An enhanced transparency framework is a central element to implementing the Paris Agreement. Article 13 provides for an enhanced transparency framework, including common modalities, procedures and guidelines (MPG) with built-in flexibility. Flexibility is to built-in by drawing on collective experience and is to be provided to developing countries that need it in the light of their capacities. Flexibility seems a simple, clear requirement, right? Well, it seems not. The discussion about flexibility has become surprisingly difficult. This is due, in… Read moreTalking of flexibility to support transparency
Environment Minister Edna Molewa has declared greenhouse gases (GHGs) as priority pollutants and published regulations for pollution prevention plans (PPPs). While it is encouraging to see a system for mitigation (reducing GHG emissions) starting to be encoded in a law, including regulations, the detailed content leave much room from improvement. Identifying GHG as priority pollutants to be controlled, and requiring the reporting and implementation of mitigation measures, are essential elements of climate change policy. So to start with the good… Read moreGood to have pollution prevention plans to reduce GHGs as priority pollutants – but much room for improvement
Date: 24 July 2017 – 5:00pm to 7:00pm Venue: Snape, TS2B | University of Cape Town | Upper Campus What are the growth and structural implications of the transition to a low-emission and climate-resilient economy? How can governments create conditions to drive such a transition, and how can they ensure that climate-friendly growth policies provide a major boost to short-term growth while increasing longer-term resilience? What development pathways will get us to the Paris Agreement outcomes? How do investment flows, in particular, investment… Read moreOECD report on “Investing in Climate, Investing in Growth” presented at UCT
The G20 meeting which has just been concluded in Hamburg, dogged by protests, was originally intended by the German presidency to be a way of building momentum around climate action in the wake of the Paris Agreement; however, the election of President Trump, and his subsequent decision to pull the US out of the Agreement, changed the nature of the summit altogether. There was widespread trepidation that the political consensus developed in Paris in 2015 on climate action would be shattered by… Read moreSouth Africa, the G20 and Climate Change: from Brown to Green?
Surprisingly strong result on energy and climate from G20 summit, or more accurately the G19. Passed the first part of ‘Trump Test’, as Germanwatch put it in an excellent, detailed analysis. The 19 (including Russia and Saudi Arabia) recommitted to the Paris Agreement. Moving to action is part 2, and a detailed Climate and Energy Action Plan is a good basis. Only the US cites ‘clean’ fossil fuels – but won’t stop momentum of the energy transition, to a greener… Read moreG19 strong on energy and climate change – action to follow
On 1 June 2017, Donald Trump (DT) announced that his administration was withdrawing the US from the Paris Agreement. The world’s largest economy is taking no responsibility for US historical emissions, and instead reneging on what his country had previously agreed. Trump’s exit is a deeply immoral, reprehensible act. The speech on the Rose Garden lawns is full of the illogical statement one has come to expect from DT (see good analysis in The Guardian). It continues to astound how unethical… Read moreTrump exit from Paris will hurt America most
At this year’s spring meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, and the G20 Hamburg Summit in July, finance ministers will gather to discuss, among other pressing matters, climate change. Carbon pricing is expected to take up some of the discussion time, particularly at the G20 Summit. Thankfully, an in-depth report on carbon pricing will be available – one with notable contributions by UCT’s Professor Harald Winkler. The Commission Winkler, the director of the Energy Research Centre, was… Read moreHarald Winkler to serve on High-Level Commission on Carbon Prices
The Energy Research Centre & UCT have recorded a MOOC on Climate Change Mitigation in Developing Countries. You are invited to take part and to encourage others to join you. The next course begins on the 26th of December 2016 and you can sign up with minimal fuss: https://www.coursera.org/learn/climate-change-mitigation Some of the comments from previous participants Excellent intro to Climate Change mitigation and what has already been done, and how to take forward from lessons learned. Super-awesome course that taught me about… Read moreJoin our MOOC
ERC researchers, Dr Katye Altieri and Samantha Keen analysed the impacts of energy-related air pollution using the environmental Benefits Mapping and Analysis Program (BenMAP) model that they developed for South Africa. The high cost of air pollution The Global Burden of Disease (GBD) reported in 2012 that three million people die prematurely each year around the globe due to ambient air pollution (WHO, 2012), with low- and middle-income countries suffering the worst effects. Developing countries, that have a heavy reliance on fossil fuels,… Read moreThe cost of air pollution in South Africa
With the UN’s COP22 underway in Marrakesh, Wits Radio hosts a programme called ScienceInside that focuses on climate change. In an interview with Professor Harald Winkler, the director of the Energy Research Centre at the University of Cape Town and others, they find out more about what the Paris Agreement means for South Africans. Listen to the interview on SoundCloud.