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'Biggest Pile of Money on the Planet' To Dump Fossil Fuels Holdings


#1

'Biggest Pile of Money on the Planet' To Dump Fossil Fuels Holdings

Julia Conley, staff writer

In 'astonishing' move, Norwegian government advised to divest its sovereign wealth fund of all its shares in oil and gas industry

About six percent of Norway's sovereign wealth fund is invested in oil and gas companies—but the countries central bank advised that all those shares be dumped, amid falling oil prices and expectations of a dim future for fossil fuels.

#2

We could learn so much from our Scandinavian friends.


#3

Not astonishing at all profoundly sensible. Though logically you should stage that investment through cleaner and cleaner fossil fuel resources. First coal, than oil and than gas. Natural gas ie methane is not as large a problem as the methane is worse that it’s product via burning carbon dioxide, and that industry should in part be preserved ie burning methane produced by waste treatment to create useful energy.
They should also advise Norwegians to divest their fossil fuel assets. The worst thing expect US pension funds to buy all those dying acts, in an act of betrayal and corruption. Better to get out early whilst value is high, than lose everything with the inevitable mass bankruptcies.


#4

This bears close watching since Norway is a major petroleum producer. It would be like the U.S. or Saudi Arabia getting out of petroleum.

Wait. Nope, the capitalist U.S. does not have a sovereign fund.

And one other problem: who will actually buy these shares for anything that resembles their current price? Maybe the U.S. will create a sovereign fund, get the Federal Reserve to create some credit and buy them.

Oh, the wonderful world of capitalism as it devours itself…and the rest of us.


#5

Every fossil fuel company is legally liable for all the damage that they do to their neighbors, neighbors who never asked for climate change. The value of fossil fuel company stock, like the value of tobacco company stock, needs to be predicated on that payout.


#6

It will be interesting, if not fun, to watch Big Fossil and Big Nuke go under.


#7

Let us just wait and see if the Norwegian right-wing government gives that divestment instruction.Norway’s sovereign wealth fund holds a 2.3 percent stake in Royal Dutch Shell, 1.7 percent stake in BP, 0.9 percent stake in Chevron and 0.8 percent of ExxonMobil. The government is now expected to consider the recommendations, with a decision and parliamentary vote not expected until next summer at the earliest. And there has been opposition in the past to such off-loading.

It is a hopeful sign as the fund has a record of ethical divestments such as from tobacco. But it may not be clear cut. UK’s largest armament corporation, BAE, has been invested in by the Fund.

Deputy Central Bank Governor Egil Matsen told Reuters that the recommendation was designed to minimise exposure to fluctuating oil prices.

“It clearly stands out, perhaps not surprisingly, but not obviously, that indeed there is a substantial difference … in return between the oil and gas sector and the broad stock market in periods when the oil price changes substantially,” Matsen said. “Oil price exposure of the government’s wealth position can be reduced by not having the fund invested in oil and gas stocks.”…little reference to climate change.

It isn’t a new move. Back in 2014 it took its money out of coal an that too was about price threats

And let us not avoid the contradiction - the fund is partly financed by North Sea Oil


#8

Just hope Big Nuke goes out with a whimper, not a bang!
;-})


#9

That will be interesting to watch considering the fact that you will in fact still require some way to petrochemical substitutes and we do not have enough resources for worldwide battery and hydro storage.

Oh and then theres these:







#10

You realize it is physically impossible for nuclear reactors to explode like a bomb. Maybe if you spent a little more time hitting the science books instead of parading in “green energy” marches you would’ve known that…


#11

If they were legally liable for the externality damage then it would not be called an externality. In order to be an externality the pollution has to be unintentional. Now you can argue that the fossil fuel companies knew they were polluting and that is true, but they will also say that they were producing enough energy to meet demand which is also a fact, and in order to produce this energy there are unintended consequences like pollution. What I find interesting is that you compare the fossil fuel industry to the tobacco industry, yet you still buy and use petroleum on a regular basis thus illustrating an inherent need for fossil fuel product. Tobacco does not serve as an inherent need, and therefore this comparison is rather misleading. Furthermore you suggest that the fossil fuel industry is liable for pollution, yet every single industry pollutes and releases GHGs. How come you are not calling for all energy industries to pay forward a proportional amount of damages equal to the pollution they emit? Fossil fuels would still owe more, but you would be recognizing that all energy sources are responsible for emissions.


#12

Right. Nuclear is perfectly safe. Nothing to be concerned about. And nuclear can be profitable for the few, just like fossil fuel.

