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well as many major international accounting firms,Stock Exchanges and the UN. What has pleased memost is that this initiative pre-empted the findings ofthe UN's study into The Economics of Ecosystems andBiodiversity, or TEEB, which reported last Summer tothe gathering of 193 Environment Ministers inNagoya. Having conducted a global assessment of themulti-trillion dollar importance to the world's economyof the natural world, it called for the present system ofnational accounts to be upgraded rapidly so theyinclude the health of natural capital, and therebyaccurately reflect how the services offered by naturalecosystems are performing.Underpinning any new framework, undoubtedly, is theneed for an integrated set of long-term public policiesand instruments to encourage a "green economy."Such an economy would rely on sustainable assetmanagement, more productive processing of waste,the construction of new, zero-carbon buildings and theretro-fitting of existing stock and on achieving stringentenergy efficiency targets for our buildings, cars andhousehold goods. If only we could look at the world inthis new way, we could create significant - and,crucially, sustainable -economic opportunities. Itwould be an economy that would, on the one hand, putmuch more emphasis on planning sustainable urbandevelopments and helping businesses to maintainbiodiversity and safeguard ecosystems, while, on theother, placing less reliance on those governmentsubsidies and mechanisms which, perversely, can endup eroding the vital, natural components that provideus with our essential capital resources.For these solutions to be implemented at scale wewould have to see effective partnerships between thepublic and private sectors and they would also need toinvolve the knowledge of many highly expert, non-governmental organisations. We could not leave it tothe market alone. Long-term public sector policiesneed to be coherent and consistent in order to createan environment which is conducive to private sectorinvestment. Only in this way will the private sector beprepared to commit investment capital.The marketcertainly offers a means of accelerating changes inbehaviour but, to be genuinely effective, thesechanges must be focused and clearly directed by long-term policies, and that means robust legislation and,dare I say it, just as robust enforcement.Now I would merely add to this list one very importantacknowledgement, if I may, and that is the role of theconsumer. It seems to me that until we all asconsumers really begin to demand sustainableproducts and services from businesses andgovernments, then policy-makers will struggle to seethe importance of introducing real change. Lately, Ihave been asking myself why the public has not eagerlyembraced the many advantages in pursuing asustainable future. My conclusion is that, for too long,environmentalists have tended to concentrate on whatpeople need to stop doing. If we are constantly toldthat living environmentally-friendly lives means givingup all that makes life worthwhile, then it is no surprisethat people refuse to change! That is why, last year, Ilaunched a new initiative called START, which aims toshow people what they could start doing -the simplesteps that we can all take to make better use of our natural resources. By working with some ofEurope's leading companies, such as Kingfisher andEurostar, as well as celebrities and marketingprofessionals, we are unashamedly attempting to sellthe benefits of sustainability. As one advertisingexecutive put it to me, we are "making it cool to useless stuff." Believe it or not, this smarter approach canactually be more profitable. As Marks and Spencerhave found, an innovative approach to sustainabilityactually saves money.I have to say, this process has not exactly been helpedby the corrosive effect on public opinion of thoseclimate change sceptics who deny the vast body ofscientific evidence that shows beyond any reasonabledoubt that global warming has been exacerbated byhuman industrialised activity. Their suggestion thathundreds of scientists around the world, and thosewho accept their dispassionate evidence - includingpresumably myself - are somehow unconsciouslybiased creates the implication that many of us are,somehow, secretly conspiring to undermine anddeliberately destroy the entire market-based capitalistsystem which now dominates the world! I would ask how these people are going to face theirgrandchildren and admit to them that they actuallyfailed their future; that they ignored all the clearwarning signs by passing them off as merely part of a"cyclical process" that had happened many timesbefore and was beyond our control; that they hadrefused to heed the