How can nations, cities and companies grow their economies, while reducing the risk of dangerous climate change?
How can nations, cities and companies grow their economies, while reducing the risk of dangerous climate change?
The Centre on Innovation and Energy Demand (CIED) develops socio-technical understandings of the emergence, diffusion and impact of low energy innovations. Sussex Energy Group
It’s all about a collective effort. Ambition and commitment from government will be rewarded by commitment and investment from businesses. But we really do need everyone. In an increasingly connected world, we need all countries and companies to step up and play their part - setting strong goals, having clear plans, and openly declaring progress. When consumers and investors place their money with companies that are on the right path, the change we all need is accelerated.
It’s important for all sectors of society to not wait for Paris or for the next agreement to come in to effect. Grasping the opportunity means acting decisively now...
Why is this so high? Let’s start with carbon dioxide. Burning gasoline emits .008 tons of carbon dioxide per gallon...
Green-Energy Inspiration Off the Coast of Denmark http://t.co/A6abhric7Y We need innovation testbeds, but what about is dynamic pricing?— Severin Borenstein (@BorensteinS) January 19, 2015
Larry Summers has a very nice Financial Times oped, "Let this be the year when we put a proper price on carbon" Greg Mankiw has also written extensively and eloquently in favor of a carbon tax, for example here. Jeff Miron has some interesting skeptical thoughts, recently here.
I agree in principle. But I have some important qualifications, and some suggestions for framing to broaden the appeal of the proposal substantially. I also think that individual rights may be better than a tax. What matters, really, is a carbon price, and there are different ways to bring that about.
I don't want today to get in to the debate about climate science. How big of a problem is human released carbon and other greenhouse gasses? Are the big computer models accurate? I don't want today to debate the larger economic and policy questions: How much economic cost is there really? Are there mitigation strategies? Are there more pressing environmental or economic problems? (Species extinction due to habitat loss, old fashioned water and air pollution, etc.)
Too much of the policy discussion focuses on the scientific debate, as if the economic and policy answers follow unequivocably once that is settled. They are not. Let's talk about the second half today.
?? PCI (@pricingcarbon) ?? http://act.pricingcarbon.org/petition??
"For RE diffusion to increase, gvmt action should be directed not only @ shielding renewables from competition w/ fossil fuel tech" Masini— HEC Paris Knowledge (@HECKnowledge) January 8, 2015
Most physicians already seeing health effects of climate change in patients, survey finds: http://t.co/4aXKvoRefk— Yale Environment 360 (@YaleE360) January 9, 2015
The Bank of England governor has warned that ‘stranded assets’ are a growing risk for fossil fuel companies
Offshore wind more profitable than oil and gas drilling on U.S. East Coast, report says: http://t.co/jEPA5K2F06— Yale Environment 360 (@YaleE360) January 14, 2015
California still in serious widespread drought, despite recent heavy storms: http://t.co/jJMRfOIdp7— Yale Environment 360 (@YaleE360) January 13, 2015
What do Americans think about global warming? http://t.co/XxNr8VxpxV— Yale Environment 360 (@YaleE360) January 14, 2015
Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV) y el Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo (BID) subvencionarán una beca “Young Talent Leader” valorada en 120.000€ que permitirá a un alumno uruguayo excelente cursar sus estudios en IE University
Sunday 11 January 2015
Three hundred professors at Stanford, including Nobel laureates and this year’s Fields medal winner, are calling on the university to rid itself of all fossil fuel investments, in a sign that the campus divestment movement is gathering force.
In a letter to Stanford’s president, John Hennessy, and the board of trustees, made available exclusively to the Guardian, the faculty members call on the university to recognise the urgency of climate change and divest from all oil, coal and gas companies.
Stanford, which controls a $21.4bn (£14.2bn) endowment, eliminated direct investments in coalmining companies last May, making it the most prominent university to cut its ties to the industries that cause climate change. Months later, however, the university invested in three oil and gas companies.
Campus divestment campaigns have spread to about 300 universities and colleges over the last few years, but are largely dominated by students. The Stanford letter was initiated by faculty, and signed by the first female winner of the prestigious Fields prize in mathematics, Maryam Mizarkhani, as well as the Nobel laureates Douglas Osheroff and Roger Kornberg, Paul Ehrlich, a population analyst, Terry Root, a biologist and UN climate report author, and others – 300 faculty members in total....
And, unfortunately, that’s the good news.
If nations want even a 50 percent chance of avoiding dangerous global warming, they’ll need to keep more than 80 percent of current coal reserves in the ground. And in the United States, more than 90 percent of coal reserves would need to stay buried, according to a new study from University College London.
