In the UK’s scramble to “keep the lights on”, the new government should listen to its favourite newspaper


A slightly extended version of my column this month in Recharge Magazine:

Given that energy is the essential bedrock of a healthy economy, it is both frustrating and bewildering to watch a protracted national debate like the one accompanying the Brexit referendum and its aftermath and see how little time and attention is allotted to energy policy. In the run up to the referendum, I saw hardly any coverage of two towering themes that will be familiar to all with an interest in energy these days. The first is the speed with which a clean energy insurgency is invading energy markets around the world. The second is... read more...

State of The Transition, August 2016: Tailwinds for clean energy and the Paris agreement, deepening doldrums for the incumbency


It was vaguely wonderful watching Presidents Obama and Xi cement their bids for a place in history, via climate change, by announcing American and Chinese ratification of the Paris Agreement on 3rd September 2016. These two nations, so far apart on so many issues, have erected glass walls around the shared climate threat and worked hard together for four years to fight it. They do so now buoyed by the strengthening momentum of climate-survival technologies, and aware of the increasing catalogue of problems faced by the energy incumbency notwithstanding climate considerations. Meanwhile, the increasingly alarming warnings they hear about... read more...

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Latest blog posts

State of The Transition, July 2016: Might the fossil fuel industries implode faster than the clean energy industries can grow to replace them?


In a memorable recent statement, some of Germany’s top scientists argued that “controlled implosion of fossil industries and explosive renewables development” can deliver the targets in the Paris agreement on climate change. Taking this premise at face value, and setting aside the thought that other factors might also be needed, the course of events in July does not offer much hope... read more...

Thoughts on significance of Solar Impulse as it finishes epic round-the-world trip

Screenshot 2016-07-26 16.57.27 ...

State of The Transition, June 2016: A long list of advances, a short list of setbacks – including Brexit.

Screenshot 2016-07-01 12.36.05

The list of main setbacks for the global energy transition in June includes a potentially big one: Brexit. But when you view that vote in the light of the month’s long list of main advances, and the other such long lists for January through May 2016, plus the three years before, dots join to tell a story. If the British are collectively ill advised enough to go ahead with their exit from the... read more...

Summary and update of The Winning of The Carbon War, Amsterdam, 8 June 2016

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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:

Thoughts on significance of Solar Impulse as it finishes epic round-the-world trip

My interview on BBC World Service Newshour: the heroism of the adventurer pilots, Bertrand Picard and Andre Borschberg, and the feeling on the ground of what their beautiful story means – at least for many in the clean energy industries. Listen to the interview  … Read-moreScreenshot 2016-07-26 16.57.27

More Interviews >>

Selected videos:

LSE lecture

The winning of the Carbon War The talk at the book launch. View the video (goes with the LSE presentation)… Read-moreScreen Shot 2015-03-27 at 14.38.37

More Videos >>