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kristopher

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Member since: Fri Dec 19, 2003, 02:20 AM
Number of posts: 29,798

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Nothing can compete with renewable energy

Nothing can compete with renewable energy, says top climate scientist
Prof John Schellnhuber says that if countries implement their pledges made for Paris climate summit it will give huge boost to wind, tidal and solar power


Damian Carrington @dpcarrington Monday 9 November 2015 08.06 ES

Climate scientist, Prof John Schellnhuber, has advised Angela Merkel and Pope Francis. Photograph: Patrick Pleul/CorbisT


Catastrophic global warming can be avoided with a deal at a crunch UN climate change summit in Paris this December because “ultimately nothing can compete with renewables”, according to one of the world’s most influential climate scientists.

Most countries have already made voluntary pledges to roll out clean energy and cut carbon emissions, and Prof John Schellnhuber said the best hope of making nations keep their promises was moral pressure.

Schellnhuber is a key member of the German delegation attending the Paris summit and has advised Angela Merkel and Pope Francis on climate change.

He said there was reason for optimism about the Paris talks, where at least 80 heads of state are expected. “That is a very telling thing - a sign of hope - because people at the top level do not want to be tainted by failure,” he said.

If a critical mass of big countries implement their pledges, he said in an interview with the Guardian, the move towards a global low-carbon economy would gain unstoppable momentum...

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/nov/09/clean-energy-is-key-successful-climate-deal-in-paris-says-top-scientist


See also (Open Access) at journal Science
http://science.sciencemag.org/content/early/2017/01/06/science.aam6284.full
The irreversible momentum of clean energy
Barack Obama


Email: press@who.eop.gov. After 20 January 2017: contact@obamaoffice44.org
Science 09 Jan 2017:

DOI: 10.1126/science.aam6284

Abstract

Private-sector incentives help drive decoupling of emissions and economic growth.
The release of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases (GHGs) due to human activity is increasing global average surface air temperatures, disrupting weather patterns, and acidifying the ocean (1). Left unchecked, the continued growth of GHG emissions could cause global average temperatures to increase by another 4°C or more by 2100 and by 1.5 to 2 times as much in many midcontinent and far northern locations (1). Although our understanding of the impacts of climate change is increasingly and disturbingly clear, there is still debate about the proper course for U.S. policy—a debate that is very much on display during the current presidential transition. But putting near-term politics aside, the mounting economic and scientific evidence leave me confident that trends toward a clean-energy economy that have emerged during my presidency will continue and that the economic opportunity for our country to harness that trend will only grow. This Policy Forum will focus on the four reasons I believe the trend toward clean energy is irreversible.



ECONOMIES GROW, EMISSIONS FALL... <snip>

PRIVATE-SECTOR EMISSIONS REDUCTIONS... <snip>

Market Forces in the Power Sector... <snip>

Global Momentum... <snip>

CONCLUSION

We have long known, on the basis of a massive scientific record, that the urgency of acting to mitigate climate change is real and cannot be ignored. In recent years, we have also seen that the economic case for action—and against inaction—is just as clear, the business case for clean energy is growing, and the trend toward a cleaner power sector can be sustained regardless of near-term federal policies.

Despite the policy uncertainty that we face, I remain convinced that no country is better suited to confront the climate challenge and reap the economic benefits of a low-carbon future than the United States and that continued participation in the Paris process will yield great benefit for the American people, as well as the international community. Prudent U.S. policy over the next several decades would prioritize, among other actions, decarbonizing the U.S. energy system, storing carbon and reducing emissions within U.S. lands, and reducing non-CO2 emissions (23).

Of course, one of the great advantages of our system of government is that each president is able to chart his or her own policy course. And President-elect Donald Trump will have the opportunity to do so. The latest science and economics provide a helpful guide for what the future may bring, in many cases independent of near-term policy choices, when it comes to combatting climate change and transitioning to a clean-energy economy.


http://science.sciencemag.org/content/early/2017/01/06/science.aam6284.full
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