Wednesday, August 18, 2021

GWPF Newsletter: UK blames Joe Biden for looming COP26 failure


US coal and oil demand on the rise again in blow to climate goals

In this newsletter:

1) UK blames enfeebled Joe Biden for looming COP failure
Global Warming Policy Forum, 16 August 2021
2) US must double cash pledge to save UN climate conference
The Daily Telegraph, 16 August 2021 

3) US coal and oil demand on the rise again in blow to climate goals
Financial Times, 15 August 2021 
4) Germany ‘set for biggest rise in greenhouse gases for 30 years’
The Guardian, 15 August 2021
5) Boris warned of defeat as bad as Churchill in 1945: 'They didn't vote for Greta Thunberg!'
Sunday Express, 15 August 2021
6) ‘Brexit hardman’ Steve Baker helped put Boris Johnson in power – and could prove his undoing over net zero
iNews, 16 August 2021 
7) Green issues expose Tory division and loner Boris Johnson’s distance from his party
Isabel Hardman, The Observer, 15 August 2021
8) Chancellor Rishi Sunak is urged to have a snap Budget to head off 'outlandish' splurge on green policies
9) Tilak Doshi: The IPCC’s climate “code red” versus the real world
Forbes, 14 August 2021

Full details:

1) UK blames enfeebled Joe Biden for looming COP failure
Global Warming Policy Forum, 16 August 2021

Amid growing fears that the upcoming UN climate conference in Glasgow (COP26) could end in failure, it would appear that UK officials are beginning to look for scapegoats.


As the Biden administration’s disastrous Afghanistan retreat unfolds, there is now a growing realisation that Biden’s colossal strategic fiasco will greatly undermine American credibility on the world stage.
There can be little doubt that America’s military and strategic failure will have devastating consequences for its international standing for years to come. This loss of global credibility is almost certain to play out later this year when the Biden administration together with the UK government intend to push through a Net Zero agreement at the UN climate summit (COP26) in Glasgow.
The chances of a global Net Zero deal, which was unlikely even before the fall of Afghanistan, have now essentially evaporated. And as a Net Zero agreement at COP26 looks out of the question, the blame game has begun, with UK officials blaming the Biden administration for refusing to increase its annual transfer of climate $$$billions to more than 100 developing nations.
The main problem the US president now faces is that after his humiliating defeat, none of his administration’s pledges at the UN climate summit will be seen as trustworthy. And while his approval ratings continue to drop, the next US president could simply overturn Biden’s empty promises and the Paris agreement at the stroke of a pen.     
2) US must double cash pledge to save UN climate conference
The Daily Telegraph, 16 August 2021 
America must increase its cash pledge to help developing countries fight climate change or one of the main targets of the Cop26 conference will be missed, British officials fear.


The Telegraph can reveal that Boris Johnson’s government is locked in an increasingly fraught tussle with Joe Biden’s administration over money to counter global warming.
Mr Johnson has made rich nations giving $100 billion a year of climate finance to poorer nations a top objective for Cop26, the UN climate change conference.

But with the Glasgow conference now a little over two months away, insiders close to the negotiations believe they are still between £10 billion and £15 billion a year short of hitting the goal.
Britain, Germany and Canada have all substantially increased their pledges, but America’s figure is roughly similar to what it was under former US president Barack Obama.
UK officials are understood to see America’s current proposed contribution as “pitiful” and are demanding that it “catch up” with other G7 countries.
They also acknowledge that Washington’s decision on whether to give more cash is effectively “make or break” for hitting the $100 billion ambition.
One UK source familiar with discussions said: “The big player that has to come to the $100bn pledge with a substantial offer is America. They’ve been saying for a long time ‘we’re on the case’. We’ve got two and a half months. We’re running out of time.”

Full story (£)
3) US coal and oil demand on the rise again in blow to climate goals
Financial Times, 15 August 2021 

America’s appetite for fossil fuels has come roaring back as the economy cranks into gear, providing a boost to energy groups but flying in the face of Washington’s drive to slash emissions.

Motorists’ return to the roads following the loosening of pandemic restrictions is pushing up fuel demand and the bottom lines of oil refiners, while a shift away from natural gas in power generation has been a boon to coal miners.

The resurgence comes as floods and wildfires in many parts of the world lay bare the destructive impacts of climate change, which a landmark report last week determined was “unequivocally” the result of human activity — mainly through the burning of fossil fuels. 

