Oil/coal reserves as stranded assets
October 13, 2014
I first heard about this reading Bill McKibben, but now the Bank of England has noticed.
Climate change constraints will prevent us from burning all the oil and coal that energy companies currently list as an asset.
And shares in those companies are probably in your retirement savings or pension fund, assuming you have one. Some of those companies are almost certainly customers of my (large) employer, perhaps yours too. The buggy-whip industry was nowhere near as important to our economy, and had nowhere near the financial reach or political power. There’s very many people whose salaries depend on not understanding the problem of these stranded assets.
Maybe we’ll get lucky and carbon capture will work for power plants, but as near as I can tell we should reserve liquid hydrocarbons for air travel, and do that as soon as we can.