And so it starts. It’s that time of year again. The cheap Halloween tat made in China is already being replaced on the shelves of shops by cheap Christmas tat made in China, thanks to the UK’s brilliant policy of exporting its manufacturing, jobs and greenhouse gas emissions to countries with lower environmental standards, then transporting the goods in question half-way round the world to sell in UK shops. It’s also the time of year for something else. And so, while the tsunami of propaganda in the UK mainstream media which accompanied COP26 in Glasgow has not been seen this year, the usual suspects are certainly doing their best to crank things up ahead of COP 27. With deliberate timing, reports and studies are being released to generate “news”, and with great predictability, the Guardian and the BBC are duly providing the headlines.

Lancet Article

Over recent days, the BBC has given us the following headline: “COP27: Climate change threatening global health – report”. Never knowingly outdone where climate alarmism is concerned, the Guardian goes one better with “Global health at mercy of fossil fuel addiction, warn scientists – Reliance on oil and gas worsening climate impacts and compounding food, energy and cost of living crises”.

I suppose it could be said that I’m being a little unfair in criticising the BBC and the Guardian for their sensationalist headlines, given that both are about a report in the Lancet, which itself doesn’t shy away from an OTT title: “The 2022 Global Report of the Lancet Countdown – The health of people around the world is at the mercy of a persistent fossil fuel addiction.

It strikes me as a highly political piece of work. To take just one of its claims, repeated by the BBC:

Heat-related deaths globally have increased by two thirds over the last two decades, it finds.

No mention, however, is made of the fact that many more people around the world die of extreme cold than of extreme heat, nor that warming in recent years has consequently saved more lives than it has cost.

I was going to spend some time seeking to analyse (and, ideally, debunk) the claims in the Lancet, but having been busy with other things over the last few days, I have been too slow out of the blocks. Instead I refer readers to two excellent articles which have done the job for me – first, “Climate alarmism is bad for your health – The world is getting healthier and wealthier, despite what the doom-mongers claim” by Laurie Wastell at the Spiked website; and Paul Homewood’s piece on 28th October.

State of Climate Action 2022

Next up is the Guardian again, this time with its take on the “State of Climate Action Report 2022”, conveniently issued on 26th October by the World Resources Institute, just in time to drum up a few headlines ahead of COP27. The World Resources Institute seems to be a marvellously wealthy organisation, as is apparent from its 2021 Report. Many of the usual climate-concerned lobby groups, billionaire philanthropists and foundations are listed among the major donors (minimum donation $750,000). UK taxpayers will be particularly pleased to see two separate branches of the UK government up there among the big-hitter donors – BEIS and Defra. However, I digress. The Guardian’s take on its report is a headline telling us: “Cut meat consumption to two burgers a week to save planet, study suggests – Climate crisis report says ‘we are not winning in any sector’ as experts call for urgent action on fossil fuels

The researchers found a gloomy picture, with just over half the indicators well off track and five heading in the wrong direction.

The indicators of most concern were the use of gas, which is increasing rapidly at a time when it should be reduced in favour of renewable energy; steel-making, where emissions-reduction technology is not being adopted fast enough; journeys taken in passenger cars; the rate of loss of mangrove forests [they obviously haven’t read Mangrove Mayhem]; and emissions from agriculture.

…Bill Hare, the chief executive of Climate Analytics, which also helped to produce the report, cautioned over the increasing use of gas for electricity generation around the world…

…The analysis concluded that far greater investment was required to shift the global economy to a low-carbon footing: about $460bn a year for the next decade in additional funds would be needed, and governments must also stop their favourable treatment of fossil fuels.

And of course:

The report’s findings will be presented to governments at the COP27 UN climate summit, which begins in Egypt next month.

The report was written by Systems Change Lab, and its section on the WRI website tells us that it is:

a collaborative initiative convened by World Resources Institute and Bezos Earth Fund. Systems Change Lab supports the UN Climate Change High-Level Champions and works with key partners and funders including Climate Action Tracker, ClimateWorks Foundation, the Global Environment Facility, Just Climate, UN Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre and the University of Tokyo’s Center for Global Commons, among others. Systems Change Lab is a component of the Global Commons Alliance.

