- 1 #4
- 1.1 „RWE is off“
- 1.2 EEG amendmend violates Paris Treaty
- 1.3 Achieving climate justice means overcoming patriarchal power structures
- 1.3.1 Step 1: h3. Schritt 1: Analyze gender aspects
- 1.3.2 Step 2: Start changes
- 1.3.3 Step 3: Break thought patterns
- 1.4 Exxon subpoenas 350.org / An Outlook onto US politics 2017
- 1.5 Energy transition in EU politics?
- 1.6 Solidary prosumption
- 1.7 What We Want
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During preparations for Ende Gelände in east germany in january the german parliament read on a modifiaction of the EEG. In June it has been signed limiting renewables including a scrappage bonus for RWE » page 2
This violates the COP21 contract in Paris. What does this mean regarding climate justice? » page 3 +4
The fight for climate justice needs to involve a political change to overcome patriarchic structures. » page 6
Subpoena against 350.org: Exxon‘s influence on US congress is high, assumingly also after elections in november » page 8
Peace politics serve climate protection. EU however stays on fossils. » Seite 10
„Prosumption“ overcomes the division of production and consumption as practical practical post-growth economy: a diverse movement with alternative living and economics claiming deindustrialization and deglobalization. Trying an utopia » Seite 11
What we want and how to get there. Starting a debate » page 12
RWE keeps NRW in stranglehold and pressures to evict the meadow camp protecting the Hambacher Forest we.riseup.net/ocnyb
„RWE is off“¶
… was the title of the german newspaper FAZ telling: „Germany‘s biggest energy supplyer suffers the danger of bankrupcy. The Brexit could give it the rest.“ Only 10 out of 45 billion euro loyalties are backed up. RWE needs supported claimed NRW economic minister Garret Duin in 2015. In June the german government signed a modification to the EEG (law on renewable energies) granting 1.5 billion for keeping old lignite power plants in reserve although they need 11 days to start. We neither need lignite nor such government.
Head of the IG BCE (workers union for mining chemistry and energy) Vassiladis painted images of two weeks of blackouts in the winter and the danger regions breaking apart in case of an fast exit from lignite. Even the „high-efficience industrial base“ Germany might be in danger: „We will fight for an Energiewende with reason.“ Translation of this limiting renewables to 40% and continuing electricity from lignite.
Energy intense companies with more than 17% turnover spent on electricity are freed from their EEG share (~14..19ct/KWh). This gives no motivation to save electricity. According to VET (exchange body for emission rights) 158.7 mio emission rights have been spread for free to energy-intense companies in 2015, with 57% for aviation. ICAO recently published plans to transform to biofuels for aviation from 2020 on to replace carbon emissions of 450 mio tons which becoming „climate neutral“. Emissions in Gernamy sum up to 303 Mt, with RWE at 109 (150 including UK) and E.ON (120). „Contributing only 2.3% to world emissions it doesn‘t matter if we reach some set number a bit earlier or later.“, Vassilliadis added.
Supplyer for the car industry SMP was affected by the rush for climate protection in 2015 and discovering the potentiol of saving energy by „covering acid beds during halts“ and optimizations of the cooling process of about 1.9 GWh a year. „According to experiences of the private energy counselor EnergyAgentur.NRW in nearly every company depending on branch and size you find saving potials of about 4 to 30%. For Engines example 20% can be saved accounting for 132 TWH in Germany, or providing warmth with 20% – 265 TWh.“, Lothar Schneider, head of EnergieAgentur.NRW. According to Fraunhofer ISI 548 TWh can be saved in companies per year. In 2015 the gross electricity consumption for germany was 608 TWh. With 1 800 PJ electricity accounts for only a fifth of germany‘s prime energy consumption after oil (36%) and gas (25%).
EEG amendmend violates Paris Treaty¶
Fossil electricity production is intended to be kept until 2025 according to the amemndment to EEG (law on renewable nergies) as of June 2016.
The share of fosisil energy at minimum stays the same. This heavily limits reasonable climate protection. Nuclear power is replaced until 2022. This either means from 2022 to 2025 there are no new renewables or fossil energy will grow until 2022.
