DAY 11: Let’s Build a House

A new draft agreement was released this morning, with delegates given only two and a half hours to read it before they had to be on form and ready to debate its contents. Options are being whittled away, pages are being dropped, and the all-important language feels as impenetrable as ever.

So, beyond the high-level talk of degrees and obligations, what does this agreement actually mean?

Picture the Paris Agreement as a large house, due to be built in 2020. The diplomats and governments are the architects, the agreement text is the blueprint, and ‘pre-2020 ambition’ is the plan we’ll use to actually physically build the house over the next five years.

The debates taking place are about everything from the type of wood, to the shape of the bathroom, to which country will do the most physical building – and if we don’t figure out how to build this house, we will have nowhere to live.

Each draft that gets presented is another, more refined blueprint – but, while some bits of the blueprint are agreed upon enough to be drawn on in pen, the majority is still in pencil (bracketed); and often, there is more than one option for how each room will look.

President of COP21 Laurent Fabius, when presenting the text, considered differentiation, finance, and ambition to be the main unresolved options. Let’s break that down.

Differentiation is the debate that underpins who will be responsible for doing the bulk of the leg work for solving the climate crisis. It’s largely a question of how much responsibility wealthy developed countries should take, versus developing countries.

Its resolution will determine who is responsible for financing the world’s transition away from fossil fuels, funding adaptation initiatives to prepare countries for climate change, and assisting countries who are already feeling the effects. Determining who should take responsibility isn’t easy – as it relies on a messy combination of past grievances, historical responsibility, and development potential.

When we take it back to the house, differentiation alludes to how we decide who is going to do the hard labour of building the house – will the job be equally distributed amongst countries? Or should developed countries, for whom it is considerably easier to build, bear the most burden? Developing countries maintain that it is more difficult for them to labour over the house, while developed countries believe everyone has the same part to play.

Finance is fairly obvious – who will pay to fix the world.

This includes how we pay for various aspects of the agreement, including adaptation and loss and damage. The Green Climate Fund is the most obvious example, and countries have a goal committing a total of USD$100b every year from 2020.

When we look at our COP21 house, finance asks who will pay for the building materials. If we want a house that is stable and long-lasting, developed countries (i.e. the ones who can afford it) need to not skimp on the materials.

Finally, there’s ambition – how big, how large, and how grand will our house be? Will it be a feat of architecture, spanning acres, with solid foundations and the ability to renovate every five years (in climate-speak, that’s the ‘ratchet up mechanism’, referring to countries increasing their climate target)? Or will it be small, dingy, unstable, and stuck with the plans we’ve got now (meaning our climate targets will be set in stone)?

New Zealand, unfortunately, is pushing for the smallest, structurally weakest house we can possibly get – in fact, it’s proposing that countries don’t even have to build a house (they’re pushing for a non-binding agreement), and has absolutely no plan for how New Zealand will build their part of it. While we’ve finally conceded that the agreement must have a goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees, we’re doing absolutely nothing to help keep the world below this limit.

Often, there’s the perception that any house is a good house – but that simply isn’t true, and the same can be said of the agreement. We don’t just want an agreement, with the same failures and inadequacies that we saw at Copenhagen, we want an agreement that is strong, binding, and truly reflective of the disparities between who has caused climate change and who will feel its effects.

As we move into the final days of the negotiations, the Green Party is asking the Government to step up from rhetoric to real action. Commit to a domestic plan, advocate for an early review of climate targets, and stop kicking domestic emission cuts down the road by trading on dodgy carbon credits.

Want more info? Take a look at this overview from Carbon Brief, this outline of the 6 White-Haired men deciding our future, this Buzzfeed look at Fossil of the Day, this update-filled Twitter account, and this graph-filled website that analyses the text.

22 Comments Posted

  1. Thanks for links John W: Russel seemed to have a solid plan; I find no faults. He was a real leader. Rod and Jeanette must be proud. Great stuff I’ve missed while being in Germany.

