Copyright: Mark Reeve and Meckon Ltd

Even before the recent IPCC report, leaders and commentators have been clamouring for more aggressive targets and commitments at COP 26, the upcoming UN climate conference in Glasgow. What we needed then and now is action, not further diplomacy, nor increasingly difficult target-setting and the loose commitments, as if we are not playing for real stakes!

The target-setting process started with the Kyoto protocol 25 years ago and did well to get the ball rolling. Since then, targets have become progressively more difficult to set. …

Illustration by: Thomas Leach for Meckon

In the shadow of the climate crisis, humanity finds itself at a fork in history with two divergent pathways: one that limps forward with business as usual, and one that embarks upon profound action in creating global systemic change. Our future will be defined by the path we choose, and I challenge my colleagues and contemporaries to find the requisite courage and character to take the road less travelled.

Despite the sustained efforts of so many good people, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) has failed to align stakeholder interests and build a critical consensus for global…

ID 117919859 © Releon8211 |

The Paris Agreement was a landmark event, the longest warm-up to taking tangible action on a global crisis in recorded history (that I can think of). From the establishment of the UNFCCC to the Kyoto Protocol took 5 years (1992–1997), from the Kyoto Protocol to the Paris Agreement took 17 years (1997 -2015). It seems it is getting increasingly difficult to get agreement on ambitions and targets. To make this worse, after the signing of Kyoto it took more than 7 years for it to come into force, how long for the Paris Agreement?

The answer is in fact unimportant…

Give and take illustration — ID 46493298 © Stuart Miles |

Few would argue that the causes of the climate crisis, as well as our historical inability to take meaningful action, are at least to some degree driven by self-interest. Self-interest is indeed deeply rooted in our economic system, in fact it is key tenant of capitalist thinking and has been attributed to bringing about both great social benefit and ill.

Whether or not you’re familiar with Adam Smith’s magnum opus: “The Wealth of Nations”, or where your beliefs stand on capitalism and socialism; most will concede that the majority of humans act in their own self-interest — even if this…

The UK has recently seen the launch of the second stage of work on its Future Power System Architecture (FPSA), known as FPSA2. It highlights the world leading cross sector knowledge and expertise related to energy in the UK. This work was a collaboration between the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET) and the Energy Systems Catapult (ESC), you can find more details here.

The most interesting development in FPSA2 aside from the validation of the findings from FPSA1, was the development of an innovative mechanism to implement the functional needs of the future system (there are 35). This mechanism…

ID 50732185 © Thejipen |

Utility organisations face an increasingly challenging environment. This author has recently published a white paper for Analysys Mason on the key strategy options that are available to executives as they move their organisations into an increasingly volatile future, the below article summarises the key aspects of the paper (a link to the full paper can be found at the end of this article).

All utility organisations will face a period of increasing change and uncertainty, though specific pressures will vary depending on the organisation’s particular characteristics. This is the result of the growing three-way tension between the need for security…

To make the majority of our energy clean, we need more than just clean energy generation — the other elements of the energy system must change too. A multi-phase transformation of the energy system will enable renewables to dominate the generation mix in the future.

Centralised vs decentralised

The energy system debate, similarly to that for economic development, centres on the comparison of the benefits associated with centralised and decentralised systems. In discussion with Dave Roberts, a director at EA Technology, we assessed the attributes of the future energy system. …

Renewable energy costs continue to fall, making renewable energy more efficient than coal in many markets. This creates a transformational tipping point, opening the way for exciting changes in the energy system as a whole.

Electricity generated by onshore wind turbines is now cheaper than coal in a number of key markets. A recent Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) report has revealed that the average cost of wind is significantly lower than coal and gas in Germany and the UK, once carbon costs are accounted for. In fact this is true across the EMEA region.

In key emerging markets such…

Sacha Meckler

Vocal innovation, technology and system change enthusiast - devising technical and social systems for positive change. Leader at Meckon Ltd (

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