Laws by the federal government are one thing, reality is different. The goal for 1.5 degrees in the Paris Treaty enforces a phase out from lignite until 2025 (New Climate Institute). Keeping that frame in five years the 1.5 goal is broken (Wagner and Hankamer; Carbon Brief). The treaty would be violated: the government articulates to push the climate significantly over 1.5°. Also law backed aims for 2050 are failed (Nitsch) and with it the 2 degrees goal for which the year 2050 is questionable (Carbon Brief). While the government ignores climate change the first victims already arrived here or are drown in the Mediterranean sea: before the escalation of the syrian war the region faced the biggest drought since a century. The connection between climate change and syrian war is scientifically accepted (Kelley). The UN estimates the number of climate refugees to rise up to 250 millions until 2050 (Tenbrock) focusing the middle east.
Energy Transition and Climate Justice¶
Climate Change is caused mainly by the industrialized countries – but threatens people in so called developing or emerging countries the most. On the one hand, because of their geographical position. E.g. droughts are not (yet) a common threat in Europe, but one of the causes for the Syrian War was the most severe drought in the last 100 years. On the other hand, they have less money, technology etc. to protect themselves from the effects of climate change. If we compare the distribution of wealth on a global scale, the wealthiest 10 % of mankind emit 50 % of CO2-Emissions, while the poorer half of mankind only emits 10 %.
The United Nations estimate a total of 250 million additional refugees caused by climate change until 2050. This equals five times the number of total refugees worldwide in 2016 – on the highest peak since World War 2. Even if we keep the rise in temperature shortly below 2 °C, 500 million people are estimated to suffer from shortages in water supply due to climate change (Die Welt 2013).
Because of this, we are obliged to limit global warming to 1.5 °C. The carbon budget, that is left, if we aim for 1.5 °C, is 5 to 9 times the Emissions of the year 2015 – 20 to 27 times for 2 °C. (Carbon Brief 2016). The problem gets more profound by a fundamental conflict between economic growth and ecological limits. The climate movement thus faces a twofold challenge: reorganizing economy extremely quickly on the one hand, fighting for system change on the other. Erosion of soils, finiteness of resources or the destruction of whole ecosystems: there are plenty of ecological risks that will become an existential threat to human society at some point. Furthermore, they usually are interlinked to each other or common causes.
1.5 °C – An Energy Transition Scenario for Germany
To reach our climate goals, although it is key to decarbonize electricity supply, we furthermore have to stop emissions for the generation of heat/ cooling, as well as emissions from traffic. In achieving this, these sectors are dependent on the generation of electricity by renewable energy sources.1 In German, this is called „Sektorkopplung“ which roughly translates to inter-sectoral coupling. The HTW Berlin recently published a scenario according to the 1.5 °C- Goal for all 3 sectors (HTW 2016). These sectors, which account to 83 % of greenhouse gases, must have zero emissions globally until 2040. Additionally, emissions have to be reduced quickly, otherwise 2040 would not be enough. Accordingly, the study points to milestones, that have to be reached on the way. It is worth mentioning, that the New Climate Institute (NCI) conducted a similar study, which points to even more ambitious milestones, denoted in brackets (New Climate Institute 2016).
Coal Power Plants emit a share of 38.2 % of emissions by electricity generation (32.5 % of total emissions).2 From a technical point of view, they are also easiest and quickest to replace. Accordingly, coal is to be phased out until 2030 (NCI:2025).
Without applying efficient technologies, Energy transition in the sectors Heat and Traffic would lead to a rise in electricity demand from 628 TWh to 3000 TWh per year. The study thus advocates certain measures, which would limit the rise in demand to 1320 TWh.3 Heat is supposed to be provided by heat pumps mainly, since gas thermal value equipment, as well as combined heat and power generation using hydrogen is too inefficient. Out of efficiency reasons, traffic uses batteries instead of hydrogen (methanized, or not), with the exception of planes and ships, where this is not possible. Biofuel production does not increase, existing production shifts to the supply of ships and planes (complemented by hydrogen-based Power2Liquid). Important highways are to be equipped with overhead lines, to enable trucks to regain power, while driving. By renovating buildings, energy demand is supposed to decrease by 30-50 % until 2040. As this takes time, it has to start soon. The same applies to cars, so new cars based on burning fuels are to be forbidden starting in 2025, or 2030 at the latest (NCI: 2025).4
To be cost-efficient, electricity supply is to be based on Solar and Wind Onshore. They currently cost 9 ct/KWh, comparable to new fossil plants (7-11 ct/KWh). On average, Solar is to expand by 15 GW, Wind Onshore by 6.3 GW and Wind Offshore by 2.9 GW per year until 2040, while Bioenergy will stay the same, continually upgraded to better balance out fluctuations of Wind and Solar Power. This is three to six times as much, as planned by the joint government of social democrats and conservatives (the law is called EEG 2017). Additionally, the scenario calculates Power2Liquid-Imports equivalent to 137 TWh from less densely populated or deserted areas (1/10 of the advocated inland electricity production).
