The UK House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee have launched a inquiry into Accelerating the transition from fossil fuels and securing energy supplies, which is scrutinising the UK Government’s Energy Security Strategy and its North Sea Transition Deal (for oil and gas production in the UK’s Continental Shelf). Oil Change International submitted the following evidence for the committee.
A new peer-reviewed study published in Environmental Research Letters finds that existing oil, gas, and coal extraction sites need to be closed down to stay within 1.5C. The study, led by researchers at Oil Change International and the International Institute for Sustainable Development, finds that nearly 40% of developed fossil fuel reserves need to stay in the ground to keep the 1.5°C limit in reach.
“The only effective response to today’s compounding crises is for global leaders to support the efficiency and clean energy solutions that can replace these dirty fuels and eliminate the need for any new LNG infrastructure,” said Laurie van der Burg.
“Furthering fossil fuel dependence would be the worst possible choice for Biden and von der Leyen in a critical moment — we need to double down on clean, renewable energy,” said Collin Rees.
Increased recognition from governments, institutions, and even parts of the financial sector of the role of fossil fuels in climate change represents a sea change from where we were even just a few years ago. The importance of phasing out oil and gas are now featured in climate policy discussions across all sectors.
The Biden White House released a statement from National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan urging OPEC to increase oil production; Oil Change International experts responded.
New research, published in Nature Climate Change, has found “an almost complete loss of stability over the last century” of the ocean currents known as AMOC or more commonly the Gulf Stream. The currents are already at their slowest point for 1,600 years. But scientists worry that AMOC could be reaching a tipping point, leading to a total collapse.
A draft report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) states: “The worst is yet to come, affecting our children’s and grandchildren’s lives much more than our own.” It reiterates that we have to act now to avoid runaway climate change.
A toolbox isn’t very helpful if even the best tool in it only gets you halfway to the repair you need to make. As the IEA prepares a special report on economic recovery, it must close its own climate credibility gap.
In its 2019 World Energy Outlook, used by governments and investors all over the world to guide energy decisions, the International Energy Agency is still centering a trajectory heading towards climate breakdown.