It’s always nice to see a key report going in front of a “vital” COP meeting, having been prepared by a group of disinterested people with no axe to grind…

They introduce themselves with this analysis:

The world stands at a crossroads: continue to invest in yesterday’s economy — a decision that will intensify climate change, accelerate biodiversity loss and deepen socioeconomic inequities — or embark upon a great global reset that will lead humanity toward a more sustainable, prosperous and just future for all. While the latter path is the obvious choice, actions to date have largely failed to spur change at the speed and scale needed to mitigate the global crises we now face.

I suppose we can’t complain that they don’t tell us up front what their agenda is.

We need to get China’: John Kerry calls for return to bilateral climate talks

Another Guardian article from last week gives prominence to John Kerry and his views.

John Kerry has urged China to return to the negotiating table with the US on the climate crisis to kickstart stalled global progress on cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

The special envoy on climate to the US president, Joe Biden, said: “China is 30% of all emissions. We need to get China.”..

…The failure of the world’s two biggest emitters to cooperate has created problems for global climate action. “Absent China, are we getting the best hope for where we want to try to go? Not, not in my judgment,” Kerry told the Guardian in an interview. …But Kerry said China had in effect stopped negotiating with the US on climate issues, as well as on other matters. He said: “It’s been impossible, really. China has pulled out of the talks for now.”..

And that really is the nub of the matter. China, and many other major greenhouse gas emitters, aren’t interested in the agenda, other than to the extent that it suits their agenda, which is obviously to weaken the western economies while not weakening their own. So far they’ve done a very good job of persuading many useful idiots in the west that they’re playing ball on climate change, and thus giving encouragement to the developed western world to continue committing economic suicide, while exporting jobs, manufacturing capacity, and emissions to China. John Kerry isn’t stupid. One might have hoped that the reality of the situation would have dawned on him by now.

COP27: Prioritise climate or face catastrophe – UN chief

Another BBC article, providing yet more hype, was written under the above heading last week. It runs over the same old ground:

Countries must re-prioritise climate change or the world faces catastrophe, the UN chief has told BBC News.

Secretary General António Guterres was speaking in New York ahead of a major climate conference in Egypt…

…He also called on the US and China to work together at the conference, saying the world relies on their leadership. In August, China said it was ending co-operation with the US on climate change after a leading US politician visited Taiwan.

“This is the defining issue of our time, nobody has the right to sacrifice international action on climate change for any reason,” he warned.

He doesn’t seem to have cottoned on yet to the reality of the situation, either.

Carbon emissions to peak in 2025 in ‘historic turning point’, says IEA

Meanwhile, back at the Guardian, publicity is given to the fantasy views of the International Energy Agency. Its name may create the impression that it is perhaps part of, or linked to the United Nations, that it is an authoritative, objective organisation, interested only in offering impartial advice to the developed and developing world. However, as its website makes clear, that isn’t actually the case:

Created in 1974 to ensure the security of oil supplies, the International Energy Agency has evolved over the years. While energy security remains a core mission, the IEA today is at the center of the global energy debate, focusing on a wide variety of issues, ranging from electricity security to investments, climate change and air pollution, energy access and efficiency, and much more…

…While energy security remains a core mission, the IEA has evolved over the years, adapting to the transformation of the global energy system. Today, the IEA is at the heart of global dialogue [sic, it seems more like a monologue] on energy, providing authoritative statistics and analysis and examining the full spectrum of energy issues, advocating policies that will enhance the reliability, affordability and sustainability [sic] of energy in its 31 members countries and beyond. …

…The modernization of the IEA was structured under three pillars: strengthening and broadening the IEA’s commitment to energy security beyond oil, to natural gas and electricity; deepening the IEA’s engagement with major emerging economies; and providing a greater focus on clean energy technology, including energy efficiency.

