The chemical industry in Germany plays a key role in the economy as a whole and the country's international competitiveness. It provides more than 290,000 well paying jobs. The capacity of the chemical industry for innovation is crucial for finding solutions to some of the major challenges of our time such as climate change and the resource crisis: chemicals can help to insulate buildings, generate solar power, build cleaner cars and increase material efficiency.
Recent estimates of global fossil fuel subsidies for production and consumption are staggering, putting the total near US$730 billion annually or higher. This analysis looks at ways that fossil fuel subsidy phase out can benefit the climate and recommends actions that can be taken immediately in the UNFCCC.
Since 2002, the world community has been struggling to formulate a framework for sustainable consumption and production. In this paper, "Preventing Wall-E", Victoria Floor describes the struggle, the high stakes and the importance of a Rio +20 agreement.
Germany has seen record investments in solar energy. Thus, coal and nuclear utilities are calling for an end to solar incentives. They might be able to delay the boom of solar power. But it is too late to stop it altogether, argues Volker Quaschning in this article.
In this essay, the president of the Heinrich Boell Foundation, Barbara Unmuessig, critically reflects on the opportunities for and the shortcomings of the concept of a "Green Economy" to influence economic policy making globally, its relationship to the paradigm of sustainable development and the need to rethink our understanding and focus on growth.
Can Europe assert leadership on climate change in light of its myriad problems? The EU was key in shaping the outcome of the last UNFCCC negotiations, the so-called Durban Platform. This paper analyzes the prospects for Europe to continue to act as a driving force towards a greener planet, both at home and abroad.
Solar power has the potential to provide secure and reliable energy to rural communities in developing countries. This case study examines an off-grid project in India and assesses it implications for national energy policy.
The effects of climate change and current policy responses have disproportionately negative impacts on women. As part of the effort to address the imbalance, this research assesses policies and practices for gender-just adaption in India.
The multiple crises – the financial crash, hunger, climate change and resource scarcity – demonstrate emphatically that neoliberal market globalization cannot fulfill its promises: namely to bring about the optimal allocation of resources on the entire planet and thus be a win-win game for all.
Today, prospects for sustainable development remain a serious challenge as our global economy, our natural environment, our social well-being, and our political structures are in crisis. From the economy to climate change to food and agriculture, systems of governance are in disarray. Everyone is struggling more intensely in today’s world – particularly women and girls.
In this paper, Mats Abrahamsson takes a closer look at a region that could be a pioneer for regional cooperation in the EU: the Baltic Sea Region. As the first region with an EU regional cooperation initiative and with a long-lasting tradition of cooperation, this region could play an essential role in showing the EU the way forward by sharing their large potential of diverse renewable energy sources.
With negotiation time extended for more than 30 hours, the South African Presidency was able to conclude the climate summit in Durban with a "Durban Package" of measures. However, while agreement was reached - barely - many key issues remained unresolved, making the COP17 results in many respects "a largely empty package".
The story of climate change is not merely the story of changing components in the atmosphere, nor is it the story of drowning polar bears and melting icebergs. Climate change is also a mirror of the erroneous household management by humanity.
This panel discussion in Durban brought together Japanese and European perspectives on how the international community is moving away from nuclear and coal-based energy in response to incidents such as Fukushima.
International funding for reductions of emissions from deforestation and forest degradation as well as for forest conservation (REDD+) has dramatically increased over the past few years. This ODI/Boell Foundation policy brief looks at lessons from the early experience, the challenges that finance delivery and implementation face and discusses some policy options for improvement.
By some counts no less than eight distinct climate finance decisions are expected at COP 17 in Durban, making the climate finance cluster one of the most crucial ones to address in South Africa. Solving the complex web of interlocking climate finance decisions in Durban also holds the key to unlocking progress in other areas, as this commentary explains.
The German Green Party suggests turning climate change cooperation into a strategic priority in the transatlantic relationships. This is the core demand of the motion 17/7356 passed by the Greens in the parliament, the Deutscher Bundestag. Though Congress is so far not acting on climate change, there are other pillars in the US society to connect to and foster collaboration and mutual learning across the Atlantic. One of the vehicles for this is the Transatlantic Climate Bridge of the German government that should be strengthened, according to the resolution of the Greens.
Transitioning towards a low-carbon economy requires the active engagement of civil society. This report explores the growing role of Chinese environmental NGOs in pushing aggressive climate targets and how the Chinese government enhances these efforts to implement ambitious climate change and renewable energy action.
Sub-Sahara Africa as a region already has been hit hardest by climate change, yet so far has received little of the financial resources it needs to adapt and cope with climate change impacts. This policy brief looks at the state of play of climate finance delivery to the continent, discusses the role of important actors in the region and addresses the problems that hamper a more equitable and effective climate finance delivery to the region.
In early 2011, the African Development Bank (AfDB) indicated its intention to establish and manage an Africa Green Fund to support African states that individually lack the knowledge and technology to secure needed global climate funds. This mapping study evaluates the AfDB's actual track record on sectors and initiatives related to climate change as a clue to the Bank’s suitability to manage any future infusions of funds to address climate change in Africa.