Capitalism, carbon and climate change


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Presentation by Michael Jacobs at the STEPS Centre Summer School, June 2013.

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  • Single source actual temperature
  • GHG/CO2 emissions trends (atmospheric GHG/CO2 in ppm)UNEP 2012 Gap Report: Current global GHG emissions based on 2010 data from bottom-up emission inventory studies 50.1 GtCO2eWMO report: Atmospheric CO2 at 390.9ppm in 2011
  • Emissions Gap report p9
  • Emissions Gap report p23
  • Other predictions WB 4c report
  • World Bank report p26 Fig 25
  • World Bank report p32 Fig 28
  • World Bank report p45 Table 3
  • US Drought Monitor Aug 29 212 – World Bank report p14 Fig 17
  • An estimated 14,000 fatalities in France alone
  • Swiss Re: over the last 40 years global insured losses from climate-related disasters have jumped from an annual US$5 billion to approximately US$60 billion in 2011
  • Global investment in renewable power and fuels increased 17% to a new record of $257 billion in 2011This was more than six times the figure for 2004, and 94% more than the total in 2007, the last year before the acute phase of the world financial crisis.
  • Current: Gov’t policies enacted/adopted by mid-2012 continue unchangedNew: Existing policies maintained and recently announced commitments and plans, including those yet to be formally adopted are implemented in a cautious manner450: Policies adopted that put world on pathway consistent with having 50% chance of limiting temperature increase to 2C
  • - Already in 2011, the world has used over a third of its 50-year carbon budget of 886GtCO2, leaving 565GtCO2- All of the proven reserves owned by private and public companies and governments are equivalent to 2,795 GtCO2- Fossil fuel reserves owned by the top 100 listed coal and top 100 listed oil and gas companies represent total emissions of 745GtCO2- Only 20% of the total reserves can be burned unabated, leaving up to 80% of assets technically unburnable
  • Governments own the majority of reserves – especially oil and gas. So if the budgets are applied pro rate to listed companies (ie a quarter), this shows the carbon budget deficit they are facing.Yet these companies actually have interests in up to double the current reserves in unproven undeveloped resources; ie heading in the wrong direction.Perhaps most concerning is that if we exceed the 2 degrees budget, there is rapid progression through the temperatures.
  • Capitalism, carbon and climate change

    1. 1. Capitalism, carbon and climate change Michael Jacobs 13 May 2013
    2. 2. Global temperature change 1880-2010 Source: NASA
    3. 3. Atmospheric CO2 1958-2012 Source: National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration Earth System Research Laboratory
    4. 4. The sources of greenhouse gas emissions Source: UNEP
    5. 5. Arctic sea ice summer melt 2012 Video: Arctic ice melt Source: U.S. National Snow & Ice Data Center Source: European Environment Agency
    6. 6. Emissions pathways Source: UNEP
    7. 7. The median 2C pathway (66% chance) in 2020: 44 GtCO2e Business as usual: 58 GtCO2e Current country pledges: 52-57 GtCO2e Emissions gap: 8 to 13 GtCO2e Source: UNEP Emissions Gap Report 2012 The emissions gap
    8. 8. The climate impacts of emissions trajectories
    9. 9. Projected impacts on coral reefs Source: World Bank
    10. 10. Projected global mean sea level rise Source: World Bank
    11. 11. Projected crop yields (2.2-3.6 C warming) Source: World Bank
    12. 12. New York, United States, October 2012 Source: KeystoneUSA-ZUMA / Rex Features
    13. 13. Ashley, United States, August 2012 Marion Kujawa looks over a pond he uses to water the cattle on his farm. Source: Scott Olson/Getty Images
    14. 14. Beijing, China, July 2012 Source: Reuters
    15. 15. Punjab, Pakistan, 2010 Source: AP Photo/Khalid Tanveer
    16. 16. Negro River, Amazonas, Brazil, October 2010
    17. 17. Source: AFP/Getty Images 104F, France, 2003
    18. 18. Insured catastrophe losses 1970-2011 Source: Swiss Re Source: Swiss Re
    19. 19. Global investment in renewable energy Sources: Bloomberg New Energy Finance, IEA
    20. 20. Global renewable power generation
    21. 21. Solar power prices Source: McKinsey & Company
    22. 22. Source: ICCT Fuel efficiency standards 2000-2025Fuel efficiency standards for cars
    23. 23. Carbon taxes and emissions trading schemes Source: Environmental and Energy Study Institute
    24. 24. US states with Renewable Portfolio Standards Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration
    25. 25. Fossil fuel use emissions Source: IEA World Energy Outlook 2012
    26. 26. Alberta, Canada, 2011
    27. 27. Fossil fuel reserves vs global 2°C carbon budget Source: Carbon Tracker Initiative
    28. 28. Global carbon budgets and probabilities
    29. 29. Listed fossil fuel reserves v 2°C carbon budget Listed reserves are a quarter of all known fossil fuel reserves Current listed reserves (762GtCO2) far exceed a quarter of the total carbon budgets but could double (1541GtCO2) If we break the 2°C budget we very quickly hit 2.5°C and 3°C 30 Potential listed reserves Current listed reserves
    30. 30. Potential (P2) fossil reserves on stock exchanges
    31. 31. Fossil fuels on New York and London exchanges