Climate Change Caused by 90 Companies Since Industrial Revolution

climate change factory

Land of beauty, prosperity, and climate change… vimeo.com

A recent analysis on climate change has revealed that just 90 companies are responsible for 63% of all greenhouse gas emissions since 1854, the dawn of the Industrial Revolution. The companies range from private corporations such as BP and Exxon to government-run companies. 83 of the 90 companies are oil, gas, and coal based energy companies, with the remaining 7 companies being cement manufacturers. Information from the climate change analysis comes from public records and data from the US Department of Energy’s Carbon Dioxide Information and Analysis Center.

Related Article: A Cheaper Alternative to Pollution

The author of the analysis, Richard Heede, from the Climate Accountability Institute of Colorado concluded in the study that

There are thousands of oil, gas and coal producers in the world, but the decision makers, the CEOs, or the ministers of coal and oil if you narrow it down to just one person, they could all fit on a Greyhound bus or two.

Heede exhibited concern over the fact that many of the companies, besides being the presiding polluters of history, are also sitting on huge reserves of fossil fuel which represent a potential for an even more daunting future afflicted by climate change.

Related Article: Sweden is Running Out of Trash

Former US President Al Gore was very excited about the study as it is one of the most major efforts to hold individual carbon producers accountable for climate change rather than governmental policy. Gore stated that:

This study is a crucial step forward in our understanding of the evolution of the climate crisis. The public and private sectors alike must do what is necessary to stop global warming. Those who are historically responsible for polluting our atmosphere have a clear obligation to be part of the solution.

The actual solution itself is tough to set in stone. Global industrial emissions since 1751 stand at 1,450 gigatonnes. If we are to slow down and eventually halt extreme climate change, a necessary step is to understand who is producing greenhouse gases and who should be held ultimately responsible.  Unfortunately, it is difficult to decide who we should be pointing the finger at regarding climate change. According to Naomi Oreskes, professor of the history of science at Harvard,

There are all kinds of countries that have produced a tremendous amount of historical emissions that we do not normally talk about. We do not normally talk about Mexico or Poland or Venezuela. So then it’s not just rich v poor, it is also producers v consumers, and resource rich v resource poor.

Another aspect of the issue that clouds facts is the climate denial movement.  Oreskes has already shown in the past that several of the top companies from the study are some of the major sources of funds used in the global campaign of climate denial. Despite evolution not being able to keep up with climate change, marine life being destroyed, and weather becoming increasingly more extreme across the planet, companies and governments around the world maintain a stance of cold apathy to the problem or at worse vehement denial.

Related Article: Costly Climate Changes

How about some highlights from Heede’s study? Sure thing:

  • Government run companies in the former Soviet Union produced more greenhouse gases than anyone else at approximately 8.8% of the total.
  • Chinese run companies came in a close second at 8.6% of total emissions.
  • ChevronTexaco was the leading emission producer among private companies at 3.5% total emissions, followed by Exxon, and BP.

Operations of the companies currently span the globe, which is very disconcerting for those of us concerned about climate change because

These entities extract resources from every oil, natural gas and coal province in the world, and process the fuels into marketable products that are sold to consumers on every nation on Earth.

climate change action

There is hope after all! http://www.myseek.org/

This is where Heede hits upon the most important point in the study: consumers. Despite the profundity of this study, why point fingers at the producers when we are just as much, if not more at fault for climate change as consumers. Although there are countries like Germany paving the way for a green world, most countries aren’t, and we are still enjoying the life that greenhouse emissions have provided.  Our daily purchases are the reason these companies exist, and the reason they continue to influence climate change.  Despite income inequality, we are all living like kings and queens relative to our ancestors, due in major part to harmful greenhouse emissions.

Related Article: The Ugly Face of Overpopulation

If we are to live in harmony with the environment, we must also live in harmony with ourselves and make decisions that reflect our true values.  Don’t waste your money, but instead use your buying power as a consumer to influence the world in a more positive way. If we don’t start making dramatic changes soon (some climate change scientists have already said it is far too late), the future may not be as grand as we all hope for.

