The crusade towards net-zero emissions is all stick and no carrot

Ideas

The crusade towards net-zero emissions is all stick and no carrot

Developed nations need to be even-handed with emerging markets to avoid perverse outcomes

Hendrik du Toit

There is an incontrovertible and sobering fact about the drive to net zero. Any effort that doesn’t work for the whole world will fail everywhere. A path that favours developed markets at the expense of others will lead to a partial net zero, which is no net zero at all.

Unfortunately, too many countries, companies and investors see achieving this goal by mid-century as a divided race against metrics rather than as a united race against time.

That’s why it’s imperative that the upcoming COP26 climate conference align and accelerate global efforts to do right by the planet. Buzzwords aside, it must generate agreement on a practical and fair transition path for all of the world’s 7.9-billion people, most of whom live in emerging markets and will depend on dirty energy sources or industries for a long time to come without support...

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