Friday, May 14, 2021

GWPF Newsletter: Macron's climate referendum dead in the water as Senate changes draft bill


A ‘red team’ view of climate science

In this newsletter:

1) Macron's climate referendum dead in the water as Senate changes draft bill
France 24 News, 11 May 2021

2) Germany plans to hide the astronomical cost of the renewable energy transition
Alex Reichmuth, Schweizer Nebelspalte, 5 May 2021

3) Plans for Britain's first gas power station that captures carbon revealed
The Daily Telegraph, 11 May 2021
4) Climate activists bring legal challenge over UK's oil and gas strategy
Financial Times, 12 May 2021

5) A ‘red team’ view of climate science
Jonathan Tennenbaum, Asia Times, 8 May 2021

6) Mark Mills: Biden’s Not-So-Clean Energy Transition
The Wall Street Journal, 12 May 2021

7) Vijay Jayaraj: Despite Biden’s climate deal, India is set to forge ahead with fossil fuel acceleration
GWPF Energy, 11 May 2021
8) And finally: China says truant school girl Greta lacks knowledge and is full of herself 
Global Times,9 May 2021

Full details:

1) Macron's climate referendum dead in the water as Senate changes draft bill
France 24 News, 11 May 2021

President Emmanuel Macron's promise to enshrine the fight against climate change in the French constitution via a referendum appeared moribund on Tuesday after the upper house watered down the ambitious wording of a government-sponsored bill. 

The initiative to state in the constitution that France "guarantees environmental protection and biological diversity, and combats climate change" originated in a citizen's body set up by Macron last year.

Seeking the upper hand in what could be a key issue in next year's presidential election, the French leader promised a referendum on the bill if it gained approval in both houses of parliament.

The National Assembly, where Macron has a majority, overwhelmingly voted in favour of the revision in March.
But when the bill then went to the Senate, the body -- majority-ruled by the right-wing Republicans -- removed a key provision from the draft law before backing a new version in a vote late Monday.

Under French law a referendum can go ahead only if it is approved in identical wording by both houses of parliament.
A majority of senators took issue with the word "guarantee" in the bill, which they say implies that environmental concerns would take priority over other constitutional principles.
Instead, they approved a text stating that France "preserves the environment as well as bio-diversity and acts against climate change under the conditions laid down in the Environment Charter of 2004", sponsored by then-president Jacques Chirac.
Keeping the "guarantee" wording would have given environmental protection priority over all other constitutional considerations, said Francois-Noel Buffet, the right-wing head of the Senate's legal commission.
The government's wording would have "introduced the virus of growth decline in our constitution", added the senate leader of the right-wing LR party, Bruno Retailleau.
Full story
2) Germany plans to hide the astronomical cost of the renewable energy transition
Alex Reichmuth, Schweizer Nebelspalte, 5 May 2021

The subsidies for promoting renewable energy are getting out of hand in Germany. Now the coalition government is resorting to a trick: it is using the federal budget to cover the horrific costs. The financial effects of the energy transition are thus less visible.
In Switzerland, people always look to Germany with a certain amount of interest. The so-called energy transition that is taking place there is in many ways similar to the plans that our country also wants to implement. Germany plans to shut down the remaining six nuclear power plants by the end of next year and also to phase out coal-fired power generation by 2038. The huge electricity gap that arises in this way is to be filled with alternative energy, mainly solar and wind power. The renovation is already in full swing.
In Switzerland, after the decision to phase out nuclear power, a large part of the electricity will also come from solar and wind power plants. However, the Swiss energy transition is progressing much more slowly, so that the German energy transition – depending on your point of view – serves as a role model or a deterrent.
Neither wind nor solar power are currently marketable. Therefore their production has to be subsidised with a lot of money. The operators of wind turbines and solar systems receive a fixed price for the electricity that they feed into the grid for 20 years after the installation of a system. In Germany this is regulated in the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG). In order to finance the subsidies, electricity customers pay a surcharge per kilowatt hour (kWh), the EEG surcharge.

The most expensive electricity in Europe
The subsidisation of renewable electricity in Germany has reached dizzying heights in recent years with around 30 billion euros annually. The EEG surcharge has increased accordingly and has now reached almost 7 euro cents per kilowatt hour. The EEG surcharge thus makes up around a quarter of the electricity price. Also because of additional surcharges, electricity in Germany has become more expensive than anywhere else in the European Union. The electricity price is 43 percent above the average for EU countries.