    Russel’s plan for the NZgovt to buy from the NZgovt, that has no comparison to the nasty QE as done by the FED and other private central bank cartels. Russel was talking intelligent self-defense. If they expand the balance sheets but you do nothing…

    I know nothing about James S. But he’s got shoes to fill. GHG mantra don’t doesn’t it for me. Wander if the Democrats for Social Credit will score in the next election? Not on this planet. I liked that Gandhi quote, but only as a joke. Lets double down on Tim Shadbolt.

  2. Cheers bjchip, trusting you’re on to something, (sorry, hadn’t read the LFTR link). But if it sounds like Green-Panic to me, then it would sound even worse in the public arena. Have you a usable sound-bite quote for us? That’s the game 😉

    POPULATION DEBATE: Good news from a debate with a Brilliant-Bible-Boy. We believe population is flat or already shrinking. The bean-counters’ growth estimates are smugged systematically, like almost all official info – propaganda by accident or other.

    How can that be? Well, peasants don’t want kids, they have too much stress already. And who’s planning for old-age these days? Not me, and I’m first world. Multiple other little reasons, but they are too sad to type.

    Our best news is regarding ARMAGEDDON: Seems we’re over the hump!
    Mark-of-the-beast: this is consumerism, and the physiological mark is a blocked pineal gland. Via sugar, aluminum in our vaccines and jet-fuel, and pollution in general.
    Earth-quakes like CHCH (and Haiti!) on sand without a fault-lines, that’s something new.
    The NUCLEAR DISASTER in Japan, was from a Richter scale 9 Tsunami, but the quake was much smaller, hmmm. How about that typhoon that hit Shanghai this year, just changed direction, hit the city and was gone in hours – even the main-stream media reported that with surprise, no ocean temperature explanation. And Benjamin Netanyahu is certainly not Jewish, I can believe he’s an Alien Hybrid (John Key too? 😉

    Seems we’ve over the ridge, and the new view is one of a world ready to heal. Hey, if chem-trails are real (just look up, we live beside big airports here, it’s just obvious) So are chem-trails not already got an advanced global reaction to climate-change, in the form of photochemical reflectors? How much more technology is there to come out? If fusion is cracked, then that’s free energy baby, and bad luck for the oil barons. Current official science says controlled fusion has already been achieved, just a fraction of a second but achieved it is, even officially.

    Hey, I’m not saying business as usual – but Green-Panic isn’t going to help anyone. Mobilising our positive projections will pull this waka through the wild-waves and see us safely ashore.


  3. @Corodale

    What a LFTR actually is, and can do is pretty impressive. Fission done this way is actually doable, can clean up waste products and is a hell of a lot safer than the older light-water reactors. You don’t get a lot of bomb material out of it either. Which is why a complete system has never been properly built. Indonesia is working on one. India. A few other places.

    I probably should point out that I do not in the first place, care who owns such plants if we can arrange to get them built. IF we can arrange to get them built, then I can start caring about ownership, but there’s too much at stake to worry first about who gets the money.

    Important to understand that the money is important, and what money is makes it important that the entire electrical grid is nationalized. It shouldn’t have ever been private and there is a lot behind the phrase I use so often here…

    “Real Money represents work done”

    This is important to the Greens in the long run because it leads into so very very many issues where the distorted debt money in current use leads to abuse of the environment. Explaining it to anyone with a formal education in economics is like a colour for someone blind from birth, because the ramifications are that much of economics is about assumptions violating the laws of thermodynamics and making the money represent work done is utterly incompatible with those assumptions. Including requiring the major electrical production capacity and distribution gridof the nation be nationalized.

  4. Most people don’t understand about how money has been hijacked by bankers. The cartel become the world power dictating and controlling on a global scale.

    The public would find it hard to believe as it is shattering news disrupting their faith in Govt and community allowing such to happen.

    So the whole ponzi scheme of looting community wealth carries on and opposition is small and relatively powerless. Politicians learn not to broach the subject.

    Russel Norman suggested the NZ state use a little quantitative easing and was jumped on from most quarters.

    He probably authored his apolitical demise with that action.

    Finally he had to back down.

    Meanwhile following the discussions around that we see the business NZ does not trust any govt to manage the money. Private banks can be trusted evidently – Yes , trusted to fill their own pockets. Business NZ ignores that but is probably controlled by bankers.

