Climate & Energy - Why the Need for Dialogue?
Climate and energy policy is an area of extensive debate, where EU/US relations have become strained over recent years. While Europe has pressed ahead with policies to limit greenhouse gas emissions, the current US administration has been reticent. However, since the mid term elections in Autumn 2006, the US policy debate has begun to progress quickly with numerous policy proposals being brought forward (although they can still be forestalled while President Bush remains in the White House). There is a feeling, however, that there is much misinformation and rhetoric on both sides concerning developments on the opposite side of the Atlantic. While there is much debate about international action, the impact that the US and EU can have by working together has been lost of late.
The dialogue on Climate and Energy is intended to review key policy developments in this area, providing participants with insight into policy development processes on both sides of the Atlantic. The aim of the dialogue is to identify similarities and differences in relation to opinion and approach; to address some of the key challenges facing domestic action; and highlight areas where Europe and the US can take action domestically to show leadership in tackling climate change. T-PAGE does not aim to propose solutions for the ongoing international negotations on a post 2012 global climate change regime as there are plenty of other forums where this is being debated.
The EU and US and their respective domestic policies are essential in moving the global debate on climate change forward. However, at present Governments are not complementing each other's efforts and there is limited exchange of information and experience across the Atlantic. Civil society has an important role to play in this dialogue by improving mutual understanding and facilitating cooperation, thus bringing about a more effective response to climate change.