Achieving climate justice means overcoming patriarchal power structures¶
Lisa Göldner (GenderCC), Lara Eckstein (Ende Gelände)
When we say: Climate change is a societal problem, when we say: Capitalism is the root cause of dangerous global warming, when we say: We do not simply want to stop climate change, we want to achieve real climate justice – then two challenges arise: 1. We need to relentlessly analyze the existing power structures. 2. We need to work actively against them.
In order to develop just responses to climate change, three questions are most important: Who are the major producers of greenhouse gas emissions? Who are those most affected by the impacts of climate change? And whose interests are considered in the creation of climate policies? Important factors to be addressed in the context are background, income, age – and gender.
Step 1: h3. Schritt 1: Analyze gender aspects¶
The way we live, consume and move around is determined by gender-specific privileges and socially constructed gender roles. Men therefore tend to have a bigger ecological footprint than women: They consume more electricity and more fuel, eat more meat and fly more often.1 Ironically, existing power structures and gender roles also make women more vulnerable to the impacts of climate change: They carry most of the burden of extra care work deriving from droughts or illnesses; they are more likely to experience violence and harassment when social order collapses in times of natural disasters; and they are more likely to be left behind when climate-induced migration becomes unavoidable.
It would therefore be wrong to say “Let’s stop climate change first and focus on gender equality later.” The opposite is true: The problem of climate change can only be solved if we strive for gender justice – and this is true all around the world, as gender-specific inequalities also exist in so-called “developed countries”.
Decision-making in climate politics – for mitigation as well as adaptation – is dominated by men at all levels. 18% of the delegates negotiating the Paris Agreement in Paris 2015 were women. The participation of women, of course, is no guarantee for gender equality. Direct countermeasures are needed to overcome existing patriarchal power structures; and unless they are actively implemented, gender roles are reproduced and existing inequalities intensified.
Step 2: Start changes¶
First of all, it is important to analyze and uncover the relevant gender aspects in climate policies. One example of how this can be done is the project GUCCI – Gender into Urban Climate Change Initiative, initiated by GenderCC – Women for Climate Justice e.V. and financed by the German International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the German Ministry of Environment. Running for three years, the project aims to develop practical approaches for the implementation of gender aspects into climate policies. Six megacities have been selected as project sites: Delhi and Mumbai in India, Jakarta and Makassar in Indonesia and Johannesburg and Tschwane in South Africa.
In urban areas, the challenges for gender-just climate policies accumulate: the bulk of global greenhouse gas emissions are produced in cities, and those who live in poverty, in densely populated areas with limited access to drinking water, sewage treatment and green spaces are the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. At the same time, climate policies for mitigation and adaptation at the local level bear the potential to directly address social injustices if developed and implemented appropriately.
“Our goal is to support women and civil society initiatives to systematically analyze local climate politics to uncover relevant gender aspects, and to actively engage in decision-making processes”, GenderCC’s project coordinator Kate Cahoon explains. Two workshops have already taken place in Johannesburg and Makassar, in which women jointly developed ideas and strategies for working together with their local governments, for implementing their own projects and participate actively in decision-making at the local level. “We want to initiate a broad, powerful movement of women who no longer accept being overlooked in climate policy-making. We suffer the most from the impacts. Now we want to finally make our voices heard”, emphasizes Dorah Marema, director of GenderCC South Africa.
In the long run, the project partners will develop common strategies to make local climate politics more inclusive, more just and more sustainable. The aim is to make cities not only more resilient to the impacts of climate change, but also more livable for all their inhabitants. The experiences best practices can help mainstreaming gender equality into national and international climate politics – and to finally initiate fundamental changes.
Step 3: Break thought patterns¶
Because if we want to establish climate justice, we need a profound problem analysis. When we strive to relentlessly analyze existing power structures and to actively address them, we need to overcome patriarchal power structures in our behavior and our way of thinking. We need to understand that gender inequalities are not the result of climate change (and hence a problem primarily in regions most affected by climate change), but one of its root causes – which means that achieving gender justice is a necessary prerequisite for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The capitalistic system that is fueling climate change is based on three pillars: exploitation of natural resources, (post-)colonial oppression of the Global South and the oppression of women and all those who do not comply with the hetero-normative matrix of masculinity. The understanding of mankind as conqueror and commander not only forms the basis of capitalism; it also causes climate change and therefore poses an existential threat to all of us. This is why we need to come up with alternatives that do not merely question the dogma of growth, but end any form of oppression.
