- In Norway, electric cars outsell traditional ones for the first time
- To engineer sustainable cities, engineer social behaviour
- Judge Says Trump’s Plan to Allow Drilling in Arctic Ocean Is ‘Unlawful and Invalid’
- Renewable Energy Now Accounts for a Third of Global Power Capacity
- Citing climate differences, Shell walks away from U.S. refining lobby
1) In Norway, electric cars outsell traditional ones for the first time
In a symbolic first, electric cars outsold fossil fuel-powered ones in Norway last month. Christina Bu, the Norwegian Electric Vehicle Association’s general secretary, said Monday that 58.4% of new cars sold in the country in March were battery-powered, calling it “historically high.” Bu added that electric cars’ share of the market in the first three months of 2019 was 48.4% and is expected to hover around 50% for the whole year. “Norway shows the whole world that the electric car can replace cars powered by gasoline and diesel and be an important contribution in the fight to reduce C02 emissions,” Bu said in a statement. Norway, a wealthy European nation of 5.3 million, has provided big incentives to boost electric car sales. It waived hefty vehicle import duties and registration and sales taxes for buyers of electric cars to boost sales. Owners don’t pay road tolls and use bus lanes in congested city centers.
2) To engineer sustainable cities, engineer social behaviour
Every minute, another 10,000 square metres of the world becomes urbanised. That’s enough roads laid, concrete poured, and buildings raised to make up a new Paris every five days, and an entire new Japan every year. That is why the role of cities, which consume over two-thirds of the world’s global energy and account for more than 70 per cent of global carbon dioxide emissions , is critical in any attempt to slow climate change. The tools to tackle urban emissions are already widely and cheaply available, said Soren Kvorning, the president Asia Pacific of engineering company Danfoss at a forum on sustainable cities in Singapore last week, which drew some 200 participants. “The technologies…are easy to apply, and they are capital-light investments,” he pointed out. “By optimising the [energy] control systems in our buildings, we can save up to 30 per cent of the current energy consumption with a payback of two to four years.”
3) Judge Says Trump’s Plan to Allow Drilling in Arctic Ocean Is ‘Unlawful and Invalid’
A federal judge has restored prohibitions against drilling in the Arctic Ocean designed to protect polar bears and other wildlife. A federal judge in Alaska ruled on Friday that President Donald Trump “exceeded the president’s authority” when he signed an executive order to allow offshore oil drilling in around 125 million acres of the Arctic Ocean, CNN reported . U.S. District Court Judge Sharon Gleason’s decision restores a ban on drilling in 98 percent of the U.S.-controlled Arctic Ocean, according to Earthjustice , which sued to stop Trump’s order on behalf of several environmental groups and Alaska Native communities. The ruling “shows that the president cannot just trample on the constitution to do the bidding of his cronies in the fossil fuel industry at the expense of our oceans, wildlife and climate,” Earthjustice attorney Erik Grafe said in a statement reported by the Associated Press.
4) Renewable Energy Now Accounts for a Third of Global Power Capacity
The decade-long trend of strong growth in renewable energy capacity continued in 2018 with global additions of 171 gigawatts (GW), according to new data released by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) today. The annual increase of 7.9 per cent was bolstered by new additions from solar and wind energy, which accounted for 84 per cent of the growth. A third of global power capacity is now based on renewable energy. IRENA’s annual Renewable Capacity Statistics 2019 , the most comprehensive, up-to-date and accessible figures on renewable energy capacity indicates growth in all regions of the world, although at varying speeds.
5) Citing climate differences, Shell walks away from U.S. refining lobby
Royal Dutch Shell Plc on Tuesday became the first major oil and gas company to announce plans to leave a leading U.S. refining lobby due to disagreement on climate policies, citing its support for the goals of the Paris climate agreement. In its first review of its association with 19 key industry groups, Shell said it had found “material misalignment” over climate policy with the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) and would quit the body in 2020. The review is part of Shell’s drive to increase transparency and show investors it is in line with the 2015 Paris climate agreement’s goals to limit global warming by reducing carbon emissions to a net zero by the end of the century.