Does today’s climate report change the arguments on UK fracking?

pnr 181005 danny vc llew 2

Fracking equipment ready for use at Cuadrilla’s shale gas site at Preston New Road, 5 October 2018. Photo: Danny Vc Llew

UK anti-fracking campaigners claimed their case against shale gas was supported by today’s international report on the actions needed to limit global warming to 1.5 ºC.

The UK government made no reference to shale gas in its response to the assessment by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). But the onshore oil and gas industry said carbon capture and storage and extracting hydrogen from methane could be cost-effective decarbonisation options.

The IPCC report concluded that limiting global warming to 1.5ºC would require rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society.

It said there would need to be “rapid and far-reaching” transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities. Global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45 percent from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050. This meant that any remaining emissions would need to be balanced by removing CO2 from the air.

Allowing the global temperature to temporarily exceed or ‘overshoot’ 1.5ºC would mean a greater reliance on techniques that remove CO2 from the air to return global temperature to below 1.5ºC by 2100, the report said. The effectiveness of such techniques were unproven at large scale and some may carry significant risks for sustainable development, it noted. Link to the report

DrillOrDrop has been looking at the reaction to the report.

“Urgent need to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions”

Claire Perry, energy and clean growth minister

“I welcome the strong scientific analysis behind today’s IPCC report and it’s conclusions are stark and sober. As policy makers we need to work together to accelerate the low carbon transition to minimise the costs and misery of a rapidly warming world.

“In the UK we have shown great leadership with the passage of the world’s first Climate Change Act a decade ago, the most rapid decarbonisation in the G7 and a comprehensive Clean Growth Strategy detailing policies to cut carbon right across the economy.  Our upcoming Green GB Week from October 15 will help us reflect on this progress but also the urgent need to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions globally.”

“Need for democratic control and public interest decision making

Rebecca Long Bailey, shadow business, energy and industrial strategy secretary

“Today’s IPCC report is sobering – a call for transformative action to avoid dangerous climate change. That is Labour’s offer to the public. But we must be honest: it is something the Conservatives will never be able to deliver.”

She said it was not a lack of knowledge or technology that prevented action.

“What we do lack is an economic system in which major decisions about resource use are under democratic control.

“We also lack a political and economic system in which decisions are made in the public interest, for the many not the few.

“We need democratic control and public interest decision making to tackle climate change – but these two things are anathema to conservatives. That is why a Tory administration could never deliver on the scale required. Fracking is just one example of this.”

“Ban on fracking”

Bill Esterson, shadow energy and international trade minister

181008 IPCC Bill Esterson tweet

“CCS and methane reforming cost-effective options”

Ken Cronin, chief executive, UK Onshore Oil and Gas

“The Committee on Climate Change have expressed that ‘Carbon capture and storage (CCS) is part of the cost-effective pathway for an emissions reduction of 80% by 2050, and its absence could double the cost of achieving this reduction. CCS becomes even more important for deeper reductions by 2050 and is essential to reach net-zero emissions, committed to under the Paris Agreement’

“Several pieces of analysis have concluded that the least cost decarbonisation for sectors such as heating and industry involves methane reforming with CCS. The alternative requires a costlier and more intrusive intervention into the UK’s homes and businesses.

“As the UK has a 50% gas import dependency, which is forecast to increase to almost 75% by 2035 without UK shale gas production – the UK would have to achieve its decarbonisation targets with higher carbon imported gas, such as LNG and long distance pipeline.”

“Government pushing us towards climate tipping point”

Caroline Lucas, Green Party MP and former leader

“Today’s IPCC report is unequivocal: renewables need to supply 70-85% of ower by 2050.

“Fracking will put us on a dangerous path towards climate breakdown.”

“Government not on track to make changes”

Jonathan Bartley, co-leader, Green Party

181008 IPCC Jonathan Bartley tweet

“Time is running out”

Friends of the Earth

181008 IPCC FoE tweet

Rachel Kennerley, Friends of the Earth climate campaigner, said:

“Political will can get us out of this and the UK government can choose whether to heed this report’s findings. Currently, they’re choosing to ignore the full weight of scientific consensus and are directly funding climate chaos by supporting fracking and other dirty industries.”

