The vote by the UK electorate to leave the EU has a number of important medium-term implications for EU climate policy.
“Old endgame lost of old, play and lose and have done with losing.”
Samuel Beckett, Endgame
“… many players are able to play quite well in the opening and middle game but feel helpless when they reach the endgame.”
It might seem a long way off, but large fossil fuel firms and those who make a living from observing and reporting on them are starting to think about the endgame.
Shell has just published for the first time a scenario that lays out a pathway broadly consistent with the aim of keeping global warming to 2°C this century.
Some 175 countries accounting for roughly 90pc of global greenhouse gas emissions signed the Paris agreement on climate change at UN headquarters in New York on 22 April. It is the largest number of states to ever sign a multilateral deal on its opening day, the previous record having been 119 signing the UN Law of the Sea Treaty.
The EU faces an internal rift over its climate ambition. And not because of the potential for Brexit — although this could also cause problems — but because, following the historic Paris agreement, some countries want to go much further in terms of emissions reductions than others.