 

Sources:

http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10584-013-0986-y

http://sploid.gizmodo.com/the-actual-probability-of-earth-going-to-hell-in-the-ne-1467435315/@kcampbelldollaghan

 

https://wondergressive.com/news/income-inequality-in-america-whats-the-big-deal/

https://wondergressive.com/news/20-biggest-wastes-money/

https://wondergressive.com/news/the-ugly-face-of-overpopulation/

https://wondergressive.com/news/germany-sets-example-for-global-climate-battle/

https://wondergressive.com/news/cheaper-alternative-pollution/

https://wondergressive.com/news/solution-smog-vacuum/

https://wondergressive.com/news/warning-weather-hazards-ahead/

https://wondergressive.com/news/climate-change-too-fast-for-evolution/

https://wondergressive.com/news/costly-climate-changes/

https://wondergressive.com/news/ask-an-astrobiologist-global-warming-and-what-to-expect/

https://wondergressive.com/news/indiana-blue-laws-exemplify-crony-capitalism-time-to-punish-politicians/

https://wondergressive.com/news/refuse-reduce-reuse-recycle-rot/

https://wondergressive.com/news/fresh-air-turned-into-gasoline/

https://wondergressive.com/news/unprecedented-changes-and-extinctions-occurring-in-marine-life/

A Cheaper Alternative To Pollution

The world is getting crowded, or so we think, and with it there is the looming threat of traffic, angry people, excessive food waste, and of course pollution.

Pollution is very unhealthy, unpleasant, and unprofitable. The pollution we are causing from our transportation and daily lifestyles is in essence costing us a pretty penny. In the midst of all the spending on pollution, we have critics that argue for a new, pollution-less world. But wouldn’t that just be a costly upgrade and exuberant amount of money spent on something that will likely cost exorbitant amounts to maintain? According to a new study, not really. In fact, the constant use of coal as a power source yields a great deal of carbon based pollution, which turns out to be costly in itself.

Related Article: The Ugly Face of Overpopulation

Many would argue that with the cheap labor costs and manufacturing costs that accompany it, there really isn’t a cheaper alternative to “coal power.” However, based on this study, coal power is in fact not only an outdated method, but it is at least more costly than onshore wind power and the use of new natural gases. Laurie Johnson, an avid advocate and proprietor of the study, gets to the nitty-gritty point:

The study results show that our electricity system, which generates fully 40 percent of the nation’s carbon dioxide pollution, is costly. Transitioning to cleaner energy won’t just help protect us and our children and grandchildren from climate change, it’s also good economics

More importantly she discusses not only the cost of production, but also the cost of damage caused by the pollution. It is no secret that global warming is causing more severe storms and climate changes, and it is also no secret that we pay a pretty penny for the destruction of our tyrant mother nature.

Related ArticleCostly Climate Changes

The study estimates that by 2018, coal will be so costly that it will cost at least .5 cents per kWh more than renewable clean energy. Although that sounds like a very little number, take into consideration that the average American uses over 11,000 kWh per year. Now multiply that by the roughly 300 million Americans in the USA and again multiply it by the .5 cents that coal costs to operate/clean/maintain. That’s-a-big a-pizza pie! The study itself concludes that:

Our estimates have important policy implications. For new electricity generation, they justify a much stronger standard than proposed last year by the Environmental Protection Agency, which was based upon natural gas emission rates. For existing source standards, which the EPA is also required to issue, they justify replacing a significant portion of the current coal fleet with new cleaner generation.

Related Article: Germany Sets Example for Global Climate Battle

Maybe it is time to give up the farce of maintaining fossil power plants and time to step up into a world of clean and renewable sources of energy. We continually progress to higher gas mileages and less pollution based cars, so why not apply this idea of clean usable energy more as a solution to our constant need for energy?

Cheers to clean energy!

 

 

Research:

Social Cost of Carbon

Laurie Johnson

 EIA.Gov American Electricity

Wondergressive: The Ugly Face of Overpopulation

Wondergressive: Costly Climate Changes

Wondergressive: Germany Sets Example for Global Climate Battle

Solar Power Going the Distance! Literally.

Solar powered cars are something of the past, old news, been there done that. Shocking, I know. But I bet you’ve never thought about a solar powered airplane! Nope, I can’t say that I have either. In fact, when researching the new/old technology behind blimp ships and space shuttles capturing asteroids, one overlooks the thought of solar energy powering any of these vessels.

YES! They did it! The brilliant among us created solar powered fliers, and without any of us demanding it either! But then again who would want to fly Air Japan on solar energy and find themselves stuck in overcast for 12 hours, that’d be a big uh oh. Lets not “fly” ahead of ourselves just yet.

