Extreme wealth invests in big global warming

Date published: 2019-04-02

Market Forces published its January 2019 update report on the investments of Australian banks into fossil fuel expansions. The big banks promised to reduce investments in developing new fossil fuel reserves, since at least two thirds of existing reserves need to be left in the ground to meet Paris agreement climate targets of 2015. They have still managed to throw more billions at investment in new stranded fossil fuel sources which must not be burned.

It is going to take time to stop the growth of our fossil-fueled powered global economic behemoth, and bring down greenhouse gas emissions.  Global growth is slowly becoming enfeebled, despite best efforts at growth, as new fossil fuel investments in oil and gas fail to give the same bang for buck as they once did. New "discoveries" have smaller reserves, lower quality product, and cost more to extract. However they surely compound our mounting global climate risks, as we expend more total energy to bring them to market. This was a seriously missing item of inquiry at the recent Australian Royal Commission into Banks.

Last year saw the big four lend to dozens of climate-wrecking projects and companies despite their climate commitments.

Our money-printing and debt creation systems of Australian banks continue to lend to various corporations and the rich people behind them, for new oil and gas fields, anywhere in the world. There is a lot of money that isn't being invested as fast as possible in low-carbon, sustainable, renewable energy. Debt creation far out-paces the numbers of available and ethical investments with positive returns.

Link to PDF of Market Forces Report - https://www.marketforces.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/2018-Banks-two-degree-scorecard.pdf

In Australia, the National Electricity Market has not kept with the project demand for renewable energy grid connections. Projects are being approved without the capacity and timetable to connect them. Blame our climate leaders/wreckers creating the "Stop, Go, Stop" policy lurching of Australian Governments, toxic to renewable energy investment. We needed a rational, engineered long term Climate and Energy Plan, which could have evenly spaced out the required build-up and budgets of grid connections and transmission capacity. Grid energy systems are very complex and expensive, and need the sort of long-term planning, that has disappeared entirely from Australian government thinking. The IPPC has indicated the sorts of changes necessary in planning and investment, on an average global trend, in its 2018 report. The graphic below was found on inside climate news, although the article writer seemed to suggest it was already happening. Most certainly not yet.  https://insideclimatenews.org/news/11102018/ipcc-clean-energy-transformation-cost-trillion-climate-change-global-warming-renewable-coal-fossil-fuels.

Energy and Climate Planning in Australia is now made on a project by project basis, without considering the impacts of all changes acting together. "Direct Action" has failed to bring about any reduction in Australian greenhouse gas emissions. Why would the coalition ever think they need electricity grid upgrades, when climate change denial allows them to think they can plonk a great big new big coal-power station any time and place they like?

Australia's Conservative government simpletons can tolerate only one criteria on energy and climate change policy. They don't want to have anything complicated or expensive, that might raise extraction costs for the business or mining investors in Australian resources. They have opposed investments in renewable energy that will require major capacity and connection upgrades to electricity grids, and oppose all restraints for coal and gas extractors and exporters. 

A lack of restraints for coal and gas extraction and export is also the major ALP policy for climate change.

Blame Tony Abbott. He started his first term of government by de-funding anything with the words "Climate Change" on it. His party has fiddled while Australian burns. Renewable energy corporations waiting to be grid connected have gone bankrupt. Australian Government has wasted investor money, jobs and the carbon budget left for a transition to a low-carbon economy. Blame the previous Minister for both Climate and Energy in the out-going government, now its deputy PM. Both coalition 3-year terms have been a waste of time for climate mitigation. The Coalition parties are a bunch of monkeys throwing coal around while impacts of climate chaos on ordinary Australians grows with drought, bush-fires and extreme weather. 

It is hard to be sure of the stability of investment trends of Australian banks, year to year. New big projects are money lumpy, and so just a few projects more or less in a year can make a big difference. In its 2018 report on fossil fuel investment by Australian banks, there was another spurt of renewable energy investment, as another "target" had started up investment again. Overall investment in new Coal, Gas and Oil production has increased. During 2018 Westpac more than doubled its yearly investment in new coal mining. Investment in local coal-powered electricity generation has dropped, but we still wait for renewable energy sources to get the connections and grid infrastructure they need.

The connections between extreme wealth and investing in big global warming are clear. The very rich are throwing the biggest money around to kill us all, and big COG parties in Australia are bending backwards to help them.

From the Market Forces Report. All new investments are future climate kills.

Michael Rynn
The connections between extreme wealth and investing in big global warming are clear. The very rich are throwing their money around to kill us all.
Extreme wealth invests in big global warming.
Extreme wealth invests in big global warming