高爾警告:碳災難降臨 是採取非暴力抗爭的時候了! | 環境資訊中心

高爾警告:碳災難降臨 是採取非暴力抗爭的時候了!

2008年10月03日
摘譯自2008年9月27日ENS美國,紐約報導,YT Chen 編譯;莫聞審校

高爾。攝影:David Lam「我相信我們已經到了該採取非暴力抗爭手段的階段,以阻止未加裝碳捕集和封存設備的燃煤電廠繼續興建!」高爾9月底於紐約希爾頓舉行的「柯林頓全球行動計畫」(Clinton Global Initiative)開幕式上,發表這番談話,並博得滿堂采。

燃煤電廠排放出的溫室氣體二氧化碳,與大氣層其他保熱氣體相混合,覆蓋地球並且造成全球溫度上升。碳捕集和封存是將溫室氣體與大氣阻絕的方法,但該技術尚在發展初期,且唯一由美國主導的「未來發電」計畫(FutureGen),於今年稍早已被聯邦政府終止。

這位前美國副總統和諾貝爾和平獎得主用他的電影「不願面對的真相」使世人驚覺全球暖化的危機,並強烈警告全球氣候可怕的現狀,因為他相信人類正逐步在對抗全球暖化的戰爭中敗退。

他在布希政府和國會正努力解決的經濟危機,以及氣候危機之間作對比。但是他強調,氣候危機如不能及時防止,將是更大的災難,且時間已越顯緊迫。

高爾說:「現在,當我們在積極努力尋找緊急財政援助的當下,許多人說我們本可防範這個危機。我們本應意識到短期的貪婪將遮蔽一個清楚預知的風險。」「更嚴重災難即將到來,是採取遏阻行動的時候了!目前全世界有價值數兆美元的『次級碳資產』(sub-prime carbon assets),世人仍以為每24小時把7000萬公頓全球暖化污染物排放入大氣中是沒問題的。然而自我們上次會議之後,全世界面對氣候危機已然節節敗退。這是一場潰敗。我們正面臨徹底地失敗。風暴的力量、乾旱的強度、熱帶疾病傳播到未曾傳染過的地區,這是我們必須要改變的,一種機能性障礙、瘋狂的全球系統所帶來的結果!」

「人類歷史上第一次,我們作為一個物種,必須決定我們該做什麼?」他誇張地問,「我們應該停止未經二氧化碳封存的煤炭燃燒。單就美國而言,煤礦和石油公司在2008年前8個月已經花費5億美元在宣傳有關「乾淨煤」的謊言。」

他接著表示:「我們應該做的是投入一次性投資,將我們的能源基礎設施從依靠骯髒、危險、破壞地球可住性、價格飆漲的燃料變成依靠永久免費燃料的嶄新全球能源基礎設施,如太陽,地熱,和風力。的確是有技術不可得的神話存在。但我們所提及的技術是可獲得的。」

高爾認為在10年內,美國應該在所謂Electronet有個好的開始。Electronet是一個統一的、全國性的、「聰明」的輸電電網,擁有長途,低喪失率的輸送能力,將電力從太陽西下和風起之處,傳送到人們居住的地方。」

高爾面對氣候和能源危機的解決辦法也可以幫助解決在蘇丹達佛的人道危機。

「讓我們從達佛開始。和任何其他地方相比較,達佛有更多充足可靠的陽光。其在非洲的區塊有一個帶狀區跨越非洲大陸直抵中東。我們應該那裡建造太陽能電廠,並接通一個超級電網,橫越直布羅陀海峽和向北穿越巴爾幹半島和地中海,取代煤和石油。」

「如今,美國國會也正在處理能源問題。未經過辯論或舉辦任何一場聽證會,他們正準備解除關於油頁岩開發的限制,此舉將大大地增加每加侖汽油二氧化碳的數量。這是徹底瘋狂的舉動,證明了利益盤根錯節的碳遊說團體的財富、權力,與影響力已能扭曲政策,並摧毀了這多數決定自由辯論的幻象。」

一項關於油頁岩於聯邦西區土地生產的禁令延展在9月26日被參議院否決。除非眾議院擴大延期償付,否則該禁令將在9月底隨著本財政年度結束而失效。

在科羅拉多州、猶他州,和懷俄明州的格林河流域地質結構中的油頁岩,含有約8,000億到1.8萬億桶的石油,粗估約沙烏地阿拉伯的石油儲量的3倍。

從頁岩生產的石油將導致空氣傳播的污染物和溫室氣體散發物更加令人擔憂。也因此,美國市長議會於2008年初通過決議,反對購買由頁岩產生的石油產品。

因為整個格林河形成於科羅拉多河排水區域,水質便成為重要的議題。在2005年由石橋公司提出的研究報告警告,「關於如何防止表面和原處經營所導致水污染的相關知識還不足夠。」

美國印第安那州的燃煤電廠。照片來源:美國電力公司(AEP)至於乾淨煤,乾淨煤電美國聯盟(American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity)指出,煤提供一半美國發電能源需求。 「在過去的30 年,美國煤電業者已經在技術方面投資超過500億美元降低排放量,同時提供可負擔、可靠的電力來符合能源需求的增長。」

但是溫室氣體二氧化碳不是受管制的排放物,且布希政府已經抵抗所有來自各級政府、企業界,和環境組織有關規範二氧化碳的要求。

以高爾的觀點來說,他在柯林頓全球行動計畫面對聽眾解釋,可更新和無碳能源,節約和效率是這個世界能使自己免除氣候危機的唯一方式。

「我們所能做的最重要事情是在我們的經濟體中設定二氧化碳的價格。如你所知,我早就爭取過以二氧化碳的稅收來補貼工資稅。應該向我們的燃燒排放物課稅,而非向我們所賺的工資課稅。」

Gore Warns of Sub-Prime Carbon Catastrophe
NEW YORK, New York, September 27, 2008 (ENS)

"I believe we've reached the stage where it is time for civil disobedience to prevent the construction [applause] of new coal plants that do not have carbon capture and sequestration," Al Gore declared at the opening session of the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting this week at the Sheraton New York.