In other words, it is now a powerful lobby organisation, committed to ending the world’s reliance on fossil fuels. Everything it says needs to be interpreted in that light. For instance, things like this (which make it clear where it stands on the climate change debate and especially the debate on related policy issues):

He also dismissed criticism from some climate deniers that spending on clean energy had contributed to higher energy prices, saying that argument was “hiding who sparked the energy crisis, which is Russia”. The IEA found that higher shares of renewable energy were correlated with lower electricity prices.

None of the government leaders complained about too much clean energy,” Birol said. “They complain that they don’t have enough clean energy.”

There’s just one problem with that. It isn’t true. Visit the BBC Market Data page on its website, and you see that the price of gas started to rise dramatically before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and although that invasion certainly created massive upward pressure on the price of gas, it peaked in August, since when it has more than halved, and is now less than it was during a pre-war peak in December last year.

Prices are a function of supply and demand. If you don’t constrain demand, while constraining supply by telling suppliers that there is going to be no market for their products and that they will be left with stranded assets, then you really shouldn’t be surprised if they cease to invest in new sources of supply at the previous rate. In that scenario, prices will rise. And that is what has happened.

Funnily enough, as recently as 28th July 2022 the IEA issued a press release with the heading “Global coal demand is set to return to its all-time high in 2022”. Its Oil Market Report from September 2022 tells us that despite covid restrictions continuing to depress the Chinese economy, “world oil demand is forecast to grow by 2 mb/d in 2022 and 2.1 mb/d next year.

Climate crisis study finds heatwaves have cost global economy $16tn

Still with the Guardian, we find a report on a study released, with impeccable timing on 28th October, with the heading “Globally unequal effect of extreme heat on economic growth”. The Guardian tells us that “[h]eatwaves brought on by human-caused climate breakdown have cost the global economy about $16tn since the 1990s, according to a study”. What the study actually says is:

Cumulative 1992–2013 losses from anthropogenic extreme heat likely fall between $5 trillion and $29.3 trillion globally.

If I had more time, I would try to analyse that claim in depth. Suffice to say that I’m not convinced by an estimate whose upper end is almost 6 times higher than its lower end, with the Guardian plumping for a figure just under the half-way point for its headline. Read the Guardian article, and one can’t help suspecting an agenda behind it.

World close to ‘irreversible’ climate breakdown, warn major studies

The final Guardian article in this round-up tells us that:

All three of the key UN agencies have produced damning reports in the last two days.

And who are the key agencies and what do they say?

The UN environment agency’s report found there was “no credible pathway to 1.5C in place” and that “woefully inadequate” progress on cutting carbon emissions means the only way to limit the worst impacts of the climate crisis is a “rapid transformation of societies”.

Current pledges for action by 2030, even if delivered in full, would mean a rise in global heating of about 2.5C, a level that would condemn the world to catastrophic climate breakdown, according to the UN’s climate agency. Only a handful of countries have ramped up their plans in the last year, despite having promised to do so at the COP26 UN climate summit in Glasgow last November.

The UN’s meterological agency reported that all the main heating gases hit record highs in 2021, with an alarming surge in emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas.

Key reports published in the last two days, eh? Science, or politics?

And, by the way, if all the key indicators remain so depressingly and relentlessly negative after 26 COPs to date, at what point will they accept that the whole jamboree is a waste of time and money that achieves nothing other than to release a lot of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere while tens of thousands of people jet around the world every year to party and to pontificate?

Should they stay or should they go?

The BBC has been lamenting for some time that our new monarch is no longer to attend COP27, given its political nature and the fact that he is no longer monarch-in-waiting. Still, it found what it evidently regards as good news in its article headed “King to hold event to mark COP27 summit he will miss”.

The King is to host a pre-conference reception at Buckingham Palace next Friday, bringing together 200 business leaders, politicians and campaigners.

Other than to mark the end of the UK’s hosting of COP26 we are not really enlightened as to the purpose of this meeting and what it is supposed to achieve. Nor are we told what will be the carbon footprint associated with it.

