Energy & Environment

Adapting to global warming is not only a challenge of the future. Younger generations are becoming increasingly aware of the urgency of the situation and the need to act today. Yet, as the urgency of the situation becomes clear, environmental policy is put at risk by broader political instability which could lead to the weakening of environmental regulations. The Energy and Environment Policy Centre will spend the academic year exploring the following two topics: adaptation to climate change and post-Brexit environmental policy.

In addition to necessary measures to limit or reverse climate change and its effects, it is vital to adapt to the already observable changes resulting from this phenomenon. Global heating is affecting weather and triggering more frequent and violent natural disasters. Climate change is driving mass migration around the globe and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates that there will be 200 million climate migrants by 2050. Migration, as well as the exhaustion of resources, will result in further conflicts, as these developments can lead to geopolitical changes destabilizing already vulnerable regions. All these existing challenges necessitate innovation and new technologies to protect not only humanity, but also wildlife and the Earth we all live on. Policy-making is essential to make the UK and the world more resilient to climate change. The UK’s legally binding 2008 Climate Change Act (CCA) obliges the government to create policies to increase resilience and reduce greenhouse gas emissions; however, many urgent risks are not addressed. The Energy and Environment Policy Centre will address some of these issues and study how we humans can achieve greater resilience against climate change while reducing our impact on the planet.

The UK is scheduled to leave the European Union on 31 October 2019, raising questions about the future of UK environmental regulations. For this reason, the Energy and Environment Policy Centre will focus on post-Brexit environmental policy for the second semester. Since the UK joined the EU in 1973, its environmental regulations and its approach to environmental policy has been shaped by discussions with the European Union. Disentangling UK regulations from EU regulations will be one more challenge to face and will certainly leave important gaps in the UK’s environmental regulation system. The government announced a “Green Brexit” and promised not to weaken the existing environmental protections, but this vision requires a significant improvement of the domestic environmental policy framework. The Energy and Environment Policy Centre will seek to propose solutions to improve the UK environmental regulation system, and if possible, to go beyond the former EU requirements. Rebuilding the environmental regulation system presents many challenges and the policy centre will thus address very diverse topics.

We invite you to come and join the debate. Everyone has a role to play in environmental and conservation efforts and we would be very happy to hear your ideas. You are welcome to write for us on the topics of your choice within the scope of energy and environment. Do not hesitate to contact us at mathilde.funck_brentano@kcl.ac.uk.

Mathilde Funck Brentano
Director, Energy and Environment Policy Centre

Our Policy Centre:

MFB

I am a third year International Relations student and passionate about the environment. My main area of interest is environmental law, as I believe it can play an essential role in protecting the environment.

~ Mathilde Funck Bretano, Director

Sara NoskeI am a third year PPE student from Amsterdam, The Netherlands. With my interest in circular economy and environmental economics I am curious to look at what policy-makers can do to face big environmental challenges such as climate change or resource scarcity.

~ Sara Noske, Editor

Irina TabacaruI am a second year BSc Political Economy student and am Romanian from France. I am very motivated and thrilled to have joined the team, specifically to research the fields of climate change policy and environmental economics.

~ Irina Tabacaru, Researcher

Mathilda Rouze

I am a third year LLB student and I am passionate about environmental protection. I am particularly interested in the conservation of our oceans, climate change and how policies and laws can be used to promote change.

~ Mathilda Rouze, Liason

Our Working Group:

Sofia Garrido AnituaI am a third year PPE student from the Basque Country, Spain. My main area of interest is the study of the current energy transition from a political, technological and economic point of view in order to understand the future of mobility.

~ Sofia Garrido Anitua, Working Group

Ambre BarriaAs a second year International Development BA French student, I strive to analyse the complexity of current geopolitics and promote awareness regarding the future environmental and resources issues our generation will face.

~ Ambre Barria, Working Group

UmerI am a third year International Relations student, who is passionate about climate change, especially in relation to the role of governments in developing countries in combatting this.

~ Umer Ahmed, Working Group