October 21, 2019
Renewable sources of electricity are set for rapid growth over the next five years, according the International Energy Agency's new report. In IEA's accelerated scenario, they could match the output of the world's coal-fired power stations for the first time in 2024, Carbon Brief reports.
European Union government leaders declined on Friday to set tougher targets for fighting climate change, dashing hopes they would inject momentum into a United Nations climate conference in Chile in December.
Why did Senate Democrats force a vote over a Trump administration regulation on coal-fired power plants that they knew they were likely to lose? It's partly about Democratic leadership in the Senate and partly to make some Republicans squirm, the Washington Post writes.
PG&E said it was considering more power cutoffs, which would be much smaller than the recent outage where 700,000 lost power, as the bankrupt California power producer warned about severe weather risks later this week.
October 11, 2019
A global agreement to make fossil fuel burning more expensive is urgent and the most efficient way of fighting climate change, an International Monetary Fund study found. The group found that a global tax of $75 per ton by 2030 could limit the planet's warming to 2 degrees Celsius.
From school strikes to the harder edge of Extinction Rebellion, young climate activists are making their voices heard—and they're increasingly politically engaged.
Tech giant Google has made "substantial" contributions to some of the most notorious climate deniers in Washington despite its insistence that it supports political action on the climate crisis, The Guardian reports.
A powerful typhoon approached Japan on Friday, threatening to batter its capital with the heaviest rain and winds in 60 years, shutting down stores, factories and subway systems.
The Sierra Club sued the Environmental Protection Agency this week after the agency refused to turn over documents to back up Administrator Andrew Wheeler's claim that climate change "is 50 to 75 years out."
Senate Democrats will try to force a vote next week to repeal a Trump administration rule that scales back pollution regulations for power plants set by the Obama-era Clean Power Plan.
October 10, 2019
Federal programs to help Americans move away from disaster-prone areas are selecting to buy homes based on the wealth of the affected neighborhoods rather than being based solely on the risk they face, according to a new study.
As the climate crisis worsens, more Americans will be forced from their homes in moves they can't afford. The U.S. government isn't prepared for a massive, government-subsidized migration away from flood-prone areas, according to a comprehensive analysis of FEMA data.
Three winners of the 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry were announced this morning for their work developing the lithium-ion battery, making "a fossil fuel-free world possible." There's a twist to this story, involving Exxon.
The world's biggest oil companies are set to flood markets with an additional 7 million barrels of oil per day over the next decade, The Guardian reports. That acceleration is a move in the opposite direction for how much total carbon emissions reduction scientists say is needed to keep global warming in check.
The Smart Grid Advisory Committee, which provided input on bettering smart grids in the U.S., is the latest casualty of President Trump's executive order to cut federal advisory boards by a third, The Hill reports.
A super typhoon in the Pacific Ocean could hit Japan on Saturday, potentially causing grave damage in Tokyo, The New York Times reports. Read more in ICN on how global warming is fueling stronger storms and sea level rise.
With Pacific Gas & Electric cutting electricity to hundreds of thousands of customers this week, California is confronting its reliance on thousands of miles of electric lines strung on vulnerable wooden poles, the LA Times reports. Until that changes, experts say, the electricity cuts will continue.
October 9, 2019
The Trump administration's effort to fast-track major fossil fuel projects has stalled in three of the biggest U.S. pipelines now planned or under construction after legal challenges by environmental groups have successfully moved forward.
The EU will start work immediately on a tax on polluting foreign firms to shelter EU businesses striving to meet a goal to be climate neutral by 2050, says Frans Timmermans, the senior official set to take responsibility for climate in the new European Commission. "We should also be prepared to consider other instruments, for instance a carbon border tax, to level the playing field for European products."
New data from world-renowned researchers points to just 20 companies that have contributed to 35 percent of all energy-related carbon emissions—a total of 480 billion tons of carbon dioxide equivalent— since 1965.
Large swaths of central and Northern California were without electricity on Wednesday as the state's largest utility began cutting power as a precaution against sparking wildfires as the winds pick up. Climate change and years of drought have contributed to conditions for wildfires to spread in recent years.
Researchers are calling for the conservation status of Emperor penguins to be upgraded from "near threatened" to "vulnerable" to help protect them from the dangers of climate change, which is predicted to degrade the birds' habitats by 2100 and threaten their existence, BBC reports.
Green roofs—rooftops with gardens in place of asphalt—have become increasingly popular as concerns about climate change and dwindling natural resources grow, The New York Times reports. One group estimates the number of green roofs have increased about 15 percent in North America since 2013.
October 8, 2019
The changes at the Bureau of Land Management might not seem small, but with a self-described Sagebrush Rebel in charge, the shifts of staff from Washington, D.C., to Western states could help position conservatives to accomplish substantial political goals, including expanding fossil fuel development.
Utility giant Pacific Gas & Electric warned on Monday that it may shut off power across much of California as winds pickup later this week to prevent power lines and equipment from sparking wildfires. Read more about how drier autumns as the planet warms helped fuel last year's devastating blazes.
Climate-related shareholder resolutions often take center stage at corporate annual meetings, fueled by mounting public pressure to curb carbon emissions. But they seldom draw support from the two top U.S. index fund firms, Reuters reports.
Coal is still a dominant fuel in the rapidly growing economies of Southeast Asia, even amid growing global pressure to move toward cleaner energy sources, CNBC reports. One study says coal use in the region will grow and peak in 2027 before slowing.
Tourists and workers on Wall Street on Monday were met by a jarring spectacle: protesters, some lying in pools of fake blood outside the New York Stock Exchange, others chanting, all to call attention to deaths linked to climate-related disasters.
Energy Secretary Rick Perry on Monday denied reports that he will leave the Trump administration in November. Last week, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee sent questions to Perry related to his travel to Ukraine amid scrutiny of the Trump administration's dealings with that country.
Oyster reefs, decimated by a century of overharvesting and worsening water quality, are being rebuilt by multiple projects using public and private funding in an effort to protect coastal real estate from climate change, CNBC reports.