Solar Impulse has created just that miracle plane we are talking about. The Solar Impulse HB-S1A has a wingspan of 208 ft. and weighs only 3,500 lbs, not all too heavy because of its carbon fiber structure, and most of the weight comes from the solar panels. It was able to attain an altitude of 30,300 feet and stayed aloft for a record 26 hours, 10 minutes, and 19 seconds at an average flying speed of 43 mph. In fact, the plane continued to fly throughout the night on energy stored in the day.

This HB-S1A vessel was actually a prototype and in 2015 Solar Impulse plans to launch Solar Impulse HB-S1B which is expected to circumnavigate the Earth. I think the coolest thing about this newer model is that it will incorporate nanotechnology to help with battery storage. I am always excited about prospective new technology and its uses!

Can you imagine the implications of an airplane that flies on solar power? The cost reduction in substituting jet fuel for something easily attained on a clear day? How about just the thought of solar power being so effectively researched and put into use that our government will be forced to use it as an alternative source of power?! On a bad note, those poor birds; they don’t even stand a chance with more things in the air…  At least we can say that we got all the needed Vitamin D for the day when taking one of these bad boys out for a spin! Move over solar salamanders! Your’re yesterdays news.

Cheers!

 

Research:

Solar Impulse – HB-S1A

Solar Impulse – HB-S1B

Time: Solar Powered Plane flies around US

Wondergressive: Blimps

Wondergressive: Capture an Asteroid

Wondergressive: Fly Away Home

Wondergressive: The Drones are Coming

Wondergressive: Vitamin D Deficiency

Wondergressive: Solar Salamander

Germany Sets Example for Global Climate Battle

Energiewende! This one word defines the German view on the global climate crisis that our planet is currently experiencing. Literally Energiewende means energy change. While its definition is simple it’s connotation encompasses an entire movement. Osha Gray Davidson writes:

The government has set a target of 80 percent renewable power by 2050, but many Germans I spoke with in three weeks traveling across this country believe 100 percent renewable power is achievable by then.

This plan also has many checkpoint gates that it must achieve. By 2020 Germany must be dependent on 35% renewable energies. These energies include wind, solar, and sheer German momentum. Sheer German momentum believes strongly that the Earth is experiencing a global climate crisis.

If a member of parliament called climate change a hoax or said that its cause is unknown, he or she would be laughed out of office.

 

Interesting. Here in the United States, we’re still trying to accept the idea of climate change. For example, my favorite winter-time joke: Where’s that dang-old global warming when you need it? (note: this joke is best told when temperatures are under 41°F and is best told by or to somebody who doesn’t properly understand what global warming is). As another example, lets see what the US Chief of Energy has to say about the matter.

Let me make it very clear that there is no ambiguity in terms of the scientific basis calling for a prudent response on climate change.

Ernest Moniz goes on to say:

“I am not interested in debating what is not debatable…There is plenty to debate as we try and move forward on our climate agenda.”

While it is good that the Energy Chief (a tittle best held by a true sorcerer) strongly holds this as fact, there are still many United Statians (I think it’s time we stopped calling ourselves Americans as we live on only a part of the continent) that uphold the belief that Global warming is a myth. If you really want to delve into crazy, I suggest you check out the Friends of Science webpage.

As we move back to the realms of science and reality we can see that the majority of the world understands science and actually is pretty good friends with it. Stanford University is spearheading the global awareness of climate change caused by humans (scroll down to page 26 for the good stuff). Don’t forget to sign the petition!

Sources:

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-11-13/germany-has-built-clean-energy-economy-u-s-rejected-in-80s.html?cmpid=otbrn.sustain.story

http://phys.org/news/2013-05-scientists-co2-sequestration-technique-supergreen.html

http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/e2-wire/301287-new-energy-secretary-need-to-address-climate-change-not-debatable

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/05/23/1211224/-520-scientists-sign-statement-on-Maintaining-Humanity-s-Life-Support-Systems-in-the-21st-Century

http://www.economist.com/node/21559667

http://www.friendsofscience.org/index.php?ide=2

http://www.globalwarminghysteria.com/ten-myths-of-global-warming/
http://mahb.stanford.edu/consensus-statement-from-global-scientists/
http://mahb.stanford.edu/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Consensus-Statement.pdf