In a way nuclear is just fucking wonderful. We can store the waste on marginal land only inhabited by indigenous people.


#13

Statistically speaking nuclear does in fact have the 2nd lowest mortality rate only behind wind energy, and this includes Chernobyl.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesconca/2016/09/30/the-deathprint-of-energy-grapples-with-the-powers-of-regulation/#42d9978f2c6b

Statistically speaking nuclear does in fact have the 2nd lowest lifecycle GHG emissions only behind wind energy.

Nuclear is responsible for .04% of all radiation that you are exposed to on a daily basis.
http://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/safety-and-security/radiation-and-health/nuclear-radiation-and-health-effects.aspx
http://www.world-nuclear.org/information-library/safety-and-security/radiation-and-health/radiation-and-life.aspx

Current nuclear suffers from economic trouble, but this is largely due to extrapolation of historical military water cooled reactors, extensive regulation after nuclear accidents that either had nothing to do with US reactors or would never have prevented a nuclear accident in the US, and mandatory postponed liscencing after nuclear accidents. You are correct that current reactor are uneconomical. However, I do NOT support current US policy on nuclear reactor technology or waste disposal. I support what nuclear science invented 50-70 years ago. I support reactors made in the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s that were revolutionary in increasing safety, increasing efficiency, and reducing costs. We suffer today from the disease that is assuming we should continue to build reactors as we always have been. This was never how the nuclear industry was supposed to grow.

I do NOT support long term deep geological waste depository.

  1. Humanity cannot build structures that will last as long as transuranic waste.
  2. Deep Geological Depositories are a humungous waste of resources and resource value
  3. We would be literally throwing potential fuel into the ground.
  4. There are current technologies used by the federal government that can separate nuclear waste and reuse it for industrial purposes that can help the economy and save lives.
  5. We have technology that can greatly reduce the half lives of very long term transuranic waste.

If you are actually interested in learning about waste reduction methods, I would encourage you to look into metallurgical Pyro-Processing at Argonne National Laboratory and the Department of Energy’s Advanced Burner Reactor technology.


#14

This will leave many a fossil fuel mafia media shill posing as supposedly impartial business press with a real quandary. The Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund is the gold standard for hedge funds both in terms of return on investment and transparency. It also one of the largest such funds on the planet (the Saudi one is bigger). One of their fave subjects just went public with what many a savvy investor has known for quite a while: fossil fuels as a sector is in the grip of the Law of Diminishing Return & the smart money has been getting out as soon as they can. In fact, investors requesting of their wealth managers that they divest from fossil fuels is the #1 such client demand for several years running, aping the 90’s money flight from tobacco. Now the ball is in the court of the USA’s largest institutional investor, CalPERS.


#15

For crying out loud, I’ve never said reactors can “explode like a bomb,” although if you watch the film of Fukushima, there are some pretty good explosions there. (Mostly Hydrogen explosions, I’m told.)
*No, I consider reactors to be “slow acting bombs,” especially when they are not maintained well, to save costs. Radiation from a leaking reactor, from “spent” fuel leakage, inability to properly store the leftovers, and there are a lot of them, many close to population centers.
*The Fermi Breeder Reactor near Detroit, Chernobyl, TMI, Fukushima, and many other problems of contamination of water, leakages into the soil at many reactors.
*I gather that you feel that dying of cancer from leaked radiation is preferable to dying of cancer from the radiation effects of a bomb.
*My preference is to avoid both, by ending nuclear weaponry, and ending our dependence on the “slow bomb” in your neighborhood.
*Great strides have been made in renewables, wind, water, solar, geothermal, etc. That is where we should be putting our money and expertise, phasing out gas, oil, coal, and nuclear as quickly as possible.
*Otherwise, I fear that within a generation or two, the question may become moot, unless we can morph into high temperature carbon dioxide breathers.
;-})


#16

I would encourage you to read my sources above on other posts, because otherwise Ill have to keep reposting them and CD doesn’t appear to like that. Lets go through your comment shall we:

  1. "although if you watch the film of Fukushima, there are some pretty good explosions there. (Mostly Hydrogen explosions, I’m told.):
    Yes Fukushima experiences a hydrogen reaction as pressurized gas was released through venting lines to avoid pressure rupture in the reactor vessel. The phenomena occurred because coolant boiled, temperature increased pressure increased, and hydrogen formed as a reaction from zirconium cladding on fuel rods.