Petrol demand collapsed last year as the pandemic forced people to stay home. But the vaccine rollout and a loosening of restrictions has allowed American motorists to return to roads in force this summer. Petrol consumption hit record levels of more than 10m barrels a day early last month.

The surge in demand has pushed up fuel prices and sparked alarm in the Biden administration, which last week pressed Russia and Saudi Arabia to increase oil production to cool the rally.

The federal Energy Information Administration expects Americans to burn through a daily average of 8.8m barrels of petrol this year, up 10 per cent on last year, but below the 9.3m b/d consumed in 2019, largely thanks to an increase in people working from home.

Burgeoning fuel demand has provided a boost to oil refiners that were hit hard by last year’s collapse. Companies have ramped up volumes, with many swinging back into profit after posting hefty losses last year. [...]

US coal demand is also rising sharply, but for a different reason. Climbing natural gas prices have spurred power producers to burn more of the dirtiest fossil fuel once again. The EIA estimates that coal consumption in US electricity generation will jump 17 per cent to 511.7 short tons this year.

It means that as Joe Biden battles to push sweeping new clean energy legislation through Congress, his first year as president will coincide with a resurgence in the use of coal.
Full story (£)
4) Germany ‘set for biggest rise in greenhouse gases for 30 years’
The Guardian, 15 August 2021

Germany is forecast to record its biggest rise in greenhouse gas emissions since 1990 this year as the economy rebounds from the pandemic-related downturn, according to a report by an environmental thinktank.

Berlin-based Agora Energiewende said the country’s emissions would probably rise by the equivalent of 47m tons of carbon dioxide.

The increase means Germany’s emissions will be about 37% lower than in 1990. It had aimed to cut emissions by 40% by 2020, and met the target last year but only due to the economic downturn.

The government recently pledged to increase efforts to combat climate change and reduce emissions to net zero by 2045.

The report draws on data from the first half of 2021 to forecast total emissions equivalent to 760-812m tons of CO2 for the full year.

It also shows a significant increase in consumption of fossil fuels across the building, industrial and transport sectors. If confirmed, the German government will be required by law to introduce urgent measures to reduce those sectoral emissions.
Full story

5) Boris warned of defeat as bad as Churchill in 1945 'They didn't vote for Greta Thunberg!'
Sunday Express, 15 August 2021

Boris Johnson has been warned he will lead his party to an election defeat of 1945 proportions and potentially unleash urban unrest if he does not take a new approach to dealing with the threat of climate change.

There is concern in Tory ranks that measures to slash net carbon dioxide emissions to zero could leave the country’s poorest citizens worse off.

A key worry is that the UK will make bold and expensive commitments when it hosts the international COP26 climate change conference in Glasgow in November. It is seen as a pivotal event in the fight against climate change, with Prince Charles due to speak.

Britons to be offered £7K to get rid of gas boiler
Last week the UN’s IPCC (Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change) predicted the world would reach the 1.5C warming threshold — after which climate change will rapidly accelerate — within two decades.

However, it said immediate action could bring it back under control by the latter half of the century.

South Thanet Conservative MP Craig Mackinlay has formed the Net Zero Scrutiny Group and expects close to 30 MPs will take part.

Mr Mackinlay fears carbon reduction commitments will “hit the poorest hardest” and said he wished the UK was not hosting the landmark climate talks because when “you’re in the chair you feel you have to go all-in”.

His concerns were echoed by Gwythian Prins, emeritus research professor at the London School of Economics.

He warned that just as Winston Churchill’s Conservatives were swept out of office in 1945, Mr Johnson could see his majority evaporate if he makes unpopular decisions on climate change.

Prof Prins, a former security consultant at the Met Office’s Hadley Centre, argues that a better approach would be to use gas technology while small modular nuclear reactors are rolled out.

Warning of the potential of social unrest, he noted that the French “gilets jaunes” riots started as fuel tax protests. He wants the Government to introduce a tax incentive to encourage people to run cars on liquid petroleum gas, which he argues will reduce air pollution.

Prof Prins fears that much of the response to climate change is following the “economics of the madhouse” and is urging Mr Johnson to use COP26 to point the world in a new direction.
He said: “You shouldn’t meddle with these things, prime minister, nor do you need to. You’re a free market prime minister.

“The people who put you there in 2019 put you in as a Conservative. They did not vote for Greta Thunberg...

“If you can change the direction of COP26 away from this record of repeated failure, that would be a great thing to do.”

The influential right-leaning Institute of Economic Affairs think tank is also sceptical about the push to get people to use electric cars.

