September 7, 2018

Is the ‘Heat Day’ the New Snow Day?

"Heat days" might soon become just as regular an occurrence as snow days for students. Classes were canceled in dozens of districts in Connecticut, New Jersey and New York this week because of heat and lack of air conditioning. Teachers described building temperatures topping 100 degrees.

One of the Largest U.S. Utilities Gives Up on New Nuclear

Duke Energy, one of the largest U.S. utility owners, says it has no plans to build new nuclear power plants. For the first time since 2005, the company didn't include the prospect of more reactors in long-term plan filed with state regulators. Duke had canceled plans to build a plant in South Carolina as nuclear plants struggle to compete with natural gas and renewables.

Norway Seeks to Offset Its Pollution 12 Years Before Needed

Norway's government wants to buy credits to offset its fossil-fuel emissions more than a decade before it needs them to meet 2030 pollution goals, according to officials overseeing the program. It's a sign of support for a UN effort to revive a global carbon market. Norway is one of the first countries to say how it will use post-2020 carbon markets to meet emissions targets.

September 6, 2018

German Court Says Frankfurt Must Ban Older Diesel Cars

Frankfurt, Germany's financial center, must ban older diesel vehicles from the city center starting in February as part of a plan to improve air quality, a court ruled. The ruling is in response to a case brought by an environmental group after a prior court ruling opened the door to inner-city vehicle bans.

Zinke Hires Endangered Species Act Critic for Senior Post

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has hired a critic of the Endangered Species Act for a senior position as the Trump administration works to weaken the law. Robert Gordon has started work as the department's deputy assistant secretary for policy, management and budget.

September 5, 2018

Outsourced Pollution? It’s Real, and Tough to Tally Up

Many wealthy countries have effectively outsourced much of their carbon pollution overseas by importing more steel, cement and other goods. Britain, for example, shows a decrease in domestic emissions between 1990 and 2015, yet with global emissions used to make things like imported steel included, its carbon footprint has actually increased, The New York Times reports.

Climate Change Warnings Cut from Trump Proposal to Weaken Power Plant Rules

Warnings about the consequences of climate change were removed without explanation from a Trump administration plan to weaken Obama-era rules on power plant emissions. Previous drafts had devoted more than 500 words to climate impacts. Internal documents show the deletions were made during last-minute changes to the plan's regulatory impact analysis.

Developed Nations Not Committed to $100 Billion Climate Finance, Groups Say

Developed countries are not taking their commitment to generate $100 billion in climate finance seriously, groups attending the international climate negotiations this week in Bangkok say. Discussion on the funding is being "blocked across the board" by a group of rich nations led by the United States, said Harjeet Singh, a global climate lead at non-profit ActionAid.

September 4, 2018

UN Official: We’re Not on Track to Meet Paris Climate Goals

Patricia Espinosa, head of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, says governments are not making adequate progress toward the goal of keeping global temperatures from rising 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial times. In an interview ahead of climate talks now underway in Bangkok, she said the private and public sectors need to act with urgency.

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