Nick Herbert: Emerging economies can still prosper while cutting emissions

Share
Related Topics

Those of us who have benefited from the economic growth pursued regardless of dangerous emissions have obligations to help emerging economies pursue sustainable development. The UK recognises that there will need to be sufficient finance and technology flows from developed to developing countries to support their action on climate change. The Conservative Party believes that countries meeting at Copenhagen must find a mechanism for helping the developing world cope with the consequences of climate change in a way that is additional to, not instead of, what we need to help them relieve their current poverty.

But we should view the prospect of international agreement not as a cost for developing countries but as an opportunity. Decarbonised growth offers the prospect for countries like India to avoid the environmental damage that has blighted industrialisation in the West and in China.

The Kyoto Clean Development Mechanism provides just a hint of the potential of global carbon-trading. The funds that would raise could finance green growth in the developing world, stimulate investment in new green technology – which needs to be shared with the developing world – and in adaptation measures.

Further opportunities lie ahead. People want a cleaner, greener environment, but there are also economic reasons to pursue it. We are only just learning to see the huge potential of recovering energy and materials – increasingly in demand – from waste. The natural environment does not only have an intrinsic value; it has a financial value too – for tourism, as a source of medicines, and with the right legal framework, in the market for ecosystem services – protecting habitats, improving air quality, keeping rivers cleaner.

Preserving the environment must not be seen as a conflict with economic growth, for ultimately, only sustainable growth will guarantee prosperity. If there is one thing we have learnt from the global economic crisis, it is that no one can live beyond their means. None of us can live beyond our economic means. But neither can we live beyond our environmental means.

Taken from a speech by the Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs at the weekend to the Greentech Foundation's Tenth Annual Global Environment Conference in Kerala, India

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Office Administrator

£14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Office Administrator is requ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - Commercial Vehicles - OTE £40,000

£12000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to expansion and growth of ...

Ashdown Group: Senior PHP Developer - Sheffield - £50,000

£40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Senior PHP Developer position with a...

Recruitment Genius: Operations Leader - Plasma Processing

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: An Operations Leader is required to join a lea...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

i Editor's Letter: Most powerful woman in British politics

Oliver Duff Oliver Duff
All the major parties are under pressure from sceptical voters to spell out their tax and spending plans  

Yet again, the economy is the battleground on which the election will be fought

Patrick Diamond
Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders