We are a small Episcopal Church on the banks of the Rappahannock in Port Royal, Virginia. We acknowledge that we gather on the traditional land of the first people of Port Royal, the Nandtaughtacund, who are still here, and we honor with gratitude the land itself and the life of the Rappahannock Tribe. Our mission statement is to do God’s Will in all that we do.

Climate Change – Some improvements in trends

The bottom line – There have been some improvements in trends noted since the last Season of Creation. The increase in emissions has been reduced.  People and enterprises are taking this subject seriously. The need for reduction in emissions has been addressed by countries, companies and many levels of government

Our goal is a Net Zero position by 2050.  Net zero refers to the balance between the amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) that’s produced and the amount that’s removed from the atmosphere. We have a long way to go by 2050 to get to our goals where we are balanced – Net Zero.

       1 The rate of increase in emissions has slowed somewhat since 2005

From C2es.org  “ We estimate that U.S. net greenhouse emissions are now 17 percent below 2005 levels in 2021. Electric power sector emissions have fallen nearly 36 percent (2005 – 2021) as a result of a shift from coal to natural gas, increased use of renewable energy and leveling of electricity demand.

The transportation sector emissions fell almost 9 percent, while industrial sector emissions fell by a little more than 4 percent over the same period.”

  1. 45 countries in the world including the United States, the UK and most western democracies are in fact cutting their emissions or are planning to do so. Since around 2019, the UN estimates a total of over 110 countries have set net zero emissions target for around mid-century, including China (responsible for 28% of global emissions)

The US s goal  100 percent clean power by 2035 and slashing 2005 climate pollution levels in half by 2030.

  1. Disclosures provided from companies

In March,2022 the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) released a statement outlining proposed rules that would require publicly held companies to provide climate risk data and greenhouse gas emissions to regulators and investors. Companies would also be responsible for reporting annually on progress toward their targets

Example – Alphabet (Google)

Alphabet is the world’s largest corporate buyer of renewable energy, which includes more than 50 projects totaling 5.5 GW of renewable energy projects under contract worldwide. This accounts for an annual deficit of approximately five million tons of

carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. By 2030, Alphabet plans to become the first major company to operate full-time on carbon-free energy. It plans to do so by continuing to invest in renewable energy generation and storage technologies that can also benefit other businesses 

  1. Virginia

The Virginia Clean Economy Act mandates that Dominion Energy switch to renewable energy by 2045 though there are recent questions whether they can make it. Appalachian Power, which serves southwest Virginia, must go carbon-free by 2050.

Almost all the state’s coal plants will have to shut down by the end of 2024 under the new law.

Fredericksburg – In 2019, City Council passed the 100% Renewable Energy Resolution, which committed the City of Fredericksburg to have 100% renewable energy power municipal operations by 2035

  1. Climate change is being included in budgets. You need to allocate resources

The Oslo Norway Climate Budget, was put forward for the first time in 2016.  A climate budget is a governance tool. It structures and organizes how we can get from climate target policies and words to action and results. It also makes all parts of the administration in Oslo a stakeholder to the climate goalsThe  climate budget, which is measured in tons of CO2 emissions, is fully integrated in the municipal budget.

  1. Consultants

Climate Ready America is a proposal for a nationwide system of climate support services to help communities do their part to address climate change. It creates a civic infrastructure that will partner with the federal government to leverage and support the climate mitigation and adaptation programs of federal agencies and other organizations, helping those tools reach the ground.

Project Drawdown – Drawdown refers to the future point in time when levels of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere stop climbing and starts to  decline.. Central to the project is the compilation of a list of the “most substantive solutions to global warming.” The list of 100, which encompasses only technologically viable existing solutions, was compiled by a team of more than 200 scholars, scientists, policymakers, business leaders, and activists and is now online.

  1. Laws

Inflation Reduction Act – The IRA directs nearly $400 billion in federal funding to clean energy, with the goal of substantially lowering the nation’s carbon emissions by the end of this decade. The funds will be delivered through a mix of tax incentives, grants, and loan guarantees. Clean electricity and transmission command the biggest slice, followed by clean transportation, including electric-vehicle (EV) incentives. 270 new clean energy projects have been announced since 2022. These investments are expected to be accompanied by more than 86,000 jobs. 

       8. Small positives. Do you use Google maps for travel ? In 2021, they instituted a new feature to guide users along the most environmentally friendly routes possible. Today, Google estimates that has saved a total of 1.2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions (250,000 internal combustion engines). Soon, drivers will be able to specify their vehicle type in Google Maps—whether diesel, gas, hybrid, or electric. The app will then optimize accordingly, taking into account the strengths of the relevant powertrain

       9 Renewables are cheaper than ever and are really starting to be able to compete against conventional fossil-fuel methods of power generation. Costs have been slashed in recent years and will continue to drop in the years to come. In some parts of the world, its already a more cost effective option to build a renewable energy plant (wind or solar farm) than build a fossil fuel powered plant.