Saturday, January 10, 2015

Most of the reserves of fossil fuels will have to be explored to avoid climate change

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Most of the vast oil reserves of the former USSR, the United States, the Arctic and the Middle East, as well as coal from China and from the African continent may have to remain unfulfilled in order to avoid serious climate change. The conclusion of a new study that analyzed the fossil fuel reserves that cannot be exploited.

According to the study by two researchers at the University College of London, one-third of oil, half of the natural gas and more than 80% of the existing coal reserves will have to remain underground in order to avoid global warming more than two degrees Celsius by 2100. The study reinforces the idea that companies and investors should consider carefully the reserves of fossil fuels as financial assets. The idea also applies to countries whose economies rely heavily on these natural resources.

This is not the first research to calculate the amount of reserves that must be explored. However, the analysis of Christophe McGlade and Paul Ekins is the first to present a meticulous level of detail, indicating what could happen to the production of fossil fuels in the different areas of the globe.

"We now have tangible figures on the quantities and locations of fossil fuels that should be explored in an attempt to limit warming to two degrees Celsius," said Christophe McGlade to the Guardian.

Reservations must be indicated in the unexplored study result from the difference between the amount of greenhouse gases that would be released if all reservations were exploited and the maximum amount of these gases that can be released into the air so that the temperature does not increase by more than two degrees by the end of the century.

Foto: Gary Rides Bikes/Creative Commons

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