This puts many private individuals with small budgets in financial difficulties. A family with an average consumption of 4,000 kilowatt hours now pays over 300 euros per year for the EEG surcharge. In addition, the competitiveness of the German economy is increasingly in danger. The Federal Audit Office recently criticised the high electricity prices. These would jeopardise the social acceptance of the energy transition, he warned in a report. 

The coalition government made up of CDU / CSU and SPD is therefore under pressure. It definitely wants to promote the expansion of wind and solar systems, but urgently needs to relieve electricity consumers financially. So she uses the general federal budget.
EEG surcharge is to be abolished
For this year and next, the coalition is spending billions of euros from the federal budget to lower the EEG surcharge. In 2021 this will be 6.5 euro cents per kWh and in 2022 6 euro cents per kWh. A few days ago the coalition decided that in the two following years the taxpayers should be used even more to finance the green electricity subsidies. In 2023 and 2024, the EEG surcharge will drop to below 5 euro cents per kWh.

In the medium term, the EEG surcharge should even be completely abolished, as Peter Altmaier (CDU) said in February from the Ministry of Economics. The billions in subsidies will be financed entirely from general funds in the future. For the coalition government, this has the advantage that it is much less visible how much money the energy transition will cost.

The money can now be spent much more loosely: with the lowering of the EEG surcharge for 2023 and 2024, the coalition also decided to “significantly” increase the tendering volume for wind and solar power planned for 2022 for a short period of time. For onshore wind, this will be increased from 2.9 gigawatts to 4.0 gigawatts, and for photovoltaics even from 1.9 gigawatts to 6.0 gigawatts.

The feed-in tariff is to expire
In Switzerland, the counterpart to the EEG levy, the charge for the cost-covering feed-in tariff (KEV), is not yet as hard on the wallet as it is in Germany. With the KEV, the producers of alternative electricity are also compensated with fixed tariffs for 20 years after the construction of a system. With the energy law adopted by the people in 2017, the KEV tax rose to 2.3 cents per kWh.

It is planned that the KEV will expire in 2023 – this means that no further systems will then be included in the financing. The KEV is then to be replaced by one-off payments for systems through competitive tenders. It remains to be seen whether this will really happen – because subsidies generally have a tendency to perpetuate themselves.

Full post (in German)
3) Plans for Britain's first gas power station that captures carbon revealed
The Daily Telegraph, 11 May 2021
The Peterhead power station would achieve 15pc of the Government’s target to capture 10m tonnes of CO2 annually by 2030

Peterhead Power Station, where the new decarbonised development is to be built CREDIT: Stuart Nicol

Energy giants SSE and Equinor are planning to build the first power station in Scotland to use carbon capture technology.

The gas-fired power station at Peterhead, Aberdeenshire, could capture up to 1.5m tonnes of carbon dioxide from its emissions each year.
The development, which is still dependent on securing sufficient investment, is hoped to be ready by 2026.
SSE and Equinor are also developing two low-carbon power stations in North Lincolnshire, announced last month.
The Peterhead power station would achieve 15pc of the Government’s target to capture 10m tonnes of CO2 annually by 2030, according to major Scottish energy supplier SSE.

The technology will capture around 90pc of the site’s carbon emissions, which will be stored at the Acorn Project’s site, located about 100km offshore in rock formations deep below the North Sea. Shell is one of the companies involved in building the Acorn CO2 storage site.
Both the Acorn Project - run by a subsidiary of UK low-carbon tech firm Storegga Geotechnologies - and the power station were given funding by the Government in March as part of Scotland’s move towards net zero infrastructure.
A final decision about proceeding with the Peterhead project will depend on government subsidies for carbon capture and storage, as well as construction of the infrastructure needed to store carbon emissions deep under the North Sea. 
Full story (£)
4) Climate activists bring legal challenge over Boris Johnson's oil and gas strategy
Financial Times, 12 May 2021

Campaigners in High Court battle to end fossil fuel production in British waters

Three climate change activists are seeking to challenge the UK’s support for continued North Sea oil and gas production through the High Court in a bid to end fossil fuel production in British waters.

The campaigners, who are supported by environmental groups including Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth Scotland and the UK Student Climate Network, have applied for a judicial review of the Oil & Gas Authority’s strategy to “maximise the economic recovery” of the country’s reserves of hydrocarbons.

The case marks the latest effort by environment campaigners to end UK North Sea production after the government earlier this year resisted calls to follow other countries, such as Denmark, in banning new oil and gas exploration.

Instead ministers promised in March to devise a “climate compatibility” test before future oil and gas licensing rounds that would take into account evidence such as domestic demand.

