2020 was exceptional for two reasons. Firstly, we launched adapt with a balanced success, which pushes us to carry on improving our tool. Secondly, the year was marked by the first significant drop in GHG emissions since the Second World War.
A first success for adapt in 2020: community setup (thanks to you!)
On February 28th, after a few months of preparation, we officially shared the adapt tool with our friends and family. Our objective is simple: to create a simple and free tool that allows everyone to understand and act to collectively reduce GHG emissions. With relatively few resources (mostly IT costs) and very little time (side-project), we managed to :
- build a simple and low-tech (in its IT structure) tool, that could be used anywhere in the world on a telephone, tablet or computer
- demonstrate the relevance of our "electricity weather forecast", which is based on a simple algorithm using open-source data, to reference players (e.g. power network operators such as RTE)
- create sustainable partnerships with committed climate entrepreneurs, such as Ma Petite Planète (France), which aims to raise awareness among eco-citizens in a way that does not make them feel guilty, or beev (France), which, like us, wants to develop intelligent electric vehicle recharging ('smart-charging').
- attract more than 4,000 visitors in 10 months who were able to find out how to reduce the carbon footprint of electricity
- convincing more than 21% of visitors to return to the site to take concrete action on the climate by consuming electricity at the right time.
- federate eco-citizens from several countries with different electricity mixes: Germany, Belgium, France (mainland) and Italy
Of course, we would have liked to have more users to have a greater impact on the climate. Nevertheless, "word of mouth" worked, thank you! Our tool is largely perfectible and we are willing to present it to as many people as possible (contact us at contact at adapt.sh). However, we see the COVID-19 crisis as an opportunity.
The drop in GHG emissions linked to the COVID-19 pandemic pushes us to continue the momentum we have started "by force".
In March, the WHO declared that the COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan has become a "pandemic". The containment measures taken in the main infected countries had a very strong impact on the global energy system. In the end, the drop in GHG emissions in 2020 was unprecedented: around 8% compared to 2019. This gives us an idea of the collective efforts that need to be made to continue the decrease in GHG emissions to reach the objective of the Paris agreement: to contain global warming between 1.5°C and 2°C (as close as possible to 1.5°C but this objective still seems very far away).
The spectacular fires in California (cover picture) in the summer of 2020 reminded us that it was too late to go back on the GHG emissions we have already emitted, because GHGs remain in the atmosphere for a long time (about 100 years for CO2 for example). As this climate catastrophe (like others) reminded us, our “climate debt" is far too great for us to give up. We must continue to reduce our GHG emissions. This reduction will be achieved through two important levers:
- Radically reducing our consumption of energy, but also of raw materials, objects, etc., because this is the most effective way to reduce GHG emissions, as has been proven by the containment
- Consuming energy more intelligently, by making an effort to understand the impacts, and by agreeing to give priority to low-carbon energy consumption at the expense of easily accessible fossil fuels.
For these two objectives, we encourage you to massively share our tool in Europe!
Let 2021 be the year of the "chosen" GHG emissions slash! Adrien & co
Sources: adapt (traffic analysis), International Energy Agency (Global Energy Review 2020 - The impacts of the Covid-19 crisis on global energy demand and CO2 emissions) and wikipedia (COVID-19 pandemic).