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can take the initiative by developing and exploiting new green technologies to improve efficiency and cut costs,” said Mr Lambert. “The sooner that happens, the closer we will be to creating significant numbers of greencollar jobs, building future prosperity for the UK and meeting our climate change targets.”

Pat McFadden, the junior Business Minister, went even further, hailing the Government’s climate policies as “an enormous industrial opportunity… a new industrial revolution”.

The World Wide Fund for Nature’s 2009 report “Low Carbon Jobs for Europe”, drew the “conservative” conclusion that there were up to 3.4 million green jobs in Europe already, with another five million associated jobs also available.

Protecting the economy means more than creating jobs. Producing the same amount of wealth for less energy – improving carbon intensity – is another way. China announced last November that it would set a carbon intensity target for 2020 of a 40-45 per cent reduction relative to 2005. A World Bank study of more than 100 countries the same month said reducing energy intensity was by far the best way of reducing emissions growth. So a cleaner economy should remain a prosperous one. This big picture suggests that with a lot of effort and quite a lot of luck we should manage to reduce emissions to a scientifically safe level, stay warm, and still have an economy worth the name at the end of it. But a couple of other points niggle uncomfortably away.

First is the real and unstoppable need of developing countries for cheap energy. There is a strong link between direct access to electricity and per capita income for people living on or below US$2 (£1.25) per day. A quarter of the world’s people have no direct access to electricity, yet no country has managed to increase the rate of poverty eradication substantially without increasing its use of energy, usually electricity.

To reach an effective level of electrification has usually taken about 40 to 60 years of continuous incremental investment. That is one reason why global fossil use is likely to rise for decades yet. The US Energy Information Administration said in May 2009: “World marketed energy consumption is projected to grow by 44 per cent over the 2006 to 2030 period … Fossil fuels are expected to continue supplying much of the energy used worldwide … World carbon dioxide emissions are projected to rise from 29.0 billion metric tonnes in 2006 to… 40.4 billion metric tonnes in 2030 – an increase of 39 per cent …”

The second worry is about how long we can afford to wait before acting. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says global greenhouse-gas emissions should peak by 2020, and then steadily decline. They are now increasing at about 3 per cent annually. What we decide in this Parliament will affect the global climate for centuries to come.

■ Alex Kirby is a former BBC environment correspondent.

‘My life has changed because I am here. My health has returned and I am happy’ Pany Pan

If you met Pany Pan today, you’d see a bright, handsome 15 year-old boy with a real love of life. He lives in a group home in Cambodia run by CAFOD partner Maryknoll Mission, with fourteen other vulnerable children and five carers who the children affectionately call ‘the mothers.’ He loves school and says that every day he feels lucky that he can learn. ‘I was so thin and I had no strength. I was hopeless and waiting to die.’ But just four years ago Pany Pan’s life was very different. When he was 11, Pan found out he was HIV positive. His mother was ill too and sadly she died soon after, quickly followed by his father. Pan went to live with his aunt and her two children. His aunt did her best to look after him but she couldn’t afford to feed him properly, send him to school or buy the medicines he desperately needed. Pan felt all alone. Sadly there are thousands of children like Pan in Cambodia. But thanks to the gifts and legacies of the Catholic community here in England and Wales, Maryknoll is able to provide loving homes, education, care and training to children affected by HIV and AIDS. Now Pan – and many other children like him – has a future he can look forward to. The transforming power of love A gift in your will to CAFOD, however large or small, could help more young people like Pany Pan and save and change lives for generations to come. CAFOD works with more than 500 partners in over 50 countries around the world and legacies fund more than a fifth of our overseas work. Once you have taken care of your loved ones in your will, please could you consider making a gift to CAFOD? It would make a real and lasting difference.

For more information without any obligation about leaving a legacy to CAFOD, or for your free copy of CAFOD’s guide to making a will, please call Beth Brook on 020 7095 5525 or write to her at CAFOD, Romero Close, Stockwell Road, London SW9 9TY. You can also email Beth at or visit i e B u n g e r o t h

A n n


Ph o t o



Registered charity no. 285776. CAFOD is a member of Caritas International.

16 January 2010 | THE TABLET | 7

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