The trio, represented by the law firm Leigh Day, will argue that this statutory objective of the OGA, the industry regulator, is both “irrational” in light of the UK’s legally binding 2050 net zero emissions target and fails to take into account the advantageous tax regime that applies to the North Sea. 
Full story (£)
5) A ‘red team’ view of climate science
Jonathan Tennenbaum, Asia Times, 8 May 2021

Koonin suggests that a first red team review might consist of close public scrutiny of the IPCC’s forthcoming Sixth Assessment Report, or the next US National Climate Assessment, expected in 2023.

A new book is a must-read for anyone concerned about the increasingly radical measures nations are being pressured to adopt in response to the so-called climate crisis. Are these measures really justified from a scientific standpoint? Does the supposed menace of a human-caused climate apocalypse correspond to reality?

The book, Unsettled: What Climate Science Tells Us, What It Doesn’t, And Why It Matters, is written by Steven Koonin, a physicist and professor at New York University who served as undersecretary for science in the US Department of Energy during the Barack Obama administration.

Koonin is also a member and one-time chairman of JASON, an independent organization of scientists that advises the US government on sensitive and pressing science and technology issues.

I received and read an advance copy of the volume and interviewed Dr Koonin for this three-part series, comprised of this book review and a follow-up four-part interview. All in all, I can highly recommend Koonin’s book: It is fascinating and informative reading, and hopefully will improve the climate for honest and open discussion.

Koonin has been calling for the appointment of a so-called “red team” – an independent group of qualified scientists – to carry out a rigorous critique of the scientific validity of the assessments and recommendations of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the 4-yearly US National Climate Assessment (NCA).

The book thus might be read as a foretaste of what a red team might turn up. Apart from its sometimes devastating conclusions, the volume provides certainly one of the most readable and fascinating accounts available to a non-technical reader about the challenges of climate science, present knowledge of ongoing climate change and potential options for dealing with it.

As the book’s title suggests, present-day climate science is far from being able to give definitive answers to key questions relevant to policymaking. This is not a popular thing to say, since people like to have black-and-white certainty. Science, however, is not truth; it is only a search for truth. A very difficult search, in this case, given the mind-boggling complexity of the Earth’s climate system.

I find particularly valuable the way Koonin explains, in simple, non-technical language, the problems of computer-based climate forecasting and the reasons for the poor reliability of today’s climate models.

While he takes a rigorous critical attitude, Koonin can in no way be dismissed as a “climate denier.” On the contrary, most of what he writes is consistent with the official reports of the IPCC and the National Climate Assessment — but with an important reservation: a number of the most essential facts and conclusions are buried in the body of the voluminous assessment reports, and not reflected in the summaries provided to the press and decision-makers.

Koonin documents how this circumstance, together with public statements by some climate scientists, has given a seriously misleading impression about the actual results of climate research. The assessment reports themselves are publicly available, of course, but one has the impression that few people actually read them carefully, at least not in the manner Koonin has.

The examples he cites make for astounding reading. Perhaps most significant, the author demonstrates that the IPCC assessments provide no basis whatsoever for the widely propagated notion that climate change is leading to a global catastrophe.

Among other things, Koonin cites a conclusion from the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report, summarizing some 20 published estimates, according to which a global temperature rise of 3°C by the year 2100 would negatively impact the global economy by about 3% measured in “equivalent income loss.”

Koonin also quotes the following key passage:

“For most economic sectors, the impact of climate change will be small relative to the impacts of other drivers (medium evidence, high agreement). Changes in population, age, income, technology, relative prices, lifestyle, regulation, governance, and many other aspects of socioeconomic development will have an impact on the supply and demand of economic goods and services that is large relative to the impact of climate change.”

Where is the climate apocalypse?

From the official assessments cited in Koonin’s book, one can only conclude that mankind faces incomparably greater dangers and potential losses from developments of a completely different sort — such as large-scale military conflicts, possible use of nuclear weapons, deadly pandemics, socioeconomic instability and spread of extremist ideologies, international financial crises and others. (One might add to the list ill-advised, disruptive and economically disastrous environmentalist policies.) …

In separate chapters Koonin addresses, with much interesting detail, some other consequences of climate change, including rising sea levels, frequency of storms and other extreme weather, floods and drought, etc. In each case, there is no hint of an oncoming global catastrophe — neither in the projections nor in the actual data. Instead, we can expect a gradual change of the sort that human societies have successfully adapted to for thousands of years.