“Consequences of new fracking industry can’t be ignored”

Greenpeace UK

“This is the last call for humanity’s journey to a liveable planet. From this point on, action on climate change can’t be kicked into the long grass. We’re now playing catch-up to limit the irreversible damage it will do.

“Every decision made by our government will have serious impacts on people’s lives and livelihoods. No longer can the UK government ignore the consequences of starting a new fracking industry, expanding aviation or failing to phase out polluting cars and deal with energy-wasting homes.

“As the room for mistakes shrinks and the cost grows, Theresa May’s government should rise to the challenge laid down by the world’s leading scientists and make Britain a true climate leader. Our children and grandchildren are watching and will remember.”

“Fracking is increasingly dangerous climate denial”

Keith Taylor Green Party MEP

“When climate scientists across the world are telling political leaders that the only way to avoid climate catastrophe is to remake the human world within a generation, it is unconscionable that the Tories are still pushing ahead with plans to fast-track the dangerous exploitation of new climate-destructive shale gas reserves. And planning to bypass local democracy in the process.

“Fracking has never been compatible with our binding climate commitments under the Paris agreement. Today’s IPCC report makes clear the brutal reality of the impact of global warming exceeding 1.5c. Failure to keep below that limit is assured if the Tories press ahead with fracking.

“Rather than jailing the fracking protesters heroically defending our planet and our future, Ministers must wake up and take urgent action to drop their support for the climate-destructive fossil fuel industry. Fracking is a form of increasingly dangerous climate denial.”

“We can’t have any new fossil fuels”

Fossil Free UK

181008 IPCC Fossil Free UK

“Why is UK fracking?

Frack Off London

“Today the IPCC stated to keep global warming to 1.50C in low-carbon energy technologies & energy efficiency would need to approximately double in the next 20 years, while investment in fossil fuels extraction and conversion decrease by a quarter. So why is UK fracking?”

118 replies »

  1. Yes, crembrule. DYOR. May be a bit more time consuming than looking at your “local” paper, but quite easy to do.

    You know what hurts shale investors, Jack? How? I wouldn’t have that unsubstantiated knowledge, but I could look at AJL shares and see that someone could have profited by around 150% in the last year. I’m not sure I would classify that as hurt. Maybe they then purchased an expensive house in London with their “hurt” and have now sold it, and rented for the moment all so they can clear off if JC ever gets near to 10 Downing Street. No, I will not make it easy. You can check the last bit quite easily. I think others may already have noticed it. London estate agents have. Capital flight is pretty easy, and is already underway. I suspect anyone investing in shale is no less intelligent than other investors investing in Tesla, and will pull their investment as and when they want. In both cases I suspect they might be thinking-let’s hold for a while and see what happens.

    No verbal abuse regarding JC. You can check his Brexit record I referred to, but you will not because it makes uncomfortable reading. You could start at who called for Article 50 to be triggered immediately after the Brexit vote, without there being any reason or sense to do so. Facts, not spin or abuse.

    What Labour put forward as a policy is no more relevant than Green policy at the moment, so no need for shale investors to get too excited yet. A fixed term parliament can easily be forgotten, but does not go away.

    • MARTIN

      LOOK at the 5 year share price for AJL.

      AJL is on its backside . It’s down by about 70% on its 5 year high .

      HARDLY a shinning example . SOME investors will of lost the shirt of their backs on this one .

      TAKE A LOOK , Google AJL share price and click on the 5 year graph .

    • MARTIN ,

      YOU ARE WRONG on so many fronts, which is why you DO NOT want to back up what you say with any evidence.

      For the members of this forum … WHO DO YOU SAY, out of all the UK political parties, has an honest and trustworthy leader and who is the champion of the people regarding Brexit ?????

      • No party has Jack. But please stop believing in Corbyn, the guy is a complete wet blanket, a freeloader, and hates the EU hence why reluctant to speak out about Brexit. His ideas are similar to fairy tales you were read when you were a kid.
        He is also one of those people that seems to despise his own country yet has had a very nice lifestyle piggy backing off of it.
        May is also a wet blanket, not a true Conservative either but she is the best of a really bad bunch.