...In this new paper, published Wednesday by the journal Nature, researchers tighten the focus of this global carbon budget by breaking the global numbers into regional ones...
...In the Middle East, producers would have to forego 38 percent of their oil and 61 percent of their gas. China and India would close off 66 percent of their coal. Former Soviet states would keep 94 percent of their coal underground...
And, unfortunately, that’s the good news.
...The above estimates assume that power plants and industry will be able to capture and hide much of their carbon dioxide beginning in 2025. Without that rosy assumption, idled coal reserves jump to 95 percent in the U.S., 77 percent in China and India, and 97 percent in the former U.S.S.R. And these numbers may be the safer bet
Professor and Head of the Department of Business and Politics, Copenhagen Business School, Denmark
Susana Borrás and Jakob Edler
Why do we see so few electric cars on our streets today in spite of the overwhelming positive views on them? Why is it so difficult to introduce electronic patient journals in our hospitals or to phase out fossil-based energy sources? How come mobile telephones were developed and expanded so rapidly in the past two decades? How are integrated transport systems transforming commuting in large cities, and who contributes to that change? At a basic level these questions have to do with the way in which science and technology interact with society. It is commonplace today in social sciences literature that science, technology and society are constantly shaping each other in a truly co-constitutive process. However, these questions also have to do with the elements that form the socio-technical and innovation systems as well as with sociocultural and economic aspects in the intentionality towards (or against) change. This book argues for the need for a better understanding of governance of change in socio-technical systems and innovation systems. It develops a conceptual framework to understand change and studies governance of change in a range of selected case studies that mobilize this framework.
(Click on the two images for zoom)
"Mary Robinson: Why Europe needs to set the pace on climate change", Irish Times, October 20, 2014
Opinion: The importance of acting now cannot be overstated: every euro spent on fossil fuels today condemns parts of the world to hurricanes, drought and infectious diseases
The meeting of the European Council – the gathering of the EU member states – in Brussels on Thursday and Friday will lead to a decision that will have far-reaching consequences. The summit is expected to see the adoption of a new framework for Europe’s climate and energy policy, including a set of targets for 2030 to cut our greenhouse gas emissions, boost renewable energy use and reduce overall energy use. These pledges matter, for Europe and the international community.
Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland, is the United Nations secretary-general’s special envoy on climate change and a member of the European Climate Foundation’s advisory board
"The future is green for business schools", FT Soapbox, October 5, 2014
Business education needs to be more integrated, more interdisciplinary and more oriented towards thinking about the bigger “system-level” picture. A second order level of thinking is required. Moving beyond the direct relationship between action and value, business schools must offer education that addresses the complex systemic challenges we are all facing.
New organisational forms have evolved in Europe. My own organisation, Climate-KIC, is Europe’s largest public-private partnership with more than 230 partners drawn from prestigious universities, research institutions, blue-chips and SMEs. The EU created the KICs to address the innovation challenge of Europe and make existing models obsolete. These organisations are creating new knowledge and will be a stimulus for business schools to evolve and change.
via Dyan Finkhousen, Head of Open Innovation at General Electric
"More recently, in an attempt to lessen the environmental impact of OS production and leverage the wisdom of the crowd, GE announced an innovation prize of C$1m to find technologies that will efficiently lower emissions"
"Another avenue being explored to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is carbon capture and storage, which OS production facilities are relatively well-suited for—though storage at scale is not yet economically viable. Two important commercial-scale test cases are in the works, however. The first is Shell’s Quest Project, which Shell believes will be able to sequester more than 1m tonnes of CO2 annually—equivalent to 35% of the CO2 produced by the facility. The second is the Alberta Carbon Trunk Line, which will connect multiple facilities and store an expected 1.8m tonnes of CO2 as part of an enhanced oil recovery operation. If successful, the latter could store up to 15m tonnes of CO2 a year—impressive, yet less than one-third of the industry’s annual emissions."
Research Interests: environmental law and policy, environmental dispute resolution, legislation and statutory interpretation, administrative law, the regulatory state, private environmental governance
Why climate change "needs to be framed as a national security issue.” http://t.co/zvPhTWXutC— Knowledge @ Wharton (@whartonknows) August 21, 2014
... what I suggest in my paper, “The Military Environmental Complex,”...
...“I think what sets my research apart, in part, comes from where I’m situated and what my background is. Most lawyers who decide to become professors go on to teach in law schools, but I chose to come to a business school. Obviously, my research is very connected to the idea of the role that business plays in society. I think what sets my research apart, in part, is the fact that I’m kind of bridging these two worlds and trying to have a conversation, not only with other legal scholars, but also with business and management scholars...