Koonin’s 2017 public call for the creation of a “red team” already struck a raw nerve in the climate science community, and resulted in considerable push-back. It was argued, for example, that additional probing would be superfluous since scientific publications on climate are already subject to peer criticism and peer review, as they are in every other field of science.

The latter is true, of course, but when it comes to spending trillions of dollars and adopting measures that will seriously affect the economies of nations around the world, a different, more critical sort of examination is needed.

In Koonin’s view, this would ideally be provided by a so-called “red team exercise”: an “adversary” group of scientists is charged with rigorously questioning an assessment or proposed course of action while an opposing group, a “blue team”, has the opportunity to rebut their findings.

As Koonin remarks in his book: “Red Team exercises are commonly used to inform high-consequence decisions such as testing national intelligence findings or validating complex engineering projects like aircraft or spacecraft; they’re also common in cybersecurity. Red Teams catch errors or gaps, identify blind spots, and often help to avoid catastrophic failures.”

I cannot help being reminded of the investigation of the 1986 Challenger Space Shuttle explosion by Richard Feynman – one of America’s greatest scientists and a colleague and hero of Koonin during his time at the California Institute of Technology.

An exceptionally brilliant and independent-minded person, Feynman was uniquely able — as an outsider — to uncover the physical causes, technical difficulties, errors and misjudgments which had led to the Challenger disaster. This kind of rigorous examination would hardly have been imaginable from inside the official US space agency NASA at that time.

Concretely, Koonin suggests that a first red team review might consist of close public scrutiny of the forthcoming Sixth Assessment Report of IPCC, or the next US National Climate Assessment, expected in 2023.

Full post

see also follow-up interviews with Steven Koonin:

The not-so-drastic truth behind climate change
Rising sea levels no cause for climate alarm
6) Mark Mills: Biden’s Not-So-Clean Energy Transition
The Wall Street Journal, 12 May 2021

The International Energy Agency exposes the hidden environmental costs and infeasibility of going green.

The International Energy Agency, the world’s pre-eminent source of energy information for governments, has entered the political debate over whether the U.S. should spend trillions of dollars to accelerate the energy transition favored by the Biden administration. You know, the plan to use far more “clean energy” and far less hydrocarbons—the oil, natural gas and coal that today supply 84% of global energy needs. The IEA’s 287-page report released this month, “The Role of Critical Minerals in Clean Energy Transitions,” is devastating to those ambitions. A better title would have been: “Clean Energy Transitions: Not Soon, Not Easy and Not Clean.”

The IEA assembled a large body of data about a central, and until now largely ignored, aspect of the energy transition: It requires mining industries and infrastructure that don’t exist. Wind, solar and battery technologies are built from an array of “energy transition minerals,” or ETMs, that must be mined and processed. The IEA finds that with a global energy transition like the one President Biden envisions, demand for key minerals such as lithium, graphite, nickel and rare-earth metals would explode, rising by 4,200%, 2,500%, 1,900% and 700%, respectively, by 2040.

The world doesn’t have the capacity to meet such demand. As the IEA observes, albeit in cautious bureaucratese, there are no plans to fund and build the necessary mines and refineries. The supply of ETMs is entirely aspirational. And if it were pursued at the quantities dictated by the goals of the energy transition, the world would face daunting environmental, economic and social challenges, along with geopolitical risks.

The IEA stipulates up front one underlying fact that advocates of a transition never mention: Green-energy machines use far more critical minerals than conventional-energy machines do. “A typical electric car requires six times the mineral inputs of a conventional car, and an onshore wind plant requires nine times more mineral resources than a gas-fired power plant,” the report says. “Since 2010, the average amount of minerals needed for a new unit of power generation capacity has increased by 50% as the share of renewables has risen.” That was merely to bring wind and solar to a 10% share of the world’s electricity.

As the IEA notes dryly, the transition is a “shift from a fuel-intensive to a material-intensive energy system.” That means a shift away from liquids and gases whose extraction and transport leave a very light footprint on the land and are transported easily, cheaply and efficiently, and toward big-footprint mines, the energy-intensive transport of massive amounts of rocks and other solid materials, and subsequent chemical processing and refining.

