Tuesday, 21 May 2019
The Sea Change report, to which I contributed, shows that UK government policy of squeezing every last drop of oil out of the North Sea is incompatible with its claims to be dealing appropriately with the danger of climate change. The government lavishes subsidies on oil companies producing in the North Sea: the deal is currently so good that in two recent tax years the aggregate tax bill for North Sea producers was negative, i.e. rebates exceeded payments. The report also considers what a “just transition” away from oil production, that defends the interests of oil workers and the communities dependent on the industry, might look like.
"Trilateral talks between the EU, Russia and Ukraine on gas transit through Ukraine after 1 January 2020 are due to resume in late May. Gazprom’s transit diversification projects, Nord Stream 2 and Turkish Stream, will not be operating at full capacity by that time and arrangements must be made. But there is little sign of progress in the talks and political factors could prevent a deal being done. Should there be a supply interruption, it could have a lasting negative impact on the position of gas in Europe." - My comment published by the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies
Saturday, 30 March 2019
"Fossil fuels are not consumed by an undifferentiated humanity. They are consumed by people living in specific social and economic relations with each other: predominantly, in the late 20th century capitalist economy. That economy’s expansion is the framework within which fuel consumption has grown. The technological systems that are the largest fuel consumers – electricity systems, urban transport systems and built environments, military systems, and so on – are controlled by small groups of people, in the context of broader relations of wealth and power." - my blog post for the Energy Futures Lab at Imperial College, London
"Most fossil fuels are consumed not by individuals, but by and through large technological systems, such as electricity networks, urban transport systems, built environments, and industrial and agricultural systems. While the media offers plenty of advice on how individuals can cut consumption, how to transform or supersede these technological systems is much less obvious. These unsustainable systems are deeply embedded in day-to-day life." My article in The Conversation.
Friday, 8 March 2019
My article in Roar magazine … "The international climate talks process has produced and reproduced its own discourse, cut off from the world where 16 of the 17 hottest years ever recorded were in the last twenty years — and where school pupils, from Australia to Sweden to Belgium, go on strike about it. It is welcome that school pupils are not only urging governments to declare a 'climate emergency' — which seems like the very least they could do — but are also seeking ways to take matters into their own hands, by demanding to learn climate science."
Monday, 17 December 2018
My interview on Truthout, about global warming and my book Burning Up. "... focus on rich-world hamburger eaters ignores the supply chain that produces such fuel-intensive, unhealthy products". Consumption is not a moral issue, and not mainly by individuals: fossil fuels are consumed by and through technological and economic systems."
Sunday, 16 December 2018
My take on the Katowice talks, in an interview with The Wire in India. "Obviously, it would be welcome if more nations adopt and improve on their voluntary targets. But we should not live in a world of false hopes. The talks have failed because they have effectively limited action to the adoption of market mechanisms. They have left the industrial and financial elites that control the world’s economies untouched. Thus, they’ve made, and continue to make, decisions that have ensured huge increases in fossil fuel use."