The UK government must tell the public small, easy changes will not be enough to tackle climate change, warn experts. Researchers from Imperial College London say we must eat less meat and dairy, swap cars for bikes, take fewer flights, and ditch gas boilers at home. The report, seen by BBC Panorama, has been prepared for the Committee on Climate Change, which advises ministers how to cut the UK’s carbon footprint. It says an upheaval in our lifestyles is the only way to meet targets. The government has passed a law obliging the country to cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050. It is “going further and faster than any other developed nation to protect the planet for future generations”, a government spokesperson told BBC Panorama. “If we can go faster, we will.” But the new report warns major shifts in policy across huge areas of government activity are needed to keep the public onside. Chris Stark, the Chief Executive of the Committee on Climate Change, tells Panorama the government’s plan for cutting emissions is “not nearly at the level of ambition required”.
BBC 11th Oct 2019 read more »
The climate crisis: can we fix it? Yes, we can, argues Bryan Appleyard. Climate change has ushered in a new era of anxiety, but existing or nascent technological solutions — from lab-grown meat to nuclear fusion reactors — may help us avoid the apocalypse. Greens are overwhelmingly against nuclear power. Yet it is clean and one of the safest forms of energy generation. But walk through an Extinction Rebellion camp and you won’t find a single voice raised in favour of nuclear. We are in the ridiculous situation of demonising nuclear power.” This is not about costly behemoths such as Hinkley Point C, it is about small, local reactors that can be put on the back of a lorry. But nobody seems to want those either. None of which may matter if two machines now being built in the UK and France called respectively Step (Spherical tokamak for energy production) and Iter (International thermonuclear experimental reactor), actually work. These are fusion machines, an energy technology that has been said to be imminent for more than 30 years.
Times 13th Oct 2019 read more »