So it’s over and what an anti-climax! I am left feeling depressed and angry at the total lack of progress. Even in my brightest moments there seems to be little to celebrate. There are lessons to be learned though and I will share these with you.
New World Power. Did you notice that the final deal was cut behind closed doors and that the EU was not a party to this, just USA, China and India. Given that the EU has driven the agenda so hard, seems unfortunate to say the least!
Diplomacy has its limits!. 192 countries in a room trying to get an agreement - looking back this was an impossible task and really it is not surprising that no ‘meaningful agreement’ was reached.
Too many hangers on.There was too much noise, too many people and not enough focus. The COPs do not work- 20,000 people all screaming, it is not surprising that nothing gets achieved as it is just one enormous climate jamboree. Time to change the format.
No Business. Business leaders were excluded from the process. This is plainly ridiculous given that they will be the one’s funding the whole change.
Another Climate Catastrophe! Unfortunately it seems that the only way that these political blockheads are going to ‘get it’ is when another climate catastrophe happens. Plain Stupid! They need to watch The Day After Tomorrow again.
And so, I am left feeling totally unimpressed by everyone and everything about the COP. Time for Business and People to stop thinking the politicians are going to do anything and time for us to take responsibility - if ever there was a need for a ‘movement for change’ then it is now!
As we reach the end of the first decade in the 21st Century, about one third of the world’s population still has no access to electricity, says Harish Hande.
Harish argues that poor people should be at the centre of sustainable energy policies, not on the end of handouts and has set up his own company called Harish Hande SELCO Solar Light to do exactly that.
Many of the conversations in the WEF were focussed around the need for solutions for the developing world, relatively few were aimed at solving finance of these solutions.
Apparently there is more than enough money out there, but the global north is scared of pledging it to the global south without strings attached.
Well Harish has part of the answer with his new company called SELCO which has pioneered access to rural solar electrification for below poverty line families through a combination of customized sustainable energy services (like lighting and cooking etc) in tandem with innovative doorstep financing.
Around 57% of the Indian population does not have electricity and for many more, the supply is unreliable. In addition, those living on less than $2 a day in India annually produce close to a billion tons in CO2 emissions showing that the developing markets must be addressed with the issue of climate change.
SELCO have developed a business based on three basic understandings – the poor can afford sustainable technologies; the poor can maintain sustainable technologies; users want run commercially viable venture serving the needs of the community.
The core business of SELCO is the sale and financing of solar-home-systems that provide lighting but also are suitable for radios, fans and income generating activities.
SELCO works with banks and MFIs to create financing mechanisms that suit the cash flow of the client. For example, a user will pay a small down payment and then pay monthly installments of 150 to 350 Rs over three to five years. The user can pay from extra income brought in from additional work made possible with the energy intervention and savings from eliminating costly fossil fuels with customized payment schedules.
The end result of this initiative apart from providing decentralized, green power is the creation sustainable energy service-related businesses and entrepreneurs.
It seems to me that it is essential that solutions like this are promoted in tandem with other larger infrastructure solutions. Better to get de-centralised renewables out there in a responsible way that initiate development rather than paying a big company to put in a power infrastructure that just locks people into a corporate monopoly!
Our very own Chrstina Wood is hosting an event tonight at Copenhagen. Check it out here!!
Well we are at last up and running. Great launch last night at The Hub in Kings Cross with an amazing turnout. Speaches from myself and Steve Malkin with special guest appearance from the Ambassador of Costa Rica who spke most eloquently. for those who have not seen it yet see our new home page and watch a few videos- great!
We are getting good support from all over including this from Nick Clegg, leader of the Lib Dems.
Very good article written by Professor Hulme about the science of climate change, also the comments. Link
My view is that although UEA has made a monumental mess of the whole situation and been made to look like an amateur night out, that this does not change our the underlying consensus. UEA is but one data centre. NASA has their own that almost maps the finding of UEA. There is no conspiracy, just sloppiness. If science is going to play it’s part, then it needs to remain objective, provide the data and allow the results (and facts??!!) to speak for themselves. Of course we always need a good orator, but let the advocate fall back on some good facts.
If there is one good thing to emerge from this fiasco, it is that the debate will be re-opened and the issue finally put to bed as politicians and the public will at last see the real issues.
For this to happen, UEA are going to provide access to whatever data they do have in whatever form it is available for public scrutiny. This needs to be compared to other data sources to substantiate the original findings. Alternatively, we should ignore their results and use other data sets to prove the case.
I heard Chris Smith (ex-minister) now head of the Environment Agency speak last night and he made a number of excellent points about the reality of climate change around the country; species being found further north than ever before, the Thames barrier being raised more times this past year than ever before, increased climate events in Cumbria. These are the reality of change and it is happening now, so whilst the debate is healthy and needed, let us not put on hold the urgent action that is needed.