Companies and their investors are being encouraged by the International Energy Agency to take a drastic step in order to achieve a key goal outlined in the Paris Climate Agreement.
The agreement intends to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions globally by 2050, which would require significantly less dependence on fossil fuels.
The 🌍 has a clear and achievable pathway to reach net-zero emissions in the energy sector.
To achieve it, we must immediately
❌ stop investments in new fossil fuel projects
✅ scale up deployment of clean energy technologies#ItsPossible pic.twitter.com/wmoTGVRYNj
— UN Climate Change (@UNFCCC) May 19, 2021
“The pathway to net zero is narrow but still achievable. If we want to reach net zero by 2050 we do not need any more investments in new oil, gas and coal projects,” IEA executive director Faith Birol said, according to Reuters.
“It is up to investors to chose whatever portfolio they prefer but there are risks and rewards.”
The Paris Climate Accords has 195 signatories, with very few countries not taking part in the pact.
The United States controversially pulled out of the agreement during the Trump administration but quickly re-entered under President Joe Biden.
We’re back in the Paris Climate Agreement.
— President Biden (@POTUS) January 21, 2021
Former President Donald Trump argued that with the participation of nations like China and India in the agreement, which are also largely responsible for carbon emissions, the entire premise of the accords was a farce.
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“Regrettably, without any facts, without any science, without any rationale that would be considered reasonable, the former president decided to pull out,” Special Climate Envoy for the Biden administration John Kerry said in April.
But under Trump’s presidency, carbon emissions in the United States dropped to their lowest levels since the 1990’s in 2020, after a steady decrease which was sped up by the coronavirus pandemic.
The vice president of corporate policy at the American Petroleum Institute, Stephen Comstock, told Reuters that the IEA knows it is unrealistic in its goals.
“IEA itself regularly acknowledges that half the technology to reach net zero has not yet been invented. Any pathway to net zero must include continued innovation and use of natural gas and oil, which remains crucial to displacing coal in developing nations and enabling renewable energy,” he said.
While it is important that there is a global transition to renewable energy, having bodies like the IEA making unrealistic demands is not going to achieve anything, and will actually turn more people off to the climate movement.
Comstock is correct to assert that technology needs to be developed first in order for a smooth transition to take place, instead of relying on alarmism.
For the United States, the federal government needs to keep the natural gas industry in business to preserve jobs, while also exploring possibilities like nuclear energy to continue the reduction of carbon emissions.
WATCH👀 : See which energy source produces more electricity per square foot? Nuke fans might want to watch till the end.…
H/T: @EnergyEcoLogic1 pic.twitter.com/vw5MNFtUGn
— Office of Nuclear Energy (@GovNuclear) May 20, 2021
It would also help if these global organizations and world leaders would hold other industrial nations accountable for their negative contributions to the environment — but I won’t hold my breath.