The London School of Economics and Political Science
Samuela Bassi and Dimitri Zenghelis
Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy
Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and
However, the case for lowering the ambition of climate change efforts, as a weakening of the Fourth Carbon Budget would imply, is not justified by competitiveness concerns, not least because of the negative impacts this would have on some of the economy’s fastest growing and most promising and innovative sectors. Uncertainty about the future climate policy framework could potentially cost jobs and affect growth, especially in the current macroeconomic environment. (end of paper)
(Dean Soumitra Dutta Johnson, Cornelll University, is one of the academic members)
Professor Michael McElroy is a leader in the fields of atmospheric science and climate change. In 2001, he was appointed to lead the Harvard University Center for the Environment, and to lead an interdisciplinary study on the implications of China’s rapid industrial development for the local, regional and global environment. Professor McElroy has worked closely with Chinese scientists in the last 10 years.Dr Fung spoke with Professor McElroy at FGI’s Enabling Asia’s Future: Hear from the World’s Leading Thinkers public seminar on May 5, 2014. In Part One of a Three-part series, Dr Fung and Professor McElroy discuss Climate Change, Realities and Responses.
Q1: How should we think about climate change, air quality and energy security? Do these problems belong in separate silos? What is the inter-relationship between all these factors?
I think that all these issues are inextricably coupled, and I would add public health and perhaps political security to that mix as well...
I really think it makes more sense to get the big guys to work together.
Authors: Kock, Carl J. Santaló, Juan Diestre, Luis
Journal of Management Studies; May2012, Vol. 49 Issue 3, p492-514, 23p, 2 Charts
Abstract:We build on a stakeholder-agency theoretical perspective to explore the impact of particular corporate governance mechanisms on firm environmental performance. Our empirical evidence shows that several important corporate governance mechanisms such as the board of directors, managerial incentives, the market for corporate control, and the legal and regulatory system determine firms' environmental performance levels. These results suggest that these different governance mechanisms resolve, to some extent, the existing divergence of interests between stakeholders and managers with respect to environmental activities. [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]
Brrroooommm https://t.co/Vigi7c28td— Pau Garcia-Milà (@pau) June 14, 2014
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesla_Model_S - It scored a perfect 5.0 NHTSA safety rating
4 Apr 2014
The Tesla Model S is the most important car Top Gear has tested. Let's just throw that out there. A handsome if generic-looking exec hatch, it threatens to do to the traditional car industry what Amazon did for retailing and Apple's iTunes infrastructure did to the music business - utterly rewire it.
The mainstream media loves Tesla's CEO, Elon Musk, a man who is two-parts real-life Tony Stark to one-part Steve Jobs. The guy made a billion from Paypal, has his own space exploration company, and recently proposed the Hyperloop high-speed transportation system. He also used to own a McLaren F1, so rest easy - he ‘gets' cars the way we do. But, rather than build a ridiculous vanity supercar, he decided to apply 21st-century Silicon Valley thinking to a technology model and industry that epitomises the 20th century. Following the slightly tentative Tesla Roadster, the results are game-changing.
Add the Performance Pack, whose higher-capacity inverter boosts torque to 443lb ft and power to the equivalent of 416bhp (probably more, in fact), and you've got an all-electric car with the same step-off and start-line grunt as a Porsche Turbo.
Everything about the Model S is reassuringly familiar and utterly bewildering at the same time. You get in, select D and go. You don't even turn it on. There's no handbrake, no paddleshift and, wind and tyre rush apart, no noise. A tentative squeeze on the accelerator pedal is like dipping your toe in a reservoir of torque, but better to build up to it gradually. Back off and there's a hearty slug of regenerative braking. Pretty soon, you'll only be using the brakes to come to a complete halt in traffic.
...usefully low centre of gravity.
It's not a sports car, though. Yes, it'll warp like a spaceship to 62mph in just over four seconds, and it keeps rolling out great gobbets of torque until you're well past 100mph. Its reduction gearing means that peak power and torque are right on the money, so overtaking is supercar easy, and motorway work utterly seamless. It also handles pretty well, too, despite its two-tonne plus weight (blame those batteries). Fundamentally, it's a languid cruiser, rather than a thriller.
