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Historical analysis shows that the proportion of coal is unprecedented, reducing the gas power needed to limit climate change to 1.5 ° C.

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To limit climate change to the 1.5 ° C target set by the Paris Climate Agreement, coal and gas electricity usage must be reduced at unprecedented rates in any major power. This is a show from 1960 to 2018.In addition, the findings published in the journal on October 22 One earthSuggests that the most rapid historical case of fossil fuel depletion occurred when oil was replaced by coal, gas, or nuclear power in response to the energy security threats of the 1970s and 1980s. doing.


Decarbonization energy The sector is a particularly important strategy for achieving the goal of zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. This is necessary to prevent the global average temperature of this century from exceeding 1.5 ° C. However, few studies have investigated the historical precedent of such a sudden and radical transition. In particular, the decline of carbon-intensive technologies is due to the spread of more environmentally friendly technologies.

“This is the first study to systematically analyze historical cases of reduced fossil fuel use worldwide over the last 60 years,” said Jessica Jewell, an associate professor of energy transition at the University of Chalmers in Sweden. I am. The University of Bergen, Norway, and the corresponding author of the study. “Previous studies have looked at the entire world, but have not found such cases, because fossil fuel use is constantly increasing at the global level over time.”

“We also studied recent political pledges to phase out altogether. coal Electricity created by about 30 countries as part of the Powering Past Coal Alliance. “We found that these promises weren’t aimed at coal depletion faster than historically happened, in other words, they are planning most of their normal operations,” Jewel said. Added.

Jewel and her colleague, Chalmers postdoc researcher Vadim Vinichenko, Austria and Lund, to investigate whether the period of historic fossil fuel depletion is similar to the scenario needed to reach Paris’ goals. Aleh Cherp, a professor at Central European University, found that coal, oil, or natural gas use rapidly exceeded 5% in 10 years within samples from 105 countries between 1960 and 2018. We have identified 147 episodes that have decreased.Rapid decline of Use of fossil fuels Historically limited to small countries such as Denmark, such cases have little to do with climate scenarios where continental regions are expected to decline.

Jewell et al. Focused on the case of fast fossil fuel decline in large countries. This represents significant technological change and policy effort, Energy sectorThe type of energy that fossil fuels have replaced, increasing and decreasing electricity demand. They compare these cases of past fossil fuel depletion with climate mitigation scenarios using a tool called the “feasibility space” that identifies the combination of conditions that enable climate change measures to be implemented in specific situations. Did.

“I was surprised to learn that the use of some fossil fuels, especially oil, actually declined very rapidly in the 1970s and 1980s in other developed countries such as Western Europe and Japan,” says Jewel. .. “This is usually not a period associated with the energy transition, but we have come to believe that we can draw some important lessons from it.” The rapid decline of fossils has historically been We needed competing technological advances, strong motivations to change energy systems (such as avoiding energy security threats), and effective government agencies to make the necessary changes.

“We weren’t too surprised at how quickly coal use would have to decline in the future to reach our climate goals, but we were still somewhat impressed,” she added, adding that all fossils. Of the fuels, coal will need to decline most rapidly, he said. Climate targets will be met, especially in Asia and the OECD region, where coal use is concentrated.

Approximately half of the scenarios compatible with the IPCC 1.5 ° C assume coal depletion in Asia faster than any of these cases. The remaining scenarios, and many of the coal and gas depletion scenarios in other regions, set a precedent for oil being replaced by coal, gas, or nuclear power in response to energy security threats in the small electricity market. There is only. To reach the 1.5 ° C goal, we need to find a fossil mechanism fuel A decline that goes far beyond historical experience and current pledges.

The authors found that almost all scenarios of Asian coal depletion in line with the goals of the Paris Agreement have historically unprecedented or rare precedents. More than half of the scenarios for coal depletion in OECD countries and more than half of the gas usage reduction scenarios in reform economies, the Middle East, or Africa have unprecedented or rare precedents.

“This shows both the big challenges of spotting such things. Rapid decline We need to learn from the historical lessons of the rise in fossil fuels and the nationwide rapid decline, “said Jewel.


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For more information:
Jessica Jewel, a historical precedent and feasibility for the rapid reduction of coal and gas required for the 1.5 ° C target, One earth (2021). DOI: 10.1016 / j.oneear.2021.09.012.. www.cell.com/one-earth/fulltex… 2590-3322 (21) 00534-0

Quote: Historical analysis shows no precedent for coal proportions, and the reduction in gas power needed to limit climate change to 1.5C (2021, 22 October) is https: //phys.org/ Obtained from news / 2021-10-historical- on October 22, 2021. Analysis-coal-gas-power.html

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Historical analysis shows that the proportion of coal is unprecedented, reducing the gas power needed to limit climate change to 1.5 ° C.

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