desperate cries of those lastremaining traditional societies throughout the worldwho warned consistently of catastrophe because theycould read the signs of impending disintegration in theever-more violent, extreme aberrations in the normallyharmonious patterns of Nature. I wonder, will suchpeople be held accountable for the absolute refusal tocountenance a precautionary approach, for this plays Iwould suggest a most reckless game of roulette withthe future inheritance of those who come after us? An inheritance that will be shaped by what you decide to do here in this Parliament. I promise you, what you decide here could induce the verynecessary adjustments we so urgently need to make.So can I ask if you will be courageous enough to seizethe moment, set Europe on a course for survival andeconomic prosperity and so earn the endless gratitudeof our descendants? nThe above remarks by HRH The Prince of Wales weredelivered during the Low Carbon Prosperity Summit atthe European Parliament, Brussels, 9 February 2011. For more information please visit:www.princeofwales.gov.ukSUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT051

" "OUR FORECASTS SHOW THAT INTRODUCINGCOST-EFFECTIVEMEASURES COULDREDUCE THE EU'SPRIMARY ENERGYDEMAND BY 30 PER CENT BY 2050 he world has witnessed quite dramaticevents already this year. There has beenextreme flooding in Australia, extremedrought in China and the earthquake inJapan, followed by a nuclear crisis. We have witnessedthe uprising in the Middle East, of which we have notseen the end yet. However diverse these events mightseem at first sight, they all make a compelling case formore ambitious global climate action. All these events have contributed to a rise in foodprices all over the world and have pushed oil prices tothe highest level since before the economic crisis. Thatis why the world needs a more sustainable growthmodel, a model which uses less resources and energy.This vision is not only a plea to promote growth thatrespects the physical and biological limits of theplanet. It is also a vision with huge economic andinnovation potential that can also make us morecompetitive in the future.With the 2050 Roadmap for moving to a competitivelow-carbon economy, the European Commission putforward such a long-term vision. The Roadmap sets outa cost-efficient pathway for the EU to reduce itsdomestic emissions by 80-95 per cent by the middleof this century - which is the EU's fair share of theglobal effort to halve greenhouse gas emissions andkeep global warming below 2°C. The low-carbon roadmap also defines the effortsneeded by all key economic sectors in the EU. And itgives directions on which will be the key technologiesof the future, so that private companies, householdsand governments know which long term investmentsare worth making. The good news is that these climate-relatedinvestments are a great source of new jobs and a way ofcutting energy costs for business. In just five years,over 300,000 new jobs were created in eco-industriesin Europe. It is a fast-growing and dynamic sector that according to estimations already employs 3.4million people in Europe, more than the steel,pharmaceuticals or automotive sectors. If we step upclimate action, another 1.5 million net jobs could becreated over the next decade.Just a few examples: the environmental portfolio of alarge engineering company in 2009 represented 30per cent of its total revenues, with around 100,000employees already working in the green sector. A carmaker produces car models made of recycled plasticsthat are recyclable and recoverable to a high degree. In addition, the group has reduced overall energyconsumption per vehicle by 17 per cent between2002 and 2009, and decreased its overall greenhouseemissions by 32 per cent since 2003. An electronicsproducer has set a target to improve its energyefficiency from 2010-2015 by 50 per cent and toincrease the sales of green products to 50 per cent by2015. One of these products is a new type of energy-saving lighting solution for municipalities, householdsand businesses. Our forecasts show that introducing cost-effectivemeasures could reduce the EU's primary energydemand by 30 per cent by 2050 and make us save bybetween EUR 175 billion and EUR 320 billion peryear on average fuel costs. By 2050, the EU couldhalve its imports of oil and gas - representing a savingof three per cent of today's GDP. Much of the requiredadditional investment expenditure for climatemeasures can be recovered from what we save onenergy costs. Money that now flows abroad for2050 ROADMAP A VISION FOR SUSTAINABLE GROWTH052SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENTCONNIE HEDEGAARD, COMMISSIONER FOR CLIMATE ACTION, EUROPEAN COMMISSION (EC)TPhoto: © European Union 2011