Bruce Usher

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The conference on climate change that begins tomorrow in Cancún, Mexico, will be the 13th such annual meeting since 1997, when the Kyoto Protocol, the first and only international agreement to place a cap on emissions of greenhouse gases, was written. This year there will be no such treaty. Why not? Excuses will abound, but finger-pointing misses the crux of the matter, which is that climate change is the most complicated and challenging problem mankind has ever faced.

Climate change is global, as emissions from one country enter the atmosphere and affect every other country. It is created by every form of economic activity, but its effects will not become critical for another generation.…  Seguir leyendo »

With the disastrous oil spill in the Gulf, talk has once again turned to clean energy. What few people appreciate is that the demand for everything from solar panels to energy-efficient light bulbs is already booming. Worldwide, $162 billion was spent in new clean-tech investments in 2009 alone.

The United States, with its expertise, capital and entrepreneurial spirit, is well positioned to dominate what could easily be the biggest market of the 21st century. But as the most recent delay over the Senate energy bill shows, the country is missing a key ingredient in shaping an effective clean-tech policy: the political will to encourage the innovation, manufacturing and investment necessary to bring these new technologies to market.…  Seguir leyendo »