ENERGY TRANSITIONS & FUTURES
Our Energy Transitions and Futures program leads strategic campaigns and produces cutting-edge analysis to advance the energy transformation we need to meet global climate goals. Our focus and expertise is on the supply side – where oil, gas, and coal companies are digging fossil fuels out of the ground.
Our groundbreaking Sky’s Limit report found that existing oil and gas fields and coal mines around the world already contain enough fossil fuels to push us far beyond 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming. That’s the problem.
The solution is for governments and institutions to manage a rapid and equitable decline of fossil fuel production. We can chart a transition to clean, renewable energy that prevents climate breakdown and guarantees a bright future for workers and communities currently on the frontlines of extraction – but we have no time to waste.
OVERVIEW OF WORK
In 2016, Oil Change International released a groundbreaking report that put the urgency of winding down fossil fuel production in sharper focus than ever before. We found that already-producing oilfields, gasfields, and coal mines – where the infrastructure is already built and the capital invested – hold enough carbon to take the world well beyond 1.5°C of warming and up to 2°C. This makes two things very clear:
- The amount of fossil fuel in production is too much already – any expansion is incompatible with meeting the climate goals set in the Paris Agreement; and
- Governments must begin a just and equitable managed decline of existing fossil fuel projects – with wealthy nations in the lead – to limit warming to 1.5°C and prevent the worst climate devastation.
Our Energy Transitions and Futures program is supporting movements and pushing international and national leaders to respond to this challenge head on, and commit to the rapid and just transition off of fossil fuels that our climate goals demand.
Momentum is growing. Since August 2017, more than 500 civil society organizations across 76 countries have signed the Lofoten Declaration, calling on wealthy fossil fuel producers to lead in managing the decline of fossil fuel production.
A growing group of countries, including New Zealand, France, Belize, and Costa Rica, have begun putting limits on fossil fuel development. We’ve produced reports making the case for why Norway, Canada, California, and Germany have a responsibility to join this club of First Movers. And we’re working with influential think tanks, investors, scientists, and policymakers around the world to ensure our leaders have the tools they need to make informed energy decisions – and plan for success in meeting our climate goals.
LATEST PROGRAM POSTS
Affirming that “science is not negotiable” in the halls of a UN conference center and acting on that fact in one’s own policy decisions can be two different things. What counts for the climate is action to manage a rapid and just transition off of fossil fuels.
We’re glad to hear that the IEA is starting to respond to the growing demands from business leaders, government leaders, and civil society members to align its scenarios with Paris. However, the devil is in the details as to whether or not such a scenario from the IEA should earn our applause, and we must withhold judgment until more details are released.
The UK’s oil and gas drilling plans are incompatible with responding to the climate emergency, according to ‘Sea Change,’ a new report by Platform, Oil Change International, and Friends of the Earth Scotland, published today.
Hidden in a detailed California budget document released last week was a critical sentence that, if pursued, could mark a major shift in California climate policy.
LATEST PROGRAM RESEARCH
This new report reveals, for the first time, the climate impact of North Sea oil and gas extraction, and shows the way to a job-creating energy transition. To deal with the climate emergency, the UK needs to immediately stop approving new oil and gas drilling and redirect support to clean jobs and renewable energy.
Investors often use the WEO to assess energy investments. Contrary to the IEA’s claims, its ‘Sustainable Development Scenario’ (SDS) is not aligned with the Paris goals.
At precisely the time in which the world must begin rapidly decarbonizing to avoid runaway climate disaster, the United States is moving further and faster than any other country to expand oil and gas extraction.