The world already has more fossil fuels than we can afford to burn if we want to avoid catastrophic climate change.
The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says that only 1,000 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide can be emitted from now on, for a reasonable chance of keeping global temperature rises below 2 degrees.
Even a 2 degree rise is far from safe, and brings with it major impacts and risks.
But existing proven reserves of fossil fuels, if extracted and burned, would emit 2,800 billion tonnes.
This means that the vast majority of proven reserves of oil, coal and gas need to be kept in the ground – they are unburnable.
Keep fossil fuels in the ground
The UK Government claims to want to tackle climate change, but it is going full steam ahead to extract and burn as much new fossil fuel as possible. It is:
- giving multi-billion tax breaks to get more North Sea oil and gas drilled
- going all out for shale gas, supporting the fracking industry in its attempts to frack throughout the UK.
Friends of the Earth energy campaigns
- Friends of the Earth is campaigning for an end to new fossil fuel extraction projects.
In the UK we are focusing on fracking, working alongside other anti-fracking organisations.
- Friends of the Earth also believes that the UK financial sector, an international powerhouse, has a major role to play in tackling climate change.
One aspect of this sector is the pensions industry. We are part of a campaigning alliance aiming to push the pensions sector into taking climate change much more seriously.