09 Nov 2008
It would seem that the turning point in the USA was indeed Bali in December 2007. To witness WIREC - Washington International Renewable Energy Conference in early March 2008 as a Brit was like watching a nation of headless chickens running round seeking a way forward.
This time the challenge is "real and necessary". Reaching the moon in the 60's was for the 'spin off' it rendered unto that nation. As a personal very close observer of the USA Washington scene - which I visit very frequently,, I am convinced they will rise to the challenge and head for zero carbon electricity within 10 years.
World collaboration is what is needed on an unprecedented scale. We are not only in a Global Village for communications, but also with our atmosphere. It is actually a nonsense for the UK Government to think they can 'lead' on a Climate Change Bill which does not take in all the aspects to work with our trading partners. I would go as far as to say it is 'parochial' and possibly typically British. A gross insult to both Europe and the USA as it is ill-informed.
On another part of this site is the I.C.U. - International Carbon Unit the measure of embodied Carbon, or more to the point, the measure of atmospheric Green House Gas Effect - the GHGE equivalent of that piece of metal in Paris we call a Metre. Does this INTERNATIONAL approach feature in the Climate Change Bill - I doubt it. Does the need to legislate for the Global Carbon Economic Model using I.C.U.s feature in the CC Bill ? Anything less than that is misleading as the committment is to join in the 'framework' that is agreed at the end of 2009. Any short term measures NOT in line with the 'framework' are, in my view, a dangerous diversion.
I understand that a Cap and Trade Scheme such as the EU Emissions Trading Scheme have been rejected in the USA for very good reason. It is not sufficiently effective to provide the Carbon Economic Brake to reduce profligate Carbon emissions in our economy. OLD HIGH CARBON goods will $/£ price LOW CARBON GOODS OUT. This MUST NOT be allowed to happen. Hence in place of any Emission Trading Scheme. Goods and services are then priced in £ and I.C.U.s to the consumer. A massive scale but no more complcated than dealing with VAT. Yes we then need carbon Accountants and Auditors. Yes we need sophisticated Carbon used measures via Smart+Meters in all commercial premises.
This whole approach uses IT to provide the Carbon economic driver.
Will the USA and President Obama support the approach ? Every sign says YES they will lead on it.