[Re: IIGCC calling for exclusion of gas from EU Taxonomy, January 12]
Last week, the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (IIGCC) published an open letter to EU Member State representatives calling for gas to be excluded from the EU Taxonomy – a framework used by investors to assess alignment of their portfolios and investments with net zero emissions.
While well-intentioned, this pronouncement fits within a current movement in the investment space which considers the attainment of sustainable energy and global sustainability in very one-dimensional terms.
Leaders already fail to recognise that current renewable technologies by themselves cannot deliver a sustainable solution to meeting growing demand for energy, while enabling a net zero carbon world. Further, the IIGCC’s announcement implies that we should consider other forms of non-emitting fuels, such as nuclear power, to help fill the intermittency gap caused by renewables. But while nuclear does not emit C02 at point of generation, it is far from green in terms of the extraction and disposal of its fuel source.
Instead, it is more meaningful to stop presenting investors with binary choices, but rather discuss challenges in terms of achieving net zero goals, in which more conventional sources of energy, specifically natural gas (as the least pollutive conventional fuel), can play a role if combined with carbon capture and storage schemes.