woensdag 10 september 2014

Could the U.N. be more effective against Climate Disruption?


If you would have asked a bunch of lawyers to draft a treaty to stifle any action, the UNFCCC would be it!

Our technological advances have not been equaled by advances in society, quite the contrary. We stick to the concept of sovereignty as if it is our lives’ blood & DNA… but it will be our downfall instead.

We have just one biosphere, this earth. Our almost infinite drive for profit, here and now, often affect that whole biosphere. Yet we are not held accountable because of sovereignty.

Fossil Fuels:

The comparison between fossil fuel companies and tobacco companies has been made many, many times.

They both create addictions, and both kill their addicts, for a quick profit. They both cite “inconclusive science” and even employ the same Public Relations companies and –tactics to continue to peddle their products and kill.

But cigarettes work and kill on a (mostly) individual level, whereas fossil fuel companies know no boundaries and kill globally, potentially all mankind even.

Citing energy poverty they now try to move in on (f.i.) poor African countries, asking them to make huge investments in fossil power plants and the infrastructure needed to distribute that energy.


Some Banks have taken tentative steps stopping investments of their money in Coal fired power plants; a first step, a promising step in the right direction but inadequate on a Global Scale

There may be sound economic reasons for a given company to construct a small power plant. Those same economic reasons really should dictate Renewable Energy in most if not all cases. For big multinationals there is no excuse *not* to invest in renewable energy! They have all the capital they need to do it, and in most cases it is investor's capital – not their own – in the first place!

This continued investing Other Peoples’ Money in the wrong way is very likely going to crash & burn our total World Economy sometime this century! Yet no one questions it? Why do we still allow investments in fossil fuel power plants, in fossil fuel mining, in fossil fuel exploration (in ever more dangerous and remote places) in fossil fuel transport facilities, refineries, you name it…?

Worldwide there is much talk how "we need to invest a Trillion (dollars, no doubt) in Renewable Energy. Right now we do precious little, but if we can redirect the flow of cash into fossil fuels projects you can be sure that major companies like Exxon, Shell, BP et al suddenly, overnight almost, become *Energy Companies*...

Quick fix?

Energy 2.0; can it be done? Well… do we have a choice?!

We can no longer accept the concept of sovereignty – both of countries and large multi-national corporations! – because they essentially threaten the financial stability as well as a liveable biosphere for future generations. So, time to act!

We have anti-trust laws that do not follow the principle of sovereignty, we even have set up (after the second World War and under threat of Atomic War) a U.N. Security Council that can adopt security resolutions. While each may not be perfect they do point out precedents to act upon I believe!

U.N. Energy Council?!

A U.N. Energy Council should investigate all large / large scale investments in (fossil fuel) energy. What large or large scale is, has yet to be defined; an amount, a percentage of GDP, a combination? Perhaps we should also include a *time scale*, say any investment in any fossil fuel activity lasting over 5 years, to allow for small-scale temporary solutions?

Maybe a setup somewhat like the Security Council will work, as long as we keep VETO rights out. That is why – in my idea – it should be a separate entity in the U.N., definitely not a part of the Security Council! I propose that both the most threatened states (together?) AND the young people (future generations!) have Permanent Seats, as they have the biggest vested interests.

The biggest fight of course will be over “mandatory” or “recommendation” when ruling on a project, an investment. But if a ruling states it endangers human existence, human prosperity, financial stability, would not most, or even all banks, pension funds and investment funds heed that advice, regardless if it is mandatory or recommendation?

That leaves Nation States who can act as they please and fund their projects. Sometimes a U.N Resolution does not stop war, life is not perfect. But the condemnation by the World, in public is a rebuke many States will find hard to ignore. We got to do something, start somewhere… NOW!

P.S. I intentionally use *energy* as electricity is about 17% of World Energy demand, *heat* around 3 times that much!

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