Economics

Back in 2012, Justin Trudeau said that “there’s not a country in the world that would find 170 billion barrels of oil under the ground and leave them there.” At an event in June organized by Bank of America, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman supposedly said: “We are still going to be the […]

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Canada is now promising the UN that it will cut greenhouse gas emissions to 40–45% below 2005 levels by 2030. The government says emissions are already set to fall from 729 million tonnes (MT) in 2018 (the last year with final figures) to 468 MT by 2030. Canada’s choice of a 2005 baseline sets it […]

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One of the revelations about fighting climate change that seems to have echoed broadly since 350.org started the fossil fuel divestment movement is the degree to which the industry can be suppressed by denying it access to financial services. That includes denying it the ability to borrow from banks and institutional investors, who are increasingly […]

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After finding his quartet of books about the global history of nuclear weapons so valuable and intriguing, when I saw that a used book shop had a recent history of energy by Richard Rhodes I picked it up the next day. It includes some nice little historical parallels and illustrations. One that I found striking […]

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In perhaps the ultimate demonstration that ‘net zero’ promises are a delaying tactic meant to preserve the status quo which favours fossil fuel producers, Canadian bitumen sands giants Canadian Natural Resources, Cenovus Energy, Imperial Oil, MEG Energy, and Suncor Energy have formed “an alliance to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions from their operations by 2050.” […]

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I was surprised just now to see that I don’t think I have a general thread on climate change and human health. I’d say there are at least two big relevant dimensions to it. First, because fossil fuel use causes so many bad health impacts, phasing out fossil fuels brings major co-benefits in terms of […]

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The University of Waterloo has joined the set of Canadian schools committing to fossil fuel divestment, specifically with pledges for a “50% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030” and “no material positions in fossil fuel exploration and extraction companies by 2025.” Cindy Forbes, chair of Waterloo’s Board of Governors, specifically cited the financial case for […]

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The CBC has two new podcast episodes related to my research. Front Burner has an episode on the movement to divest from the bitumen sands, which tracks the movement’s progression from church groups to universities to major banks and insurers. It notes that only half as many insurers are willing to cover the industry as […]

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The International Energy Agency has released a report on what would be necessary to achieve a ‘net zero‘ global economy by 2050: Net Zero by 2050 A Roadmap for the Global Energy Sector. Unsurprisingly, it replicates the carbon bubble / stranded assets argument: “The global pathway to net‐zero emissions by 2050 detailed in this report […]

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After shutting down everywhere in Canada except Ontario and Quebec in 2018, Greyhound is now shutting down in Canada completely, aside from some routes across the border by the American company (Toronto to Buffalo and NYC; Montreal to Boston and NYC; Vancouver to Seattle). When the government is so keen to help out those who […]

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