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UK CO₂ Emissions Are Lowest Since 1888 Due to Government Intervention (fortune.com)
49 points by mehrdadn 33 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 21 comments



That is of course excellent news, but the UK still produces around five tons of CO2 per capita, about 20% more than France, and about three times as much as India. The effort mustn't stop now.


The atmosphere doesn't care about per capita. Absolute numbers are what counts and then India doesn't look so good.


The atmosphere doesn't care about political boundaries either, so there's not much utility in drawing a line around an arbitrarily large group of people and summing their emmissions. The only reason to look at country-level stats at all is to assess the effect of policy, and controlling for population size is the correct approach for that comparitive analysis.


Why point at someone else when you have your own problems to fix?


What is more absolute than one human one share?


The Australian government is diametrically opposed to taking such action.

Australians, or just over 50% of them anyway, care most about their own pocket, making sure they get money, making sure their house price remains high.

I'm pretty sure a very large percentage of Australians care about the environment at some level, just not more than they care about money.

The Australian government is very much opposed to renewable energy and strongly supports the usage of more coal.


I'm Australian as well and I'm ashamed of how many of my fellow countryman prioritising their short term alcohol and other lifestyle "requirements" over worrying about the future of the planet.

Quite a number do care and I've met some of them, but there's a lot of opposition, especially in rural Queensland.


Maybe get a few copies of Greta Thunberg's book to give to your friends. Short and clear: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45450258-no-one-is-too-s...


Appreciate the reference, I'll read it as well.


As always, you just have to follow the money. The Conservative side of politics is intertwined with the resources industry as this investigation by investigative journalist Michael West in conjunction with Greenpeace showed [1].

With regards to the election result - I wonder what proportion of LNP voters are actually just plain selfish? I imagine it's high but there must also be a proportion that are just taken in by the false narrative (I know at least one). There were two massive lie campaigns, one pushed by the LNP and one by Clive Palmer (at a cost of $80 million allegedly), which were amplified by a mainstream media that no longer appears to consider checking whether claims are true is any part of their job.

1. https://act.greenpeace.org.au/dirtypower


And yet that remaining 49% are opposed to nuclear and hydroelectric. The "Green's" party found its roots in resisting nuclear and hydro - being behind most of the propaganda and lobbying against it from the beginning and through to today.


Australia is perfectly suited for solar.


For half a day. Running the other half on batteries is a hard problem.


No, it's an expensive problem. That's very different.


You'd think that Australians would be very focused given they probably are one of the worst impacted by changes in climate? Is that not the case?


The weird thing is that nobody is out there taking credit for this success. Probably because all politics is now Brexit.

It seems to have been partly the great expansion of wind power and partly the Large Combustion Plant Directive. Many coal power stations were uneconomic to modernize.

A nuclear plant was commissioned in 2012 but of course won't be ready until maybe 2025, assuming that the UK's exit from Euratom doesn't prevent it.


Yes - the main reason is that coal electricity generation is close to disappearing completely in the UK when it used to be baseload c.10 years ago. Change in the car fleet has also contributed a fair amount, mostly by replacing old less carbon-efficient petrol engines with newer diesel or smaller turbocharged petrol engines.

The move away from coal is much more driven by economics than the LCPD - once wind is built, it will always dispatch before coal, and the UK subsidised a lot of offshore wind build over the past 10-15 years through various mechanisms (ROCs, CfDs, some small tax incentives, historically also state investment through the Green Investment Bank, EIB and arguably corporate "greenwashing" spend).

On top of that, the UK also takes a large share of private investment in green power generation as a result of its reputation as a fair investment destination (predictable legal environment, creditor-friendly insolvency regime, etc) so it's been an obvious destination for private capital looking to invest in green power generation "somewhere" with low risk.


I think it's more likely because the credit goes to the market (i.e. everyone together) rather than a big move by the government. Very different to the Energiewende.


> The weird thing is that nobody is out there taking credit for this success. Probably because all politics is now Brexit.

It would be amusing if there was an EU directive at the root of it.


Progress, I just hope nobody here in the UK takes this as an excuse to get complacent.


Good to see progress. A lot seems down to having some sort of carbon pricing. Currently a floor of £18 per ton of CO2 apparently.




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