How to Stop Climate Change

Someone born today in the United Kingdom will have a life expectancy which, during his or her lifetime, will probably be much more than 85 years. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change 85 years is about the length of time that we must phase out fossil fuel burning if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change. We have, they think, a decent lifetime to provide lifetimes for the billions of people yet to be born. Continue reading

Secret Subsidies

I am pleased that environmentalists have complained to the European Commission that the United Kingdom is in effect secretly subsidising nuclear energy. The complainants argue (in my view rightly) that laws that cap liability for nuclear accidents or do not require the nuclear energy producers to clean up after they have made their money from nuclear electricity and a host of other subsidies are contrary to the EU laws which require these subsidies to have been granted state approval before they are implemented. Continue reading

London’s air quality

Air quality is terribly important. There are various ways in which air can be polluted and various ways to test that the air quality is of a sufficiently high standard so as not to present a hazard to human health. One of the most important ways of measuring air quality is to measure pollution particles in the air that have an aerodynamic diameter of less than ten micrometres. If the particulate matter in the air at a given place is less than ten micrometres the measurement of this particulate matter is referred to as PM10. Continue reading

Carbon Emission Fell by 1.3% in 2009

Headlines are misleading, and no more so than those that relate to climate change including my headline. Climate change is like something that happens bit by bit and very slowly when measured in terms of a single human life. The very slowness of climate change makes it no less a problem; the mills grind slow but exceeding fine. Continue reading

Visions of the past future in the present

Fifty years ago I used to read in comics and in books about visions of the future. Some visions frightened me; some could foresee a totalitarian control of people’s lives in western democracies where individualism and free though were sniffed out by the thought police, or books which had the wrong kind of writing were burned by the fire brigade and where all animals were equal but some, inevitably, were more equal than others. Continue reading