    Meanwhile private banks flood markets with created money. assist inflation in the price of rural land ( of which they own at least half currently ) and housing bubbles: and that is accepted. Who controls that acceptance and the organised attacks on politicians or other spokes people who see that the people ( Govt) have a right to create money, a right that has been allowed to becomes the manipulated prerogative of private banks.

    While world banking has holds no responsibility for the impending large scale disaster on several fronts, it continues to demand growth.

    I find it somewhat puzzling to follow logic on population overshoot being OK.

    It is certainly not sustainable at any stage after the first billion and the longer the overshoot and consumption generated continues, then the less resource there may be left for any future population.
    In a climate where patterns of remaining fertile cropping land will shrink it is indeed a depressing prospect, one that should create extreme alarm and not be ignored.

  5. Great summary John W. I feel the same. Some of us years ago in late Values days were sitting talking after a meeting and we concluded the same, and we saw our role in the meantime as doing as much as we can to protect these shores from the worst of it and positively educate. The solutions are in a lifestyle, but as things progressed, I felt the pristine lifestyle I was trying to set up as examples, were being threatened by the political power of the uninformed vested interests, later becoming obviously informed vested interests. For that reason I left my cosy place to get involved.
    Maybe they see things as inevitable too but see no connection with the life forces we are probably trying to enhance. As I am older I feel an irony that heavy metals I have fought to minimise, have burnt my bridges now I have Parkinson’s. I miss the rural connection but do what I can to enthuse others to face the realities. I am enthused by my grandson and his partner at Uni who are coming to terms with their future and activating their skills. I guess that is what it is about and maybe we need to hammer the grandparents and parents about what they are leaving. Maybe we need to get a real good database of the alternative examples.
    At present I am writing a tv series script about the early days on the Coromandel fighting the mining. I am wrapped my grandson is already making good short films, we need to keep putting the message out that change is possible and can be fun, Tim Shadbolt for Prime Minister.

  6. sorry, JohnW, but I do disagree. The otherside of the population debate wont get printed here, as most people will miss-understand and find it depressing.

    As for changing the money system: Trust me that 99% of the people at Julie’s New Economic Conference will totally understand that stable currencies would make a world of difference. And it must happen, and soon. It’s unbelievable; private banks print money out-of-thin-air and collect profit from global debt, but that is the way it works 🙁

  7. It is pleasant stuff to read, full of hope and detail. Reassuring to have a younger generation coming through with a spirit to find direction.

    That bigger picture you mentioned is certainly based on some evidence. If you look beyond those transient details there is a more basic premise looking to what we are facing, politically / economically and structurally.

    Politically the human race is a basket case which has not been very different for a long time. Deal with that as you may.

    Population overshoot is virtually ignored politically. More consumers works short term for a capitalistic approach. Gold cannot be eaten. Manipulating economics or the money system will not change the basic structural problems accumulated, associated with overshoot. Too many people.

    I have covered much of this much earlier. For well over 40 years the forecast has been clear, based on hard data and well monitored. No effective measures have been implemented to change the course of where we are heading in any significant way. Sure there are groups working on local food supply and local provision of basic needs, but the impact on such a minuscule scale is only contributing to a pool of laudable ideas of a more sustainable existence, which in practice are not in a vacuum. In contrast there is the growth proposition calling for more of the same we have been doing with variation in methods but not direction.

    Most propositions put forward for correcting both political and structural problems we face seem to be entangled with reductionist application of relatively small details. Usually culturally based such as changing the economic / money system or even energy sources.

    I agree the state should function as a regulating body and the the only agent of money creation. Look at how we lost that. Retrievable? Probably not at present. Perhaps crisis may change that.

    Unless a wide perspective embodies and appreciation of the interactive nature of problems connected with overshoot and consumption, then one may as well get satisfaction from casting urine into the wind.

    While the approaching decade or 2020 – 2030 will see a melt down of most of the systems relied upon by present civilisation, still we blunder on with words mainly.

