,” he said. It is not. It is actually about how “we redistribute de facto
    the world’s wealth.” ”
    ****************************
    What could be clearer?

  15. Graeme No.3 permalink
    May 5, 2017 8:12 am

    And if the weather turns colder in the next 3 years?
    Already a lot of voters are having doubts about Global Warming, and politicians are starting to wonder how to climb down off the platform and pretend they either always had doubts or that they have been converted on the way to Damascus. The next step is to stop the money. Once that starts to happen the believers will go into full hysteria mode and lose.
    Look on the weather currently damaging grape harvest yields. That’s the weather that gets headlines and starts questioning.

  16. CheshireRed permalink
    May 5, 2017 9:46 am

    Please, can someone, anyone, elucidate what EXACTLY are the ‘devastating impacts of carbon emissions’?

    Is there anything at all that’s happened or happening to global temperatures that’s outside of normal natural variation? The answer is ‘no’ and that kills claims of ‘climate devastation’ stone cold dead. What a racket ‘climate change’ has become.

  17. Dung permalink
    May 5, 2017 10:41 am

    It really is not about global warming, it really is all about the UN and sustainable development whereby we do not use up resources that our decendents might need (coal, oil, gas etc).
    Sustainable development is the reason why they want to change the global economy.
    We in the UK are deemed to be consuming more than our share of resources and therefore we must be stopped and our wealth sent to those in ghreatest need (overseas aid anyone?).

    • Dung permalink
      May 5, 2017 10:48 am

      descendants/greatest bloopers 😦

    • Rowland H permalink
      May 5, 2017 11:01 am

      Yes, UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. All about setting up world government.

  18. Dung permalink
    May 5, 2017 10:45 am

    Has anyone told Figueres that the UK turned on the first commercial fusion reactor last month?

    • May 6, 2017 4:42 pm

      Never mind fusion. Thorium technology is the most likely solution to cheap, safe and abundant energy. It also produces no CO2 which might please some people albeit somewhat irrelevant.

  19. Gerry, England permalink
    May 5, 2017 12:46 pm

    The hidden agenda is the mass extermination necessary to reduce demand, but I guess that doesn’t go down well if you put it in your reports.

  20. May 5, 2017 1:34 pm

    Imagine over 7 billion people who, almost overnight, no longer have the energy and infrastructure to support a healthy prosperous life. Now everything that moves is food and every tree is fuel till the entire planet is a wasteland. Great environmental plan. What insight these folks have. People will not passively roll up into a ball and just die. They will quite rightly fight till their last breath to survive and ensure the survival of their families and in doing so, once the modern industrial society is trashed by environmental nut cases, they will decimate the planet.

  21. Coeur de Lion permalink
    May 5, 2017 6:00 pm

    How many people in India don’t get enough to eat?

  22. willhaas permalink
    May 5, 2017 9:13 pm

    At the very least these people should stop having meetings that require any travel which causes more CO2 to enter the atmosphere. The reality is that the climate change we have been experiencing is caused by the sun and the oceans over which Mankind has no control. There is no real evidence that CO2 has any effect on climate and plenty of scientific rational that the climate sensivity of CO2 is really zero..So all of their proposed efforts will have no effect on climate. But even if they could stop the climate from changing, extreme weather events and sea level rise would continue because they are part of the current climate.

  23. May 6, 2017 9:35 pm

    What do they plan for international trade – hot air balloons and sailing ships ?

    Seriously ?

  24. yarpos permalink
    May 7, 2017 7:25 am

    3 years gives them time to cream a nice income, do some networking and line up the next opportunity. 2020 just gives them enough working time to slither up the ladder.

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