It's also an EV, so inevitably you begin thinking about the available energy and what you're doing with it in a completely different way. Responsibility becomes less of a chore. The 85kWh Model S will deliver a range of up to 265 miles, 220 without requiring you to drive like your family is strapped to the bonnet. It takes 15 hours to fully charge it from a standard 32-amp UK street or supermarket charging point, half that using Tesla's home charging apparatus. (Tesla's ‘Supercharger' stations are being rolled out in Europe and the US). Range anxiety isn't really on the radar....
...The Tesla Model S is incredible...
This isn't the America of old Detroit. The Silicon Valley interloper has changed everything.
Spain is one of the worlds largest oil importers. For €2000 I made my car run on liquid gas. http://t.co/9QuqgKgeEo— Martin Varsavsky (@martinvars) 15 Juin 2014
Equivalent in 2011 prices: €70 bn and nearly €80bn today.
"Rotman Professor Elected to Leadership of Academy of Management". - DeansTalk, April 11, 2013
Toronto – A senior professor at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management has been elected to the governance rotation of the Academy of Management, which with more than 18,000 members in 110 countries, is the largest organization in the world devoted to management research and teaching.
Yesterday, for the first time in human history, concentrations of carbon dioxide, the primary global warming pollutant, hit 400 parts per million in our planet's atmosphere.
Indeed, every single day we pour an additional 90 million tons of global warming pollution into the sky as if it were an open sewer. As the distinguished climate scientist Jim Hansen (DeansTalk, 26 November 2012) has calculated, the accumulated manmade global warming pollution in the atmosphere now traps enough extra heat energy each day to equal the energy that would be released by 400,000 Hiroshima-scale atomic bombs exploding every single day. It's a big planet -- but that is a LOT of energy. And it is having a destructive effect...
There is no more pernicious procrastination than the kind which resembles work.— GianpieroPetriglieri (@gpetriglieri) May 10, 2013
16 April 2013 - EU Adaptation Strategy Package
April 8, 2013, The Carbon Conundrum
U.S. President Barack Obama wants the U.S. Congress to revive a failed “cap-and-trade” bill that would put the U.S. on the road to an environmental policy – a policy departure for the country that stands out as the leading industrial power without one. Obama wants it so much he warned Congress in his recent State of the Union speech that if they failed to form a market-based solution to climate change, he would go it alone.
Actually, Obama is not “alone” among leaders in this regard: with no global agreement in sight, countries too, are already acting unilaterally to reduce carbon emissions. Carbon markets have been established in Europe, Australia, California, China and South Korea. But carbon taxes or “cap-and-trade” systems are only half of the battle, according to INSEAD Assistant Professor of Economics and Political Science, David Hemous....
The university made no upfront payment for the project and has secured a below-market electricity rate. The university expects to save up to $2.3 million over the 20-year contract.
1/2 minute registration, class.stanford.edu
Class began October 8, 2012
This course focuses on the operating principles and applications of emerging technological solutions to the energy demands of the world. We will begin with discussing the scale of global energy usage and requirements for possible solutions. Basic physics and chemistry of solar cells, fuel cells, and batteries will be discussed in quantitative detail. We will explore performance issues, including economics, from the ideal device to the installed system. Finally, we will end with the promise of materials research for providing next generation solutions.
A recent publication by the Green Growth Action Alliance (G2A2), aims to provide some answers. WRI and others provided guidance, case studies, research, and data to the publication, The Green Investment Report: The ways and means to unlock private finance for green growth (PDF,40 pages). The findings were discussed widely at the recent World Economic Forum meeting in Davos...
The public sector has the ability to attract private investment by improving the risk-reward profile of green investments. A variety of instruments is available to do this – the Green Investment Report discusses some, as does WRI’s working paper, Moving the Fulcrum: A Primer on Public Climate Financing Instruments Used to Leverage Private Capital. Essentially, with the judicious use of financial and other support, the public sector could leverage a large amount of private finance—leverage ratios of five times or more are not uncommon. At Davos, Mexico’s former president, Felipe Calderon, said that by demonstrating the huge potential for leverage, the report gave a “can do” tone to what is often seen as a discouraging topic.
Professor Hans Rosling, co-founder and chairman of the Gapminder Foundation and Advisory Board Member at the Open Knowledge Foundation, received a standing ovation for his keynote at OKFestival in Helsinki in September in which he urged open data advocates to demand CO2 data from governments around the world.
Following on from this, the Open Knowledge Foundation’s Jonathan Gray interviewed Professor Rosling about CO2 data and his ideas about how better data-driven advocacy and reportage might help to mobilise citizens and pressure governments to act to avert catastrophic changes in the world’s climate.