Yesterday, the editorial in the Observer, the Guardian’s Sunday sister paper, described UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s decision not to attend COP27 as “shameful” and a “disgrace”. It lectured us to the effect that “Britain started this crisis; it should be helping end it”. It worked itself up to a rousing peroration in the final paragraph:

We should be clear. The UK cannot sideline the unfolding climate catastrophe on the grounds we have more important things to do. Britain began this whole grim story. We created the Industrial Revolution and were therefore the first to burn coal – and later on, oil and gas – in vast amounts to power our way to global domination in the 19th century. The first significant additions of man-made greenhouse gases to the atmosphere emanated from this country. For its leader to shun this responsibility is an embarrassment and a disgrace.

There are a few problems with this tub-thumping, of course. The fact that Britain was the first to the industrial revolution doesn’t mean that other countries wouldn’t have gone down the same road had we not done so. It also ignores the fact that the UK is nowhere near the leading cumulative emitter of greenhouse gases, and it ignores the fact that the UK has probably reduced its emissions (admittedly in large part by exporting them) more than any other nation. Nor is an explanation offered as to what exactly is the difference to the outcome of COP27 that we can anticipate if our Prime Minister does attend the jamboree.

Given today’s development, it may prove to be more than a little embarrassing that they chose to add this sentence:

The fact that the nation’s environment secretary, Thérèse Coffey, has also dismissed Cop27 as “just a gathering of people in Egypt” underscores the blinkered incompetence that lies at the heart of the current administration.

Why should that be embarrassing? Well, the favourite climate pin-up of the Guardian and the Observer, their regular go-to for a quote on everything climate-related, Greta Thunberg, has just spoken in terms that suggest that she rather agrees with Thérèse Coffey. Just 24 hours or so after the Observer editorial appeared, the Guardian produced another article with this headline: “Greta Thunberg to skip ‘greenwashing’ Cop27 climate summit in Egypt – Swedish climate activist says the UN’s climate conference will be ‘used as an opportunity for leaders and people in power to get attention’.” It edits her words so as to be slightly less embarrassing, but the Independent isn’t so reticent, with its more dramatic headline: “Greta Thunberg says Cop27 a ‘scam’ that provides platform for ‘greenwashing, lying and cheating’.”

Greta Thunberg has described climate summits such as the Cop27 conference taking place in Egypt next week as a “scam” that is “failing” humanity and the planet by not leading to “major changes”.

The Swedish activist said people in positions of power were using the high-profile gatherings for attention and were “greenwashing, lying and cheating”.

“As it is now Cops not [sic] are not really going to lead to any major changes, unless of course, we use them as an opportunity to mobilise,” she said…

Activists must try to “make people realise what a scam this is and realise that these systems are failing us”, she added.

And, not for the first time, I find myself in surprising agreement with Greta.

25 Comments

  1. How weak are our politicians? A bit of a rumpus from the “green” BBC and the Guardian, and it’s flip-flop time:

    “Rishi Sunak could still attend COP27 climate summit”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-63454966

    Prime Minister Rishi Sunak could still attend the COP27 climate summit if sufficient progress is made on preparations for the autumn Budget, Downing Street has said.

    On Thursday No 10 said Mr Sunak was not expected to attend “due to other pressing domestic commitments”.

    But on Monday the prime minister’s official spokesman said this position was “under review”….

    Why?

    Like

  2. “Rishi Sunak badly misread the national mood, and now a Cop27 U-turn is looming
    Gaby Hinsliff
    The prime minister may have little impact in Sharm el-Sheikh, but skipping it would do political damage much closer to home”

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/oct/31/rishi-sunak-cop27-prime-minister-sharm-el-sheikh

    I was encouraged by the reality of the headline (“The prime minister may have little impact in Sharm el-Sheikh” – correct), but then read the article, and the Guardian is as potty as ever:

    In his desperation to win over party members during the summer, he boxed himself in badly, committing to block both onshore windfarms and farmers putting solar panels in their fields despite evidence that public opposition is visibly softening. (Nearly three-quarters wouldn’t oppose a new windfarm in their area, according to YouGov; Vladimir Putin has unwittingly helped make a powerful case for them, but I wonder if rural communities haven’t also just got more used to the sight of those whirling blades on the horizon).

