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COP-26 an unfortunate, but predictable result...

Doug Houseman's picture
Visionary and innovator in the utility industry and grid modernization Burns & McDonnell

I have a broad background in utilities and energy. I worked for Capgemini in the Energy Practice for more than 15 years. During that time I rose to the position of CTO of the 12,000 person...

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"The most recent draft agreement circulating at COP26 softens language from a previous version; it now “requests” instead of “urges” countries to develop better climate plans, among other changes..."

30,000 people, more than 400 private planes, diesel generators to charge electric cars, diesel generators to support media...none of that matters.

What matters is:

This looks like a repeat of the results of the EU 20/20/20, the Paris meetings and other climate meetings.

This makes me sad, a wonderful set of media quotes, photo opportunities, and no real change in national or global policies.

If the US were to completely eliminate GHG emissions and the rest of the world do nothing, we would still not meet the global climate goals.

Further, we would become the highest cost producer in the world, and kill almost all jobs in the US.

We need to make this a national priority and make all the equipment and materials strategic assets, meaning that we protect domestic industry - so that we can't have the rug pulled out from under the US by the countries that currently dominate these industries. Or, we will be held back from meeting our goals.

We may even need a draft to provide the labor to do the installation of solar, insulation and other projects where the skill level of much of the labor is not high, nor are the wages.

OBTW - no deferments, that was what wrecked the old draft.

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Bob Meinetz's picture
Bob Meinetz on Nov 18, 2021

"If the US were to completely eliminate GHG emissions and the rest of the world do nothing, we would still not meet the global climate goals."

Doug, as i've pointed out elsewhere:

• The U.S. is responsible for 410.2 gigatonnes of anthropogenic CO2e  - 4/5 of the extra CO2 in the air since the Industrial Revolution.
• With 5% of its population, the U.S. emits 25% of global fossil CO2e emissions - five times the global average.
• It is not only our responsibility to lead the world in reductions of CO2 emissions, it's our moral imperative.

"This makes me sad, a wonderful set of media quotes, photo opportunities, and no real change in national or global policies...Further, we would become the highest cost producer in the world, and kill almost all jobs in the US."

What makes me sad is the refusal of some Americans to accept responsibility for a problem of our own making. Forget solar, forget wind, forget biofuels, hydropower,  biomass, geothermal, hydrogen - they're drops in the energy bucket. People still have no idea how bad the problem is, and it's accelerating.

The only hope we have to limit climate change is to use not Germany, but France as an example - to build out nuclear plants as fast as possible. A 2003 paper that appeared in Physical Review calculated that by 2050 the world could achieve not "net-zero" emissions, not "carbon-neutral" status, but zero (0) carbon emissions by bringing nuclear plants online at the rate of 1/week (in 1983 that rate briefly became a reality). 

Though we're behind the ball 18 years later, meeting the challenge of climate change is still possible. The first step, however, is for Americans to own a problem of our own making, to stop pointing fingers. To take the lead is our responsiblity and ours alone.
 

 

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