Policy analyst Alexander Hammond said: “If every diesel or petrol car in the UK was replace with an electric version (EV), over their lifetime they would avoid 324 million tonnes of CO2, which has a market value of £15.7billion. However, the taxpayer would have to fork out £82.1billion in EV subsidies alone – not to mention additional costs, such as funding hundreds of thousands of EV charging points.”

A Government spokeswoman said: “As the IPCC report made clear [last] week, acting now will be cheaper than waiting to deal with the consequences of climate change which are already evident around the world.

“At every step of our path to net zero, we will be guided by affordability and fairness.

“The UK economy has already grown by 78% whilst cutting emissions by 44% over the past three decades – securing jobs, investment and exports across the country.

“The costs continue to fall as green technology advances, with solar and wind now cheaper than existing coal and gas power plants in most of the world, and more affordable electric vehicles continuing to come on the market.

“This is thanks to clear government signals, investment and targeted support that boosts private sector investment, builds industries and technology, and provides more affordable solutions for consumers.”

The Government points to an 85 percent fall in the cost of solar in the last ten years and 70 percent fall in the cost of offshore wind.

Mr Johnson has said the Government is determined to "keep bills low and that is a priority" and it must "make sure that we have the technology and make sure that it’s affordable".

Jim McConalogue of the think-tank Civitas argues it is possible to generate prosperity and "level-up for the future" while still ensuring that the "transition to green technologies is made affordable for small businesses".

He suggests a "carbon border tax" which would "protect our manufacturers against unfair foreign competition while preserving our economic competitiveness”.

“The ongoing concern remains that as international competitors make commitments to net-zero targets, the UK must look to protect the interests of manufacturers and jobs across the regions while ensuring that the transition to green technologies is made affordable,” he said.

6) ‘Brexit hardman’ Steve Baker helped put Boris Johnson in power – and could prove his undoing over net zero
iNews, 16 August 2021 
The Government’s climate targets will provoke an ‘enormous political explosion’, says the MP who helped make Boris Johnson Prime Minister
Steve Baker, the self-professed “hardman of Brexit”, is gearing up for another tilt at the “smug” political elite over who suffers what pain and when to meet climate change targets.

The Conservative MP for Wycombe has already done more than most of the cabinet in shaping the destiny of this country. Without him and his band of ‘Spartans’ – the 28 MPs who voted against all forms of Theresa May’s agreement – Boris Johnson almost certainly wouldn’t be sitting in Downing Street today.

Mr Baker is well aware of the debt. “One of the reasons I made him,” he says at one point, before checking himself, “Helped make him prime minister was because I sort of sat at dinner with him and I saw in his eyes, a serious Boris Johnson – a Boris Johnson who really cares about the welfare of the British people.”

Now, however, the Prime Minister is lumped in with Labour’s Keir Starmer and the Liberal Democrats as part of a political class that is, once again, setting up the conditions for another populist revolt.

“We’ll have another absolute political fiasco if we don’t confront the cost of net zero now,” he says. “There is undoubtedly a political consensus we should go to net zero. But as so often with the advancement of state power, the argument is not over whether something should be done, but you’re not going far enough, fast enough.

“But when those costs actually are present in people’s lives, suddenly, they’ll be turning to Richard Tice or Laurence Fox (leaders of fringe parties Reform UK and Reclaim) or whoever. And we’ll be repeating the Ukip phenomenon.”

It’s important to be clear what Baker is – and is not – saying. He says he is not denying the science but alarmist misrepresentations of it. He says he does not deny action is needed but says politicians are not being honest about the scale of the pain to meet the targets that are being set.

The trouble, he says, is that challenges to the ‘how’ questions of reducing emissions are usually met with answers to the ‘why’ question that often go beyond the scientific consensus on likely scenarios.

“I’m absolutely clear that climate change is a real thing, and that human emitted carbon dioxide has contributed to it, and that we should do something about it, the idea that we should do nothing is dangerous and foolish,” he says before winding up the to ‘but’.

“I do not see how we get any government elected on an open and frank manifesto of making the public, poorer and colder. The only way that could be done is if the public genuinely believed that the Earth was about to burn. And that I think is why we then see the IPCC report being presented in a way that encourages people to be terrified.”

He adds: “In net zero, as with Brexit, the political class has in a very, almost smug and self-satisfied way, built a consensus which is not going to survive contact with the public. And when actually there’s going to be an enormous political explosion.”

Contrary to what you might expect Mr Baker is impeccably polite – he likes to point out his award for civility in public life. He is unusually straightforward about the role of his faith as an Evangelical Christian in his politics describing himself as a “Christian libertarian”. “I am absolutely not a Tory.”

