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A grim warning about the 2°C target – but then what?

Last week PWC released the 2012 version of its “Low carbon economy index”, the fourth edition of a publication that started just prior to the Copenhagen COP. The main message delivered by the publication is a grim one, although hardly surprising,...

Posted November 12, 2012    

Simplifying the Planetary Boundaries

I have just got back from the annual Council meeting for the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) where it was good to hear the new President, Peter Bakker, talking about a much more focused and serious response from the...

Posted November 2, 2012    

Is technology push sufficient as a policy approach?

I came across an article from the Breakthrough Institute which argues for the benefits of government support for new energy technologies. The story is a few months old, but still highly relevant – in any case a related story is back on...

Posted October 19, 2012    

Time to think in 3D about Arctic Sea Ice

The recent rash of news alerts about the all-time-low, end of summer, Arctic sea ice extent has certainly given new food for thought about the state of the climate. Of course we shouldn’t be entirely surprised by this state of affairs as more rapid...

Posted October 4, 2012    

In order to control climate change, do we need to unlock CERs?

Two recent publications highlight the challenges ahead in the multilateral process that continues to seek an equitable global approach to the issue of growing CO2 emissions. But comparing and contrasting them illustrates the contradictions that...

Posted September 27, 2012    

Is the UN Clean Development Mechanism now increasing emissions?

Late last week Point Carbon reported that the Executive Board of the UNFCCC’s Clean Development Mechanism has (re)agreed to allow energy efficient coal fired power plants to be included under the mechanism. Point Carbon said:The governing...

Posted September 19, 2012    

A CCS project for Canada?

I don’t normally use my blog to write about Shell, but last week saw an announcement that is very relevant and worthy of some further elaboration. Shell Canada, as operator of the Athabasca Oil Sands Project joint venture (with Chevron and...

Posted September 11, 2012    

A carbon trading linkup between Australia and the EU

As Australia struggled through the ill fated CPRS legislation and finally landed with its carbon pricing mechanism, I often thought that it would be much simpler if they just joined the EU ETS. Governments don’t tend to do simple practical things...

Posted September 4, 2012    

US emissions continue to fall

If you dig down a few layers through the US State Department website, you will come across a Press Release from February 2010 where the USA pledged to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.Press StatementTodd Stern,  Special Envoy for Climate...

Posted August 24, 2012    

How important is the two degree target?

In a speech given at Dartmouth College at the beginning of this month, US Lead Climate Negotiator Todd Stern caused some consternation in the media by opening up the subject of the global two degree Celsius target. Bylines such as “US Abandons...

Posted August 17, 2012    

Two Studies Now Confirm Extreme Weather Caused by Global Warming

As the NASA Curiosity rover touched down gently on Mars and began its 2+ year observation and exploration of its surrounding terrain, the NASA Goddard Institute of Space Studies announced the publication of a new paper in the journal ...

Posted August 13, 2012    

Encouraging CCS in Europe

In a recent post I discussed the problems that the EU flagship programme to demonstrate CCS (carbon capture and storage) is having. With an allowance surplus building up in the ETS and a resulting low carbon price, the urgent need for...

Posted August 3, 2012