We’ve heard it before, but this time the message comes in the form of a joint statement from 11 of the world’s biggest engineering organizations: we already have all the technology we need to slash global greenhouse gas emissions by 85 percent by 2050.
Released a month ahead of the next round of international climate talks — set to take place in Durban, South Africa — the statement faults politicians for failing to take advantage of ready solutions.
“While the world’s politicians have been locked in talks with no output, engineers across the globe have been busy developing technologies that can bring down emissions and help create a more stable future for the planet,” said Colin Brown, director of engineering at the UK’s Institution of Mechanical Engineers. “We are now overdue for government commitment, with ambitious, concrete emissions targets that give the right signals to industry, so they can be rolled out on a global scale.”
The joint statement calls for:
- Leaders at Durban to commit to a peak in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020, with “substantial reductions” by 2050;
- Making sure green policies don’t unfairly or unintentionally harm any particular industry or country;
- Intensive training and retraining efforts to ensure available workers for emerging green industries;
- More emphasis on energy efficiency, the “best available measure to bring down emissions in the short and medium term.”
The statement came out of the Future Climate 2 conference that took place this week in London.
Engineering groups behind the statement include the Institution of Mechanical Engineers (UK); the Institution of Engineers (India); the Association of German Engineers; the Japanese Society of Mechanical Engineers; the Association of Professional Engineers, Scientists and Managers (Australia); the Danish Society of Engineers; the Civil Engineer Organisation of Honduras; the Swedish Association of Graduate Engineers; the Norwegian Society of Engineers; the Finnish Association of Graduate Engineers; and the Union of Professional Engineers (Finland).