It is strange that the best country to do this – and it is painful for a Swede to accept this – is the United States CDIAC (cdiac.ornl.gov, Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center). Federal Agencies in US are very good on data and they take on the whole world. CDIAC make estimates for the rest of the world. Another US agency I really like is the National Snow and Ice Data Centre in Denver, Colorado (nsidc.org). They give us 24 hours updates on the polar sea ice area. That’s really useful. They are also highly professional. In the US the data producers are far away from political manipulation...
The Institute of International and European Affairs (IIEA, www.iiea.com) is Ireland’s leading think tank on European and International affairs and is an independent, not-for-profit organisation with charitable status. Its extensive research programme aims to provide its members with high-level analysis and forecasts of the challenges on the global and EU policy agendas which impact on Ireland. It acts as a catalyst for new thinking, new solutions and policy options, which give its members from the private and public sector a significant competitive advantage.The IIEA provides a unique forum in Ireland for corporate networking. It annually hosts over 100 events which afford its members unparalleled access to the highest-level speakers, decision-makers, and thought-leaders at national, EU and global level.
...At an EU level, the European Commission is due to publish an EU Climate Adaptation Strategy in March 2013. It will build on the knowledge base developed since its 2009 White Paper on Adaptation. It will focus on addressing knowledge gaps, climate-proofing EU policies, and on mobilising the private sector to provide insurance products tailored to a changing climate. The intention is to shift from understanding the hows, wheres and whys of climate adaptation to implementing actions that will make the EU increasingly climate resilient.
Aaditya Mattoo and Arvind Subramanian“This important book sets a sensible and specific way forward. It should be read by all involved in economic development and international action on climate change.”
Global negotiations on climate change have been hampered as much by a
neglect of scientific facts as a lack of objective analysis. Greenprint fills a
large gap and provides a useful departure from standard literature on the
—R. K. Pachauri, Nobel Prize–winning chairperson of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
“Greenprint presents a fresh out-of-the-box approach to climate cooperation and proposes a concrete menu of options. It should be seriously considered by political leaders and the armies of climate negotiators.”
—Jairam Ramesh, India’s environment minister at the Copenhagen Conference
“Mattoo and Subramanian are the masters at rethinking global compacts in a way that is free of the wishfulness, abstraction, and process-obsession that sometimes bedevil the debate.”
—Sebastian Mallaby, Center for Geo-Economic Studies, Council on Foreign Relations
International cooperation on climate change has floundered. With mutual recrimination between rich and poor countries, the zero-sum arithmetic of a shrinking global carbon budget, and shifting economic and bargaining power from old CO2 emitters to new—what Aaditya Mattoo and Arvind Subramanian call the “narrative,” “adding up,” and “new world” problems—the wonder is not the current impasse but belief that progress might be possible at all.
Each of these problems must be addressed in a radically different way. First, the old narrative of recrimination must give way to a narrative based on recognition of common interests. Second, leaders must shift the focus away from cutting emissions to generating technology. Third, the old “cash-for-cuts” approach must be abandoned for one that requires contributions from each country calibrated in magnitude and form to its current level of development and future prospects.
AbstractThe process used by organizations to integrate the ISO 14001 standard has not yet been the subject of extensive research in environmental management despite the rapid development of this standard, particularly in industrial companies. The results of a case study conducted among nine ISO 14001 certified Canadian organizations showed that adopting this standard tends to lead to a ceremonial behaviour intended to superficially show that the certified organizations conformed to the standard. Although rigorous compliance with the standard often resulted in real improvements, these improvements were primarily technical and administrative in nature. However, in most of the cases studied, daily practices remained somewhat decoupled from the prescriptions of the ISO 14001 system, of which employees generally had only a vague understanding...This research also illustrates how adopting the ISO 14001 system can have an ambiguous effect on environmental management practices and performances.
SEATTLE, WA — Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn sent a letter to the city’s two chief pension funds on friday, formally requesting that they “refrain from future investments in fossil fuel companies and begin the process of divesting our pension portfolio from those companies.”
There is a clear economic argument for divestment. While fossil fuel companies do generate a return on our investment, Seattle will suffer greater economic and financial losses from the impact of unchecked climate change. Our infrastructure, our businesses, and our communities would face greater risk of damages and losses due to turbulent weather that climate change causes. As a waterfront city, several of our neighborhoods and industrial districts are at risk if climate change causes a significant rise in sea level.
I believe that Seattle’s pension funds should be invested in companies that can provide a good return on our investment without putting our city and our future at risk. I am ready to work with the City Council and the pension board to make this happen.
Mayor of Seattle