• World Economic Forum sees diverse range of responses by delegates on climate change

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      Patrick Lavery

      Combustion Industry News Editor

The Climate Change News website has covered various statements of political and other leaders at the Davos World Economic Forum held in Switzerland in the second half of January. The statements ranged from anodyne to notable, and the backstories to some of the statements were of particular interest. A graph of International Energy Agency predictions about the growth of renewable energies, for instance, shows just how remarkably different the EIA projections have been compared to what has happened, the EIA consistently predicting far less growth than has occurred. Another interesting development was the Papua New Guinea prime minister, Peter O’Neill, describing highly-polluting developing countries such as China as “one of the biggest contributors” to the challenge of climate change, in a break in the previous solidarity between developing nations. The divide between highly-polluting developing countries and developed countries remained, though, with Indian prime minister Narendra Modi saying “Everybody talks about reducing carbon emissions, but there are very few countries who back their words with their resources to help developing countries to adopt appropriate technologies. Very few of them come forward to help.” Al Gore, on the other hand, stated that the US would exceed the commitments it originally made to the Paris Agreement, “in spite of what [Trump] says, or tweets or does”, trusting state and business leaders instead, as well as market forces. The range of opinions is revealing about the myriad political and economic tensions underlying the problem of climate change.