    There is no sign of a turn around nor a will for a major change direction. More of the same with variation is about the best offered and then the variation has to suit the entrenched economic / political system.

    Human population, harnessing of energy, food supply, land use, soil fertility, water supply, pollution, species reduction, industrialisation, non renewable resource depletion; are all inter- related.

    The last one is not reversible while the first one is. It will happen, it is a matter of how.

    One would hope the collective human mind would respond and facilitate a change of direction. It appears not.

    The patterns of energy harvesting, non renewable resource consumption, environmental devastation, population growth, have accelerated over the last two centuries or so and now we have overshot, stuffing up the planet.

    As we sit close to the peak across a range of observable consequences, those things relied in the immediate past no longer can be relied upon to provide answers desired for continuation of a similar human presence.

    It is not population alone but also the accumulating damage done by the growth of human population. Depopulation will not reverse the damage but is likely to moderate the rate of continuing damage.

  8. oops, sorry oldlux, I miss-read you. Yeah, slow change over 200 years sounds reasonable. Perhaps it’s my relative youth, that makes me feel it’s really now! But there are more layers of smoke n mirrors at work here, I’ve seen solid clues that this current generation will really feel the quick change in all directions. But I see no reason to cry doom and gloom. Our climate Professor at Uni certainly never promoted concern, but his warm presentation style did inspire us to get active with positive change.

  9. Sorry, my typing wasn’t so clear. Yeah, Aquarius 2000 years, not 200. “Cycles on the 20 year scale explain why there was little warming in last 5 year, but next 5 years should show much global climate warning”, said my climatology Professor. Or, 2012 end of Mayan calender, (was actually early 2015 in the North, late 2015 in the South, by my reading), both same thing, era change. Solar winds have changed, etc. Our youth will be more capable with positive projection, and better connected with kundalini fields, etc. But industrial pollution balances this out. Our pineal glands are often blocked, or third-eye in Hindi or one-eye in Christian text.

    I don’t want to sound totally insane – ok, just a bit more: Our relationships to time are more flexible in this era. Modern physics confirms the 4d of time and space can be reversed, so if you think of meditation as fixed in one dimension of space, this allows travel in the three dimensions of time. But what’s my point, hmmmm. Guess there are many positive paths, beyond the simple scientific spin.

    eg. Are people here talking about nuke fission or fusion? The difference between the two options is like comparing Monsanto with Green Peace.

    You guys know who owns the nuke power companies, who profits? It isn’t local communities, that’s for sure. The slip to the political-right is the job of the centre-left, eg, Labour. A values party like the Greens can’t support fission. But have you guys heard about progress with fusion? Or are you still getting your scientific options from Wikipedia and Blue Helmet backed fascist-front we lovingly call the United Nations?

  10. Also Gerrit, if we go to the nukes we may as well finish the work on the LFTR and that turns all that spent fuel problem into a fuel source. It is quite definitely feasible. Even without the LFTR it can be done.

  11. Gerrit

    To phase out fossil fuels JUST using Nuclear is as impractical as trying to phase them out JUST using wind, or JUST using pure renewables or JUST using conservation…

    …we need all of the above, and the need to include nuclear is simply a manifestation of the sheer magnitude of the problem which you identify when you discuss solving it just with nukes. Ain’t happening. Hansen includes nukes because we can’t afford to leave ’em out…. not because they’re his favorite thing in the world. Not my favorite either, but we need every non-co2 erg we can get.

  12. What I understand of the Age of Aquarius and its astronomical explanation, the cusp of change into this process of influence is about 200 years long, maybe the reason for the lack of community unity and focus on what is survival. Also as the old age was reputedly the Age of Pisces, the age of mythical religions and thus mythical economic systems, is still being grasped by the emotionally underdeveloped.

  13. CoroDale says

    It’s connected to a spiritual transitions that the world already began.

    Is that the same spiritual transition us venerable folk called the “Age of Aquarius” and which we looked forward to in the 1960’s?

  14. John W: Growth is super-duper, it just depends how you measure it. Obviously we’re not lookin for GDP growth, but economic growth that doesn’t harm people and planet is certainly possible. This is where we should be talking. Local economies, it’s all too obvious.

