Climate Confidential

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    December 28, 2005
    by phil
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    In a specially extended programme we put the Labour government and the Conservative party on the spot. We speak to Elliot Morley MP who is the Minister of State in charge of the UK’s Climate Change Programme; and to John Gummer MP, Environment Secretary under Margaret Thatcher (1993-1997) who now heads the Conservative Party’s Quality of Life Policiy Review Team (which includes climate change).

    We end the second series with unsigned band Pollination X‘s climate change rap “So People.” Contact info@pollinationx.com for further info.

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    December 21, 2005
    by phil
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    At a time when emissions are rising under Labour, and the government have been unable to finalise their new Climate Change Programme due to interdepartmental disagreement, the Labour Party’s environmental record is tatters. The other parties have been stealing a march in this increasingly voter-conscious area.

    We speak to the main opposition parties about what they would do if in power and, critically, why we should believe them. Unless there is a legal obligation on government to make annual cuts in emissions, won’t they just make the same mistakes?

    We speak with Katie Elliott from Friends of the Earth about the progress of the Climate Change Bill which aims to bring in just such a legal obligation; and to Norman Baker MP, Liberal Democrats, Shadow Secretary of State for the Environment – who has been working to forge a cross-party consensus on climate change.

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    December 7, 2005
    by phil
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    Climate Confidential has the very latest on the UN Climate Talks from our contacts in Canada:

    • Simon Retallack from International Climate Change Task Force/IPPR
    • Catherine Pearce from Friends of the Earth International
    • Matthew Carroll, co-ordinator, Youth Caucus, UN Commission on Sustainable Development; and Elissa Smith, president of the Canadian Youth Environmental Network, which represents over 300 environmental youth organizations in Canada.
    • plus! an exciting written statement from DEFRA!
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    November 30, 2005
    by phil
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    As the first ‘Meeting of the Parties’ since Kyoto came into force gets underway Montreal, we talk to Mark Lynas, author of “High Tide: News From A Warming World.” Mark is a veteran of the UN talks and has written an open letter to the delegates which was published in The Independent on the day the talks opened.

    We end today’s programme a climate change rap entitled “So People” kindly donated by unsigned band Pollination X. Contact info {at} pollinationx.com

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    November 23, 2005
    by phil
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    “The Montreal talks will be the key to determining the future for all life on earth.” – Tony Juniper, Director, Friends of the Earth in The Guardian, 23/11/05

    “It’s very important that pressure is maintained in the next few months so that the United States and all parties go to Montreal and are prepared to talk about long-term targets for cutting greenhouse gas emissions.” – Bob Ward, Royal Society spokesperson on Climate Confidential, 13/7/05

    • What will the European Union’s negotiating position be in Montreal?
    • Will Margaret Beckett be arguing for adequate and binding targets?
    • How do we get the US back on board?

    Catherine Pearce from Friends of the Earth International guides us through the fog.

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    November 16, 2005
    by phil
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    What needs to come next after the first Kyoto Protocol period expires in 2012? If we agree that 2 degrees centigrade is the maximum limit beyond which dangerous climate change takes hold – and that to avoid this we need to stabilise emissions of all greenhouse gases at around 400ppmv (CO2 equivalent) – then it is clear that we urgently need a much stronger agreement if we are to reverse the current global trend of rising emissions.

    How do we avoid the arguments about the amounts of greenhouse gases that individual nations are able to emit and make sure that we do not end up with another inadequate agreement?

    Under the Contraction & Convergence solution, a scientifically-informed emissions reduction curve is drawn up which results in every person on the planet ending up with an equal right to emit. We speak to the architect of the scheme, Aubrey Meyer of the Global Commons Institute.

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    November 9, 2005
    by phil
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    The first in a series of shows looking forward to the UN climate change discussions in Montreal takes a look at the need to set internationally agreed thresholds which will give us the targets we need to avoid dangerous climate change. We speak to Simon Retallack of the International Climate Change Task Force who tells us that we need to keep warming within 2 degrees centigrade if we are to avoid:

    • irreversible loss of the Amazon rainforest and 95% of coral reefs
    • global food insecurity
    • a third of the world’s population facing the threat of water scarcity
    • and ‘positive’ feedbacks that would result in much greater levels of warming

    Will the talks in Montreal result in an agreement on such limits and thereby set the framework for binding targets that might help us avoid disaster? What are we to make of Tony Blair’s recent pronouncements against binding targets? What will the EU be taking to the negotiating table?

    For more information, see Setting a Long-Term Climate Objective by Simon Retallack for the International Climate Change Taskforce

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    August 31, 2005
    by phil
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    Climate Confidential looks at two topics that have a bearing on the price of oil:

    We talk to award-winning journalist Greg Palast about his investigation for BBC Newsnight and Harpers magazine on the battle within the Bush Administration about what to do with Iraq’s oil. Palast uncovered a destructive tug of war between the neo-cons and Big Oil about whether or not to privatise Iraq’s oil and whether or not to break the OPEC cartel. As always he has the documents to prove it.

    Secondly we have an interview with one of the leading lights of the Peak Oil debate. Colin Campbell helped found London-based Oil Depletion Analysis Centre after having worked as Chief Geologist for Amoco and Vice President for Fina. He tells us why he thinks we are in for a bumpy ride as we adjust to an oil era that is coming to an end.

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    August 17, 2005
    by phil
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    Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London, has set a tough but necessary target for London to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 20% (from 1990 levels) by 2010.The Mayor has set a tough but necessary target for London to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 20% (from 1990 levels) by 2010.

    We speak to Mark Watts, one of Ken Livingstone’s energy advisors, about what else the Greater London Authority has up its sleeve to meet this demanding challenge.

    We also speak to Nusrat Yousuf from Camden council to find out about their plans to put five wind turbines on top of the town hall extension in King’s Cross as well as their wider plans for reducing emissions across the borough.

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    August 10, 2005
    by phil
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    In Woking, a small commuter town just 29 miles south of London, Allan Jones has made great strides in energy efficiency and cuts in greenhouse gases that has set a model for cities all over the world.

    Over a thirteen year period from 1990 he halved Woking Council’s energy consumption and reduced its carbon dioxide emissions by 77%, saving the council over £1M per year. In the town as a whole he achieved a 17% reduction in CO2 emissions.

    How did he do it? Allan Jones MBE is now the Chief Development Officer of London’s new Climate Change Agency. How does he intend to translate his vision for a low-carbon town of 100,000 people to a low-carbon capital with a population of 7.4 million?

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