Today’s Climate: January 18, 2010

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EU Nations Spar Over Climate Policy After UN Summit Deadlock (Bloomberg)

Europe is struggling to hold a common line on climate policy after last month’s failed UN summit in Copenhagen, with the UK, Germany and France defending deeper emission cuts in the face of Italian and Polish resistance.

UN Seeks Responsibility for Climate Talks (Wall Street Journal)

Climate negotiations should remain the responsibility of the UN, even if the Copenhagen climate summit didn’t provide a breakthrough, said Achim Steiner, executive director of the UN Environment Program.

IRENA Nabs Saudi Arabia (Recharge)

Saudi Arabia, a long-time thorn in the side of the climate change movement, will sign onto the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) "within a matter of weeks." The move will bring the group’s total list of member states to 143.

Shell Faces Shareholder Revolt Over Canadian Tar Sands Project (Guardian)

Shell CEO Peter Voser will be forced to defend the company’s investment in Canada’s tar sands at his first annual general meeting, after calls from shareholders that the project be put under further scrutiny.

Premier Says Alberta Won’t Limit Oil Sands Growth (Canadian Press)

Premier Ed Stelmach says Alberta will help reignite oilsands development in the province, not limit growth as his new energy minister appeared to suggest a day earlier.

Higher Temperatures Can Worsen Climate Change, Methane Measurements from Space Reveal (ScienceDaily)

Higher temperatures are not just a consequence of climate change, but by triggering a jump in methane emissions, they also worsen global warming, new research published in Science concludes.

Himalayan Glaciers Won’t Melt by 2035, Says New Finding (Hindustan Times)

The UN IPCC is expected to retract its oft-repeated prediction that most of the Himalayan glaciers will melt by 2035.

CA Business Group Loses ‘Green’ Members in AB32 Fight (The Bakersfield Californian)

An organization representing some of California’s biggest carbon polluters is working to alter the state’s global warming law, while claiming to represent several "green" companies that have since left the coalition after learning of its recent actions.

Carbon-Neutral City Possibility for Malaysia (Malaysia Star)

Malaysia could see its first carbon-neutral city following the signing of a cooperation agreement between the 1Malaysia Development Bhd and the Masdar company of the United Arab Emirates.

Australia: Downturn Triggers Slump in Emissions (The Australian)

Australia’s eastern states slashed their carbon emissions from energy use by almost 2% last year, as weak economic conditions caused electricity demand to fall.

White House Signals Support for Low-Carbon Transit Plans (Business Green)

The Obama Administration has announced plans to revamp its funding guidelines for local transport projects in an attempt to help speed the flow of cash to infrastructure projects that aim to cut emissions and congestion.

Toyota to Build 1 million Hybrid Cars in 2011: Report (Reuters)

Toyota plans to increase global production of gas-electric hybrid cars to 1 million units in 2011, twice the volume of last year, as it tries to keep its leading position in the growing market, the Nikkei reported.

Toshiba Wins Order to Supply Okinawa Smart Grid Trial (Bloomberg)

Toshiba, Japan’s biggest maker of nuclear reactors, said it was selected to supply electrical gear for Okinawa Electric Power’s trial of a localized smart grid project.

Renault Pledges to Build New Electric Vehicle in France (New York Times)

Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn sought to defuse an employment conflict with the French government, telling Pres. Sarkozy that the automaker would produce its new electric vehicle entirely in a plant near Paris.