    But it sounds like you need to hear some of the political big picture first. Too put your mind at rest, then we get on with the solution. Seems population control is well under-way. UN estimates can’t be trusted, and some sources are saying we’ve already fully plateaued. Eg. Bill Gates has publicly stated/slipped he can get it down to 6 Billion. I don’t want to know how he calculated that! Though as an example, I’ve understood that vaccines in Kenya are being used as contraceptives.

    Shadow-world-government has two main factions, and both are hot on population control plans. The more extreme plan was from the faction with the Oil Barons and Bush Family, who where aiming to invade Iran, thus wwIII, un-ending. Good news is, that their control of the Pentagon was overthrown in Sep/Oct this year. US carrier fleets have been withdrawn from the Arab Gulf, etc.

    So who is in control of the pentagon now? It’s the UN faction. But they are also played by puppet masters. With dreams of Blue Helmets carving up any indepent ( nation states, while shouting “Climate Change” as ground cover. Dark plans for population control etc too. But lets not talk about all that crap.

    Good news is, there’s also an Eastern Alliance with fast rising power. From the financial perspective, they have a 95% chance of taking control (this statistic is from a CIA power-model-report, (link, based on the expected fall of the US petro-dollar, etc. Note that Russia are now stabilising (in relative terms) Syria, Iran, etc. China and India have gold… actually, the World Bank has a mountain of gold for humanity too, (the Royal’s Committee of 300 claim it’s theirs, but that wont stand up in an honest court. The world bank would make the gold, etc avaliable for good, but the fiat money system must first be transformed, otherwise the gold will be used as bonds and just get chewed up by the capitalist system.

    It gets complex, but it would seem the Eastern Alliance are well meaning. Don’t fear, the Stalin and Mao figures where belonging to the Washington/London/Israel factions, not to the current Eastern Alliance.

    But dude, all this fear-porn stuff isn’t where it’s at. There are real solutions to be worked on here. As the scholars say, “its time for political factions to unite and agree on the solutions.”

    Obviously you’ve heard of fractional-reserve-banking and fiat money. Well, this system is coming to an end, so get ready for a brave new world.

    There are many positive, principled and pragmatic solutions coming in the near future. It’s connected to a spiritual transitions that the world already began. Basically it about keeping cool, and going with the core green values. Understand how much we all really don’t know, and have faith that the solutions are coming. They are coming. If it feels too slow, then turn off the 6 o’clock news/propaganda, and all that.

    How about public banking, local currencies, social credit? Climate issues will fall into place, but first things first.

  15. Solving a perceived problem by creating a bigger one seems to be the path we are on.
    Adding growth should be an obviously neurotic response.

    There are no vehicles that do not have a carbon / GHG footprint. Making more cars just can’t help long term.

    Call it unrealistic but no mater which way the situation is examined, spin will only get us in deeper. The present Paris agreement will not curb emissions to a sustainable level and certainly will not limit the T rise to 2 deg C.

    The public taking comfort from the positive present spin put on the Paris outcome may feel good if you want to believe it.

    Where was the discussion about planned population reduction, and reduction in NRR use. Politically untenable? Ok then perhaps accepting life in fantasy land may be politically acceptable.

    That’s were we have lived for several decades digging a deeper hole..

  16. The COP21 Climate Summit:
    The Ambitions and Flaws of the Paris Agreement. Outcome of Deception and Bullying

    Here is a report from Dr Binoy Kampmark, a Commonwealth Scholar at Selwyn College, now lecturing at the MRIT University in Melbourne. This is via a news source which is endorsed by our old friends New Zealand Democratic Party for Social Credit.

    First and last paragraphs here. Follow link for full read. Let me know if you can find a better review.

    “Seeing the clapping and hollering enthusiasm from the likes of Al Gore and others in Paris, one would have thought the earth had been saved. “I now invite the COP to adopt the decision entitled the Paris Agreement outlined in the document,” came the words of French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius. Then, the deluge. “Together, we’ve shown what’s possible when the world stands as one,” claimed an overly optimistic US President, Barack Obama.”