Coal-fired power plants emit the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide that is joining other heat-trapping gases in the atmosphere, blanketing the planet and raising the global temperature. Carbon capture and sequestration are methods of keeping the greenhouse gas out of the atmosphere, but the technology is in its infancy, and the only U.S. demonstration project, FutureGen, was halted by the federal government earlier this year.

The former U.S. Vice President and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate who woke the world up to the dangers of global warming with his film "An Inconvenient Truth," stepped up his warnings about the dire state of the global climate because he believes humans are losing the fight against global warming.

He drew a parallel between the economic crisis that the Bush administration and Congress are now trying to resolve, and the climate crisis - but he says the climate crisis will be much more disastrous if it is not prevented - and time is growing short.

"Now, in the midst of this frenetic effort to find a bailout, many are saying we should have prevented this. We should have realized that the short-term greed was overcoming a clear vision of what the risk was," said Gore.

"Well, now is the time to prevent a much worse catastrophe because the world has several trillion dollars in sub-prime carbon assets, based on the assumption that it is perfectly alright to put 70 million tons of global warming pollution into the atmosphere every 24 hours. Since we met here last year, the world has lost ground to the climate crisis. This is a rout," he warned. "We are losing badly."

"The strength of the storms, the depth of the drought, the movement of tropical diseases into areas that never experienced them before, this is the result of a dysfunctional, insane global system pattern that we have to change," Gore said.

For the first time in all of human history, we as a species, have to make a decision," he said, asking rhetorically, "What should we do?"

"We should stop burning coal [applause] without sequestering the CO2," said Gore, blaming the coal and oil companies for the climate crisis.

"The coal and oil companies have spent, in the United States alone, a half a billion dollars in the first eight months of this year promoting a lie that there is such a thing as clean coal," he said.

"What we should do is make a one-off investment to switch our energy infrastructure from one that depends on fuel that is dirty, dangerous, destroying the habitability of this planet and rising in price to a new global energy infrastructure that is based on fuel that is free forever: the sun [applause] and the wind and geothermal."

"There is a myth that the technology is not available. It is available," Gore said.

Gore said within 10 years the United States should have a good start on what he calls the Electronet, a unified, national "smart" power transmission grid "with long-distance, low-loss transmission capacity to take the energy from the places where the sun falls and the wind blows to the places where the people live."
Gore's solution for the climate and energy crisis may help resolve the humanitarian crisis in Darfur, Sudan as well.

"Let's start with Darfur," he proposed. "Darfur has more sunlight falling on it reliably than almost any other place. There's a belt across that part of Africa into the Middle East. We ought to build solar, electric plants there and connect them with a super grid that goes across the straits of Gibraltar and up through the Balkans and across the Mediterranean and replaces coal and oil."

"Today," he said, "the U.S. Congress is dealing with energy as well. They are, without debate and without a single hearing, preparing to lift the moratorium on the development of oil shale, which would vastly multiply the amount of CO2 from every gallon of gasoline. This is utter insanity and it demonstrates that the wealth and power and influence of the entrenched carbon lobby to twist policy and to put out illusory impressions about this that is overwhelming free debate."

An extension of the ban on oil shale production on federal lands in the West failed to pass the Senate on Friday. Unless Congress extends the moratorium, it expires at the end of September with the end of the current fiscal year.

The oil shale of the Green River geological formation in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming contains 800 billion to 1.8 trillion barrels of the equivalent of oil - roughly three times the size of Saudi Arabia's oil reserves.
Production of oil from shale will result in airborne pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions so worrisome that the U.S. Council of Mayors earlier this year passed a resolution against the purchase of petroleum products produced from shale.

Because the entire Green River formation lies in the Colorado River drainage basin, water quality is an important issue, and 2005 study by the RAND corporation warns that "not enough is known about how to prevent water contamination from surface and in-situ operations."

As for clean coal, the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, an industry association, points out that coal provides half of America’s electricity generation.

"Over the last 30 years," the coalition says, "America's coal-based electricity providers have invested over $50 billion in technologies to reduce emissions ?while at the same time providing affordable, reliable electricity to meet growing energy needs."

But the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide is not a regulated emission, and the Bush administration has resisted all attempts by the states, business and environmental groups to regulate CO2.

In Gore's view, he explained to the high-powered audience at the Clinton Global Initiative, renewable and carbon-free sources of energy, conservation and efficiency are the only way the world can extricate itself from the climate crisis.

"The single most important thing we could do is to put a price on the CO2 in our economy today," said Gore. "As you know, I've long argued to reduce the payroll tax on working people and make it up with a tax on CO2. Tax what we burn, not what we earn."