    • “Yes, crembrule. DYOR. May be a bit more time consuming than looking at your “local” paper, but quite easy to do”

      Please don’t come the DYOR nonsense it’s a cop out as you have nothing to back your unfounded claims.

      Empty vessels somes you up to a tee.

  2. Unfortunately the World was never going to make the 2 deg target. The 1.5 deg target has zero chance. Not pessimisim but realism. But no doubt a few Countries will play their part, including the UK. Lead by example and all that…..but to no avail.

    In a few years time there will be more panic and a tougher target – the fun and games have already started:

    One thing we could do is accept the IPCC report and disband the IPCC, afterall they have done their job, we are all aware of the impending disaster, it is up to us and our Governments to act to prevent it. The Scientists could be redeployed to start work on how to adapt to the increased temperature rather than keep telling us it is going to happen? Perhaps move some into battery technology research? Free energy from water?

    Time to move up into the hills….luckily I already live 30m above sea level so whoever lives in my house in 50 years will be okay but Sainsburys will be long gone.

    Not sure of the altitude of the Fylde but could be risky by the end of the Century? Certainly don’t want to have a lot of gas infrastructure flooded by rising seas.

  3. What is so important about the five year price, Jack???? Please explain, substantiate what you say.

    Was I wrong regarding Article 50? Did you not know without a link?

    As GBK states, no party has. Remember Virgin Train-gate? Probably not, but that was simply dishonest and exposed as such.

    Sorry Jack, I’m not sure where you reside and whether you have a real problem not knowing what goes on in the UK, but it really is up to you to DYOR not for me to do it for you. Our chat around the NT raised the point. It still seems to be there.

    Not a problem. The old NT issue will be back shortly and then we can have another go!

    • MARTIN ,

      Well it’s simple, we have little bit of a, hmmmm how can I phrase it , ” a dead cat bounce ” here as AJL hobbles along the floor, let’s be honest, it’s hardly reaching for the stars is it ????

      YES , there will be a rise here and there as with any listed company as the bulls_ _t flows from within. Their aim is of course is to attract and maintain investments and if possible, attract more steady investors . That’s how the wheels of financial commerce roll .

      BUT then comes the falls as profit takers cash out…

      AJL , isn’t racing away is it ???? Just look at the graph , it’s still heavily DOWN, that’s a fact .

      As far as ” Article 50 ” goes. Has anyone yet, played with a straight bat MARTIN ??? …. The whole things becoming a complete farce and its making the UK a complete laughing stock … Whether we stay in the EU or leave, what we need is strong Margaret Thatcher style leadership to go in and truly fight for the UK.

      I’m sorry that you are still a little bitter about National Trust refusing access on their land for Shale gas companies . The points raised for all to see MARTIN is that you continually only ever give us your opinion. You NEVER back up anything you say with any evidence …… EVER .

      YES , I’m sure the National Trust debate, will rage once again .

  4. Back to fracking, one for the antis to get their teeth into. CP is of course correct in that the seismicity levels are set far too low:

    “Rules designed to halt fracking operations if they trigger minor earthquakes could be relaxed as the shale industry begins to expand, the UK energy minister, Claire Perry, has said.”

    “But Perry has told a fellow Conservative MP that the monitoring system was “set at an explicitly cautious level … as we gain experience in applying these measures, the trigger levels can be adjusted upwards without compromising the effectiveness of the controls”.

    [Typo corrected at poster’s request]

    • It was always going to go up, the TLS was lip service to appease the masses; Eric will tell you how hard you need to pull the lever to get the gas….

      • The TLS was a huge mistake by Industry. It was pushed by what is now the OGA but the Industry didn’t have the balls to stand up to them. You should be thanking Eric (although I think he has gone?).

        • Yes, shook his proverbial hand as he left…..but he can tell you a tale or two…..
          The industry didn’t need any balls; they were gonna change it anyway…regulations, what regulations?

  5. No, Jack, not opinions but facts. Not a wise move to question someone’s facts when you post opinions which are factually incorrect!

