The Clean Energy Target as proposed by Chief Scientist Alan Finkel will be overhauled and replaced with a policy that will place much greater emphasis on coal-fired baseload power and possibly a slower transition to renewable energy. The shift was welcomed in the Coalition party room by Tony Abbott. He congratulated Mr. Turnbull and warned there should not be a CET bolted on top of the existing Renewable Energy Target. —Financial Review, 13 September 2017
Malcolm Turnbull is facing a backbench push to stop a clean energy target being embraced as government policy, after former prime minister Tony Abbott fired a warning shot on the political risk of adding the new scheme to existing subsidies for renewable power. A solid group has formed within the Coalition party room to oppose a clean energy target out of concern it would push up prices and weaken the security of supply because it would favour renewables over coal or gas generators. —The Australian, 12 September 2017
Nations around the world are building coal-fired power plants at a faster rate than those being decommissioned. The plants under construction reflect a 10 per cent increase in the total global generation powered by coal. New electricity generated by coal-fired plants will outstrip that which was retired in 2015 and 2016 by a factor of five. With Australia facing a policy crisis over energy security and the winding back of reliance on coal, construction of new coal-fired power plants was increasing in at least 35 countries, according to data analysis supplied to the Nationals by the federal parliamentary library. China has 299 new coal generation units under construction, followed by India which is building 132. Australia’s closest neighbor, Indonesia, was planning a further 32. —The Australian, 13 September 2017
The wide spread of projected temperature changes in climate projections does not predominately originate from uncertainty across climate models; instead, it is the broad range of different global socio-economic scenarios and the implied energy production that results in high uncertainty about future climate change. It is therefore important to assess the observational tracking of these scenarios. Here we compare these socio-economic scenarios created in both 1992 and 2000 against the recent observational record to investigate the coupling of economic growth and fossil-fuel CO2 emissions. We find that global emission intensity (fossil fuel CO2 emissions per GDP) rose in the first part of the 21st century despite all major climate projections foreseeing a decline. —Felix Pretis and Max Roser, Energy, September 2017
An election seen partly as a referendum on Norway’s future as an oil-producing country went solidly for the status quo. Prime Minister Erna Solberg of the center-right Conservative Party and her main collation partner, the Progress Party, won 89 seats in Norway’s 169-seat Parliament, defeating a group led by the Labor Party that was projected to win 80 seats. Before the election, weakening of the Labor coalition was thought to have created an opportunity for the Green Party to gain influence. The Greens campaigned to halt oil and gas exploration and to phase out the Norwegian oil industry in 15 years. But the party only retained its single seat, winning an estimated 3.3% of the vote. —Oil & Gas Journal, 12 September 2017
Global warming and climate change are serious issues that are drawing the attention of the world. However, the phenomenon of Himalayan glaciers melting is not a recent one. In fact, it has been happening for 400 years. —Times of India, 13 September 2017
As many as 248 of 2,018 or 12.3% of Himalayan glaciers are “retreating” while 18 are advancing, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar told the Rajya Sabha on Monday in a written reply. The minister’s reply, however, also revealed that a majority or about 86% of glaciers have remained stable. The minister said the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in collaboration with the ministry of environment and forests (MoEF) had conducted a study on a part of the glaciated region of the Himalayas between 2004 and 2011 which threw up these results. —Times of India, 15 December 2017
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