Planning for low-carbon development: the twin challenge of poverty eradication and emissions reductions

In developing countries, where most of the world’s population lives, the daunting challenge for governments and policy makers is to reduce both poverty and greenhouse gas emissions. Professor Harald Winkler from the University of Cape Town’s Energy Research Centre offered his perspective on how this challenge might be tackled in South Africa, a country that, like Australia, has a heavy dependence on coal-based electricity generation. Prof Winkler argues that taking more ambitious action to reduce emissions can result in socio-economic advantages, or ‘co-benefits’, which should be considered primary rather than secondary benefits.

Prof Winkler was joined by panellists, Tony Wood and Malte Meinshausen, who discussed the Australian parallels to South Africa’s experience.

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