Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Energy & Climate Change

Academics champion far-reaching reductions in flying

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More and more academics and institutions are discussing how to address climate change in their own activities. Our own institution, the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, has recently drafted a Travel Strategy, and an accompanying Working paper (‘Towards a Culture of Low-Carbon Research for the 21st Century’) to reduce our collective travel impact on […]

Now for the long term: evaluating climate policies from Paris to 2050

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With the Paris climate summit around the corner, and substantial research efforts to catalogue and understand an increasing number of climate policy initiatives, there is little doubt that much is already happening to address climate change.[1] But what does all this effort really amount to? And how will we know? One way to improve our […]

the Volkswagen scandal and the future of car industry lobbying on environmental issues

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The revelation of Volkswagen’s deception has left consumers, politicians, national authorities, and environmental organisations reeling. Trust in big business and industry has taken a nosedive, but it is not the first time a big company has deceived consumers and authorities, and it is unlikely to be the last scandal.  Given the lobbying power of car […]

Europe’s one-foot-in-one-foot-out approach to CCS isn’t working

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Last week’s announcement from Drax (the energy company that owns and operates the largest power station in the UK) that it would no longer invest in Carbon Capture & Storage (CCS) development at its Selby plant came as little surprise. The news joins a litany of other stumbling blocks that CCS has suffered on its […]

The rescue of Volkswagen will involve a hydrogen powered engine

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What will be the long term consequences of the Volkswagen (VW) exhaust emissions scandal? Monday 21st September 2015 may go down in history as the day when the world finally lost confidence in fossil fuel powered vehicles. At the very least the scandal will probably lead to the diesel engine for private passenger vehicles becoming […]

“On track” or “probably not enough”? EU climate policies in Juncker’s first State of the European Union address

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Last Wednesday, Jean-Claude Juncker delivered his first State of the European Union (SOTEU) address. This speech – the longest since Barroso started yearly SOTEU back in 2010 – is a key agenda-setting moment for the Commission President, providing the opportunity to set out a personal vision on the major issues facing the European Union today. […]

Does Local Climate Information Stimulate Action?

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A popular saying goes that ‘all politics is local’. While public debate on climate change often focuses on international summits and the political drama of negotiations, the real steps to address climate change will be have to be implemented at a much more local scale. Ultimately, the way we lead our lives – how we […]

How Well Does Bottom-Up Climate Governance Work?

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The failure of the 2009 Copenhagen climate conference marked a shift in international climate governance. As the system of agreeing international emissions reductions targets and then negotiating individual country contribution towards that target proved increasingly unworkable, there has been a drive towards a much more bottom-up form of climate governance. In preparation for the Paris […]

Austrian energy company will store gas from renewable energy underground

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In a press release of 1st July 2015, the German electrolyser plant construction company ETOGAS, reported how it delivered an electrolyser system to a site used by the Austrian energy company RAG Rohöl Aufsuchungs Aktiengeselleschaft in the town of Unterpilsbach in Austria. According to the press release, the equipment consisted of a 40 foot electrolysis […]

Ten Years after the French and Dutch ‘No’: How the Two Countries Reinvented their Relationship with Europe

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Ten years ago today, the French voted down the European Constitution Treaty, which was supposed to replace existing EU Treaties and institute key changes such as the appointment of a EU foreign minister. This was followed by an even stronger ‘No’ in the Netherlands three days later. These ‘No’ votes succeeded where the Danish 1992 […]

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