Spooling up production can’t happen overnight. The IEA observes something every miner knows: “It has taken on average over 16 years to move mining projects from discovery to first production.” Start tomorrow and new ETM production will begin only after 2035. This is a considerable problem for the Biden administration’s plan to achieve 100% carbon-free electricity by 2035.
In what may become the understatement of the decade, the IEA concludes that such long lead times “raise questions about the ability of suppliers to ramp up output if demand were to pick up rapidly.” The conditional “if” is a discordant qualifier given the IEA itself has endorsed, and nearly all its member states have already pledged, a rapid transition. The clear consequence is that “deployment of clean energy technologies is set to supercharge demand for critical minerals.”

Credit the IEA for acknowledging that this will require a global mining boom that leaves in its wake all manner of environmental implications. “Mining and mineral processing require large volumes of water”—a serious issue when around half of global lithium and copper production takes place in areas of high water stress—and “pose contamination risks through acid mine drainage, wastewater discharge and the disposal of tailings.”
The IEA falls backs on the usual admonition that mitigating these risks will require “strengthening international collaboration” for everything from pollution to labor practices. But the history here isn’t promising. IEA data show that expanded ETM mining will occur mainly in countries with “low governance scores” where “corruption and bribery pose major liability risks.”
The IEA may be the first major agency to flag the geopolitical risks of the energy transition, again with copious data. Today the oil-and-gas market is characterized by supply diversity. The top three producers, among them the U.S., account for less than half of world supply. The top three producers for three key ETMs, however, control more than 80% of global supply. Here we find China utterly dominant while the U.S. isn’t even a player.

Well buried in the report is a warning about the “high emissions intensities” of ETMs. Energy use per pound mined is even trending up. This is no arcane nuance. It’s the key hidden factor that determines whether, or to what extent, a clean-energy machine actually reduces carbon-dioxide emissions on net. The IEA data show that, depending on the location and nature of future mines, the emissions from obtaining ETMs could wipe out much or most of the emissions saved by driving electric cars.

Full post ($)
7) Vijay Jayaraj: Despite Biden’s climate deal, India is set to forge ahead with fossil fuel acceleration
GWPF Energy, 11 May 2021

India will not reduce its growing dependence on fossil fuels but will invest in renewable technology as a requirement under various international climate agreements.


During the recently concluded Leaders’ Summit on Climate, India and the U.S. signed the India-US Clean Energy Agenda 2030 Partnership. India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that “Together we will help mobilise investments, demonstrate clean technologies, and enable green collaboration.”

Despite being touted as a historic agreement, neither Biden nor Modi addressed the biggest elephant in the room: fossil fuel production and consumption in India, which is one of the highest in the world.

India will not reduce its dependence on fossil fuel, but it will invest in renewable technology, merely as a requirement under various international climate agreements. During the Summit, Modi pointed out that “India’s per capita carbon footprint is 60 percent lower than the global average,” hinting that it would be unfair for world leaders to expect India to carry the burden of emission reduction.

This falls in line with India’s recent approach towards other International Climate Agreements where India chose to refrain from committing to any form of reduction in fossil fuel production. Perhaps Biden was aware of this and much of the discussion was limited to clean energy and not on India’s proposed plans to increase fossil fuel production.

India has made sure that none of its climate policies impacts the fossil fuel sector adversely. This is because fossil fuel makes up the biggest portion of the country’s primary energy needs, including electricity. More than 70% of the electricity comes from Coal and fossil fuels account for 90% of all energy consumed in the country.
Reality of energy need in India
India does not consider its renewable installations as an insurance for future energy needs. The government and the DISCOMS (power distribution companies) are aware of this and continue to rely on fossil fuel sources that are abundant, accessible, affordable, and dependable.

Professor V Ranganathan, RBI Chair at IIM India and a Visiting Professor at the University of Pennsylvania, explains why India’s renewable ambitions are out of touch with reality and explains the problem with renewable intermittency. 

"India on the other hand has been going gung-ho on renewables, bringing misery to coal-based electricity plants and their unwilling buyers, ie discoms, alike…. It is quite clear that solar and wind can be no match for good old coal-based electricity because the RE is intermittent energy, i.e. it provides only energy;  while the coal/storage hydro is continuous energy providing both capacity and energy……Achieving viability through grid connection for solar and wind is the biggest deception because in this case the capacity cost is borne by some other continuous energy source in the grid…..The rare case where it is worth is when the renewable energy supply is in phase with the system peak demand. But it is seldom so,” says professor Ranganathan.

