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Intellectual property rights = incentive for green innovation

technologyIntellectual property rights could just as well inspire solutions to climate change, rather than hinder them, according to Michel Jarraud, Secretary-General of the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO).

Speaking at a conference in Geneva this week, Jarraud said countries could best address climate change through international cooperation, a multi-disciplinary approach to challenges and the facilitation of technology transfer.

David Lammy, Britain’s Minister for Higher Education and Intellectual Property, added that the intellectural property system is critical for the widespread diffusion and transfer of climate change-mitigating technologies, particularly to developing and least-developed countries. Resolving the technology transfer issue is key to the successful outcome of climate change negotiations, Lammy said.

France Gurry, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organisation, pointed to moves by several countries to develop systems to fast-track the examination of patent applications in the area of clean technologies and renewable energy. Intellectual property rights, he said, can provide the incentive needed to develop green technologies.

“The greatest opportunity for innovation lies in the areas of clean technologies and renewable energy,” Gurry said.

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