Today’s Climate: March 15, 2010

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Australia ‘0.7 Degrees Warmer Over Past 50 Years’ (AFP)

Australia’s top science body said on Monday temperatures had risen about 0.7 degrees Celsius (0.44 Fahrenheit) in the last 50 years. They describe the finding as "significant evidence" of climate change.

Money Spent on Tar Sands Projects Could Decarbonize West (Guardian)

The same amount of investment being spent to develop Canada’s tar sands between now and 2025, about $380 billion, could decarbonize the Western economy by funding ambitious solar power schemes or a Europe-wide shift to electric vehicles, according to a new report.

Climate Target Divides Environment Ministers (EurActiv)

EU environment ministers are meeting today to debate their strategy for climate negotiations, but no consensus is emerging about whether the EU should raise its target for emission reductions for 2020 from 20% to 30%.

Carbon-Capture Plant Planned for Scotland (The Times)

Plans for the UK’s first coal plant with carbon capture technology are to be lodged with the Scottish government today. If it gets the go-ahead, it will also be the first new fossil-fuel powered station in Scotland since 1973.

Deep-Sea Volcanoes Play Key Climate Role: Scientists (Reuters)

A vast network of undersea volcanoes pumping out nutrient-rich water in the Southern Ocean plays a key role in soaking up large amounts of CO2, acting as a brake on climate change, scientists say.

Won’t Resign Over One Mistake, Says Pachauri (Indian Express)

The UN IPCC chairman, Rajendra Pachauri, said Monday that he would not resign over what he called "one mistake" in the IPCC report.

Scientists Warn of Demise of Canadian Climate Research (The Canadian Press)

When government funding for the decade-old Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Sciences dries up at the end of the year, scientists say the aftershocks of its departure will be felt not only in Canada but by researchers around the globe.

Solar Energy Firms Seen Vulnerable: Barron’s (Reuters)

Shares of a number of solar energy companies have become vulnerable as the Obama administration has turned out to be a lot less lucrative for green investors than originally hoped, Barron’s said.

China, Not UN, Controls Supply for CO2 Offsets, Stanford Says (Bloomberg)

China’s power to set prices for electricity from wind farms is dictating the supply of tradable emission credits in the UN carbon market, the world’s second biggest, according to a report from Stanford University.

Connecticut Plan Would Waive Student Loans for ‘Green’ Careers (AP)

State legislation under debate in Connecticut would waive thousands of dollars in loans for students who earn degrees or certificates in green technology and other jobs.

Kenya Plans 280 Megawatt Geothermal Plants Within 3 Years (Bloomberg)

Kenya plans to build geothermal power plants over the next two to three years that will have the capacity to generate 280 MW of electricity, Energy Minister Kiraitu Murungi said.

Big Auto and EU Face Off Over Green Van Targets (Reuters)

Europe’s vanmakers have gone a long way toward meeting proposals to curb climate-warming emissions, but as debate on the 2016 targets kicks off big auto is seen digging its heels in over the last mile.