By David Powell, associate director, environment, at the New Economics Foundation (NEF). This article has been cross-posted from NEF.
If you’re the boss of BP, Chevron or Shell, how worried are you right now?
171 governments put pen to paper last week, formally signing the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. The New York event was an encouraging, albeit largely symbolic, confirmation of December’s commitment to limit temperature rises to two degrees or lower.
The world has spoken; the science is clear; the likes of Mark Carney continue to warn about the economic risk of drilling like there’s no tomorrow. Paris provokes a very simple acid test: most of the world’s known reserves of oil, coal and gas will have to be kept in the ground – and you can forget prospecting for more.
There’s only one problem: oil companies don’t seem to have noticed.
Two companies are being investigated for a conflict of interest in acting on both sides of negotiations related to fracking in the East Midlands,...