Climate as Investment

by Larry Lohmann

first published 22 July 2009

Proposals for Green New Deals aimed at tackling both global warming and global recession are streaming forth worldwide. Unfortunately, many give short shrift to the need to phase out both fossil fuels and fossil fuel substitutes. Many also rely on obsolete conceptions of technology transfer. Future climate movements will have to focus increasingly on the democratization of research, planning and finance.

The climate crisis and the credit crisis have made the political issues surrounding investment and finance more critical than ever before. Proposals for Green New Deals aimed at tackling both global warming and global recession are streaming forth worldwide. Yet, as this article forthcoming in the journal Development & Change argues, many such proposals are incoherent in that they overlook the need for an immediate start to a programme of phasing out both fossil fuels and purported fossil fuel substitutes such as nuclear power and industrial-scale agrofuels. They also tend to rely on Northern-biased conceptions of technology transfer and intellectual property that the climate crisis has helped make obsolete. To overcome these problems, future climate movements will have to focus increasingly on the democratization of research, planning and finance.