The latest international climate summit in Doha produced few results (“Disappointment in Doha”, 13-19 December). No region or country can solve the climate crisis on its own – but it is also the case that international negotiations are not the only way to achieve results.
One example of this is that the US over the past five years has reduced greenhouse-gas emissions by 490 million tons, compared with the EU's reduction of 360 million and an increase of 269 million by China.
The decrease in US emissions is mostly thanks to the shale-gas ‘revolution' – a revolution that is, ultimately, all down to private investment in research and the American entrepreneurial spirit.
The lesson to be learnt from this is to focus more on enhancing the business climate in order to solve the climate challenge. At the moment, the EU's leaders are mostly focusing on setting new binding legislation with costly stick-oriented policies beyond 2020.
What Europe needs, instead, is a better investment climate, in which the focus is on support for research and innovation, measures to increase the take-up of new technology, cuts to some taxes and to red tape in general.