Centre for Law and Environment


UCL CLE/UCL Public Policy going low-carbon

23 November 2011

Dr Chiara Armeni (UCL Laws); Professor Maria Lee (UCL Laws); Dr Simon Lock (UCL Science & Technology Studies); Professor Tadj Oreszczyn (UCL Energy Institute). Chaired by Professor Yvonne Rydin (UCL Bartlett School of Planning and Director, UCL Environment Institute).

About this event
Technological innovation is likely to play a significant role in moving to a low carbon economy. Alongside the technological and scientific challenges, this presents considerable governance challenges. There are currently major gaps in the ways in which UK high level political discourse on climate change technologies addresses governance. The focus tends to be on economic incentives; the full complexity of the governance challenges associated with capturing the carbon savings potential of technological innovation is barely acknowledged.

Furthermore, the ways in which different publics might engage with climate change technologies other than through economic incentives are rarely considered, and tried and tested governance frameworks (such as planning) are generally discussed (if at all) as barriers that must be overcome. But any technology is embedded in its social context, and the public in their diverse roles (as citizens, consumers, members of communities) play unavoidable and important roles in the adoption, proliferation and impact of climate change technologies. This seminar will explore some of the diverse governance challenges thrown up by climate change technologies. Presentations include:

  • Building Insulation – The challenges and intended consequences of insulating the existing housing stock
  • Wind Energy & the Public – NIMBYism, engagement or just a load of hot air?
  • Capturing the Opportunities and Challenges of Governing CCS Technologies.

Going Low Carbon: Event Executive Summary (pdf).