Science ministers from the G8 countries have agreed to increase funding for research and development to create a low–carbon economy.
The ministers, along with representatives from Brazil, China, India, the Republic of Korea, Mexico, the Philippines and South Africa, met at the first G8 Science and Technology Ministers' meeting in Okinawa, Japan, this week (15 June).
Participants agreed to cooperate on research into energy technologies, including carbon capture and storage and the development of biofuels from non-food plant material.
They also expressed a commitment to the commercialisation of such technology through government funding and measures to encourage investment by the private sector.
Recognising the role of science and technology capacity building in developing countries, the group suggested that developing-country scientists should be able to work more closely with institutions in G8 countries — provided mechanisms were in place to encourage them to return home and thus avoid brain drain.
'Brain circulation', where G8 countries receive and send researchers to developing countries was also discussed.
There are plans for a workshop to discuss science and technology cooperation between G8 and developing countries in October.