IEA World Energy Outlook 2018

2018-11-13

in Canada, Economics, Politics, The environment

As reported in The Guardian, the International Energy Agency is warning the world that there is no place for new fossil fuel power stations, vehicles, and industrial facilities if the world is going to stay below the 2 ˚C upper limit in the Paris Agreement:

In total, the IEA calculated that existing infrastructure would “lock in” 550 gigatonnes of of carbon dioxide over the next 22 years. That leaves only 40 gigatonnes, or around a year’s worth of emissions, of wriggle room if temperatures are not to overshoot the 2C threshold.

This underlines why Canada should not be building more fossil fuel production or export capacity.

Canada may be a comparatively small part of the world’s population and energy use, but the scale on which we produce and export fossil fuels gives us an outsized impact on the rest of the world. Certainly we need to achieve emissions reduction by constraining demand, but we also need to avoid new investments in production. Once projects are built and actual jobs depend on them governments are rarely willing to let them shut down, regardless of the magnitude of the global harm and suffering they are causing.

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