In May, the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung, Environmental Action Germany (DUH), and Food and Water Europe organized online conferences entitled “Fracking, Plastics, Methane Emissions and the Gas Lobby” to better explain the connection between them and climate crisis. The first of the two drew upon startling new satellite data explained by globally renowned methane and fracking expert, Prof. Robert Howarth from Cornell University. In his presentation, he detailed how the ongoing fuel switch from coal to gas has likely worsened the overall climate. Other speakers, including two Members of the European Parliament (MEPs), several environmental attorneys, and other fracking activists discussed continuing gas lobbying efforts to “greenwash” uninformed MEPs and the general public. Now available for streaming, the first webinar-debate provided a welcome space for an informed discussion around fossil gas policies, many of which ignore established science in favor of economic and political expediency—our L. Michael Buchsbaum reviews.
As utilities across Europe make the switch from coal to gas, CO2 emissions there are falling. But on the other side of the Atlantic, ever-rising fracking production deteriorates air and water quality, impacting public health. Buchsbaum reports from Colorado where ozone and other industry associated pollutants regularly makes outdoor exercise dangerous.
Faced with dwindling oil reserves, Columbian politicians are worried about energy security and state funds. The country is looking into whether it will allow fracking if it’s ‘sustainable’ – ignoring the possibility of expanding renewables instead, says Rebecca Bertram.
Under pressure from Trump, just weeks ahead of the European Parliamentary elections, the EU Commission signed a long-term agreement locking in at least 20-years of imported fracked Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) shipments. Despite hundreds of international environmental groups warning this will torpedo the goals of the 2015 Paris Climate Accords and retard plans to decarbonize Europe, EU President Juncker and Vice-President Maroš Šefčovič are hailing the deal as part of the continent’s on-going clean energy transition. L. Michael Buchsbaum takes a look.
Multi-lingual, multi-cultural and multi-ethnic, over 400 million voters Europeans from 28 member states are poised to elect a new Parliament and European Commission President. Given its lead position on climate and energy issues, and under pressure to accept more American fracked fossil gas, their decision will have global ramifications. L. Michael Buchsbaum takes a look.
With Germany’s coal plants scheduled to close by 2038, operators now face some major decisions about how to restructure energy systems. One idea is to convert polluting power stations into batteries. L. Michael Buchsbaum takes a look.
The Mexican president let fracking opponents hope for the abolition of the environmentally harmful procedure. Rebecca Bertram explains to what extent this promise has been fulfilled.
Germany was once seen as the front-runner of the global energy transition, but it is now working against it at home and in Brussels, says L. Michael Buchbaum.
With the upcoming inauguration of the Mexican president, a new parliamenterial confrontation is waiting. Attempted implementations of sustainable energy reforms, have never been implementated under the previous government due to corruption cases. Maximiliano Proaño asks about the feasibility under the new president.
In the US state of Colorado, a ballot initiative has proposed to keep fracking at least 2,500 feet (around 760 meters) away from neighborhoods. But industry interests are fighting tooth and nail preserve the status quo, says L. Michael Buchsbaum.