    Not sure where you got the idea that companies want long term share holders. I don’t think they could care less as long as people are willing to buy their shares. But, you might be right and can point to masses of share investments where an investor could have made 150% profit in one year. There will be some, I’m sure, but not a lot. Most of those companies would expect a high proportion of investors to pocket their gains after +150%-although the Wolf was told that was the opportunity to access their increased funds for the next investment! But look what happened to him!

    No bitterness to the NT. I am no longer a member so if they end up throwing away some of their membership contributions on an empty failed gesture they can answer to them, not me. But they start from a weak position in terms of recent PR so they need to be careful. Charities do not automatically attract public support when they have been adversely exposed in the recent past, even if they maintain the support of a few activists.

    • I am willing to bet the NT has more public support ( members or not) in this respect than Gentleman Jim’s bully boys and the fracking industry as a whole.

  6. So what is your point crembrule? If INEOS win there will still be some who will still think NT were correct, but many of the members and the general public are certainly not that warm towards NT recent management actions and will see it as another piece of poor management. Try asking some of NT tenants how warm they are to the NT at the moment. Equally, you may get the same answer from some of the staff. Both issues are so fresh the media have probably not filed the copy yet.

    I think the key might be whether the comment that NT refused to discuss with INEOS is found to be correct. If so, they are on a costly hiding to nothing.

    • My point Martin is a reply to the statement in your post made at 6.20pm

      “But they start from a weak position in terms of recent PR so they need to be careful. Charities do not automatically attract public support when they have been adversely exposed in the recent past, even if they maintain the support of a few activists.”

      To address some of the other unrelated guff in the rest of your follow up I would imagine most tenants have issues with their landlords from time to time, as do some employees with their employers.

      How any of this in any way influences the wider publics opinion of the organisation in its stance against the frackers is the question. This very much sums up the modus operandi of a lot of your posts Martin, more tangents than a geometry text book.

    • MARTIN ,

      I’m sorry, but what you are saying is pure guesswork on your part, without ANY foundation whatsoever.

      For the record…..Membership for the year ending 2017 hit an ALL TIME HIGH .

      Looks like the National Trust is in a VERY STRONG position, with a lot of public support .

      National Trust memberships hit new high of five million.

      • MARTIN ,

        Just click on the above link and take a look how many visits some of these National Trust ( NT ) places have had, the numbers are all there….. They certainly have had a very, VERY busy year .

        There’s something else that I’m sure you especially will be very pleased about. Just consider all the employment and revenue the NTwill have generated . Lots of Tax Revenue for the government

        Just think about how many 10s x thousands of foreign tourists thst have gone to these NT places and spent there money . The £ numbers must be HUGE .

        Let’s refresh our memory with the numbers of permanent jobs Cuadrilla PNR expect to create…. It’s 11, yes I did say 11 and how many of those will be minimum rates of pay security guard jobs, 7, 8, 9 ????

        It’s hardly put up the Bunting Time is it ???

        The National Trust puts any possible FRACKING revenue in the shade don’t you think ????

  7. Just a note to report that data from Oil Price News indicates that China aims to increase the use of gas in the massive coal-from-gas switch, Chinese consumption of gas jumped by 21.6 percent in August, according to NDRC data calculated by Platts. Domestic production increased by 9.6 percent while imports surged by 38.9 percent in August from the same month last year.

    In January to August, natural gas consumption went up 18.2 percent annually, with production up 6 percent and imports soaring 38.6 percent.

    All this comes about because of political concerns about pollution rather than climate change but, of course if the supply of gas is not forthcoming China will continue to increase their use of coal. When you think that India is proceeding rapidly allow the path of economic development led by China, with most of the rest of SE Asia in tow then the chances of achieving any meaningful decrease in CO2 output is slim unless gas or nuclear replaces coal in electricity generation. The rest of the world understandably want their turn in the economic limelight and no concerns about climate change is going to stop them.

  8. Interesting that both crembrule and Jack seem unaware of what has been within the UK press in the last few months and are unable to access it even now, and then resort to links about MEMBERSHIP! (There was a particular saga crembrule regarding NT and tenants. It is out there, no need to resort to generalities.)