He is thoughtful on issues like “wokeness” drawing a distinction between being considerate – good – and “setting up new hierarchies of grievance” – bad. He has said he would take the knee.

He worries about food poverty – “I think it’s outrageous that highly developed welfare state should need food banks” – and wants ministers to keep the £20 extra a week in Universal Credit given at the start of the pandemic but set for withdrawal this autumn.

“The reason is, as a Christian, I am under a command to love my neighbour, to love, even my enemies to bless those who curse me. It’s quite hard as a politician.”

“My journey into Christianity was in a sense personal and not all that relevant compared to where we are, but I was baptised by immersion into the Church of England but at a beach, which was unusual.” He adds: “I was 13 or 14, something like, my parents were getting divorced – a very tricky time, I responded to a sermon.”

A political conversion followed while he was working as a software engineer at Lehman Brothers (he was working at the bank when its collapse helped trigger the global financial crash – “I was writing software, it definitely wasn’t my fault”).

He’s an admirer of Richard Cobden, a 19th century opponent of the Corn Laws and the Austrian School of Economists which makes him profoundly uneasy at what he sees as the reckless abandonment of “sound money” as central banks scrambled to re-float the world economy after the crash. He thinks the end of quantative easing will be ugly (“I’m sorry to be a Cassandra’’)

As someone who believes the state should be as small as possible he acknowledges the irony of helping install in Boris Johnson a man who has presided over the biggest state since the Second World War. It was worth it for Brexit, he says.

So has Mr Johnson now served his political purpose? “I think that is going too far. I think that’s very much in his hands.”

7) Green issues expose Tory division and loner Boris Johnson’s distance from his party
Isabel Hardman, The Observer, 15 August 2021
Trouble is brewing ahead of the climate change summit in Glasgow, but the friendless PM appears blissfully ignorant

Boris Johnson is a bit of a loner, socially and politically. He doesn’t have a clear group of friends. Neither does he hail from a particular political faction. The latter probably contributes in no small part to his electoral success: it’s hard to pigeonhole him, much to the frustration of his opponents. The former is useful, too, as he doesn’t end up just appointing his mates to jobs. He doesn’t really have mates, for one thing. He’s notoriously difficult to get truly close to.
But there are obvious disadvantages to not having your own tribe. One is that you don’t automatically have people who will come out to fight for you when you find yourself in the trenches. The other is that you find it hard to notice when there is a political problem brewing in your party because you haven’t really bonded with one part of it, let alone its noisy, often stubborn, entirety.
Johnson is going to feel both of these disadvantages particularly keenly this autumn. He is heading for a stand-off with many of his backbenchers on green issues as the UK prepares to host the Cop26 UN climate summit in Glasgow. It’s not clear whether he has realised quite how widespread the worry is within his own party about the direction he is heading in on climate change policies. It’s not even clear whether he understands what the nub of the problem is.

Because he is not a tribal politician, he is not fully aware of the delineation of the groups in his party on climate. The noisiest is the “net zero scrutiny group” (NZSG), set up by Steve Baker and led by South Thanet MP Craig Mackinlay. It is easy for casual observers – including the prime minister – to assume that this is the only source of scepticism about the measures needed to reach net zero. It isn’t.

What they aren’t, according to Mackinlay, is a bunch of climate change deniers dressing up their irritation with this agenda as serious scrutiny of the policies.
“What I want this group to be is a clearing house, a balanced academic facility where we get all sides of the argument. We only seem to get one argument from the climate change committee and when the serious decisions come we want to be fully armed.”
Their main worries are the cost of many of the proposed measures on the lower paid, as well as the real greenness of what’s on offer. Members often cite electric vehicles as an example. “We are being skewered down the route of just battery vehicles,” explains Mackinlay.
“But there are a lot of hidden costs to the planet here, not least because of the rare metals involved, which are usually produced in the Democratic Republic of Congo involving unspeakable human misery. I’m not convinced that the mining companies have got the ability to produce the volumes of these things that we need.”

Another member explains that, while the NZSG (not the catchiest of names, it has to be said) is signed up to the principle of climate change being a serious problem caused by humans and in need of a solution from humans, they feel political leaders are making the mistake of assuming that any solution is a good solution.
“They’ve told us the ‘why’ of all this; fine, I’m signed up to net zero,” he says. “But every time someone questions whether the way of getting there is the right one, they just pivot back to the reason we need to do it, which isn’t the same thing.”
Johnson will hear a lot from the NZSG in the coming weeks. But he would be mistaken to think that they are the only constituency within the party that he needs to speak to. MPs in red wall seats are also very anxious. This bunch of MPs is represented by the Northern Research Group, which worries not just about the cost of electric vehicles, green boilers and other measures for their constituents’ homes, but also about the language ministers are using.

