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Lord Lawson outlines 'Plan B' on climate change after Copenhagen's failure

Screen shot 2009-12-20 at 14.50.01 Former Tory Chancellor of the Exchequer Nigel Lawson has today outlined a 'Plan B' for the world on climate change (although it was always his 'Plan A').

His Global Warming Policy Foundation outlined four themes for this 'Plan B':

  • A switch from trying to avoid climate change to one that adapts to change. The GWPF recommends "an agenda aimed at helping to increase the resilience of both advanced and poorer countries to such change." On ConHome last week, Tory Climate Change spokesman Greg Clark noted that Copenhagen did move global policy-making in a direction that would help developing nations cope with extreme climate events.
  • Greater recognition of the real priorities of the developing world. "Economic development and the relief of poverty are, rightly, more important than the curbing of carbon emissions," notes the GWPF. The self-styled Sceptical Environmentalist, Bjorn Lomborg, has long argued through his Copenhagen Consensus project that international politicians should devote their limited energies to lifting trade barriers if they had the poorest nations' true interests at heart. As countries grow richer through trade they will be much more able to adjust to any climate change that occurs.
  • More transparency in climate change science.  The failure of Copenhagen, say GWPF, should be seen as "an opportunity to focus on a better understanding of the dynamics and long-term impacts of climate change, including the economic analysis embodied in climate change models."
  • An end to unilateral environmental action.  Unilateral environmental measures by Britain and the EU would be "extremely short-sighted" if they are implemented now that it is clear that most other countries are unwilling to burden their economies in similar ways.

I would add a fifth theme: Continue with policies that increase the energy resilience of our nations.  By resilience I mean protection from outside shocks.  We should not be, for example, dependent on a narrow range of often despotic regimes for our energy supplies.  We should invest in energy efficiency, nuclear power and renewable energy in order to achieve this resilience.

Tim Montgomerie

> On Platform today, Jack Perschke draws some distinctions between Red Green policies and Blue Green policies.


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