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Behind the Curve

Posted in California,Climate,USA Federal by Cheryl Morgan on the December 9th, 2008

One of the most memorable parts of the panel on energy policy in New Orleans was listening to Jim Sweeney talk about where the Obama Administration needs to go with its climate change policy. It wasn’t enough, he said, for the US to catch up with the rest of the world and actually have a policy; it needs to become a leader in climate change technology, and to help and encourage other companies to reduce their carbon emissions. It is a grand scheme, but apparently the US has a lot of catching up to do.

Over at EU Energy Policy Matthieu Glachant from the School of Mines in Paris is talking about research that he and his colleagues have done into innovation in climate change technologies. It is clear from looking at the data on patents that work is proceeding rapidly in this area, and that the technology is strongly global. One area of the world, however, is lagging behind. Yes, you guessed it, the USA is behind the curve.

The full report is available here. I did a quick search for California to see if it was once again bucking the trend, but there were no matches. Patent law in the US is a federal issue, so it would have been difficult separate out the performance of individual states. Still, we can hope. Innovation is supposed to be something that California is good at.

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