The task seems tremendous; but it can also be understood as a unique opportunity for a fundamental System Change towards the protection of our natural resources and livelihoods, the safeguarding of a good life for future generations, and for more social justice – between genders and between all people around the world.
Exxon subpoenas 350.org / An Outlook onto US politics 2017¶
Every summer fire affect great forest areas in California. Exxon is taken responsible by many for knowing about their effects on the climate and instead informing the public they used millions of dollars distributing lies, downplaying the fossil industry and denying reasons for climate change and corrupting politicians. 350.org, a NGO for climate protection issued the campaign „ExxonKniew“ and together with 7 other NGOs and state lawyers of New York and Massachusetts received subpoenas by the US congress to deliver emails and documents. 350.org‘s Jamie Henn takes this as a violation of the free speech and will not deliver but use the opportunity to ask the congress publicly about not investigating Exxon‘s climate denial, but instead going against their critics.
Congress is governed by big money not just since yesterday. It disables people to use parliaments for their interests. The movie „Exxon Brothers Exposed“ shows the influence of a family grown rich building refineries for Stalin, Hitler and in USA and how they used money to corrupt politicians. They founded a system named ALEC that enables companies to issue coordinated campaigns for laws in all US states saving a lot of money. For example they campaigned to reduce and obstruct minimal wage, disarm environmental regulations and tax cuts for high incomes.
Voting for any of the two big parties needs to know to support this inhuman system. Some months Bernie Sanders spread hope with a crowdfunded campaign for presidency. In the US no law will happen without the support of the fossil industry he said. If science is right, following Naomi, Klein it is necessary to break their rules to save life on earth.
In November 2016 the US elect a successor for Barrack Obama. While it is wrong to concentrate on leaders it could deliver insights regarding climate justice. On the side of the democrats in June socialist Bernie Sanders gave up and endorsed Hilary Clinton who is seen a supporter of Wall Street and NATO interventions in the middle east1.
Mostly supported by coastal states the green party sends the agnostic medic Jill Stein5. When she tried to join a TV debate between Obama and Romney she was arrested sitting on the pavement with the official reason of disturbing traffic6. Her positions are similar to those of Sanders7. She promotes a „green new deal“ (subventions for „green“ jobs) financed with a 40% military cut8. She wants to overcome student debt what she calls a fallback to the early post of the USA making students to „indentured servants“. Next she aims for publicly funded elections, public banks, transformation to 100% renewables by 2030, which overcomes wars and the „dangerously blown-up“ unnecessary military budget and is mandatory to prevent a sea level rise of 15 metes9. Contrary to Hilary Clinton she sees herself as feminist10.
When Sanders gave up for Clinton on July 15th she criticized him not answering invitations to speak publicly for the green party. The democrats had sabotaged him which shows there is no way for a revolutionist inside a counter-revolutionary party. It could be seen for Dennis Kucinich and Jesse Jackson, that the democrats show a left image but stand on the side of companies and military („fake left, but go right“)11. The party can‘t repair political system which would be necessary to overcome the „rigged system“ of racist justice, health care and the support for the fossil industry. She calls the inspired by Sanders 60% voting neither Democrats nor Republicans to a political revolution in the sense of Occupy Wall Street, the Arabic Spring and the Black Lives Matter movement, quoting Frederick Douglass „Power concedes nothing without a demand.“12
Looking forward to 2017 no peacefully politic can be expected from the US. Climate change is ignored (Clinton)13 or denied (Trump)14, both supporting deficit fracking. Reason for us rattle the parliament from outside.
Energy transition in EU politics?¶
Since the cold war national states became global lobbyists on the run for raw materials. In light of aspected dominance on resources on neighbouring continents EU foreign politics gives no peaceful image. Eager activities of their NATO members provide to climate change.
Also not helpful regarding emissions is prospecting eastern european and asian gas fields among others to become more independent from Gazpom. EU foreign politics subordinates to this principle supporting worldwide (military) campaigns to secure access to resources.
At the end of July the EU accepted a proposal about 1.8 billion Euro for a 80 km Pipeline from Estonia to Finland, 5.3 billion at all until 2020. Therefor no exit from fossils.
Peace politics support effective climate protection. Since years the Informationsstelle Militarisierung (information on militarization) publishes against military education by the Bundeswehr at schools and more and more aggressive endeavors undertaken by the NATO. Hardly these voice can be head in mainstream media and public debate. The Bundeswehr is being pushed up with jets emitting in a hour more than you and me in a year.
