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Over the past few years the competitiveness of geothermal energy has improved vis-à-vis fossil-based fuel sources. In Germany, parliament has passed promotion laws to help enhance the technologies for the use of geothermal energy as a source of heat and a means of generating electricity. However, geothermal power stations will still contribute less than 1% of total supply in 2020. Geothermal development will benefit the construction industry: the growth of direct geothermal use will result in a cumulative construction volume of EUR 25 bn in Germany by 2030. Going forward, sustainable stimuli will boost all construction segments including the building materials industry and many service providers.
Commodities prices look set to rise further. Their steady increase was interrupted only briefly by the economic crisis. Germany’s chemicals industry will continue to be faced with rising prices in the future. For this reason investment in more efficient plant must not be postponed. Also, every type of economically viable technology must be employed that can help save or replace commodity input. A case in point is biotechnology and its use of biomass. Biotech offers great potential and Germany’s chemicals industry should not miss this opportunity...
Well aware that small farmers are key to world food security, agribusiness players are increasingly partnering with them. They are taking practical steps to secure farmers’ financial success in a sustainable way and integrate them into the global food supply chains...
The Copenhagen Accord has disappointed many observers of the negotiations. Still, the Accord addresses many crucial elements of a framework for tackling climate change. The greatest near-term risk stemming from the Accord concerns the future of carbon markets. In order to reduce uncertainties it is necessary to make quick progress on both carbon market reform and financing of international mitigation projects. Many countries have embarked upon their own climate policies. The Copenhagen Accord does not end these policies or slow down the momentum that was gained in the run-up to Copenhagen. The weeks ahead will of course reveal countries’ willingness to register ambitious policies and thus keep up the momentum.
The plenary session of the 193 participating countries decided to merely note the “Copenhagen Accord”, the three-page minimalist consensus document drawn up by the G-20-plus group on the final day of the conference. It did not give its explicit approval to the accord. This means that following marathon negotiations the two-week climate summit ended on a disappointing note...
Practically all member states in the European Union are grappling with massive budgetary black holes caused by economic stimulus programmes, bailout packages and crisis-driven revenue shortfalls. At the same time progressive climate change calls for urgent action. It is hoped that climate taxes will address both problems by achieving a financing as well as a steering effect. However, climate taxes in Europe are organised so differently that, for all the European Commission’s efforts, their harmonisation will presumably be very difficult to realise – even though standardisation would send out a consistent price signal for greenhouse gas emissions in Europe. The fiscal impact in the individual EU countries is also likely to vary considerably.
Climate change has the potential to severly impact societies, economies and human wellbeing. The climate change conference in Copenhagen is an important milestone in a round of negotiations. Financial institutions can play a key role in mitigating the negative effects of climate change and in adapting to climate change. In this document Caio Koch-Weser, Vice Chairman of Deutsche Bank Group, summarises key Copenhagen messages of Deutsche Bank's Environmental Steering Committee.
At the start of December Copenhagen will host the UN Climate Change Conference, and the expectations are huge. The objective is to pave the way for international climate policy in the years ahead. A multitude of contentious issues are already under discussion in the run-up to the conference. Debate focuses on the setting of reduction targets for greenhouse gases, the regulations for financial and technology transfers, suitable climate protection instruments and the importance of adaptation measures. Given the many fundamental challenges and the questions of detail that remain unanswered it is difficult to be optimistic about the prospects for Copenhagen. A failure in Copenhagen could hardly be communicated well politically, though, and is therefore unlikely.
With the international financial crisis deepening in September 2008 and spilling over into client industries steel output nosedived at double-digit rates from October 2008. For 2009 DB Research reckons on contraction of 25% and then for 2010 with expansion of 10% owing to restocking effects. The close link between crude steel output and industrial production suggests that EU crude steel output will grow only slightly over the medium term. Generally speaking, the production of crude steel in the EU only has a future with “specialisation” in premium products. Innovation drivers are energy efficiency and environmental responsibility.