In response to Russia’s invasion and brutal war of aggression against Ukraine in 2022, many European nations, particularly Germany, have banned Russian fossil fuels imports. For Germany this has meant not only finding new sources of liquified natural gas (LNG), but also spurred the government to establish several new LNG terminals. However, LNG, which is mainly cooled and compressed methane, represents a major source of climate-harming emissions. Germany, which had no LNG ports prior to Russia’s invasion, has now embarked on a very controversial port and terminal-construction binge, citing the need to maintain energy security. As demand for LNG rises, many of the world’s largest energy firms are raking in record profits – and exporters like the United States have been reaping the benefits.
To help us understand the changing LNG situation and to breakdown LNG’s climate impacts, lead blogger and our host, Michael Buchsbaum interviews the tireless environmental researcher and campaigner, as well as fellow Energy Transition writer, Andy Gheorghiu.
More about our guest, Andy Gheorghiu: https://www.linkedin.com/in/andy-gheorghiu-2aa816b8/
Recent blogs for the ET:
Recent mentions in other media: https://www.dw.com/en/lng-for-germany-uae-delivers-first-shipment/a-64292879
More about the Global Gas and Oil Network, Beyond Gas Network, and the Break Free From Plastic Movement:
- Global Oil & Gas Network: https://ggon.org/
About plastic and the role of methane: https://www.breakfreefromplastic.org/winter-is-coming/
Publication in Nature about LNG and methane over 3%: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-022-35419-7
Information about Germany’s LNG Fast Tracking law:
Information about US LNG exports:
Current state of controversy around a potential LNG port in Rügen:
Global record investments in the energy sector continue to make headlines. After a halt in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, sector investments increased in 2021 followed by projections of a similar trajectory by mid-2022. The momentum is associated with the renewables sector which accounts for the majority of these investments. Countries that have committed to achieve net-zero emissions and meet Paris targets will have to maintain this trend – or, potentially, a higher one – if they intend to fulfill those commitments. But net-zero also implies a gradual phase-out of traditional fossil fuel technologies and assets. This is where the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) could hamper the transition towards climate neutrality essential ways. Legal and energy specialist Lekë Batalli has the details.
The global energy system is undergoing a major transformation. Fossil fuel prices are soaring, and extreme weather and war are causing massive blackouts and energy shortages. A clean-energy transition is no longer just an option, but an absolute requirement for survival. As countries shift away from dirty fuels, governments and corporations are increasingly looking toward hydrogen as part of the solution. Robert Howarth has the details. This Piece was originally published on NikkeyAsia.
Representing a district near several of Germany’s largest coal mines and lignite-burning power plants, Kathrin Henneberger entered the Bundestag, Germany’s Federal Parliament, on a mandate from Green voters to accelerate the clean energy transition both at home and abroad.
Long involved in the campaign to curtail global coal and fossil fuel production as well as human rights, during the summer of 2022, Henneberger traveled to Colombia, visited with front line coal, oil and gas communities and began forging a new intergovernmental climate alliance.
But with her own country struggling to phase out coal, her constituents living near the edges of Germany’s still expanding open pit mines, and the energy crisis continuing to impact us all, instead of being able to make immediate progress, Henneberger has been fighting something of a rear-guard action to at least maintain the environmental and climate gains already in place a year ago.
In this podcast, Henneberger discusses why she traveled to Colombia, what she experienced while there and shares her insights with lead blogger and podcaster, Michael Buchsbaum.
For more on Colombia’s energy transition, listeners should check out the preceding podcast with Deutsche Welle correspondent, Judit Alonso as well as lead blogger, Michael Buchsbaum’s seven-part Colombian Conundrum series:
South Korea is jeopardizing its ability to meet its 2030 methane reduction target under the Global Methane Pledge due to the country’s plans to massively expand fossil-based hydrogen, according to a recent study by Seoul-based Solutions for Our Climate (SFOC) led by legal, economic, financial, and environmental experts with experience in energy and climate policy. Jinny Kim explains.
In the past six months people of Ukraine have shown to the world a great example of resilience, ingenuity, and bravery by successfully pushing back against the full-scale military invasion unleashed by Russia. With broad international support Ukraine is now set to take over the aggressor and regain its territorial integrity. But an even bigger non-military battle lies ahead for Ukraine – the battle for energy independence and long-term economic prosperity. Amory Bloch Lovins and Svitlana Romanko explain.
Aftershocks from Russia’s war against Ukraine continue rippling around the world, including to the deserts and jungles of Colombia. Producing increasing volumes of oil and fossil gas, this Andean country is also one of the world’s largest coal exporters.
Long rocked by violence, civil war as well as government and industry-linked terrorism, prior to Russia’s invasion European buyers had been curtailing fossil fuel and “blood coal” imports from Colombia due to linkages with human rights violations. But faced with its own energy crisis, following a personal call in April from German chancellor Olaf Scholz to Colombia’s then President Ivan Duque, more coal than ever is sailing from Latin America to European ports.
But then two months later, voters elected the nation’s first ever left-green government into power. Campaigning on a platform to accelerate their clean energy transition, ban fracking, and restrict coal mining, the economist and former Bogotá mayor and former guerilla fighter Gustavo Pedro has now assumed power.
To help us unpack how we got here and what to expect next from both Colombia, Germany and the European Union, in this episode, podcast host and lead blogger, Michael Buchsbaum, interviews Latin American expert and Deutsche Welle reporter and correspondent, Judit Alonso.
Click here for background information on links between Colombia’s civil war and coal and fossil fuel extraction.
Click here to read more about Scholz’ phone call to Duque.
Click here to read stories and see images of how mining and development is impacting Colombia’s Wayuu indigenous people.
Audio from the podcast was mixed and edited by audio expert Christian Kreymborg.
While much of the international community’s climate action has focused on controlling carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, in doing so, we’ve essentially given a pass on another very powerful greenhouse gas: methane.
With 86 times the warming impact of CO2 over a twenty-year period, new studies show that methane accounts for about 30-50 percent of today’s global warming.
Thankfully, after years of pressure from activists and climate scientists, in 2021 world leaders finally started paying attention to our growing methane problem. While US President Biden created something of a stir leading an international pledge to reduce methane emissions, the EU actually introduced some rules intended to control methane pollution both inside the 27-member bloc as well as outside of it.
In this second episode in a series focusing on methane, host Michael Buchsbaum interviews James Turitto, Campaign Manager for Methane Pollution Prevention at the Clear Air Task Force.
We also hear an excerpt from Sharon Wilson, Senior Field Advocate at Earthworks, who has long been documenting carbon leakage in the US.
Audio from the podcast was mixed and edited by audio expert Christian Kreymborg.