    “In any case, such measures are meaningless without a united front of seemingly disparate interests, be they anti-austerity groupings on the one hand, or climate change activists on the other.[6] Environment, economy and politics are vast but related peas in a complex pod. In the aftermath of Paris, it is clear that COP21 was far from what Angelica Navarro, Bolivian trade and climate negotiator, would have wished for: the equivalent of a Marshall plan for planet earth.”

  17. Dear bjchip,

    your dreams are coming true – positive projections really are an effective tool! Belgium have just turned two reactors back on, though both where previously retired, due to cracks and old age. Happy about that? You and James Lovelock might me, but those living down wind aren’t. Are you telling us that GHG issues are more important than curbing the current military-world-hegemony, and wild-fiat-money-system? Try looking at this from the perspective of drivers. Are GHGs driving political-chaos? Or is political-chaos driving GHGs? Well, you could claim that the Syrian crisis arrived at the same time as their big drought, but I would rebut that with ease. Or, perhaps its human nature that’s driving both GHGs and political chaos? All humans all crap once in power? No, we’re all here for spiritual growth, and we’re all good at the one-core. We’ll pull through.

    Thanks for engaging in the real debate. Please allow me to talk us through just one of the layers of smoke-n-mirrors.

    Talk about the US govt? If Obama reads the wrong tele-script, he goes to heaven, like JFK re-written. “They” have false flagged their way through more than a century of US state-capture. Under perpetual terror-alert, human-rights are officially optional in the US. Is the US govt even constitutionally valid? No, but try telling that to their corrupt courts and military police. Seriously, we should be trying; at the end of the day, the squeezed 99% are human. Brain-washed since the beginning of recorded history, but human we remain. Hey, I’m not Anti-American. This crime network is as international as the BIS Bank. Wasn’t me who coined the term “Washington Consensus” Think that comes from the Group of 77, the largest ever world peace movement. Yeah the poor countries, those insulted by sick jokes like the UN’s Millennium Goals.

    Talk of political solutions, so I’ll quote the National Party for you, “it’s like we own the NZ Herald”.
    Propaganda, we’re soaking in it! Anti-trust laws against corporate media perhaps? Who are we kidding, the media write our laws by swaying the public opinion. Have you ever read the other side of the story? It does hell to the speed of you internet connection, but it’s important to understand how wide that reality gap really is. Yeah, the truth is somewhere in the middle, so they say. Well, I don’t think so, but even if it was. That should send alarm bells ringing, as a sign that nobody is telling the truth about anything! Or do we trust the US Govt, our very very very close friends, as they broadcast, “All alternative media is propaganda and RT News is a threat to national security!” Hell, in my opinion RT News have to dilute the truth down, or the masses wouldn’t digest any of it (and the Russian gangsters n CIA would ramp up the assassinations).

    I can back any of my statements with a wave of sources, but posting any links here will put the Green Party Blog under a time consuming cyber-attack. Or shall we do an experiment? I post links, and you watch as this blog-site goes wobbly.

    Sorry, bj. This learning curve isn’t something one takes on in-a-day. I was born on the alternative (but blue-blooded) Coromandel, and have spent the last 5 years studying a second degree in Sustainable AgriBusiness part-time in Germany, while remaining connected to nature through mixed bd-farming. Even in it this situation I’ve found the transition towards truth can be an often lonely and traumatic journey.

    Perspective tip: try splitting our understanding of realities into three. eg. Social, Economic, and Environmental. eg. Jesus, Christ and Holy-spirit. eg. The Threefold Social Organism by Steiner. But each of these examples uses a language that only insiders can easily understand. We’re all at different levels and perspectives.

    Your concern for climate change isn’t wrong, and controlling GHG’s makes sense. But we’re currently debating; what is the real priority here? With so much propaganda flying, it’s hard not to quote it. I paraphrase: follow the Way, follow the Light, follow the Truth.

