With conventional oil production in decline, the global oil industry is investing heavily in dirtier and riskier forms of oil and also in unconventional resources, such as tar sands, and oil shale. All are difficult and costly to produce, usually more carbon intensive than conventional oil and may have calamitous long-term impacts on the local environment.
The international dialogue project aims to engage young academics, activists and policy makers in a cooperative and creative debate. An important milestone in this process will be the Alternative Resource Summit in September 2013.
Recent estimates of global fossil fuel subsidies for production and consumption are staggering, putting the total near US$775 billion annually or higher. In a time of economic hardship, dangerous climate change, and growing demand for reliable and cleaner sources of energy, these fossil fuel subsidies are a reckless and irrational use of taxpayer money and government investments.
By Elizabeth Bast, Traci Romine, Stephen Kretzmann, Srinivas Krishnaswamy, Lo Sze Ping
The definition of "good life" depends mostly on political, economical and cultural circumstances, but due to the effects of climate change and global warming, it also depends on issues of nature and environment. Georg Koessler investigates the relationship between climate change and living conditions.
By Georg Koessler
The European Union (EU) and the Government of India are currently negotiating a bilateral Free Trade Agreement (FTA) that aims to liberalise 'substantially all trade' between the two trading blocks. This study assesses the possible impact of an FTA between India and the EU on the Human Right to Food in India.
The G20 could dramatically improve the working of international food systems if they chose to, and the broader benefits would be significant. Yet the final communiqué showed just how much work is still to be done.
By Sophia Murphy
Renewables in the electricity sector are often built in regional cooperations. The Example of the Baltic Sea Region shows, that there is a clear potential for an energy system built on 100 percent renewable production.
The construction of a European grid is a prerequisite for the joint exploitation of renewable energy sources in Europe. But although the necessity is now widely accepted, the construction of this grid and especially of the interconnectors between the different European countries is progressing slowly. How can we speed up this process?
By Antonella Battaglini, Johan Lilliestam
What is the nature of the European Union’s relations to third countries with regard to renewable sources of Energy? And what are the options available for developing those relations further in order to exploit the potential of renewable energy more effectively?
By Sascha Müller-Kraenner
Yesterday, the European Commission presented an update to its Raw Materials Strategy from 2008. What are the practical implications of this European strategy, especially for resource rich developing countries around the world?
By Johanna Sydow, Lili Fuhr, Ute Straub
China is the world leader in exports of rare earths, which are mainly used for the production of hi-tech products. The Heinrich Böll Foundation talked with Dr. Zha Daojiong, a professor at the School of International Studies of Peking University, about the important raw materials and the role of China.
On 18 and 19 November 2010, the annual Albrecht Thaer Kolloquium, co-hosted by the Humboldt University Berlin and Heinrich Böll Foundation, brought together a group of international environmental scientists to debate the imperative to adapt our political and economic systems to the unprecedented challenge of environmental and climate change.
The strategy in its current form is problematic in some key areas. For example, it says very little about the governance, rights and environmental issues associated with mineral wealth in many developing countries.
By Silas Kpanan’Ayoung Siakor
Samuel Nguiffo, Director of the Center for Environment and Development Cameroon and Goldman Environmental Award Winner 1999 and other members of the civil society in Cameroon comment and criticise the Raw Material Strategy of the German Federal Government
Amidst allegations of rampant human rights abuses at the Chiadzwa diamond fields and reports of diamond smuggling the KPCS has failed to take decisive action. Claude Kabemba sheds light on the reasons for the KPCS’ inability to act and concludes that a failure in Zimbabwe will send a negative signal about the relevance of the KPCS and capacity for self-regulation of the diamond industry as a whole.
By Claude Kabemba
In a globalised world, energy independence can not be achieved. Successful energy policies require inter-sectoral co-operation, supervision, and long-term public policies concerning employment, the environment, and investment.
By Ana-Maria Boromisa
For a generation to come, relations between the EU and Russia will be shaped by the question of gas, as this is highly important for the EU’s energy security, climate changes policies, and commerce.
By Maria Belova
Turkey has close ties to the Caspian region, Central Asian, and the Middle East. Its longstanding cultural, historic, and economic interrelationships in the area means that Turkey is an ideal intermediary for the EU in its efforts to develop an energy dialogue.
By Arzu Yorkan
Awareness of the commons requires a fundamental shift in thinking about the foundations of society. It means using, sharing, and multiplying our common wealth in a free and self-determined way. Our society needs a great debate and a worldwide movement for the commons. Now!