KEEPING UP WITH THE “COPS”
CLIMATE CHANGE AND WHAT IT MEANS (OR CAN MEAN) FOR YOU AND YOUR COMPANY
Renewables have broken the Energy mold. Now, their game-changing economics have generated their own kind of power. Not only does low-carbon energy produce low-cost power, but it often creates invaluable assets.
Why? What’s behind this shift in market forces?
The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has, since 1995, organized the annual Conferences of Parties (COPs). The COPs devise greenhouse gas emissions policies and aim to limit global temperature rise caused by anthropogenic (human) activities to less than 2 degrees Celsius. In the 2015 Paris Agreement (COP21), virtually every nation in the world (197 parties) agreed to work together to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions.
The Paris Agreement requires that every five years members submit action plans known as nationally-determined contributions, or NDCs. Each country must continuously strengthen its plan. COP21, now ratified*, drives government policies worldwide to reduce fossil fuel use and increase renewable energy. The photovoltaic (PV), or solar panel, manufacturers and installers now benefit from economies of scale and strive to build solar farms that can satisfy utility-scale demand at lower and lower prices.
“Storing the sun” now ranks as a second “race to space” as technology companies vie to design huge batteries and exploit the sun’s stored PV power at night or optimize Concentrated Solar Power (CSP), which heats a liquid to produce 24-hour power from conventional turbines. Plug into this worldwide megatrend and you’ll find big opportunities to increase value and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
WEMCo recognizes the influence that climate-change science has on your business—from promoting your brand to engaging your employees in Sustainability. We can assist in the design of policies and practices at any scale that keep your business up to speed with the fast-moving world of climate-change science and politics – WEMCo Helps You Keep up with the COPs! Every month you will discover insights into the reality of climate-change-driven businesses and businesses driven by climate change.
*U.S. President Donald Trump has initiated the USA withdrawal from the COP21 agreement, which adds a new dimension to the politics of climate-change science.
Wayne E. Mayer, Ph.D.