    Peace, love and forgiveness,

  18. Hey Gerrit, that’s really interesting.

    A few years ago, the Canadians had this idea that with their tar sands, they could extract the world out of the Peak Oil problem, by using small reactors to provide the necessary heat and energy for the tar conversion plants. I worked the numbers back then, and they would have needed to build (from memory) 1.500 reactors over about 20 years to do what they hoped. You’ve outlined a problem of roughly the same order, and a decade later it still looks an unreasonable target.

    The real problem is the coal is just there, centuries worth of it (at the current rate of use) and it is just so easy to carry on extracting the stuff, and so easy and cheap to build new coal power stations. Its a very high hill to climb.

    In related news, the UK have apparently stated they will only allow zero emission cars (ie EVs) to be bought new in the UK in 2050. That also is a problem, as in addition to EVs, they need a carbon free source of power to recharge them. And this will be in addition to the electricity the nasty sources of which already need to be replaced.

    BJ, I wish our Green Party would endorse hydro, let alone nukes. In reality, the Green Party arguments against nukes are the same as their arguments against hydro, the party really are trying to give the impression they don’t give a toss about CO2.

  19. BJ,

    Totally agree the Greens face a dilemma. For the phase out coal electricity generation around the world requires the building of 100 nuclear power station, world wide, per year for 20 years. That is 2000 nuclear power stations.

    The scale of such an endeavour would be vast. First off we need to find safe locations and build the plants, and then we face perhaps the biggest hurdle and that is the need to mine (and we know how much the Greens hate mining) the raw materials for fuel and then (perhaps the biggest down side of nuclear power) a storage facility for the spent fuel. Not to mention the huge water volumes required cooling reactors

    We know how the Greens feel about shipping and storing spent fuel, just multiply the current volume by 2000 and the scale of the problem is apparent.

    Nuclear might be an answer but the scale of replacing ALL coal fired stations with nuclear is far bigger then people envisage.

    Just in the USA alone there would be a need for 175 new stations (at a cost of around 7 billion each).

    Certainly doable but not without large capital expenditure, increased mining plus the need for safe storage of spent fuel.

  20. I would, in the spirit of trying to get people to understand just how important this is, wish for OUR Green party to do the “unthinkable” and endorse the use of nuclear power in those places where no other immediate solution is practical, and there are many such places in the industrial world… which includes China and India when you start counting out where things are actually produced.

    It is not a necessary technology here in New Zealand because of our wind, and our geothermal and our hydro, but it will be essential elsewhere and there is no downside to having people turn off their coal plants in favour of a LFTR. Civilization will not survive if there is no power at all. It will have to change dramatically if the power becomes intermittent and THAT will be a likely excuse offered to keep the coal burning too long.

    Hansen is right… the agreement reached is inadequate, but necessarily so. The US Congress can’t deal with reality and without the US there’s no point… but it gives us a framework and a place to hang siding and roofing and maybe it will protect us from the worst of the problems if we keep working.

    We’re going to have to do that though. We’re going to have to persuade people that we are serious that THIS is the most important problem in this OR the previous century apart from the threat of nuclear war… it is on the same scale of threat, but it demands a LARGER change in our attitudes and lifestyles.

    Wish us all luck, we’re going to need it… and we are going to need people to understand and believe that it is deadly serious for us… no playing with words, no sacred cows. If Japan or Germany or China do some of what France DID, then the CO2 problem gets addressed faster.

    We have to be more convincing… we have to shake up the electorate… and we have to get started with that task now. Notions that we can work with National are extremely shaky… there’s almost nothing that they are capable of agreeing with us about.

    That means that we’re still going to be seen as an automatic Labour ally. Which means that Key and his cronies are going to continue to run against US and rely on that to beat Labour. If the public doesn’t get the truth it will never vote us up, and it will accept the National party insult to its intelligence, and it will deserve what it gets as a result.

  21. The UN are taking this conference to the level. This deal is looking to be both as reckless as the Security Council, and as insulting as the Millennium Goals.

    Having skimmed your links and theirs, and searched the CTCN site for any mention of reality; I can follow our house analogy by saying they will build an Illuminati mansion like in that film Eyes Wide Shut. Careful which after party you end up at!

    I did like the “6-White-Haired-Men” link, as a good laugh, at the end of to an other-wise depressing investigation.

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