A fundamental mistake that the government is making is to assume that talking about “green jobs” is the way to appeal to voters in working-class, formerly Labour seats. That’s not right, according to a number of red wallers.
One says: “We have been trying to relay to them for a while that they need to stop saying ‘green jobs’. Our people think it’s some kind of civil service, public sector thing. We need to make it hi-tech, high-skilled, levelling up.”
Another adds: “We are all pretty supportive of this stuff but if I talk to my constituents about ‘green jobs’, they think of a council employee who goes around wasting taxpayers’ cash. But if I talk about next generation manufacturing, then people get it. We have got to be careful that we are not targeting language to address seats in south-west London. ‘Green’ does not go down well up here because it sounds naff and something that’s being imposed.”

There is also deep frustration with what NRG members see as “greenwashing” or off-shoring Britain’s carbon emissions to other countries. The fight over plans for a new coalmine in West Cumbria is one example and it exploded into a heated debate in the main WhatsApp group for Conservative MPs recently when local MP Mark Jenkinson started to question energy minister, Anne-Marie Trevelyan, about whether ministers really understood what blocking this mine would mean.
Jenkinson’s position, and that of many Tories in manufacturing seats, is that the coal produced by this mine is coking coal, used to make steel, not generate dirty electricity. Britain will use coking coal whatever happens: it’s just a question of whether it imports it from Australia, thereby making another country foot the carbon emissions bill, or is more honest and produces it here at a lower cost to the planet.

Full story
8) Chancellor Rishi Sunak is urged to have a snap Budget to head off 'outlandish' splurge on green policies
 Mail on Sunday, 15 August 2021
Rishi Sunak is being urged to deliver a Budget just days before the COP26 summit to stop Boris Johnson making ‘outlandish’ spending pledges at the huge climate change event.

Government insiders revealed that the Chancellor is being privately advised to tie the Prime Minister’s hands by making a financial statement on the eve of the environmental summit in Glasgow this November.

It would be his second Budget in just seven months after the pandemic forced Mr Sunak to postpone the planned 2020 Autumn Statement to March this year.

But a Government source said last night: ‘Rishi is being advised strongly that a second Budget [this year] would be the best thing to do.

'He needs to lock down everything for COP. We can’t have any outlandish, stupid spending commitments at the summit.’

The revelation comes amid repeated reports of tensions between the PM and his Chancellor over the affordability of Mr Johnson’s plans to spend billions on ‘net zero’ green policies, including persuading people to switch to electric cars and to swap domestic gas boilers for greener heat pumps.

But it also comes after Mr Johnson accused Mr Sunak of a ‘failure of political judgement’ in writing to him to complain about the UK’s chaotic Covid-related travel restrictions – in a letter which was then leaked to the fury of No 10.

And last night, suggestions of a Budget to stymie Mr Johnson sparked a fresh round of infighting between rival camps within the Government.
Full story
9) Tilak Doshi: The IPCC’s climate “code red” versus the real world
Forbes, 14 August 2021
With the dust having barely settled after the UN climate body issued its “code red” climate change report on Monday, the Biden White House urged OPEC and its allies to boost oil output to tackle rising oil prices.
In a “jarring contradiction”, just two days after the UN’s IPCC published its 6th Assessment Report warning of a point of no return in its climate crusade to quickly banish the use of fossil fuels worldwide, US national security adviser Jake Sullivan criticized big oil producers including Saudi Arabia for what he said were “insufficient crude (oil) production levels”. "At a critical moment in the global recovery, this is simply not enough," Sullivan said in a statement.
The Jarring Contradiction of Imploring OPEC While Yielding to Climate Zealots
In British parlance, this is a massive own-goal, while Americans might call it a self-own. From day one in office, President Biden did everything to punish US oil and gas producers in the name of “fighting climate change”. He unleashed a series of executive orders that was meant to reverse his predecessor’s strategy of “energy dominance”.
At a stroke of the presidential pen, the Biden Administration revoked permits for the Keystone XL pipeline to transport oil from Canada to Gulf Coast refiners; suspended oil leasing in Alaska; halted oil and gas leases on federal land; and cynically invoked the Endangered Species Act to block energy resource development on private lands in the West.

