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Coronavirus: How we emerge from this terrible crisis could push us into a better future

The Grantham Institute’s Dr Alex Koberle blogs on how the response to COVID-19 could help shape a sustainable, resilient future. The COVID-19 global pandemic is pushing institutions and governments to their limits. People are worried about their health, their families, losing their jobs and the uncertainty the future holds. The economic fallout of this crisis is still uncertain too, and we may well wake up … Continue reading Coronavirus: How we emerge from this terrible crisis could push us into a better future

Antarctica at 200: why the ‘climate decade’ must secure the future for Antarctica

Following an Imperial Lates event focused on what the future may hold for Antarctica, Richard Knight, former student on Imperial’s MSc Environmental Technology course, blogs on how vulnerable the continent is, how its sensitivity to climate change threatens the world, and how to protect it.   This year Antarctica celebrates its 200-year anniversary, marking two centuries since it was discovered. Since then, humanity’s interests have largely shifted away from exploiting the continent’s rich aquatic life and mineral … Continue reading Antarctica at 200: why the ‘climate decade’ must secure the future for Antarctica

The graphic shows that a single journey from London to Paris by plane will cost £64, take 4 hours 40 minutes, and emit 59kg equivalent of carbon dioxide. By train, the same journey will cost £49, take 2 hours 55 minutes, and emit 2kg equivalent of carbon dioxide. Assumptions: the start and end location are the main train terminal in the centre of each city; travel costs are for the cheapest advance tickets bought in advance and include all connecting journeys; carbon emissions are calculated using UK government greenhouse gas emissions factors for short-haul flights, ferry and international rail travel. To find out more, visit www.imperial.ac.uk/stories/climate-action

Reducing demand for air travel starts at work

Laura Warwick, Research Postgraduate on the Science and Solutions for a Changing Planet Doctoral Training Partnership, says flying shouldn’t be the default option when it comes to international travel. Aviation is becoming an increasingly contentious issue in the UK. The government’s decision to step in to assist regional airline Flybe seems to be at odds with the UK Committee on Climate Change’s warning that continued … Continue reading Reducing demand for air travel starts at work

COP25 – the world must wake up to environmental inequality

People protesting in Santiago with colourful flags and political slogan. Credit: Carolina Cuadros Karina Corada Perez, Research Postgraduate at Imperial’s Centre for Environmental Policy, blogs on how the UN Climate Summit, COP25, has already shone a spotlight on social crises and environmental injustices – and what she thinks governments around the world can do to change the economic systems that are unsustainable for human life. On Friday … Continue reading COP25 – the world must wake up to environmental inequality

Anti-fracking protesters with yellow signs saying "frack free Lancashire"

Fracking Q&A: The background, the ban and what’s coming next

Last weekend, the United Kingdom Government announced a moratorium on fracking, based on evidence from a report by the Oil & Gas Authority (OGA). In this Q&A, Imperial’s Karen Makuch, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Law, and Miriam Aczel, President’s Scholar at the Centre for Environmental Policy, consider what led to the ban, and what it might mean for the UK energy sector going forwards.   What … Continue reading Fracking Q&A: The background, the ban and what’s coming next

Carolina Schmidt, Minister of Environment, Chile and Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC at the Host Country Agreement signing ceremony (c) UNclimatechange

Have I got the Bonn blues? Time to look forwards to COP25 in Chile

Carolina Schmidt, Minister of Environment, Chile and Patricia Espinosa, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC at the Host Country Agreement signing ceremony (c) UNclimatechange Trish O’Beirne, student on the MSc in Environmental Technology, reflects on her experience at the UNFCCC’s Climate Change Conference in Bonn, and looks ahead to the forthcoming Conference of the Parties (COP25), in Chile. Having spent most of my academic career in the happy … Continue reading Have I got the Bonn blues? Time to look forwards to COP25 in Chile

Direct air capture: could this new technology save us from climate change?

FEATURE: A promising technology that sucks carbon dioxide from the air could help, but not replace, climate action, say experts. Simon Levey explores what is Direct Air Capture and what are the chances of it taking off in time to help avert the climate crisis. Continue reading Direct air capture: could this new technology save us from climate change?

COP24 President Michal Kurtyka jumps in celebration of the approval of the Paris Agreement Work Programme at COP24 in 2018 (c) UNClimateChange

Why should the UK host the COP26 climate summit in 2020?

Grantham Institute lecturer Dr Joeri Rogelj, member of the United Nations’ Climate Science Advisory Group, blogs on why hosting the 26th Conference of the Parties in 2020 is an unrivaled opportunity for the UK to take the lead internationally on climate change action.  For the last 40 years, each consecutive decade has been warmer than the previous one. The amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere … Continue reading Why should the UK host the COP26 climate summit in 2020?

London, UK - July 13th 2016:The front elevation and doorway of 10 Downing Street, with a cat and a British policemen standing outside. It is the official office and HQ of the British Prime Minister

Legacy on climate change – “make a powerful statement of global leadership”

A group of leading climate scientists, coordinated by Professor Joanna Haigh, former Co-Director of the Grantham Institute, have written to Prime Minister Theresa May calling for her to make climate change action her legacy by setting a net zero greenhouse gas emissions target into national law. Here is the text of the letter: Dear Prime Minister, As a group of Britain’s leading climate scientists, we … Continue reading Legacy on climate change – “make a powerful statement of global leadership”

Extinction Rebellion protests in London, April 2019. A big crowd of people gathered around Oxford Circus

Let’s embrace this fighting chance to reach net zero

Dr Ajay Gambhir, Senior Research Fellow at the Grantham Institute and contributor to the Committee on Climate Change’s Net Zero report, blogs on why we mustn’t lose this moment to accelerate the low-carbon transition. On Thursday 2 May 2019 I attended the launch of the Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC’s) latest report, which advises the government that the UK should reach net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) … Continue reading Let’s embrace this fighting chance to reach net zero