“The high emissions, debt-driven, resource intensive (economic) model is dying,” says Mr de Boer, who heads negotiations within the UN climate convention.
“Unlimited growth on a planet with finite resources cannot go on forever,” said Eberhard von Koerber, co-president of the Club of Rome. Reforming economies along sustainable lines, he said, “does not imply a reduction in the rate of growth – only that the growth will be achieved differently”.
China’s 10-point plan, unveiled in November, will target more than $100bn at increasing efficiency, expanding rail networks and “environmental improvements”. See this quick overview of where China is at with energy matters, including renewables.
US President Barack Obama’s plan, scheduled for a Congressional vote this week, will aim to double capacity for alternative sources of energy like wind, solar, and biofuels over the next three years.
Speaking at the Globe meeting, former UK environment minister Elliott Morley said that if European governments followed these leads, that could mean a total of $1.5 trillion being targeted at green reforms.
Anders Wijkman, a Swedish MEP, was however critical of the EU. He cited the dilution of the EU’s climate and energy package during December’s European Council summit as an example.
“Half of the 20% (reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020) can be done through offsetting,” he said. “If the ultimate goal is to bring emissions down to zero, then this just postpones the day of action.”
Globe – Global Legislators for a Balanced Environment – is a group of parliamentarians which supports “ambitious political leadership” on issues of environment and energy. It convened this latest meeting in preparation for the G20 summit in April, which the UK will chair.
A report just released by US scientists, sponsored by the US Department of Energy, makes uncomfortable reading regards carbon emissions & trying to tackle resulting climate changes. See BBC article.
Governments are aiming to agree a new global deal on climate change at the next UN climate convention summit in Copenhagen in December.