Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Energy & Climate Change

Climate Change Skepticism in the UK Independence Party

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On 6 May 2005, the day after the UK general election, the Euroskeptic UK Independence Party (UKIP) had much to be concerned about. Despite fielding 558 national candidates, UKIP had no seats in the UK Parliament and had won only nine seats on local councils. Ten years later, things have changed. UKIP currently holds 370 […]

British manufacturer helping to make the German Energiewende a reality

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On 17th February 2015, the British electrolyser manufacturer ITM Power announced it had delivered a proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolyser, to the energy company RWE Deutschland AG at Ibbenbüren in Germany. According to ITM Power this was the third rapid response power-to-gas PEM electrolyser installed by ITM Power in Germany. (1.) The delivery of the […]

On the Road to Paris and Beyond: What Role for Political Parties?

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As governments gear up for the international climate change Conference of the Parties (COP) in Paris in December 2015, this post considers the role of political parties in climate politics. As the locus and focus of much modern-day political debate, parties arguably play a key role in shaping political conversations and actions on climate change. […]

British and German companies make progress with power-to-gas energy

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The British power-to-gas energy company ITM Power announced in a press release on 11th February 2015, that its proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolyser had performed well in tests conducted for the Thüga Group in Germany.(1.) The electrolyser which has been in operation at Frankfurt-am-Main in Germany since 2013 converts electrical energy into hydrogen gas, which […]

Will renewables find their Daimler moment in 2015?

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Two things might happen this year: renewable forms of energy such as wind, tidal, and solar power coupled to the new power-to-gas technology could become more widespread; while there could also be a gradual decoupling of fossil fuel use from economic growth. The issue of climate change has finally been recognised by world leaders, as […]

Why has Germany fallen behind in the climate protection index?

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In December 2014 the Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) for 2015 was published by the environmental organisation Germanwatch, as a means of assessing the performance of 58 countries in tackling climate change. Between 2005 and 2013 Germany was one of the top 10 countries, whose climate policies were seen to be making the most effort […]

Daily Express compares EU to Nazi Germany

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  Today, writing in the Daily Express newspaper, columnist James Delingpole shockingly compares the European Union to Nazi Germany. He claimed that a “faceless commissar in Brussels” was deciding to ban every-day consumer products for no good reason. The newspaper asks its readers to play a new Christmas game called, “EU Ban Bingo” to “guess […]

The Politics of Climate Ambition: The EU’s 2030 Emissions Target on the Road to Paris

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With the first ten months of 2014 being the warmest January-October period since records started in 1880, many hope that the current climate change negotiations in Lima, Peru will lay the groundwork for a global climate deal in Paris in December 2015. In this context, on October 24 the European Council announced that the twenty-eight […]

Could sustainable gas as opposed to fracking give Grangemouth a long-term future?

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According to recent reports in the British media, the chemical company Ineos is at the point of investing £640 million in the controversial shale gas extraction process known as fracking. See http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-30125028 and http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/nov/20/ineos-founder-wants-shale-gas-revolution-in-uk. The company is hoping to use the gas extracted by this process as a raw material or feedstock for its chemical […]

Climate change – a tale of economic growth

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The photo of Australians sticking their heads in the sand to protest against Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s lack of commitment to climate change came just a few days after the US and China agreed to reduce their emissions and start tackling climate change. The USA has promised to reduce its emissions by 26%-28% below its […]

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