BP Report: Carbon emissions in the energy industry went up in 2018

“The longer carbon emissions continue to rise, the harder and more costly will be the necessary eventual adjustment to net-zero carbon emissions.” Bob Dudley, CEO, BP

Despite a 14.5% growth in the renewables industry, the equivalent of an additional 400 million combustion engine cars was emitted last year.

The Guardian reports the news that carbon emissions from the energy industry rose in 2018. In an ironic twist – if you like your irony sandwiched between bad news – emissions have risen as society struggles to deal with unusual and unexpected temperature fluctuations brought about by climate change. much of the rise was located in China, India and the USA. The stats, which feature in a recent BP report, are a reminder that we don’t talk often enough about the unexpected consequences of the climate crisis.

Global temperature fluctuations mean far more than whether or not we are able to stay warm or cool. They threaten the very fabric that societies are based on. Most major cities are near ports: be they attached to rivers or sea, flooding is a clear and present danger. Most crop growth depends on pollinators – their struggle isn’t necessarily a direct result of climate change as much as it is pesticides but they should act as a reminder about the importance of balance within the eco system.

Last time I checked most major pension funds were invested in polluting industry and/or infrastructure at risk from floods. You can invest in solar and wind power but how stable are those projects in a flooding scenario? What about your house?

We cannot afford to let emissions go up. Never mind climate change, who amongst us wants to continue to breathe in the toxic air which results from our propensity to burn stuff?

One of the report’s authors, BPs chief economist, Spencer Dale has this to say, “At a time when society is increasingly concerned about climate change and the need for action energy demand and emissions are growing at their fastest rate for years.”

And BPs chief executive, Bob Dudley has this timely warning, “The longer carbon emissions continue to rise, the harder and more costly will be the necessary eventual adjustment to net-zero carbon emissions.”

Think about it. When oil giants are warning you about climate change, something has gone wrong. BP calls for growth in natural gas, I remain unconvinced since they have vast reserves and a switch from coal to gas would suit them.


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