    Nice of you guys to take an interest in what is happening in the UK. Let me just explain regarding membership of the NT. Members obtain a discount to visit sites. Membership is about saving money, not endorsing an organisation. Those members are very interested in their membership fees and costs they fund when visiting a site, so yes they will be very interested in whether NT money is wasted. So will the Government. (Jack-links are all well and good, but not when you use them to try and demonstrate something they do not.)

    As I suggested before, if it is proven the NT has not allowed dialogue that would be expected, they could have a problem.

    • MARTIN……. La La Land

      YES , are you also aware of that Elephant that could fly using only its ears ????? It was in the press over the last few months. NO need for me to present any evidence, it is there , just take my word.

      NOW once again you are wildly jumping to conclusions regarding National Trust ( NT ) members , without ANY evidence to support what you say.

      Under your logic, you expect members of the NT just to roll over and accept whatever threat is placed against them, by whatever company. Because if they don’t it may cost pennies/several £ more on their membership, if the NT chooses to fight it .

      The fact the NT has 5 MILLION MEMBERS, gives an indication as to the members possible sway on Fracking. It would be reasonable to assume that people visit NT because they enjoy the open spaces and that the last thing they would want is to see during their visit, is the DUMP like views and endless truck movements that greet the residents close to the Cuadrilla PNR site on a daily basis.

      I mean let’s face it , the Cuadrilla PNR site is hardly like living next to the Hanging Gardens Of Babylon is it ?????? It really does look like a complete and utter dump .

      You will find in the real world, people do NOT take kindly to threats, intimidation and bullying of any sort , by any company .

      If you think, in your wildest dreams that Fracking has a hope in hells chance of moving forward on the back of threats, financial threats and injunctions , then you really are living in La La Land.

  9. “Van Beurden said renewables would become a bigger part of what the company does in future, but it could only move as far as society did.

    “That means Shell’s core business is, and will be for the foreseeable future, very much in oil and gas,” he said.

    Separately, Qatar, the world’s biggest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG) said there was no doubt gas would be a fuel of the future, even with tough climate targets. “We believe natural gas will continue to play a key role, not as a so-called transition fuel but rather in our view, a destination fuel,” said Saad al-Kaabi, chief executive of Qatar Petroleum.

    The state-owned company recently announced plans for a significant expansion of its LNG production and exports, which account for nearly a third of the UK’s gas imports.

    Kaabi said it was difficult to believe in the IPCC 1.5C report if it did not spell out the cost of hugely reducing the world’s reliance on gas. But he denied he was being dismissive of the report. “My comment is it doesn’t make sense that you could get rid of so much [oil and gas] volume unless you give me a solution that is different from just renewables,” he said.”


  10. No one is threatening NT members, Jack. INEOS are acting against the NT, not members.

    Maybe in Jack Land they do not have organisations where people are members for discounted leisure activities? No health clubs? If a company acts against a health club do the members get angry??? Only if the costs of that action put up the membership fees, and then their anger is directed at the health club.

    I gave you links previously to NT media difficulties, Jack. Didn’t help you then, so why should I repeat it? I also gave crembrule links to his “local” paper as he couldn’t understand that Nimbyism was exposed as extreme around Blackpool and was featuring as a comical item across UK national press, as well as his “local”. Didn’t help him either, he still denied it happened.

    I shall have to remember during our future chats that what is standard within the UK is a little foreign to you. Not a problem, I used to do business outside of the UK as well, I can adapt.

    • MARTIN ,

      Ladies and Gentleman , I put it to you . Has MARTIN ever provided a link ????,

      NO MARTIN , when you go against the National Trust , you also go against its members. The members are the backbone of the NT.

      Just face the facts , nobody wants Fracking and the NT members as you will find will be very pro-active in stopping it on NT land .

      WHY possibly would any sane member of the NT want their beautiful landscapes destroyed and the peace and tranquillity ruined by Fracking companies and their noisey trucks ?????

      It truly is laughable to suggest otherwise

      • MARTIN,

        As far as your working career goes, its beginning to look like the only thing you haven’t done is walk on the Moon.

        I’m not ” foreign ” in my thoughts, or outlook as to what goes on , or happens in the UK. As well YOU know.

        [Typo corrected at poster’s request]

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