In Davos, fuel-powered ‘activists’ warn against climate inaction and greenwashing

Posted: January 16, 2023 by oldbrew in climate, Energy, government, net zero
Tags: , , ,


Best daytime temperature forecast for Davos in the next week is -3°C, overnight lows down to -16°C. Get back to us when so-called climate activists don’t use fuel-powered transport and heating, and all the rest of it, anymore.
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As oil and gas executives rub shoulders with government leaders in Davos this week, activists have raised concerns about the risk of greenwashing and further delays in climate action, says Euractiv.

More than 50 heads of states, international organisations and business leaders are meeting in the Swiss Alpine resort of Davos this week for the 2023 meeting of the World Economic Forum.

The theme of this year’s conference is “Cooperation in a fragmented world”, a reference to the multiple crises and geopolitical tensions currently shaking the globe as Russia’s war in Ukraine enters its second year.

Discussions on the programme are heavily linked to climate change, but activists fear greenwashing will take centre stage as CEOs of oil and gas companies rub shoulders with global leaders.

“Davos is of course dominated by a wealthy group of people,” said Ugandan climate activist Vanessa Nakate who spoke to journalists on Wednesday (11 January).

“Oil and gas CEOs are invited into the forum to greenwash their businesses. It’s not hard to be cynical about the prospects for climate justice after spending a week there,” she added.

According to research published last week in the journal Science, US oil major ExxonMobil publicly downplayed climate change for decades, despite evidence from its own scientists who had made accurate predictions about global warming already since the late 1970s.

Campaigners including Nakate and Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg will travel to Switzerland in the coming days to bring a “cease and desist” letter to oil and gas CEOs, demanding they stop any new oil and gas project.

“If you fail to act immediately, be advised that citizens around the world will consider taking any and all legal action to hold you accountable. And we will keep protesting in the streets in huge numbers,” says the letter, addressed to fossil fuel CEOs.

‘Double talk’

Activists will also ramp up pressure on rich nations to increase climate finance to developing countries. The past year has seen a “historic” agreement to establish a loss and damage fund at the COP27 climate summit as well as the Bridgetown initiative which aims at reforming the global financial infrastructure to tackle climate change.

“These decisions show there is acceptance for the need for major financial support to vulnerable countries as the climate crisis worsens,” Nakate remarked, adding that, while the good intentions are there, the gap in climate finance is still major.

In the European Union, the commitment to decarbonise has been challenged by the energy crisis, leading to a greater reliance on fossil fuels to replace Russian gas.

For this reason, the upcoming Davos meeting will feature “double talking” and “mixed messages” by corporate executives, said Desiree Fixler, chair of the non-profit initiative VentureESG.

There will be “statements like: we’re still committed to net-zero but we have to manage this transition and take into account the accelerating cost of living, so we have to stay invested in fossil fuels,” Fixler said.

“I just don’t buy it,” she added, underlining that it is not possible to reconcile the commitment to net zero while at the same time investing in new fossil fuel projects.

The blame doesn’t lie only with corporate leaders though, according to Rachel Kyte, a British academic and dean of the Fletcher School at Tufts University.

“I just get the feeling that corporate leaders are feeling the pressure from all sides,” Kyte stated, adding that well-intentioned corporate leaders are frustrated because government action is slow in giving regulatory certainty, forcing to “voluntarily make up the rules as we go along”.

Overall, Kyte said she wasn’t expecting anything meaningful to come out of Davos.

Full article here.

  1. Curious George says:

    Would it be better to fill the conference room with 50 clones of Greta?

  2. oldbrew says:

    ‘it is not possible to reconcile the commitment to net zero while at the same time investing in new fossil fuel projects’

    The world is 80% fuel powered, like it or not.

  3. catweazle666 says:

    Economist Jeff Currie of Goldman Sachs (Global Head of Commodities Research in the Global Investment Research Division): “Here’s a stat for you, as of January of this year. At the end of last year, overall, fossil fuels represented 81 percent of overall energy consumption. Ten years ago, they were at 82. So though, all of that investment in renewables, you’re talking about 3.8 trillion, let me repeat that $3.8 trillion of investment in renewables moved fossil fuel consumption from 82 to 81 percent, of the overall energy consumption. But you know, given the recent events and what’s happened with the loss of gas and replacing it with coal, that number is likely above 82.” … The net of it is clearly we haven’t made any progress.”

    Since then due to Putin’s activities it’s very likely to have risen back to 82% again – and climbing.

    I think the horse has already bolted.

  4. Bazz says:

    The oil companies could say “We will cease all deliveries of petrol, diesel aviation fuels and marine fuels from 31st January ” We can then meet and discuss this matter further.

  5. Phoenix44 says:

    “slow in giving regulatory certainty.”

    In other words governments aren’t banning stuff quickly enough for businesses to know what to invest in. But the fact remains, people don’t want bans and any acceleration in Net Zero will lead to a long and deep recession or worse.

  6. liardetg says:

    Lord Lawson’s article in the London Spectator last November predicted Net Zero will bring ‘an unparalleled economic calamity’ to the UK. Seen nothing to contradict that.

  7. oldbrew says:

    The WEF Is A Cult Wrapped In A Grift Wrapped In An Enigma

    The World Economic Forum, which meets this week in Davos, Switzerland, is fighting back against conspiracy theorists who say it and its founder Klaus Schwab are seeking global domination through a “great reset” aimed at stripping the masses of their private property, deindustrializing the economy, and making everybody eat bugs.
    . . .
    But the WEF has proven to be highly secretive, even as it urges corporations to disclose more information.

    When Public asked WEF how Klaus Schwab Foundation invests its assets, a WEF spokesperson noted that the Foundation differs from WEF and added, “Swiss law does not require financial reporting for foundations.”

  8. oldbrew says:

    Davos 2023: UN chief urges credible net-zero pledges; slams ‘Big Oil’ firms
    Guterres compared fossil fuel sector to the cigarette industry in the 1970s, where businesses were aware of the harmful health impact
    – – –
    How did this joker get to Davos – on a horse? Not likely 🛫

    He’s away with the climate fairies here…

    “Every week brings a new climate horror story”
    – – –
    Weather is always doing something unpleasant somewhere. What’s new?

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