September 25, 2019
Environment ministers from dozens of countries agreed this week to hasten their efforts to reduce a class of greenhouse gases that, until now, has been largely overlooked in international climate agreements but could play a crucial role in limiting the worst effects of climate change.
With Mont Blanc Glacier at Risk of Partial Collapse, Italian Prime Minister Calls for Climate Action
Part of a glacier on Mont Blanc, Europe's highest mountain, is at risk of collapse, Reuters reports, prompting Italian authorities to close roads and evacuate Alpine hamlets and the prime minister to call for action to tackle global warming.
Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old climate activist from Sweden who delivered a powerful speech at the United Nations on Monday, has been celebrated for galvanizing a worldwide youth climate movement. But she has also been the target of vicious personal attacks from right-wing adults on television and social media.
European Union governments on Wednesday agreed to delay an effort to set standards for determining what financial products qualify as "green," Reuters reports. The move delays the effort until the end of 2022 and might end up including investments in coal and nuclear power.
Poland's ruling party plans to introduce legislation that will allow the government to open new coal mines without the approval of local authorities, the country's energy minister said Wednesday. The party wants half the country's electricity to come from coal by 2050. The European Union calls for member states to get to zero carbon emissions by 2050.
More than four-fifths of the world's largest companies are unlikely to meet the targets set out in the Paris climate agreement by 2050, an investment data provider's analysis of publicly listed companies and their climate disclosures shows. It found more than a third of the world's top 200 companies still don't disclose their emissions
September 24, 2019
The Senate majority leader has represented Kentucky for decades, but some coal miners now fault him for being unwilling to shore up the fund that supports miners with black lung disease or a pension fund.
UN Climate Summit: Small Countries Step Up While Major Emitters Are Silent, and a Teen Takes World Leaders to Task
Dozens of small nations ramped up their commitments to cut carbon emissions Monday at the UN Climate Action Summit. But the world's largest greenhouse gas polluters offered only silence, met by a stinging rebuke from 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg.
A federal judge on Monday temporarily halted the Trump administration's plans to open up thousands of acres in Alaska's Tongass National Forest to logging. The ruling came just days before the administration was set to begin reviewing bids and offering contracts for logging old-growth timber there.
The political war between California and the Trump administration escalated Monday when the head of the EPA warned the administration would withhold federal highway funds from the state, the New York Times reports. California has angered Trump with its efforts to adhere to stricter auto pollution standards while Trump was trying to roll them back.
Almost 10 million Indonesian children are exposed to air pollution triggered by wildfires raging across the country's central and western regions, the United Nations Children's Fund said.
As world leaders gathered at the United Nations climate summit to discuss the urgency of curbing carbon emissions, 13 of the world's biggest fossil fuel companies presented their defense at a forum across town.
September 23, 2019
Millions of young people took to the world's cities Friday, flooding streets, blocking traffic and skipping school to take part in what is believed to be the biggest global climate protest in history.
Almost every Democrat running for president has now talked at length about how they'll approach policy to combat climate change. And while their policy ideas differ, they've shown a Democratic Party which, across the political spectrum, is remarkably aligned with the science on mid-century emissions.
The global average temperature is set to rise to at least 1.2 to 1.3 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels over the next five years, a World Meteorological Organization official said Monday. That's dangerously close to the limit adopted in the 2015 Paris Agreement.
Banks with more than $47 trillion in assets, or a third of the global industry, have adopted new UN-backed "responsible banking" principles to fight climate change on that would shift their loan books away from fossil fuels.
As 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg met with lawmakers on Capitol Hill last week, top Republican policymakers met with the fossil fuel industry behind closed doors, the Intercept reports.
Chancellor Angela Merkel's government on Friday agreed to support a $60 billion package of climate policies aimed at getting Germany back on track to meet its goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, the New York Times reports. Critics say the plan doesn't go far enough.
Nearly 90 major companies have pledged to cut greenhouse gas emissions ahead of a major United Nations climate summit on Monday. Companies including Nestlé, L'Oréal and French building material manufacturer Saint-Gobain agreed to cut emissions to net zero by 2050.
September 20, 2019
Teen activists are hoping to pull off the largest climate protest the world has ever seen, with thousands of demonstrations planned today in 120 countries and all 50 states. Major protests were already underway early today in cities including Melbourne, New Delhi and Berlin. They want politicians to pay attention to the science.
Greenhouse gas emissions from commercial air travel are growing at a faster rate than previous—and already dire—projections, according to new research from the International Council on Clean Transportation.
Research compiled one year ago by Customs and Border Protection pointed to an overwhelming factor driving record-setting migration to the U.S. from Guatemala: Crop shortages were leaving rural Guatemalans, especially in the country's western highlands, in extreme poverty and starving, NBC reports. Read more from ICN on the climate risks people are facing in Central America.
A much-anticipated climate summit at the United Nations on Monday will help reveal whether the world's nations, which came together to sign the Paris climate accord in 2015, can muster the resolve to slash carbon emissions as rapidly as scientists say is needed to avoid the worst effects of climate change.
The remnants of Tropical Storm Imelda were moving slowing after swamping parts of southeastern Texas with rain that was measured in the feet. The final storm totals could reach 45 inches in some of the same communities Hurricane Harvey ravaged two years ago.
The bird population in the United States and Canada has decreased by 29 percent, or 2.9 million birds, since 1970, a new study published in the journal Science found, in what some conservationists are calling a "full-blown crisis."
New York City is taking action to protect lower Manhattan's waterfront, but low-income residents in other boroughs are largely fending for themselves against the threats of climate change, the Guardian reports.
German icebreaker Polarstern is setting sail Friday on the largest and most ambitious climate-change research expedition the Arctic has ever seen, The New York Times reports. Carrying more than a million pounds of equipment, the ship and its crew will deliberately trap themselves in an ice floe to study it for 12 to 14 months.
September 19, 2019
The Trump administration today stripped California of its authority to enact the nation's toughest auto pollution standards, setting the stage for an epic legal battle that could squelch the nascent U.S. market for petroleum-free vehicles at a critical time.
The palm oil industry was responsible for at least 39 percent of forest loss on the biodiversity-rich island of Borneo between 2000 and 2018, a new study found. Read more in ICN on how deforestation is getting worse, even after countries vowed to stop it.