Ideas on Europe

Energy & Climate Change

Is the EU’s commitment to the 2°C target unravelling?

environmentaleurope |

‘2°C is an objective,’ EU Climate and Energy Commissioner  Miguel Arias Cañete said in February 2015, when questioned over the status of the widely recognised target for preventing ‘dangerous’ global warming[1] at this December’s Paris UN climate conference. ‘If we have an ongoing process you cannot say it is a failure if the mitigation commitments […]

Policy Entrepreneurs: Key Players in Bottom-up Climate Policy

Jonas Schoenefeld |

As the top-down, United-Nations driven target setting approach to international climate through the Kyoto Protocol approach has increasingly been called into question, many have begun to highlight the advantage of bottom-up approaches. Whereas the top-down approach is analogous to divvying up a pie among different countries, the bottom-up approach means that each country contributes some […]

Climate Change Skepticism in the UK Independence Party

environmentaleurope |

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 […]

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

Jonas Schoenefeld |

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. […]

Daily Express compares EU to Nazi Germany

Jon Danzig |

  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 […]

Climate change - a tale of economic growth

Helene Dyrhauge |

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 […]

Climate Policy after the Crisis: From Environment to Energy

Jonas Schoenefeld |

The combined effects of the financial and economic crisis starting in 2008 and the fiasco of the 2009 Copenhagen climate negotiation have led to a gradual re-framing of climate change from an environmental to an energy issue. As I detail below, this re-framing has happened in subtle, and not-so-subtle ways, from changes in political rhetoric […]

Road to Paris: Time for UK to show leadership on climate change

environmentaleurope |

The next twelve months will be critical in shaping the European Union’s position on climate change, ahead of the all-important UN climate negotiations which start next November in Paris. But will the UK be a help or a hindrance to delivering ambitious action on climate change? At the UN Climate Summit in New York this […]

Worldwide Carbon Emissions Set for Record Levels in 2014 – Can the EU Step up its Leadership in New York and beyond?

Roisin Moriarty, Jonas Schoenefeld |

Recent data from the Global Carbon Project show that worldwide carbon dioxide emissions—the main driver of climate change—are set to reach a record-breaking 40 billion tones in 2014, led by a 2.5% rise in fossil fuel burning. In order to maintain a 66% chance of keeping global warming below 2 degrees—a widely accepted safety threshold—global […]

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