State of The Transition, November 2016: Steps forward continue to outnumber steps back, notwithstanding the Trump election. But.

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The global energy transition remains in a state of net forward momentum as of the end of November. However, evidence that the society is in danger of reaching its eventual target of complete or near-complete energy decarbonisation too late to save the planet from runaway global warming was particularly clear this month. As if we didn’t know it before the events of November, this is going to be a tight race.

The Paris Agreement, a global decarbonisation pact adopted by every independent nation on Earth, entered into force on November 4th. I summarised the state of play in international climate politics, as it stood after the Marrakech... read more...


State of The Transition post-Marrakech: Unity is strength as the “irreversible” climate train rolls towards Trumpism

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My latest for Recharge:

Donald Trump’s would be climate saboteurs might have hoped that merely the mention of their intention to quit the Paris Agreement would be enough for the climate talks to fall apart at the annual climate summit in Marrakech. Exactly the reverse happened: the rest of the world pulled together. In the second week, with ministers and some heads of state in attendance, nations strengthened their collective resolve to decarbonise global energy. 195 countries issued a Marrakesh Action Proclamation reaffirming the Paris Agreement, the urgent imperative for it, and the speed of the energy transition... read more...


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Latest blog posts

Trump’s win will slow climate action and renewables, but as the reactions at COP 22 show already, he will fail in his fossil promises

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My latest for Recharge:

The unexpected election of Donald Trump is undoubtedly a setback for the international climate talks and the renewables industries. The shock dominated the first week of COP 22, the first annual meeting of the nations party to the Paris Agreement, in Marrakech. But by week end the message was clear. The rest of the world will march on towards emissions cuts and clean... read more...


“Something post-colonial”: As Mrs May pitches UK plc in India, my eye witness account of Mr Cameron’s equivalent trip. …And that was then.

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Extract from The Energy of Nations: Risk Blindness and the Road to Renaissance, 2013

New Delhi, July 2010.

 The bus weaves miles across the far fringes of Heathrow’s tarmac with CEOs and chairmen clinging to straps like tourists being driven to a charter flight. We reach a souped-up portacabin labelled the Queen’s Suite, and after the quickest check in I have ever experienced,... read more...


State of The Transition, October 2016: As the Paris Agreement enters into force, momentum in the great energy system change continues to outpace setbacks

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Today the Paris Agreement on climate change comes into force, defying doubters the world over. Many said a decarbonisation treaty could never be negotiated. In December last year it was, and every independent nation on the planet adopted it. Many thought it would not be signed in critical mass. In April it was, by 175 nations, more than any other treaty in history. Many then doubted it would be... read more...


Spare a thought for energy CEOs in this tech-race world

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My latest column in Recharge magazine:

We live in an era where change seems to be accelerating, wherein eventualities once deemed black swans because of their unlikelihood regularly come to be viewed as predictable surprises after the event. In this context, imagine sitting down for confidential in-depth interviews with 60 business leaders and their equivalent in public service,... read more...


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The chronicle which accompanies The Winning of The Carbon War

Act de Triumph

Paris - Triumph

On Saturday December 12th, 2015, I witnessed something that nothing else in human history comes close to, in terms of scale and stakes. Most of the nations on Earth, 195 of them, adopted the world’s first universal agreement to fight an existential threat to civilisation and indeed life, as we know it, on the planet.
Going into the Paris Climate Summit, there were three possible outcome... read more...


The full Chronicle >>

The Paris Climate Summit begins. The world watches. And my Chronology of the Carbon War, charting the years running up to this unique event in human history, closes. But for one more entry.

Paris - atmosphere over

With this image of the atmosphere over Paris at night, this is the penultimate entry in my Chronology of the Carbon War. The last one will be made after the summit ends, with its outcome hopefully clear. The drama that will no doubt unfold in the next two weeks I will describe in the last few chapters of The Winning of the Carbon War, to be published as a free-download e-book in the first week... read more...


Latest interviews, presentations, videos and Tweets

Selected interviews:

“The solar revolution is coming… fossil fuels could be facing extinction”: BBC Click


BBC TV News’s popular Click programme summarises the state of play in solar, and how step-changes in cell efficiency could be “icing on the cake”, as I put it.… Read-morescreenshot-2016-10-01-12-49-23

More Interviews >>