December 3, 2021

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Conflict in Glasgow over green change | COP26 – Glasgow Climate Change Conference

A few days before the summit, which begins on October 21, October 31, Greenpeace, broadcast by the BBC, revealed the involvement of states and organizations (Saudi Arabia, Australia, Japan, OPEC). Change the content of the IPCC report (Government Committee on Climate Change), which serves as the basis for the discussions.

The BBC received about 32,000 requests for change from governments, businesses and organizations.

Some of these countries claim, or these lobbies, the speed with which the IPCC is putting pressure Post-fossil fuel conversion, And especially the results of coal-fired power plants or petrol-powered cars are not always achievable … or even desirable!

In essence and simplicity, the IPCC states: This should be done as quickly and promptly as possible. For Equalize the curve Global warming by 2050.

No. Possible For some …

Let us first discuss the difference between Possible And Desirable.

For example, Japan or Germany, two economic giants, manufacturers and exporters, cannot immediately or for a short period of time cancel the use of gas, oil and coal while maintaining their consumption and maintenance. Production in the present stages, it is the reality of life. This is unattainable.

At the current stage of development of green energies such as wind, solar, hydropower or biomass (waste energy recycling), these energies will not be able to meet the total demand in 2021.

Some smaller countries, for example, in northern Europe (Sweden, Norway), as in Quebec, sometimes come close to it with exceptional power generation rates from wind or hydraulic sources. But it is singular, based on distinct geography, climate or geographical conditions.

Germany has invested hundreds of billions of euros in wind power for 25 years. But the contribution of wind power in this country is limited to 20 to 25% of the total electricity consumption (which varies greatly depending on the year and the wind).

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In addition, there are enormous transportation problems – production is mainly in the north of the country, especially in the south – which hinders the growth of the sector. Not to mention a strong popular resistance to visual and sound pollution associated with this energy, in many regions.

Conclusion: Germany increased its production and imports by expelling a planned nuclear power plant (following the Fukushima disaster in Japan in 2011). It also relies heavily on the Russian North Stream Pipeline.

In Europe, by adding the wind, solar and biological sectors, we generally come to 15, 25, 35% of the total, depending on the country. Rarely more.

… no Desirable According to others

But beyond a change Possible In the (or not) short term, there are positions protected by countries such as Saudi Arabia and Australia – which the BBC and the Greenpeace Scoop reveal – the notion that such a rapid change is not desirable.

How is such a provocative situation possible in 2021?

The capture and sorting (or storage) technology of CO2 is available in these countries, giving the fossil fuels longer life while preventing it from being released into the atmosphere.

Of course, when Saudi Arabia (the world’s largest oil exporter) and Australia (the world’s largest coal exporter) send such statements to the IPCC, they use double talk.

They are not just talking about the objective possibilities of rapid green change (and a real question) or the inherent virtues of carbon capture.

A pre-conflict between ecological and economic interests

These countries, even in the first place, protect their businesses and foreign exchange resources. Here, the conflict between ecology and the economic interests of some countries, some industries, becomes at the forefront.

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For example, according to the BBC, an adviser to the Saudi oil ministry asked the IPCC for similar statements. Urgent action is needed to mitigate climate change Where Rapid transition to zero carbon sources Will be removed from the report.

A senior Australian government official, for his part, did not like the outcome of the report calling for the immediate closure of coal-fired power plants and called for it to be scrapped altogether. This is understandable: Australia continues to open new coal mines every month in 2021!

However, ending the use of coal is one of the stated objectives of the COP26 conference and one of the key steps to achieve the 2050 goals of reducing GHG emissions.

It affects many people, many countries, not least, the climate emergency. Add less precise, more sophisticated, more diplomatic and perhaps more hypocritical perspectives coming from countries like China, Japan or Norway (which is a model for hydropower and a leader in oil production).

China (coal producer and importer) and Japan (which no longer produces it, but imports a lot of it) protect this technology, which is forced to keep fossil fuels for a while, with the remaining purpose being to eliminate them.

In its report, the IPCC is highly skeptical about carbon storage: Little is known about how effectively fossil fuels can be processed to achieve the goals set by the Paris Agreement.

Salvation by nuclear power?

Then there is the nuclear issue that could be brought to the table in Tokyo or Paris Glasgow.

Nuclear power is seen by its proponents (including Japan, which will gradually return ten years after the Fukushima disaster) as a way of not emitting greenhouse gases while expecting more sunlight, wind and biomass.

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The Tokyo government is not the only one changing its attitude towards nuclear. In France, Emmanuel Macron announced in early October that it would invest one billion euros in small, recent-generation power plants, while the United Kingdom, Russia, India and China plan to build or reactivate nuclear power plants. Always with argument vert, Nuclear power generation with no carbon dioxide emissions.

However, there are enemies of nuclear power among environmentalists because of the insecurity of power plants (Fukushima 2011, Chernobyl 1986) and the long-standing insoluble waste problem. The biggest advantage of nuclear power is that it produces zero CO2 emissions (or close to zero).

Then there is Germany, which is officially one of the most ecological discourses verts Of the world. In Germany, there were a lot of nuclear power plants (about thirty at the beginning of the 21st century), but unlike Japan, we decided to eliminate all use of nuclear energy in the short term (2022).

As a result, meanwhile, as in Japan, coal consumption (and soon Russian natural gas) begins to rise, after years of decline.

Yes, there are heated debates going on in Glasgow.