Last year I haven written much about climate change. But I continue reading, thinking and worrying. It has been grey year, disappointing for many things and hopeful for others. So let’s put in black and white my personal balance:
In the most significant part I would locate the IPCC Special Report on 1.5ºC. It deserves more explanation, but the main point, in my opinion, is that scientific community concretes to the world the time limit to act in order to be in the safe side of climate change and the time limit is narrow. We are close to the crossroad
In contrast, the world CO2 emissions have increased significantly. And this is by itself the bad news, but considering the crossroad concept it gets even harder to assume, it is like saying something clearly to the world and getting the wrong answer immediately. This way there is no way. Last year was the 4th hottest until now but next record will be here soon.
COP24 did not get a political serious compromise and thermosolar is not growing fast either.
In the positive trends, there are many hopeful signals:
- Coal continues to decline in many countries and globally. Coal is the first fossil fuel to quit.
- UK in its brexit decision turmoil continues to be a great example, reducing power consumption (decoupling from economy), coal and emissions.
- Off-shore wind power seems to be a reality, in UK and in many other EU countries.
- Electric mobility seems closer. Maybe not in numbers but the felling is that some governments and auto industry consider it feasible. Or at least more feasible that ten years ago.
- Energy storage seems closer too. Battery costs go down steadily. This is a key factor to increase renewables in many electric systems.
- Photo-voltaic and on-shore wind power are profitable without subsidies in many countries. This changes the game, even more for developing countries. They do not have to decarbonize, just do not have to carbonize.
Most of those sentences deserve a dedicated post. I will try.