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Environment Research Group PhD Seminar: Green leadership, Emissions Trading and Greater Energy Justice

Pawel Pustelnik and Alister Forman, School of Planning and Geography
Tuesday 20th May 2014 - 4:00pm
Glamorgan Building Council Chamber

Please join us for this Environment Research Group Seminar featuring:

Pawel Pustelnik - European Green Leadership Confronted: the Case of Inclusion of Aviation into the European Union Emissions Trading System

The European Union’s (EU) aspirations to have larger impact internationally, and appear as an environmental innovator and leader have been translated into recent inclusion of aviation into the European Union Emissions Trading System (EU ETS).

This paper looks at the initiatives taken by various actors to oppose inclusion of aviation in the EU ETS by looking at the policy networks in the US and the EU. It explores their strategies used to influence US policy making and international bargaining over the EU ETS. This paper focuses on the policy processes and governance mechanisms that were in place to prevent compliance of the US air carriers with the EU ETS.

It is argued that resistance coming mostly from the US, China and India offer a compelling example of multi-level climate policy bargaining. It shows also that the industry managed to block the international carbon market for CO2 aircraft-related emissions by strong opposition, building an effective coalition. The empirical material for this paper was gathered through interviews with policy-makers at the US Congress, European Parliament, European Commission as well as representatives of green NGOs and aviation industry both in the US and in the European Union.

Alister Forman - For Greater Energy Justice: The Case of Community Energy and Fuel Poverty in Wales

Community energy initiatives have proliferated across the United Kingdom over the last twenty years.  Whilst the rhetoric of environmental justice has undoubtedly been a powerful force in the growth of such initiatives, austerity has brought into sharp focus the concurrent social justice dimensions that have, up until recently, received somewhat less attention in the academic literature.

The prevalence of ‘fuel poverty’ – particularly in the devolved regions of Scotland and Wales – is one such social justice consideration that is gathering increasing concern; but which government policy over the last decade has abjectly failed to alleviate in any meaningful sense.  Whilst synergies exist through the mobilisation of community energy as a response to both fuel poverty and wider environmental insecurities, social justice considerations have arguably taken a back seat as a driver of community energy initiatives on the ground. 

In the endeavour to ensure that social justice considerations are embedded within such systems, I use this presentation to explore the notion of ‘energy justice’, issues of access and entitlement to energy and links to building resilience in the context of fuel poverty in Wales.