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Science

Cities Are Scolding Countries at UN Climate Conference To Cut Emissions (vice.com) 159

A reader shares a report: An alliance of major cities including New York, Toronto, and London challenged nation states attending the United Nations climate talks in Bonn, Germany this week "to kick dirty carbon to the curb" and immediately "commit and work straightaway towards carbon neutrality, 100 percent renewable energy, zero-waste and zero-carbon." The Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance is a new collaboration of 20 international cities (other members include Washington DC, San Francisco, Oslo, and Sydney). All are striving for carbon neutrality and cutting greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80 percent by 2050. "Dirty fuels and climate disruption are killing and displacing millions of citizens around the world," the Alliance stated in a strongly-worded letter sent to every country's delegation at climate talks, known as COP 23. "Cities are on the frontline of climate impacts. We see the urgency of climate action and need nation-states to be as committed as we are," Johanna Partin, the director of the Alliance and former advisor to the mayor of San Francisco, told Motherboard by phone.
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Cities Are Scolding Countries at UN Climate Conference To Cut Emissions

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    All those cities the TALL buildings should require the tall buildings to have windmills on them.
    Then the power is generated close to where it is being used. Windmills in the countryside are and eyesore.
    Perhaps photovoltaic window too.
    Get the carbon out of YOUR city before you start trying to run mine.

    • Your proposals don't make a lot of sense.

      Rooftop windmills are not efficient. They are too small and the skyline is too uneven. I read that they don't even break even in energy. Also, the city landscape changes too quickly compared to the optimal lifetime of a windmill.

      The technology for putting them in windows isn't mature enough. Photovoltaics on the roofs make some more sense, at least for buildings not in the shade of taller buildings. But it isn't going to provide nearly enough power to power the build

      • I read that they don't even break even in energy.

        Buildings don't break even on sprinkler systems, either.
        Sometimes doing what is good for others is enough.
        Of course that involves regulation(!) since no developer would do that unless forced to.

        Photovoltaics on the roofs make some more sense, at least for buildings not in the shade of taller buildings. But it isn't going to provide nearly enough power to power the building.

        They don't need to power the whole building.

        If they can provide 10% of the building's summer A/C energy cost,
        that would be a win for the building's owners and a huge win for the environment.

  • it's like Wesley Mouch at the Bureau of Economic Planning and National Resources is writing these, backed up by Dr Stadler's science upon which everyone (everyone who's anyone) agrees.
  • This is why I'm not worried about the climate accord Trump pulled the US out of. Cities, states, and people are stepping up to take care of the environment on their own. An that is how it should be.

    We need to breed a environmental conscious generation and no try to legislate one into existence.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      So Trump was right all along? We don't need big government, we can do it ourselves? You know how toxic that idea is? It has the potential to poison globalism for decades to come. Don't let Trump win, /r/esist!
      • by jwhyche ( 6192 )

        I'm not going to get in to another debate weather Trump was right or wrong about that. All I'm saying is I have more faith in people and local governments than I do in big government to do the right thing.

        • by jwhyche ( 6192 )

          Wait. I see what you did there. Very nicely done.

        • by Anonymous Coward

          Why? What has the federal government done to harm your life?

          If you live in Flint your local government did a lot to harm your life. If you're in any one of dozens of cities in Oklahoma now suffering earthquakes regularly you again have your local government to thank.

          Go back in time a little bit to pre-EPA era and you had rivers and lake catching on fire again due to local governments permitting just about anything.

          These are all mamby-pamby environmental issues you say? Again, history is not on your side

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            You're talking about some previous era before Lois Lerner and globalist neo-liberalism. Governments have a terrifying amount of power today, and they are not using those powers for the good of their people.

            Funny you should mention Flint, the local government there was so incompetent that their ability to govern themselves was taken away by the adults. All the more reason to govern yourselves, distant rulers don't care about you and never will.

            • Flint, the local government there was so incompetent that their ability to govern themselves was taken away by the adults.

              Where the "adults" were the federal government.