Other Wondergressive Articles:

The ugly face of overpopulation 

The 5 Rs

Sweden is running out of trash

The Ugly Face of Overpopulation

buildings

freeimages.co.uk buildings

Texas, the lone star state. My recent visit to Texas gave me a new outlook on the Lone Star meaning. They say that this Lone Star state is capable of containing all of the world’s population. Texas has a square mileage of about 268,581 which equates to 7,487,608,550,400 square feet. Over 7.4 trillion square feet gives about 1000 square feet to each of the 7.5 billion people of our Earth’s population! So that’s what they mean by lone star state! Texas truly IS the only state that the world needs!

But what about transportation, farms, food services, power plants, etc.? Realistically, that would be a problem if we all lived in Texas, but that is not the point. What matters is that we have sufficient room on this planet for up to 282 billion people (calculated by Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research) and surely technology will always evolve and adapt to the limited space available to us. If not, then we build UP! Towers, skyscrapers, pyramids, whatever we can think of. Even, eventually, out into the new frontier!

So why all this overpopulation talk? Why is there all this talk of Kenya’s population needing to be controlled because of its drastic population increase? Why are we so afraid of reaching 9 billion people by 2050?

The answer is not in sheer numbers but in the daily consumption of those increased numbers and the toll it takes on the environment. It is in resources and available luxuries of a comfortable lifestyle that we are lacking. Roger Martin, chair of the NGO Population Matters states that:

Every additional person needs food, water and energy, and produces more waste and pollution, so ratchets up our total impact on the planet, and ratchets down everyone else’s share.

In reality, we Americans live lavishly, even at poverty levels compared to that of the rest of the world. Here in America we associate a good, happy life with a big house, a nice car, a high paying job, and a family that is fed and satisfied. Other countries are not so lucky and a daily struggle for food only increases as the population grows. One of many gruelling facts:

Americans constitute 5% of the world’s population but consume 24% of the world’s energy.

Where are all the solutions?! What can we do as a country to prepare for an Environmental Crisis?! Do I have to give up all of my luxury?

I am confident that most of you reading this article have heard the claim that the United States produces enough food to feed the entire world before. So then why are we still worrying about a shortage of food or overpopulation? Because every day supermarkets throw away food while people die of starvation all over the planet. Because day after day the corporate world  churns out more than is needed, creating piles of waste so that we can have comfortable lifestyles in America. Because no matter how much we produce or how efficient we become, nothing will deter the environmental crisis if we do not work for a cleaner and healthier environment around us.

Obama and his congressmen have been putting off the reforms needed in environmental advancements in order to have more sustainable energy and a cleaner environment. Germany already has implemented better energy efficient methods that are improving both the environment and their people’s way of life and is setting records for solar power production. Even if all that can be reached is a consensus on a future we want but do not currently have, we need to start moving in the right direction to help create that better, sustainable future.

Already the revolution towards a cleaner environment is happening. Already we are creating edible landscapes, creating gasoline out of air, working towards more efficient heating methods, and most importantly, using waste as a form of energy! The Environmental Revolution is upon us. Do not let yourself get left behind.

 

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Texas

http://www.pik-potsdam.de/institute

http://www.nation.co.ke/News/Kenyans-urged-to-cut-population-growth/-/1056/1607130/-/kdn3t5z/-/index.html

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/oct/23/why-population-growth-costs-the-earth-roger

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qy5A8dVYU3k

http://www.mindfully.org/Sustainability/Americans-Consume-24percent.htm

http://www.naturalnews.com/029637_supermarkets_food.html

http://www.worldhunger.org/articles/Learn/world%20hunger%20facts%202002.htm

https://wondergressive.com/2012/09/07/unprecedented-changes-and-extinctions-occurring-in-marine-life/

https://wondergressive.com/2012/08/16/permaculture-connection/

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/26/us-climate-germany-solar-idUSBRE84P0FI20120526

http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,2118058,00.html

https://wondergressive.com/2012/08/15/edible-landscapes/

https://wondergressive.com/2012/11/02/fresh-air-turned-into-gasoline/

https://wondergressive.com/2013/01/05/heat-yourself-not-your-house/

https://wondergressive.com/2013/02/12/sweden-is-running-out-of-trash/