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Chris Mooney @chriscmooney
, 12 tweets, 3 min read Read on Twitter
1. Seeing a lot of reaction to my story (with @StevenMufson) on Shell’s new “Sky” scenario report, outlining how the world could actually meet the Paris goals and produce net-zero carbon emissions by 2070 (and, negative emissions after that).…
2. So a few further thoughts on this type of exercise and what we can learn from it.
3. The Shell scenario is consistent with many other scientific studies showing what it takes to really get carbon out of energy in a massive way -- but it walks you through the problem and its assumptions a bit more.
4. Briefly, the scenario: The report says that what you need to achieve Paris is basically a combination of mass electrification of energy use (thus for instance, cars powered by batteries, in turn powered by renewables) and mass carbon storage.
5. The scenario has 10,000 major carbon capture and storage (CCS) facilities at work around the world by the year 2070. So far, CCS, which experts have repeatedly stressed will be necessary to slow and eventually even reverse climate change, has lagged far behind wind and solar.
6. Oh – and there also has to be a tripling of nuclear power, and a total halt to net deforestation. And a lot of other things.
7. One of those -- it sounds like -- is negative emissions are required between 2070 and 2100. The report makes it sound like there is going to have to be BECCS, or bioenergy combined with carbon capture and storage, though it doesn’t have a lot of detail on this.
8. But BECCS is looking increasingly problematic these days as experts start to analyze the scale that would be required and how that would cause massive environmental impacts of other kinds.…
9. Anyways, all this, and the warming of the planet is held to 1.75 degrees C or 3.15 degrees F in this century. In other words, 1.5 C is still out of the picture. And we're still about .75 C warmer than now.
10. In light of this, I'd underscore most the doc's frank caveat that “Systems tranformations are unpredictable and take time.” Something that a number of other energy experts have stressed to me.
11. It adds: “Achieving net-zero emissions in just 50 years leaves no margin for interruption, stalled technologies, delayed deployment, policy indecision, or national back-tracking.”
12. In other words, this is a scenario – just one scenario -- that might halt climate change consistent with the world’s goals. But people who study how energy systems change can't guarantee all the pieces will all come together as planned -- the political ones most of all. /end
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