Yet, what does President Biden do when US gasoline prices hit their highest levels since 2014? He implores the OPEC+ group of oil producers (which includes Saudi Arabia and its allies as well as Russia) to open the oil taps. Bob McNally, a former George W. Bush administration official and one of Washington’s most influential consultant in energy affairs had this to say: “The Biden administration is under enormous political pressure due to inflation, with galloping gasoline the most publicly visible and vexing.”
Scott Angelle, a former Republican lieutenant governor of Louisiana and secretary of natural resources puts it more bluntly: “The White House doubles down on favoring OPEC production while giving the middle finger to American energy jobs, American energy consumers, climate advantaged American production.”

Liberal commentators try to explain away the inconsistency of the US position. Jason Bordoff, director of the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University and a former energy and climate adviser in the Obama administration, said “I don’t see anything inconsistent in expressing concern over the pace at which OPEC+ is bringing oil back to the market and pursuing strong climate policy for the long-term.” But hard-headed analysts would likely suggest that this sounds perilously like the classic story of the heroin-addict asking for a last fix before cleaning up his act tomorrow.

Model Predictions and Practical Politics
But let’s step back a bit and start from Monday’s UN report. The UN Secretary-General António Guterres said it was nothing less than "a code red for humanity. The alarm bells are deafening, and the evidence is irrefutable". The Biden administration and the EU, primary funders of the UN climate bureaucracy, are in lock step with this message. US climate envoy John Kerry, asserting Greta Thunberg-like that we have “9 years left” to avoid a global climate catastrophe, is now on record stating that the US is considering carbon tariffs on China which is the world’s largest carbon emitter by far. This is despite the risk of intensifying already fraught trading relations. The EU, international leader in all things green, has already stated its intentions of imposing a “carbon border adjustment tax” on energy intensive imports coming into force from January 2026.

Suddenly Worried About Gas Prices, Biden Wants OPEC+ To Produce More Oil

Yet in the practical world of politics, the Biden administration’s dysfunctional posture of imploring Saudi Arabia, Russia and other producers to increase oil production while doing its best to obstruct its home-grown oil and gas industry to satisfy the climate zealots of the Democratic party is not exceptional.
Germany’s ban on fracking while increasingly depending on Russian natural gas imports is par for the course. Perhaps the news out of the UK, poster child for climate ambition, is most revealing. In a “fiery Whatsapp tirade” seen by The Sun, angry Tory MPs expressed their mounting concern over the electoral cost of pursuing green policies just three months before Mr Johnson hosts the COP26 climate change summit in Glasgow.
As the true costs of “net zero (emissions) by 2050” pushed by the UN climate body and allies in the climate industrial complex become increasingly evident to British voters, Prime Minister Boris Johnson may well scale back ambitions for the Glasgow COP26 climate conference in November. According to an ITV report,  the chances of keeping global warming to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels “had now virtually disappeared” and instead a “senior figure advising the UK government” argued that 2C would be a good outcome.

The Rest of the World Speaks
How is this seen in the rest of the world? China – which is ramping up its coal use to meet surging demand — is opposed to committing to the 1.50C goal and objects to any changes to the Paris Agreement which requires little of developing countries for many years hence. China’s chief climate negotiator Xie Zhenhua stated that while "some countries are pushing to rewrite the Paris Agreement… We have to understand the different situations in different countries, and strive to reach a consensus.”
Both China and India, along with other leading developing countries such as Brazil and Indonesia, have argued  consistently that industrialised nations were able to get wealthy before carbon emission reductions were called for and that developing economies cannot be expected to make sacrifices that would put their legitimate aspirations for economic development at risk.
Only eight of the G20 countries have submitted more ambitious climate targets, as they are expected to do every five years under the Paris agreement. China, India, Brazil, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Russia and Australia are among the countries yet to do so.

If one were a betting sort of person, the choice between predicted outcomes represented by two key individuals in the high-stakes game of the alleged “climate crisis” is an eminently fateful one. On the one hand is the hockey stick model-based prediction of an impending climate apocalypse by UN Secretary-General António Guterres on the basis of which he demands countries to commit to the most profound transformation of the global economic system since the Industrial Revolution.
On the other is the recent vow of Saudi Oil Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman. He is investing in expanding his country’s production capacity and he intends to “drill every last (hydrocarbon) molecule” as developing countries — which account for over 80% of the world’s population — aspire for higher standards of living based on cheap and affordable energy. What would you bet on?

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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