A transition to a lower-carbon world economy is already well under way. There can be no doubt that it will gather momentum in the near future and have an increasing impact on all economic activity in every part of the world.
The reasons for this transition are well known. High carbon-emitting industrial activity has disrupted humanity’s relationship with the natural world to the point where catastrophic climate change has become an imminent existential threat. This has been most intense and most evident in what some have called the anthropocene age – where human action has become the main factor in earth system change. This began after the end of World War II, when nuclear weapons testing began to take place and when fossil fuel driven energy generation, transport equipment and production of consumer and capital goods expanded exponentially, most particularly in the advanced industrial countries.