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Saturday, December 17, 2011

Happy Christmas everyone!!!! Lets all wish for a positive, constructive, peaceful, rewarding and environmentally friendly new year.
Having said all that  I'm having problems with my internet connection now so I'll sign off and try again soon.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Durban COP 17 News.

Click here for more info.

Durban - Nothing short of a new energy industrial revolution is going to hold global warming below 2°C, economist Lord Nicholas Stern said on Monday.

He told reporters at COP 17 in Durban that radical cuts would have to be made in global greenhouse gas emissions.

"The numbers on climate change - if we’re going to have a reasonable chance, at least 50-50, of holding to 2°C - are very clear," Stern said.

"And it’s also clear that they imply that if we’re to achieve the reductions that we have to achieve to get to 2°... those reductions have to be radical, and to achieve it means a new energy industrial revolution."

Stern, author of the landmark Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change, was speaking a day ahead of the start of high-level political negotiations at the climate change conference.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Climate change, the demand for action

If you know how the United Nations is organising the battle to limit climate change then just skip the next bit.

Because I was getting confused about what is going on I did a bit of surfing.

IPCC  is the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. They have just had a meeting in Kampala. It was identified as the 34th Session from 14th to 19th November.  They are working to produce their Fifth Assessment Report, AR5. Due for completion in 2014. Their previous report called AR4 was released in 2007.  The IPCC produces assessment reports for the FCCC.

The FCCC is the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. Set up in 1992 at the so called Earth Summit in Rio De Janeiro. That led to the Kyoto Protocol.

 The FCCC works in parallel with the IPCC.  It progresses through COP's (short for  Conference of the Parties). Their COP17 is currently in progress in Durban , South Africa.  26th Nov to 7th Dec.

Reports from Durban talk about AEOSIS which is the Alliance of Small Island States with 39 members and LDC's which are the 48 Least Developed Countries. This combined grouping of countries is about 50% of the total UN membership and they want action to start on Jan 1st 2012.

They are now confronted by the rest, some of whom also qualify as LDC's including India, Brazil and China who don't want action before 2020.

To find our what the situation is in the Conference you can find reports on the BBC Environment pages and no doubt else where.

If I've missed anything important don't hesitate to tell me!  Click here for a link to the BBC. Wiki is very good also.

The natural environment has been identified as the major obstacle in the future prosperity of the UK.
Please read the HM Government Document;
National Infrastructure Plan 2011
Click here to view the plan.
Here is an extract from the plan which expands on the views which many people have objected to in the Planning System proposed newNational Planning Policy  Framework:

  1. Reforming the planning and consenting systems
    To tackle barriers in planning, the Government is placing the presumption in favour of sustainable development at the heart of the planning system, requiring a positive approach to be taken to plan-making and to decisions on individual planning applications.
    As set out in Chapter 6, as part of implementing the recommendations of the Penfold Review, the Government will:
  • ensure the key consenting and advisory agencies have a remit to promote sustainable development as soon as the National Planning Policy Framework is finalised. This will ensure that these bodies consider the impact of their decisions on sustainable economic growth and swiftly approve consents when it is appropriate to do so; and
  • introduce a 13 week maximum timescale for the majority of non-planning consents, to speed up the consenting process and give certainty to developers. This would take immediate effect for Government agencies.
    In addition, the Government will:
  • ensure that there is a more effective mechanism for applicants to obtain an award of costs, if there is an appeal against refusal of a planning permission where a statutory consultee has acted unreasonably, through measures to be implemented in summer 2012. The Government will also improve the performance of the key statutory consultees in responding swiftly to applications;
  • build more flexibility into the new major infrastructure planning process, particularly in the pre-application phase, by summer 2012, as part of a light touch review of the process responding to feedback from users of the regime; and
  • ensure that compliance with the Habitats and Wild Birds Directives does not lead to unnecessary costs and delays to development, while continuing to support the Directives’ objectives. The Government is reviewing the directives as currently implemented in England by Budget 2012 and is committed to tackling blockages for developments where compliance is particularly complex or has large impacts. In addition, the Government can announce progress on specific projects where compliance has already proved problematic, including Falmouth Harbour.