    He must now avoid making a similar mistake with anti-net zero zealots on the backbenches. They may be noisy, but they’re as out of step with an alarmed British public on climate as they are on almost everything else, and setting a compass by them is madness; the situation cries out now for a prime minister who can lead, not follow, opinion.

    Perhaps the best lesson an inexperienced prime minister could draw meanwhile from the Cop27 episode is that always prioritising today’s urgent problem (in this case the budget) over tomorrow’s more distant but more existential one (the prospect of the entire planet frying) is roughly how we ended up in this burning mess. Sometimes, tomorrow needs to come before today.

    The whole article is a hoot, but the last paragraph is a howler, coming from the Guardian which (rightly) bangs on endlessly about the scale of the economic crisis facing the country. Never mind that Rishi – go to Egypt instead, expand your carbon footprint, and have little impact on yet another pointless international gabfest which will – as usual – achieve nothing.

    Like

  3. Well said Terry Welsh, and – credit where it’s due – well done the Guardian for publishing his letter:

    I smiled at Peter Brooker’s comment that Thérèse Coffey won’t now be wrecking the NHS (Letters, 30 October). But I find myself, for the first and probably only time, in agreement with Coffey. Cop27 will be an expensive schmooze-fest, long on words but negligent of deeds.
    Terry Walsh
    Cartagena, Spain

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/oct/31/leaders-apathy-towards-climate-crisis-is-proving-deadly

    Like

  4. Mark. Have tried to reply to several of your posts but without much success. Am in hospital with a broken femur bone. Had my operation on Monday, so am at the earliest stages of recovery. Find it diffiCult to use the hospital IT system.

    Like

  5. Alan,

    I’m very sorry to learn that. I have emailed you privately.

    Meanwhile:

    “Why Rishi Sunak is right to snub COP27
    The annual climate conference is an indulgent and pointless spectacle.”

    https://www.spiked-online.com/2022/11/01/why-rishi-sunak-is-right-to-snub-cop27/

    And:

    “Boris Johnson confirms he is attending COP27 in Egypt”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-63478120

    Mr Johnson said he wanted to use his appearance in Egypt to “talk a little bit about how I see things and how we see things in the UK”.

    Well, that’s great. About as much use as Matt Hancock’s trip to the jungle. Why has one been suspended as a Tory MP for abandoning the constituents he’s paid to represent and Parliament that he’s paid to attend, while the other hasn’t? And who’s paying for this trip to the sun? I hope it isn’t the UK taxpayer, but I fear it is.

    Like

  6. In other (ahem) COP-related news:

    “Cumbria coalmine decision delayed until after COP27”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-63479809

    A decision on whether to go ahead with a new coal mine in Cumbria has been delayed for a third time.

    The decision was expected by 8 November, but it has been pushed back until after next week’s COP27 climate summit in Egypt.

    The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities said it would now be made “on or before 8 December 2022”.

    The Planning Inspectorate’s report has been with the government since April.

    Constantly kicking this can down the road is both an embarrassment and a disgrace. 500 local jobs, in an area of high unemployment, are on hold pending this decision. However, it seems that faux virtue-signalling ahead of COP is more important.

    Like

  7. Here he goes again……

    Mr Sunak tweeted that there would be “no long-term prosperity without action on climate change” or energy security without investing in renewables.

    “That is why I will attend @COP27P next week: to deliver on Glasgow’s legacy of building a secure and sustainable future.”

    If he believes that, then he’s in the wrong job.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Another UN report, released just in time for COP27:

    “Climate change: No glaciers on Kilimanjaro by 2050”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-63489041

    The final words sum up the political nature of the timing of all these reports and surveys:

    “There’s a message of hope here,” said Carvalho Resende. “If we can manage to drastically cut emissions, we will be able to save most of these glaciers.”

    “This is really a call to take action at every level – not only at the political level, but at our level as human beings.”

    By the way, I’d be interested to learn if the picture accompanying the article is a recent one. The glacier looks much the same as it did when I was there 25 years ago.

