Discover more from Adetokunbo Sees
The U.S. Rich caused 40% Emissions, China's Rich 32%, Europe's Rich 40%: Blame the Rich for causing Emissions
As the climate crisis continues
The rich and carbon emissions, Credit, The Guardian
In a recent study, researchers discovered that the wealthy tenth of United States households caused forty percent of national greenhouse emissions, with the wealthiest one percent of households responsible for between fifteen to seventeen percent of emissions, while the investment income of the rich made up a large share of emissions.
In Europe, the pattern looks similar, because the richest tenth of the population emitted about twenty-four tonnes of greenhouse gases per person, with the poorest fifty percent emitting about five tonnes per person, a gap of five to one.
The members of rising middle and rich classes in China displayed the attitude of wealthy Americans and Europeans, with the rich class, which constitutes only 11 percent of the total population in 2016, contributing 32 percent of emissions, a situation compounded by the population explosion of the middle and rich classes, which drives the growth of emissions.
It doesn't matter the continent, including Africa and South America, the wealthiest ten percent causes the highest percentages of greenhouse gas emissions, with an Oxfam report linking billionaires to the emission of an average three million tonnes of carbon dioxide per person, a million times higher than 2.76 tonnes of carbon dioxide average for those living in the bottom 90 percent of the ladder of wealth.
Billionaires for example invest $2.4 trillion in 183 companies, with 14 percent of their investments in pollution-generating industries such as non-renewable energy and materials like cement, a figure twice the average for investments in the Standard and Poor 500, with only one billionaire in a sample making investments in a renewable energy company.
Superyachts bear a huge responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions of the rich, as billionaires and other members of the rich ten percent spend a lot of their money on the purchase of the product, leading to the top 20 billionaires on the planet emitting an average of 8,000 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2018, two third of this caused by their yachts.
According to a recent research, a person flying on a private plane emitted 10 to 20 times as much carbon dioxide emissions as a commercial airline passenger, yet the super wealthy used a sizeable chunk of wealth in the purchase of private jets, convenient since some of them control $190 million in investments and properties.
With the rich investing in polluting industries, or spending lots of money in the purchase of superyachts, or using a chunk of their money in the acquisition of jet planes, they cause the highest percentages of greenhouse gas emissions, a million times higher than the figure for the majority of the less affluent.
The households of the top 0.1 percent rich in the United States bring lots of emissions, and only 15 days of the income of members generate equal the amount of emissions generated by a lifetime of income of a household at the bottom ladder, according to a research that analyzed huge datasets spanning 30 years on the relationship between financial transactions and carbon pollution.
Big homes signify prestige and social status, but unfortunately, the top one percent rich in Europe creates 11 percent of carbon emissions from the housing sector, by owning large and often multiple homes.
In China, the top ten percent rich induced 24.7 percent of the household carbon dioxide emissions in that country, while the bottom 46 percent of the population generated just 34.6 percent of emissions, confirming yet again a huge disparity between the affluent and the less affluent.
In sum, due to investments the rich make in such luxuries as superyachts, private planes, and big homes, they not only cause the highest percentages of greenhouse gas emissions in the planet, they also fuel social tensions as the climate crisis worsens, through the disparity in emissions caused by the rich and the not-so rich.
To tackle the problem of climate change, members of the rich class must be made to cut down on their carbon emissions.
Five climate tech companies to watch this year
Climate tech companies, Credit, Information Age
Founded in 2016 and located in Charlottesville, Virginia, Astraea builds products for solar developers and farmers looking to optimize production.
The company makes SaaS platforms that source and examine satellite imagery utilised by developers building solar farms and looking to optimize productivity, or for farmers looking to develop regenerative farms.
Astraea provides a more affordable tool to detailed land images, making its product useful to smaller companies looking to develop renewable energy and agricultural projects.
Founded in 1986 and located in Austria, the company proves best for utility and industrial storage of renewable energy.
It makes energy storage systems with a type of long-duration battery such as vanadium, used at more than 130 sites across the globe, including a mining plant in South Africa, a medical device company in California, and an EV charging station in Switzerland.
Vanadium is more available than lithium, and there are large supplies of it across the US.
Compared to lithium-ion batteries, vanadium is cheaper to buy for industrial and grid applications, and holds the prospect for being able to store large amounts of renewable energy at utility scale.
Founded in 2020 and located in Los Angeles, CA, this company is good at supporting EV infrastructure ramp-up, able to hire, train, and dispatch technicians to fix EV charging stations.
Since charging stations are rapidly deployed, ChargerHelp! looks set to help them stay in service.
It was established in 2017 in Somerville, Massachusetts, for storing renewable energy at utility scale. It makes batteries for the renewable energy grid, as well as developing an iron air battery that can store electricity for 100 hrs.
It raised $450m in Series E funding in 2022, and helped to develop the Tesla Powerwall, a battery system that stores energy produced by at-home solar panels
Established in 2011 at Redwood City, California, its products fit meat lovers who want to eat less meat. The company makes plant-based beef, chicken, and pork.
It raised a total of $1.9B in funding, and since alternative protein startups won eight percent of climate tech-related venture capital dollars during 2022, this company should be watched, as it's situated within one of the hottest sub-sectors in climate tech.
What to Eat
Bora Bora vegan food, Credit, Tahiti.com