Video: Interview with Rhian Kelly, CBI business environment director

The climate change negotiations kicked off in Paris this week. Europe needs to ensure that it takes businesses along with it on the path to tackling the carbon reduction challenge says Rhian Kelly.

“I think that things are looking good now [regarding a positive outcome from the Paris carbon talks] and there is lots of optimism in the business community, explained Rhian Kelly, CBI business environment director at last months Environmental Industries Commisson Annual Conference.

"It is really good for Europe to be in the lead on this but by being in the lead we need to be one step ahead and not two steps," she said. "We need to be mindful of those industries that use a lot of energy and so as a consequence have a lot of regulation and cost added but who are trading with companies fro countries without comparable costs. We just need to be mindful that we don’t encourage them to invest outside Europe – we keep them here."

But Keely points out that it is impprtant not to assume that Paris will provide all the answers or the single solution to tackling global climate change. 

"I thnk that there are certain indicators out there already which demonstrate that Paris isn’t going to be the only one stop shop providing all the solutions to our climate change challegnes," she says. "The INDCs (Intended Nationally Determined Contributions) add up and are a good starting place but they don’t go quite as far as we’d like and there is more that we can be doing . So absolutely,  Paris is not the end destination but a point in the journey on the road. The learning from Copenhagen is managing expectations and the battle of interpretation and that needs to start now.

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