The Carbon Crunch How We're Getting Climate Change Wrong--and How to Fix It Dieter Helm

Publication date:
12 Oct 2012
Yale University Press
304 pages: 229 x 152mm


Despite commitments to renewable energy and two decades of international negotiations, global emissions continue to rise. Coal, the most damaging of all fossil fuels, has actually risen from 25% to almost 30% of world energy use. And while European countries have congratulated themselves on reducing emissions, they have increased their carbon imports from China and other developing nations, who continue to expand their coal use. As standards of living increase in developing countries, coal use can only increase as well—and global temperatures along with it.

In this hard-hitting book, Dieter Helm looks at how and why we have failed to tackle the issue of global warming and argues for a new, pragmatic rethinking of energy policy—from transitioning from coal to gas and eventually to electrification of transport, to carbon pricing and a focus on new technologies. Lucid, compelling and rigorously researched, this book will have a lasting impact on how we think about climate change.

Dieter Helm, CBE, is professor of energy policy, University of Oxford and fellow in Economics at New College, Oxford. He is a member of the Economic Advisory Committee to the UK Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, and Chair of the Natural Capital Committee.

“Helm’s credentials couldn’t be more impressive…This intelligent though depressing tome should inform future debates.”—Publishers Weekly

“An optimistically levelheaded book about actually dealing with global warming.”—Kirkus, starred review

“At such a critical moment in the climate change conversation, Dieter Helm’s new book…could not be more timely.”—America

“[The Carbon Crunch] serves as a velvet sledgehammer in the global conversation about climate change.—America

“A lucid, readable volume on a critical issue.”—Choice

Honorable Mention, General-Non-Fiction category at the 2013 Green Book Festival sponsored by JM Northern LLC