Barely a week goes by without a press headline warning us of the dangers we face from climate change. Behind the stories, real people are already being hit, with climate change now killing 150,000 people a year. The technological solutions to prevent it from becoming much worse already exist. The challenge is to make the transition to them in time to avoid dangerous climate change.
Some of the changes needed to make that transition will be achieved entirely through regulations that largely affect industry. Others will require individuals to choose to behave differently. In the UK, the energy we use in our homes and for personal transport is responsible for 44 per cent of the country's carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Engaging with the public is therefore critical to reducing the country's overall contribution to climate change.
Engaging the public will not only benefit the climate: helping individuals to use energy more efficiently and be less reliant on fossil fuels will also help government meet its other energy policy objectives of increasing energy security and reducing fuel poverty. More broadly, empowering people to exert control and resolve problems for themselves is a good in its own right: improving governance, deepening democracy and rebuilding trust.
Snakes and ladders: Tackling precarity in social security and employment supportAcross the country, people are trying to make ends meet, build financial security and pursue their aspirations. But, in a vicious cycle of snakes and ladders, many are being pulled down into poverty.
Making markets: The City's role in industrial strategyTo tackle climate change, we need a significant increase in public and private capital investment.
Broken hearted: A spotlight paper on cardiovascular diseaseProgress on cardiovascular disease was a significant driver of better health and prosperity in the latter half of the 20th century, however progress has recently stalled – with indications it may be in reverse.