DITCHED: Is 2020 the Tipping Point for Fossil Fuel Divestment?

 

By Julia Pyper, Host/Producer, Political Climate

Despite economic disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, a growing number of countries, companies and financial institutions are committing to quit coal and are beginning to ditch oil and gas projects, too. 

In this episode of Political Climate’s special DITCHED series, host Julia Pyper speaks to Tim Buckley at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) about what’s driving the increase in fossil fuel exits around the globe, including in historically coal-dependent economies such as China and India. Buckley argues the pandemic was a “wake up call” to financiers who realized, looking at the virus’ impacts, that the cost of climate inaction, would be higher than making the transition now.

Buckley is bullish on renewable energy as it has accelerated every month this year, especially solar because the cost is dropping so fast.  In November 2020 the price of solar hit its lowest price ever in India — dropping 15% over the last six months — causing a major energy disruption and putting us on a path toward decarbonization, and much faster than previously estimated.

Will 2020 prove to be a tipping point in the energy-finance transition?

Recommended resources:

  • IEEFA: Why 2020 is turning out be a pivotal year for fossil fuel exits
  • IEA: Renewable power is defying the Covid crisis with record growth this year and next
  • Argus: Coal India to diversify into solar power
  • PV Tech: Indian solar tariffs fall to record low following SECI auction
  • Reuters: Satellites reveal major new gas industry methane leaks
  • IEEFA: Is the Gas Industry Facing Its Volkswagen Moment?

Episodes of DITCHED will air Mondays over the next several weeks. Listen and subscribe to Political Climate on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, Google Play or wherever you get podcasts! You can also find DITCHED episodes via Our Daily Planet.

 

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