Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Need for Technology Assessment at Copenhagen

By Soumya Dutta

I have repeatedly raised these Tech, particularly - the blind reference to 'Tech Transfer' and its equally blind connection with Financing.

I have the following serious points

1) How can we expect that any technology developed by the capitalist industrial system - with its inherent thrust for cost-externalization, labour reduction, capital intensification etc etc -- be Directly Transferable to southern countries, where the primary requirements are also of job creation, along with emission reduction or reduction of energy intensity ??

2) As of now, what is or are the BIG Tech that we are tomtoming , that the northern countries can transfer to the south to fulfill both requirement ? Even to fill the need for emission reduction - how many and at what cost ?

3) As most tech are owned by pvt corporates, the IPR issues are well known and needs no more mention,

4) The dangers of pushing unacceptable CCS, nuclear (fission), coal-gasification, (even 2nd gen) agro-fuels etc are great, as they not only often have huge embedded (& hidden) emissions, but the pipeline emissions & energy costs are never accounted for (like decommissioning energy & emissions for fission plants,

5) In most southern countries, the questions of rights to the commons - lands, water, forests, pastures, (atmosphere) are already at a critical stage, and most tech being branded about will aggravate these.
6) many fancy Climate Solution Techs, like Electric cars, jatropha-derived bio-diesel, ... have an anti-democratic character -- for example, in most countries, a major part of electricity is still derived from Coal (and some gas) -- in India 70% or so. As we force EVs 9particularly cars) the urban elite gets rid of the gaseous pollution from HC burning, but the tribal people, forest dwellers the villagers in & near whose land the mines, washeries, rail-lines to transport, coal power plants, their staff colonies & facilities etc etc are located -- by forcibly evicting a large no of them,
start paying a much higher price for some "Benefit" of a "clean tech" that the urban elite is using. It is a simple step by step efficiency calculation that shows that the total emissions from today's electric cars are higher than the equivalent HC cars they replace -- on top of that they extract a heavier toll from the non polluters, while giving the polluter-consumers - a cleaner air to breath !!! What a clean tech, that even here in COP 15 many groups are proposing !!!

7) There is an almost "unholy exaggeration" of the solar PV, at the expense of simple, community controlled solar heating applications that already exists in many southern countries. The rteason is clear - more money, more profit, big machines -- so people cannot use their own energy from their own backyards !! Similar is the case with Over projection of wind turbines and almost total obliteration of the simple wind mills that farmers could still build and maintain at their local workshops , do not have to pay the BIG Cos like Vestaas, Suzlon etc, do not have to pay Suited-Booted "maintenance engineers". That is their great "dis-incentive" too for the Corporates & their cronies - the Govts.

These many quickly.

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