The global run on resources can only be stopped with a radical shift away from industrial mass production. These claims by Nico Peach depend on a deglobalized trend for prosumption. This structural change started already in many cities. It connects anticapitalist methods living without money with the transition town movement beeing on of the most active fields of social change. Combing „superfluid“ people and well-off LOHAS holds some potential, although militarist politics only can be stopped by a strong peace movement.
Relaxing diplomacy needs to become to paradigm of foreign policy again, also in the hope to neutralize motivation for assaultss. However the rise of armed attacks share some cause with violent media education. Sustainable peace education should start in the early age.
„Green growth“, the „green new deal“ and „sustainability“ mostly focuses to inibit negative factors, to make them more invisible, but with the same basic logic of production, consume and export. Every saving underlies capitalistic exploitation, certified „climate neutral“ it is exchanged with damaging processes like fossil energy production. A dangerous trap of glooming security without stopping destruction abroad.
Reducing is not enough, eco-efficiency not necessarily good and green technology doesn‘t save emission or adds consume via rebound effects.
The alternative is a fundamental shift towards the perspective not to subordinate one‘s lifestyle to capitalist principles and to bind energy consumption to local production.
This is a technical utopia without sacrifice: People in one street sharing a compost heating, producing methane from sewage, which is cleansened in a plant filtration system using leftovers after composting on surrounding fields. Methan is stored and used for cooking and during cold times to support the compost heating with a energy efficient combustion using produced warmth for heating common areas. Produced humus finds its way to the rooftop gardens or cycles back to the permaculture fields. As food production does not need heavy machines, trees are growing on among smaller fields strengthening the stability and supplying the surface with biomass.
Cooperative production areas are cleanly integrated in to the social nexus as modern technical processes strictly separate cycles of industrial material from biological metabilsm.
The architecture of this „social factory“ (german Sozial-Fabrik) mimics an alongated hill with an accessable rooftop with windows, elevated beets and hedge labyrinths, providing a place for nutrious recreating on top and a long light road with a partly transparent rounded ceiling. In separated production areas the inhabitants create necessary goods and bring it to the storage or distribution areas (formerly know as supermarktes). In the center a track is surrounded by sitting furniture and green areas with the character of a market place. At all a shopping mall developed to a subsistence center.
The side walls provide access to group offices, common areas like kitchens, children‘s rooms for playing and learning. The living areas continue to surrounding gardens at the outer edges. Self-narrative Scientific work produces publications and lectures at connected habitats providing to common finances. Mostly however the exchange with other regions is based on trust and does not rely on direct exchange or payments. Energy intense export orientation has been overcome focusing local needs as a main characteristic.
What We Want¶
States are suppressong system and there valid reason to try to superseed them. But it it would be counterproductive to leave them to corporations and political rulers. Politics should be Politics should be accompanied by diverse non-parliamentary movements to use it as instrument to achieve our goals. It is not enough to limit reductions. Only many decetral project to bind carbon can bring down athmospheric carbon dioxide down from currently 406 below 350 ppm to reverse climate change.
Politics will only follow this when we force it to do so. We need laws, to control companies that are unwilling to limit their emissions. Big consumers must not be freed from their EEG shares. The ETS share approaches climate change in a wrong way and does not deliver the necessary motivation to limit emissions. Giving emisson rights to big consumers like the aviation industry show the corruption regarding the billion-industy. Fossil jobs are not worth more than those of other sectors but less as they promote unscrupousity of workers and undermine efforts for climate responsibility.
Planting trees is not wrong, the opposite is true, but it is wrong to use it for greenwashing of emissions. Terms like „climate-neutral“ are misleading if they are based on financial transfer.. It‘s not enough, the equivalent them 1:1. Energy transition is a dangerous lie because it boosts growth and resource consumption. Decentral electricity production using produced warmth for example with methane from sewage should be subsidized.
The price for emission rights needs to grow over 50 Euro to make active humus production financially attractive. Local food production on (community) permaculture fields is the most effective way to bind carbon and free countries of the global south to export their food to us. To protect fields from erosion from heavy rains they need stability from roots. Agroforestry and hedge cultures are the right answer to fertilizer addicted monocultures managed with heavy machines. Vegetated ponds capture further carbon dioxide. Such projects should be encouraged.
Fighting for climate justice we can lend our voice in media and politics to those who suffer most from industrial climate change. We should make their interests to ours and support them with practical projects making a change.
We all can calculate and limit our ecological footprint and build up projects to sustainably bind carbon.