It would be suicidal for India to blindly trust renewable tech, when a large section of its population still remains in energy poverty. It is estimated that India’s per capita energy consumption is only around 30% of the world’s average and there are ongoing efforts to increase this.
India’s energy experts are aware of this and hence are persisting with an aggressive policy to increase fossil fuel production. International Energy Agency’s (IEA) Energy Policy Review for 2020 notes that “India is taking significant steps to enhance its energy security by fostering domestic production through the most significant upstream reform of India’s Hydrocarbon Exploration and Licensing Policy (HELP) and building up dedicated oil emergency stocks in the form of a strategic petroleum reserve. The scale of these achievements is hard to overstate.” According to the IEA, “India spent a total of USD 25 billion on subsidies for the consumption of fossil fuels” in 2018 alone.
This hunger for growth in fossil fuel production, especially coal, was witnessed even during the on-going second wave of COVID-19 in the country. Coal India Limited, the State Coal agency and the largest coal producing company of the world, recorded an increased offtake of 54 million tonnes during April 2021, the worst month of COVID-19 infections in India. Coal production rose by 3.7% (year-on-year). Northern Coalfields Limited, which is one of the eight subsidiaries of Coal India Ltd, “has clocked a 32% phenomenal year-on-year growth in coal dispatch for April 2021.”
It is also noteworthy to mention India’s reliance on oil and gas. India is the 3rd largest oil consumer in the world after China and the US. It is the second largest oil refiner in Asia and largest exporter of Petroleum products in Asia. India is also the fourth largest importer of liquefied natural gas globally.

Given this high degree of dependency on oil and gas, India is investing a significant sum into the sector. $58 billion will be invested in oil exploration and production, and a further $60 billion will be invested in natural gas infrastructure by 2024. The country’s energy minister said that India is aiming to double its oil refining capacity by 2030 (from 250 million tonnes to 500 million tonnes). However, this is likely to be expedited, with Prime Minister Modi suggesting that India will double its refining capacity as early as 2025. Indian Oil Corporation, the nation’s biggest and state-owned refiner, aims to double petrochemicals output from its nine refineries.

Besides the energy reality that beckons India to continue on its fossil fuel path, there are other problems with the global climate change movement that discourages India from pursuing a renewable utopia. One of them is the unfulfilled climate financing aspect associated with the Paris climate agreement.
Full post
8) And finally: China says truant school girl Greta lacks knowledge and is full of herself 
Global Times,9 May 2021
"Greta Thunberg, who at age 15 started skipping school on Fridays for her climate protests, is merely 18 years old this year. She is short of sufficient academic knowledge study, and lack of sound self-judgment capability."

China's annual greenhouse gas emissions in 2019 exceeded those of all developed countries combined, for the first time since national emissions have been measured, according to a new report from the US-based Rhodium Group.
When retweeting the news on Twitter on Friday, Swedish teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg commented, "Yes, China is still categorized as a developing nation by WTO, they manufacture a lot of our products and so on. But that's of course no excuse for ruining future and present living conditions. We can't solve the climate crisis unless China drastically changes course."
It's noticeable that Thunberg has not publicly voiced her opinion over Japan's decision on dumping contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant into the sea.
When talking about climate change, both current greenhouse gas emissions and historical accumulated ones should be taken into account, Li Haidong, a professor at the Institute of International Relations at China Foreign Affairs University, told the Global Times. If developed countries only focus on the current figure and pile pressure on developing countries to limit their emissions of greenhouse gases, it is to restrict the right of developing countries to further development. 
During their prior period of rapid development, developed countries emitted huge amounts of greenhouse gases without any penalty and restriction. When many developing countries including China are speeding up their development, developed countries are trying every means to limit developing countries' greenhouse gas emissions. This practice is unfair and unjust. In terms of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, climate justice and equality must be underlined.
China is the most populous country in the world. Putting much more emphasis on China's total volume, instead of per capita, is an attempt to deprive Chinese people of the right to improve their quality of life. Ding Zhongli, chairman of the Central Committee of the China Democratic League, replied in an interview years ago when talking about fairness in emissions reductions that, "Aren't the Chinese also human beings?"
He believed a per capita count of emissions would be more equitable and treat all people the same. [...]
Thunberg, who at age 15 started skipping school on Fridays for her climate protests, is merely 18 years old this year. She is short of sufficient academic knowledge study, and lack of sound self-judgment capability. Girl like her is prone to be affected or even manipulated by some political forces.
Li said, in a bid to achieve their political intents, some Western political forces manipulate teenagers, treating Thunberg as a political puppet. This practice is unethical and despicable.
Full story

The London-based Global Warming Policy Forum is a world leading think tank on global warming policy issues. The GWPF newsletter is prepared by Director Dr Benny Peiser - for more information, please visit the website at

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