News & Views item - December 2008



Royal Society Responds Frostily to EU Climate Change Agreement. (December 14, 2008)

In response to December 12's announcement of an EU climate change agreement James Wilsdon, Director of the Royal Society Science Policy Centre said:

Setting targets is an important step but emissions must be cut and not just shuffled around the world. Europe must have a fully functioning Emissions Trading Scheme covering all sectors, where permits are not just given away. Those who can't see beyond the short term must not hold sway the consequences are too serious. Today's announcement could well be a missed opportunity.


There will be costs in delivering emissions reductions but much of the money is investment which can help to lift the European economy out of recession. Large scale investment now in green technologies can reap long term economic gains. Wind and solar are already with us on a commercial scale and carbon capture and storage, low carbon transport and other renewables in development offer huge potential. A failure to invest in these will leave the UK and the rest of Europe dependent on others for our energy and increasingly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.