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We need to leave fossil fuels in the ground

Last November the International Energy Agency (IEA) told us the total carbon in all the known fossil fuel reserves is 2860 Gt CO2. To stay below 2°C only one quarter of this can be used before 2050. If we can't burn what what we've got then why use controversial and dangerous methods to find more. This shows the search for extreme energy is pointless.

The first tool we need is divestment from fossil fuels. That is the withdrawal of support by big investors such as university endowments, pension funds, cities and eventually countries. Already the weighty player the Rockerfellers have withdrawn funds from fossil fuel projects. That inspired Glasgow University to follow suit and the Swedish company is Vattenfall withdrawing from it's coal assets from Germany. This is also being considered by the Norwegian government. This method needs to be encouraged, it has been successful in the campaign against tobacco companies and the fight against apartheid in South Africa The move to divest from fossil fuels is now bigger than the anti aparteid divestment. It is beginning to have an effect on fossil fuels. Hopefully withdrawal of funds in fossil fuels will lead to greater investment in renewable power.


How can we possibly do that without a crash landing?


Tradable Energy Quotas (TEQs) are a new form of carbon trading that brings the problem of global warming down to the individual. This tool allocates a yearly allowance of TEQs to each citizen. The remaining TEQs would be auctioned to industry. They will be used up every time you buy energy i.e petrol or non renewable electricity. The number of TEQs would be reduced every year thus reducing fossil fuel . It will also ensure that when energy becomes in short supply it is shared out fairly.

A well managed TEQ scheme will help to give the descent from fossil fuels a softer landing.