    Like

  9. Here’s another one, with more “new research”:

    “Climate change: Hidden emissions in liquid gas imports threaten targets”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-63457377

    Europe’s growing reliance on liquefied natural gas (LNG) is coming at a high environmental cost, new research shows.

    LNG imports have soared in the wake of the Ukraine war which has limited piped supplies from Russia.

    Analysis, seen by the BBC, shows that the production and transport of LNG causes up to ten times the carbon emissions compared to pipeline gas.

    There are worries that the extra carbon could hamper efforts to rein in warming.

    We’re told that transport as well as production emissions have to be taken into account. But not if we’re talking about a Cumbrian coal mine, in which case it’s apparently better for the coal to come from the other side of the world.

    Like

  10. “COP27 Is About a Jet-Setting Elite Trying to Make a World of Fewer, Poorer People Who “Live Meagre Lives”, Says Ecologist”

    https://dailysceptic.org/2022/11/03/cop27-is-about-a-jet-setting-elite-trying-to-make-a-world-of-fewer-poorer-people-who-live-meagre-lives-says-ecologist/

    Ahead of COP27, the ecologist Dr. Susan Crockford has launched a hard-hitting attack on the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the World Economic Forum (WEF), King Charles and Sir David Attenborough. The two men are said to “parrot WWF activist nonsense” that they naïvely accept as science. Dr. Crockford is an acknowledged zoology expert on polar bears, whose work on their recently growing Arctic populations has effectively removed them as a green poster story. She says it is clear that many of the goals of the WWF are shared by the WEF, and these complement the vision the King and Attenborough share for the future. “They all want a return to a world with fewer people that live meagre, circumscribed lives, while the rich carry on their jet-setting ways.”

    Dr. Crockford writes that when the WWF began promoting itself as a scientific authority a dozen or so years ago, these “naïve elite boosters” accepted it without question, parroting unsubstantiated WWF climate doomsday talking points at every opportunity. In her view, these men don’t speak with an authority of their own on this topic, “they use their exalted positions to assist the WWF and others achieve their utopian dream: destroy for others the capitalism that created their own wealth and power”…

    Like

  11. And now the Bristol Mayor’s CO2-emitting globe-trotting to save the planet lifestyle continues:

    “Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees to attend COP27 climate conference”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-bristol-63497208

    Bristol’s mayor will travel to Egypt for a climate conference where he will try to raise cash from investors.

    Marvin Rees said he would be representing cities all over the world to secure funds for climate projects while attending COP27.

    Mr Rees was criticised earlier this year for flying nine hours to attend the TED 2022 conference in Canada.

    A spokesperson for the mayor said in order for Mr Rees to “make big deals…you need to be in the room”.

    “Marvin Rees is proud to have secured an initial £424m from international investors for City Leap clean energy projects, creating 1,000 new jobs and cutting 140,000 tonnes of emissions over the next five years,” he added.

    “The fight against climate change will be won or lost in cities, so Bristol simply can’t afford not to be at COP27 banging the drum for our city and our planet.”</blockquote.

    Utterly delusional, IMO.

    Like

  12. Why does everybody think it’s up to the UK? She doesn’t seem to have anything to say about China:

    “Spanish minister urges Sunak to commit to climate crisis fight
    Teresa Ribera says she was ‘hugely surprised’ and saddened by PM’s initial refusal to go to Cop27 summit”

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/nov/03/absurd-debate-in-the-uk-spanish-minister-urges-rishi-sunak-to-commit-to-climate-crisis-fight

    The Spanish government has urged Rishi Sunak to demonstrate a clear commitment to fighting the climate emergency, describing the British government’s flip-flopping over the prime minister’s attendance of the forthcoming Cop27 summit as “sad” and “surprising”, given the UK’s global reputation and its current presidency of the conference.

    Spain’s environment minister, Teresa Ribera, also said the “absurd”, heel-dragging political debate over climate change in the UK was “surprising and disappointing”.

