G-8 Summit and Climate Change

The G8 summit will discuss a comprehensive set of energy options to mitigate climate change and create incentives for expanded use of clean energy. An important way to achieve both objectives is by expanding carbon markets.

Two years ago, the G8 Summit in Gleneagles, Scotland promised to advance a clean development agenda and mobilize financial support for greener growth in the key emerging market economies. This year’s meeting, in Heiligendamm, Germany, must deliver on that promise.

Since Gleneagles, a critical mass of public support to act decisively on climate change has developed. Some say a tipping point has occurred. The science and the economics of climate change has come closer as a result of the overwhelming scientific evidence in the studies of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Sir Nicholas Stern’s Report for the UK government on the costs of action and inaction. Around the world expert officials, the business community, concerned citizens, and responsive governments are coming together to find common solutions to a global problem that may be the single most important issue we face as a global community.

In Heiligendamm, the G-8 leaders, together with representatives of major emerging economies (Brazil, Mexico, China, India, and South Africa, who have a critical stake in energy consumption to continue to generate economic growth), will discuss a comprehensive approach encompassing a set of energy options, from energy efficiency and renewable energy, to clean coal, carbon capture and storage, and carbon sequestration. They also have a chance to advance the use of market mechanisms to do two things: mitigate climate change, and, at the same time, create incentives for expanded use of clean energy.

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