      • Trump is not right, Trump is not wrong. The only thing Trump really does is the opposite of what Obama did. "Obama did that? I better undo that." "Obama didn't do that thing? I better do that thing!"
    • by Ichijo ( 607641 )

      Cities, states, and people are stepping up to take care of the environment on their own. An that is how it should be.

      That's like saying when a freeway gets congested, cities along that freeway should step up and widen their portion of it and hope the other cities do the same, instead of depending on the state or federal government to do it for them.

      But that's how we get bottlenecks.

      • Exactly. It's much better to sacrifice everything on the altar of Efficiency. What kind of moron wouldn't want to live in a world where every facet of life is decreed from on high by noble, enlightened bureaucrats? If we don't act now to stop this plague of "self determination", why, the economy might only grow at 3.6% next quarter. This is a travesty, and it shall not be tolerated. Just think of all the heavy handed social policy we're missing out on, all of the minuscule reductions in meaningless sta

        • What kind of moron wouldn't want to live in a world where every facet of life is decreed from on high by noble, enlightened bureaucrats?

          You're forgetting that "liberty" includes the rights of your neighbours
          to fuck you over anytime they want to.

          And if there is enough of them, and they are well armed,
          then there is sweet fuck all that you can do about it.
          That's what life in all failed states (e.g. Somalia, Afghanistan) is like.

    • by jwhyche ( 6192 )

      Oh some moderator got his panties in a wad. I wonder why? Because Trump was mentioned with out being condemned? Well good thing I have karma out the ass.

  • You don't like our record on the environment? Because you have to deal with the inevitable concentration of pollution that results from your population densities?

    Fine. Whey don't you grow your own food, mine your own minerals (and process them), and generate your own energy within your city limits. Cities can just STFU as long as they consume all the goodies that everyone else produces. You want carbon neutral food (for example)? We'll stop delivering it. You can just get your butts out to the farm and do

  • One of the interesting things is that modern appliances designed to reduce emissions use less energy, which drives down utility bills.

    New buildings typically use 20-30 percent as much energy as the old buildings they replace. Running factories in the dark and using LED lighting and modern equipment cuts heat buildup, so you spend far far less on heating and cooling buildings. Building modern factories with solar roofs allows you to run ceiling fans, cuts maintenance, and makes you much more competitive than

    • That's terrible if you're a energy company. What you want is for energy usage to go down but billing to go up. Here in California I feel like I use less energy each year but my power bill goes up a little bit more each year.

      • Residential electricity consumption has been going down for more than a decade now.

        Your bill goes up because you have wildfires that destroy energy infrastructure from the sources - solar farms in adjacent states, wind from WA/OR/ID, hydro from WA/OR/BC/ID - and you have to replace it.

        Put some solar panels on your building and your utility costs will plummet. Most Californians already know that. India is going for a mix of solar and wind too. The world isn't stopping. As the article points out.

  • The cost of compliance is trivial for those promoting this change, but is significant for those being pushed to accept it. Better to mine to the last rock, pump oil to the last drop, or split atoms to the last reaction. Anything else is less consistent.
  • It's hard to tell from the article and their accompanying documents what exactly it means for a city to join this alliance. It could just be some bureaucrat in an obscure agency nobody heard of signing up for some nice conferences overseas. I doubt it has any significance beyond virtue signaling.
  • From TFA:

    Itâ(TM)s a tired myth that there is a conflict between environmental protection and economic growth, Partin said.

    If we want environmental protection without killing the economy then we need to take a list of what's "green" and what's cheap and see where they overlap, then use those.

    What's low on CO2 output? Look here:
    http://www.world-nuclear.org/u... [world-nuclear.org]
    (Page 7 has a nice chart BTW)

    What's cheap? Look here:
    https://www.instituteforenergy... [institutef...search.org]
    (Charts and graphs near the bottom of the page.)

    Looks to me like the winners are wind, hydro, and nuclear. Of course future developments will shift these numbers around so let

    • Looks to me like the winners are wind, hydro, and nuclear.

      The biggest and cheapest winner is increased energy efficiency. Get those old energy-wasting buildings, vehicles and appliances to the dump.

  • The easy way to do this is just end manufacturing. We can all move to the country and engage in subsistence farming. How're your farming skills?

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