    Speaking to the Guardian before this year’s summit in Cairo, the minister said Europe needed to be strategic, transparent and purposeful – especially in the wake of a report that found temperatures on the continent have increased at more than twice the global average in the past 30 years.

    Ribera, who is one of Spain’s three deputy prime ministers, also insisted the UK had an important role to play in tackling the climate emergency.

    Like

  13. And here’s Justin Rowlatt at it again:

    “COP27: Why the latest UN climate conference matters”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-63502762

    Tens of thousands of people will be jetting to an Egyptian holiday resort beside the Red Sea this weekend in an effort to tackle climate change.

    It sounds like a joke…[yes, doesn’t it? A bad one]…but this latest UN climate summit – COP27 – is reckoned to be the world’s best hope of progress on the climate issue.

    Progress is certainly needed.

    The global effort to cut emissions is “woefully inadequate” and means the world is on track for “catastrophe”, the UN warned last week.

    But the meeting in Sharm El-Sheikh is shaping up to be a prickly and confrontational affair.

    It’s worth looking at the graph of global CO2 emissions to understand the full extent to which all the COPs to date have been a complete waste of time. It’s fairly clear, too, that the greatest increase in emissions is in Asia. As Rowlatt says:

    China is now the world biggest emitter, for example, India the third biggest.

    Indeed, 7 out of the top 10 emitters are Asian countries, 8 if you include Russia, which might be a bit of a stretch – although more of its land-mass is Asian than European, most of its population lives in Europe.

    Like

  14. It’s official. If COP27 doesn’t come up with a blockbuster agreement, we’re stuffed. So presumably this is the last COP – if the deal is done, then there’s no need to keep on talking; and if it isn’t, then it’s too late, so there’s no point in keeping on talking:

    “UN chief warns ‘we will be doomed’ without historic climate pact
    Exclusive: António Guterres says gap between developed world and poorer countries is biggest issue facing Cop27 talks”

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/nov/04/un-chief-antonio-guterres-climate-crisis-cop27

    Rich countries must sign a “historic pact” with the poor on the climate, or “we will be doomed”, the UN secretary-general, António Guterres, has warned, as a deepening gulf between the developed and developing world has put climate talks on the brink.

    The stark warning comes as world leaders start to gather for the UN Cop27 climate summit, which opens on Sunday in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, but which even the hosts admit will be the most difficult in at least a decade.

    Cop27 is taking place amid the worst geopolitical tensions for years, over the Ukraine war, a spiralling global cost of living crisis, and deepening economic gloom.

    But the gulf must be bridged if humanity is to have a hope of avoiding the worst ravages of climate breakdown, Guterres said.

    “There is no way we can avoid a catastrophic situation, if the two [the developed and developing world] are not able to establish a historic pact,” he told the Guardian in an interview on the eve of the summit. “Because at the present level, we will be doomed.”…

    …At last year’s summit in Glasgow, countries agreed to focus on limiting global temperature rises to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels, but recent UN reports have shown that current policies would raise temperatures by about 2.5C.

    Guterres said there was only a slim chance of holding to the target. “We still have a chance but we are rapidly losing it,” he said. “I’d say the 1.5C is in intensive care, and the machines are shaking. So either we act immediately and in a very strong way, or it’s lost and probably lost for ever.”

    Can’t say it clearer than that. It’s now or never. So they’ll all shut up next year, then?

    Like

  15. “Jordan Peterson: COP27 is an Expensive Exercise in Futility as CO2 Emissions Climb Ever Higher and Renewable Energy Cannot Do the Job”

    https://dailysceptic.org/2022/11/04/jordan-peterson-cop27-is-an-expensive-exercise-in-futility-as-co2-emissions-climb-ever-higher-and-renewable-energy-cannot-do-the-job/

    Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results – the famous quote often misattributed to Albert Einstein should be the unofficial motto of COP27, say Jordan Peterson and Bjørn Lomborg in the Telegraph.

