Climate Change Conference

Paris COP 21 - a boost for energy efficiency?

Elmhurst Energy has been following the run up to the Paris COP21 with great interest and attempted to steer opinion through a number articles published in September and November. We are therefore delighted that the conference closed with what appears to be significant progress having been made.

The Climate Change Conference closed on 12th December with all 200 participating nations agreeing to set new and increasing targets for reducing greenhouse gases. At the conference close, President Obama said about the agreement: “It could be a turning point for the world.” The new agreement sets a new global target of reducing global warming to a level of 1.5 to 2 degrees centigrade. However, each nation will set its own target for reducing greenhouse gases and submit regular plans for how these targets will be met.

The key aspects are

  • To keep global temperatures "well below" the 2.0 degrees C limit above which experts believe that significant and permanent harm will result. 
  • "endeavour to limit" them even more, to 1.5C.
  • before 2100 (yes 85 years!) to limit the amount of greenhouse gases emitted by human activity to the same levels that environment can naturally absorb.
  • To review progress to cutting emissions every five years.
  • For rich countries to help poorer nations by providing "climate finance" to adapt to climate change and switch to renewable energy.

Elmhurst Energy is delighted with the outcome and would urge the UK Government to establish itself as a leaders by;

• reducing the demand for energy by requiring builders to design and build energy efficiency homes and offices.
• using both a carrot and a stick to encourage building owners to improve the energy efficiency of the buildings they own.
• offering incentives and education to occupiers to reduce their energy demand.
• supporting our renewable industry until the market is mature and self sustaining

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