  2. "Radiation from a leaking reactor, from “spent” fuel leakage."
    Does material leak from nuclear reactors occasionally? Yes it has happened before. Is all radiation dangerous? Depends on how specific you want to be. Yes ionizing radiation from radioactive material damages your cells, but if you conform to the zero threshold line that many environmentalists like to propose they make society live in a very interesting situation. Nuclear reactors leak radiation yes. However, the radiation that the average human is exposed by nuclear reactors is substantially lower than background radiation sources. Heres an experiment: Take a breath… OMG you have just been exposed to radiation!!! Congrats you just inhaled Radon 222, which is a radioactive isotope of Radon.

    a. So how come you aren’t dead or have medical issues? Because radiation is little bit more complicated. Just because you are exposed to radiation does not mean that you will start growing other limbs. We live on a naturally radioactive planet. The fact is the radiation that the average person is exposed from a reactor is such small concentrations that you are not in danger. If you want to bring up incidents in specific locations were there may have been a cancer cluster from material those are relatively outlier events, and I can just as easily point to events in which mean have been contaminated from silicon tetrachloride solar waste, petrochemicals used in wind, workplace death of hydro, and silicon dioxide inhalation of geothermal.

  3. " inability to properly store the leftovers,"
    This argument is so outrageous. The Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 was the start of developing permanent storage for nuclear waste so it would not require interim storage. Base on initial plans the Yucca Mountain Depository was supposed to have been constructed, designated and installed by the 1990s, and was entirely paid for by nuclear facilities to the tune of $750 million per year. This plan did not happen, because for 35 years this country has stalled their feet to make any kind of plan regarding long term waste disposal. How dare you attempt to suggest that nuclear is unable to properly store materials. The nuclear industry has been trying to for decades. Every time a new solution comes up it is lobbied and dented, and then those same dumb moronic people who just lobbied against it come back and claim that nuclear has no solution. The nuclear industry has paid $30 BILLION for waste disposal that has since been terminated for political reasoning. Why the industry has not received these funds back, despite the whole deal being a complete fraud by the US Congress, I have no idea. Don’t ever try to blame this on nuclear though. You do not get to blame the industry, for a problem continued by the US government.

  4. "there are a lot of them, many close to population centers"
    There are about 100 of them in the USA which produce 19.7% of all electricity. In major cities they can make up an even larger percentage share. For example in New York City nuclear makes up 25% of electricity consumption, and in Chicago nuclear makes up 32% of electricity production. This why replacing nuclear can be problem, as terminating a few reactors can eliminate 1/4 of a major metropolitan area’s power supply. The upsetting part is that nuclear has never once been replaced by solar and wind. Even in super green California, its pretty interesting that two plants close and wouldn’t you know natural production magically increases. In New York since Indian Point is closing in 2021, 6 new natural gas plants are under construction. Maybe its just a giant coincidence? While youre complaining about radiation that have never actually medically affected you, we are increasing our CO2 output that does actually medically effect you.

  5. "I gather that you feel that dying of cancer from leaked radiation is preferable to dying of cancer from the radiation effects of a bomb.:
    Very interesting theory, but nuclear accidents have never actually increased cancer rates in society. These aren’t my words, but the words of over 15 medical organizations and subsequent studies made over the last 35 years. Additionally you are not even exposed equivalent amounts of radiation from a bomb versus a reactor. A bomb is literally the polar opposite of a nuclear reactor in that its objective is make the largest nuclear chain to reach critically, while a nuclear reactor’s purpose is to control and moderate nuclear chains for long consistent power production. WMDs have enrichment of 90% compared to reactors at 5%. This means that a WMD’s fuel material is primarily Uranium 235, and it also means youre going to have a lot more fission reactions. If you have a lot more fission reactions and they occur in very split second times and you are immediately exposed to this radiation, it means that you will be exposed to hundreds of isotopes that have extremely short half lives (.00000001 seconds to 3 minutes). A short half life is actually much worse medically speaking because it means you are exposed to more material per unit of time. This is why the fallout is so devastating. In a nuclear reactor the spent fuel you may be exposed to is not going to contain very short half life material. This is why your comparison is severally flawed.

  6. "Great strides have been made in renewables, wind, water, solar, geothermal, etc. That is where we should be putting our money and expertise"
    You have been making great stride in that technology for 120 years, and yet it still produces less electricity combined than 100 45 year old reactors.


#17

Scandinavia leading the world in economic, social structure and moral, ethical fronts. Indeed the world has a lot to learn from their leadership.