    Global CO2 emissions have kept increasing since the world’s nations first committed to rein in climate change at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 – despite dozens of climate summits and the global climate agreements struck in Kyoto and Paris. This is the case, once again, in 2022, when we will collectively set a new emissions record. While rich countries increasingly promise draconian cuts (and then generally backtrack, as they import huge amounts of oil, gas and coal to save their citizens from energy poverty, as they have done most recently to address the current energy crisis), most of the future emissions will come from the currently poorer countries in Asia and Africa, as they power their climb out of abject poverty.

    In the previous 10 years, the world has focused more on remediating climate change than ever before. Despite this, we are not achieving anything, although no shortage of money has been wasted. In a surprisingly honest review of climate policies, the UN revealed a “lost decade”: The report found that it couldn’t tell the difference between what has happened and a world that adopted no new climate policies since 2005. Consider that: all those climate summits and grandiose promises – all that expense and trouble – and no measurable difference whatsoever. …

    Like

  16. If this is right, it looks as though COP27 could well be yet another stalemate:

    “New U.S. message on climate change: Make China pay
    The U.S. is softening its resistance to paying developing countries for loss and damages suffered from climate change, and it’s pointing the finger at China’s massive emissions as well.”

    https://www.politico.com/news/2022/11/05/climate-change-china-emissions-00064736

    …China should contribute its own funds to the cause, U.S. Special Envoy John Kerry told reporters late last month, “especially if they think they’re going to continue to go on to the next 30 years with increasing their emissions.”

    …“At the rate we’re going, a couple of countries have the ability to eclipse our historical mountain” of emissions since the middle of the 19th century, Kerry said. “So yeah, we burned coal and we did this. But guess who else burned coal? Every single one of those other countries have been burning coal for 70 years. Are they absolved?”

    Long-time observers of the climate talks like Michael Oppenheimer, a Princeton University climate scientist and international affairs professor, question whether the U.S. tactic is designed to create a wedge between China and the developing countries that often negotiate as a bloc at the talks and take a contentious stance against the industrialized countries.

    “Breaking up that bloc a little bit is something the U.S. would regard as a diplomatic coup,” Oppenheimer said.

    The EU is backing up its ally….

    Like

  17. I see the quote above ““UN chief warns ‘we will be doomed’” has now been rolled out on the TV news today.
    that big chief António Guterres sure knows what language is needed to get things done.

    wonder if he has watched – “The Restaurant at the End of the Universe”.

    Like

  18. They’re still at it (and no doubt will be for the next few weeks):

    “COP27: ‘Climate chaos’ warning as UN summit begins”

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-63517078

    The UN’s climate change summit has opened in Egypt with a warning that our planet is “sending a distress signal”.

    Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was responding to a UN report released on Sunday saying the past eight years were on track to be the warmest on record.

    Which is true, certainly according to NOAA, but a bit of context might be helpful. NOAA’s records only go back to 1880, and for much of the world, those records are fragmentary at best before the late 20th century. Also, the hottest year, according to NOAA, was 2016, since when the global mean temperature declined by 0.15C to 2021, which was only the 6th warmest.

    The best that NOAA predicts at the moment is that 2022 will be a top 10 year.

    Like

  19. Astonishing to read this in the Guardian:

    “Cop conferences are a big game of let’s pretend and 27 won’t be any different”

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/nov/06/cop-conferences-are-a-big-game-of-lets-pretend-and-27-wont-be-any-different

    It could almost have been written by any of us:

    The fact that Cop27 is being held in a non-democratic country highlights another of the awkward realities of the climate negotiations, namely that many of the developing nations – including those who bleat on about how much they are suffering from climate-induced “loss and damage” – are in fact hideously authoritarian states whose citizens step out of line at their peril. Somehow the moral issues of climate justice feel a little different when you look at it that way.

    But none of us will talk about any of this. Cops are a big game of let’s pretend: let’s pretend Egypt is a free country, let’s pretend that we can still meet the 1.5C target for temperature rise, and let’s pretend that this Cop will be different from all the others.

    Save perhaps for the conclusion:

    …if the Cops didn’t exist we would have to invent them. They do serve a purpose, but just not as big a purpose as you might think.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.