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Category Archives: Politics & Public Policy

Is The Paris Agreement on Shaky Legs? How to Ensure Successful Implementation

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What is needed to make the Paris Agreement a success? This blog post focuses on one of the most central but underappreciated elements – the periodic reviews of progress.  States must of course make ambitious and credible contributions in the first place.  But if there is no system to ensure that they are monitored and […]

The politics of (bad) policy design: French solar panels and Northern Irish boilers

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As one previous post on this blog detailed, the current political turmoil in Northern Ireland was sparked by a subsidy for renewable energy production.  Though it is tempting to blame political carelessness, the ongoing RHI scandal prompts a broader reflection about renewable energy policy instruments. Incentives akin to the RHI are relatively common in renewable […]

Lessons from European Climate Monitoring Crucial for Paris Agreement Success

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As the 22nd session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 22) in Marrakech draws to a close, it is becoming increasingly clear that credible monitoring and transparency procedures are urgently needed. Otherwise national pledges to address climate change in the spirit of the 2015 Paris Agreement will not build sufficient global trust. The 2015 […]

Donald Trump v. The Environment: learning from past attempts to dismantle environmental policy

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A week after the Paris Agreement entered into force, the United States have elected Donald J. Trump as their 45th President – a man who famously described climate change as “created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.” His stance on climate change, his strong support for coal and pledge […]

Heathrow expansion in the shadow of Brexit

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After decades of debate on where – and whether – to expand airport capacity in south-eastern England, the UK government announced two days ago that it would favour building a third runway at Heathrow Airport. This option, highly criticised on environmental grounds (notably due to the air pollution caused by road transport to the airport) […]

Can European policies be dismantled?

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A recent Pew Research Center poll found that 42 per cent of Europeans were keen for some ‘powers’ to be returned to the national level, with only 19 per cent favouring further centralisation at EU level. The idea of ‘less Europe’ is not new: calls for it date back to the great subsidiarity debate of […]

Was hat der Klimawandel mit Flüchtlingen zu tun?

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Die Flüchtlingskrise ist in Deutschland spätestens seit September 2015 in aller Munde. In der öffentlichen Debatte werden Flüchtlinge dabei meist mit außen- und innenpolitischen Sicherheitsfragen in Verbindung gebracht. Diskutiert wird dabei zum Beispiel unter welchen Umständen Flüchtlinge wieder in ihre Heimat zurückkehren können oder was große Migrationszahlen für die innere Sicherheit in Deutschland bedeuten. In […]

Why the environment matters in the British EU Referendum debate

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Monday 11 April saw the launch of an impartial and independent review: the EU referendum and the UK environment. Authored by 14 international experts – and led by the three of us – this review draws on the findings of over 700 publications to investigate how has EU membership affected the UK and what might […]

A surprising deal? Cameron’s ‘reformed EU’ & the environment

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When the European Council finally drew to a close on February 19, 2016, the deal to help secure the UK’s continued membership in the European Union (called the ‘Anti-Brexit’ deal in continental newspapers) was finally agreed. After years of discussions and months of negotiations, there was a deal, publically available. This document provides insight into […]

Green Investment Bank 2.0?

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In the three years since its foundation, the Green Investment Bank (GIB) has made waves in the green investment scene in the United Kingdom (UK). But rather than resting on its laurels the UK government needs to realise the work of GIB has not gone far enough, that the level of green investment in the […]

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