The North Sea oil and gas industry is the gift that keeps on giving when it comes to emitting dangerous greenhouse gases.
Shell and Exxon are packing up and moving out of the famous Brent oil and gas field in the North Sea. As a final hurrah, almost 800,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide will be emitted as four platforms are dismantled and parts are either left to erode in the ocean or moved onshore and recycled.
That’s equal to about five percent of the UK's North Sea industry’s annual emissions — from the start to very end, the Brent oil field continues to contribute to climate change.
But emitting hundreds of thousands of tonnes of dangerous greenhouse gases including carbon dioxide, nitrous dioxide and sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere is not the only environmental danger that comes with plugging and abandoning the wells.
UK energy company Cuadrilla has begun work on its controversial shale gas site in Lancashire it was announced on 5 January.
The fracking firm started building an entrance and access road at its Preston New Road site near Little Plumpton early Thursday morning following permission to start being given by the local council on Wednesday.
It is expected the construction work, which also includes a well pad, will take about three months to be completed before drilling can start according to Cuadrilla. Should everything move smoothly for the company, the UK will see its first fracking operations since 2011 start in the spring.
The longer we delay addressing environmental problems, the more difficult it will be to resolve them. Although we’ve known about climate change and its potential impacts for a long time, and we’re seeing those impacts worsen daily, our political representatives are still approving and promoting fossil fuel infrastructure as if we had all the time in the world to slow global warming.
We can’t say we weren’t warned.
Consumers are increasingly turning away from polluting diesel and petrol cars, favouring potentially greener options, new industry data shows.
While customers seem ready to switch to cleaner cars, the government will need to reverse a recent trend and continue implement low carbon energy policies if the UK is to have a truly green transport system.
Following yesterday's Environment Audit Committee Report on the future of Britain's environment post-Brexit, Viviane Gravey of Queen's University Belfast sets out four 'green lines' by which to judge the Brexiteers' true colours.
Brexit risks harming the UK’s environment unless the government passes stiff new legislation before it triggers Article 50. That’s the conclusion of a major new report by the Environment Audit Committee, a cross-bench group of 16 MPs.
In the run-up to the referendum, most experts were very worried about the environmental impact of Brexit and, since the vote, some of these concerns have been confirmed – think, for example, of Michael Gove and John Whittingdale inviting companies to draw a wish list for a bonfire of EU social and environmental legislation. On the other hand, some environmental NGOs have launched a campaign to achieve a “Greener UK” after the vote, seizing Brexit as an opportunity to increase, not decrease, environmental ambition.
The UK ended 2016 with lots of new faces adorning the front pages, along with some more familiar ones.
DeSmog UK takes a look at the people behind the major climate and energy stories this year (in no particular order).
And wonders, what will they do in 2017?
No, it wasn’t all a dream, 2016 really did happen. And for those who view tackling climate change as a priority in order to minimize its impact on people and the environment, it was a particularly overwhelming year. You’d be forgiven for simply wanting to go into hibernation mode and wait for it all to be over.
For many, the scale and pace of change is unprecedented, and it’s coming at us from all angles: political, social, and environmental.
From Brexit to Trump, it may seem like 2016 was a bit of a disaster in the climate arena.
But look closely enough and you’ll see it wasn’t all bad news in Britain.
DeSmog UK takes you through five positive things that happened for clean energy and climate policy this year.