Rutte is open to ambitious Urgenda climate plan on hydrogen, megawind turbines

Prime Minister Rutte and VVD State Secretary Yesilgöz van Klima are open to new plans by Dutch climate activist Marjan Minnesma. The Director of Climate Organization Urgenda today presented an ambitious plan at the Ministry of General Affairs to make major steps for rapid reduction in greenhouse gas emissions within a decade.

Minnesma, for example, intends to transform steel factory Tata Steel, the old blast furnaces in IJmuiden, into a hydrogen free steel mill. The hydrogen comes from mega-wind turbines at sea and the project can bring about 4,000 jobs, says Minnesma.

Now the cabinet is thinking about underground storage of CO2, but thats very expensive. Minnesma proposes to let go of that plan and use extra on hydrogen.

During the conversation, the two VVD administrators responded positively to the project of the Netherlands most famous climate activist, sources say to DecceIT. I have the impression he looked at it benevolently, Minnesma also said afterwards. He wasnt negative, thats a step forward. Its her second conversation with Rutte in a few weeks.

Forest fires, sea level rise

Rutte and Minnesma have been facing each other for years. Her Urgenda organization brought the cabinet to court years ago, because the government would do far too little to protect citizens from global warming.

The government thinks theres time to take climate action until 2050. Then, according to Urgenda, it is far too late to prevent heat waves, drought, forest fires and sea level rise. The Earth has already warmed up by more than 1.5 degrees. Its so hard with climate change that you get irreversible processes that you cant reverse anymore. Then you violate human rights, says Minnesma.

The judge judgeed Urgenda six years ago, and then appealed again. The State must comply with its duty of care to protect and improve the environment. The judge required the cabinet to ensure that 25 percent less greenhouse gas would be emitted by the end of 2020 than in 1990.

Here are the key proposals of the climate plan that was on the table today:

The plan is called Woman on the Moon, referring to US President Kennedys approach. He wanted a human on the moon within ten years, while at that time there was no knowledge at all to realise it. Eight years later, the first American was on the moon.

The government is currently demissionary and will most likely not include Minnesma plans in the Prinsjesdag plans for 2022, but the talks are continuing. In the short term, the Urgenda Director will visit State Secretary Yesilgöz.