Devastating Impacts, Affordable Climate Solutions
Drive IPCC’s Urgent Call for Action
March 20, 2023 – the Energy Mix
A stark choice between climate stability and global devastation is the constant drumbeat from a landmark report released today by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
“The choices and actions implemented in this decade will have impacts now and for thousands of years,” the UN agency states in its Sixth Assessment Report, a final synthesis that brings together six in-depth science and policy reports dating back to October, 2018. – more
Top Findings from the IPCC Climate Change Report 2023 | World Resources Institute (wri.org)
Governments Spent Record $1 Trillion Last Year Subsidizing Fossil Fuels
February 16, 2023 – Bloomberg
Even as global governments raise their ambitions to cut fossil fuels in the future, they spent a record $1 trillion last year subsidizing energy sources that are the main driver of climate change.
That’s the finding from the International Energy Agency, which estimates that the combined subsidies for oil, natural gas, electricity and coal hit an all-time high in 2022 as soaring energy prices crippled economies.
The world is entering a new age of clean technology manufacturing, and countries’ industrial strategies will be key to success
Jan 12, 2023 – IEA
The energy world is at the dawn of a new industrial age – the age of clean energy technology manufacturing – that is creating major new markets and millions of jobs but also raising new risks, prompting countries across the globe to devise industrial strategies to secure their place in the new global energy economy, according to a major new IEA report.
‘Amazing!’ Lula Applauded for Naming Amazon Defenders as Brazilian Ministers
Dec 31, 2022 – Jessica Corbett – Common Dreams
Environmentalists and rights advocates around the world are celebrating Brazilian President-elect Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva’s selection of Marina Silva and Sônia Guajajara to serve as the nation’s environment and Indigenous ministers, respectively.
Lula, who is set to be sworn in Sunday after defeating right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro in an October runoff, confirmed the appointments Thursday, sparking a flood of applause and hope about what they signal for the leftist leader’s return to office. Read all about it here!
Electricity prices plunge as Greens hail cap and “beginning of the end of gas”
Dec 15, 2022 – Australia, Renew Economy – Giles Parkinson
Prices of electricity futures have continued their fall as the federal government’s controversial gas price cap legislation passed through parliament, along with measures that will urge and help households to quit gas and go electric.
As the gas industry continued to use the scare tactic of blackouts, and the media such as the AFR decried “a populist assault” on the gas industry, a new report from the Australian Energy Regulator highlighted the inappropriate behaviour of the thermal generation industry over the last six months.
Red List Calls Out ‘Perfect Storm of Unsustainable Human Activity Decimating Marine Life’
December 10, 2022 – JESSICA CORBETT – Common Dreams
“Today’s IUCN Red List update reveals a perfect storm of unsustainable human activity decimating marine life around the globe. As the world looks to the ongoing U.N. Biodiversity Conference to set the course for nature recovery, we simply cannot afford to fail,”
Atmospheric levels of all three greenhouse gases hit record high
Oct 26, 2022 – The Guardian
Scientists warn world ‘is heading in wrong direction’ amid rise in nitrous oxide, carbon dioxide and methane
Atmospheric levels of all three greenhouse gases have reached record highs, according to a study by the World Meteorological Organization, which scientists say means the world is “heading in the wrong direction”.
The WMO found there was the biggest year-on-year jump in methane concentrations in 2020 and 2021 since systematic measurements began almost 40 years ago.
WILDLIFE POPULATIONS PLUMMET BY 69%
Today we face the double, interlinked emergencies of human induced climate change and the loss of biodiversity, threatening the well-being of current and future generations. As our future is critically dependent on biodiversity and a stable climate, it is essential that we understand how nature’s decline and climate change are connected.
WWF LIVING PLANET REPORT 2022 – pdf
Warmer, wetter, darker—What’s happening to the “frozen North”?
Saturday, October 15, 2022 – Irene Quaile – Eye on the Arctic
… So, reality has turned out far worse than the predictions.
“Our results indicate that the recent four-fold Arctic warming ratio is either an extremely unlikely event, or the climate models systematically tend to underestimate the amplification”, the scientists write. Worrying?
Australia changes government as climate action takes centre stage
June 6, 2022 – Kevin Rennie – Global Voices
Labor government takes office after nine years of conservative rule.
It took 10 days to finalise the results for the House of Representatives following the Australian Federal elections on May 21, 2022. However, one thing was clear on election night: the people’s desire for stronger climate action. Voters not only changed the government, they also sent a message to the nation’s political parties that the climate crisis must be acted on urgently.
California cities ban new gas stations in battle to combat climate change
July 11, 2022 – Grace Toohey – Los Angeles Times
Without realizing they were starting a movement in green energy policy, leaders of a small Sonoma County city seem to have done just that when they questioned the approval process for a new gas station — eventually halting its development and others in the future.
“We didn’t know what we were doing, actually,” said Petaluma Councilwoman D’Lynda Fischer, who led the charge last year to prohibit new gas stations in the city of 60,000. “We didn’t know we were the first in the world when we banned gas stations.”
Meet the ‘Future Generations’ Commissioner of Wales
April 5, 2022 – Reasons to be cheerful – Peter Yeung
Sophie Howe has a uniquely forward-looking job. Since 2016, the Future Generations Commissioner for Wales has been tasked with ensuring her country’s public institutions are taking into consideration how their actions affect Welsh citizens who haven’t been born yet. In that time, Howe has intervened on transport planning, education reform, gender and racial equality, and climate change. – Read the full story – watch the TED talk.
IPCC issues ‘bleakest warning yet’ on impacts of climate breakdown
Feb 28, 2022 – the Guardian – Fiona Harvey
“The scientific evidence is unequivocal: climate change is a threat to human wellbeing and the health of the planet,” said Hans-Otto Pörtner, a co-chair of working group 2 of the IPCC. “Any further delay in concerted global action will miss a brief and rapidly closing window to secure a liveable future.”
It’s a fairytale that world governments will fix our climate crisis. It’s up to us
Nov 13 – Bill McKibben – the Guardian
Thank climate activists for the fact that any progress was made in Glasgow. Unless we push hard, powerful interests don’t budge.
What was COP 26? Here’s What You Need to Know
The Kids Will Be Alright (if we’re not lost and damaged by COP 26)
Nov 9, 2021 – The Energy Mix –
This op-ed is directed at decision-makers at COP 26. It has been co-created this week by 60 young people from all over the world, to make a unified call for climate justice. Most of us didn’t grow up speaking English and we had not met each other before. Yet in just four hours, we listened to each other, shared our experiences, and put together our vision for the future we want to inherit. If we can do this, decision-makers can do it, too. Read their vision – Here
Countries’ climate pledges built on flawed data,
Post investigation finds
Nov 7, 2021 – The Washington Post
… Across the world, many countries under report their greenhouse gas emissions in their reports to the United Nations, a Washington Post investigation has found. An examination of 196 country reports reveals a giant gap between what nations declare their emissions to be vs. the greenhouse gases they are sending into the atmosphere…
Despite 30 years of climate mitigation and policies, emissions keep rising
Oct 30, 2021 – Stephen Leahy – the Weather Network
Radical actions that will effectively tackle climate change include strict regulations for corporations, dismantling carbon-emitting industries, and more effective leadership.
“Climate change is ….the outcome of a fully functioning capital accumulating economy working hard to shift costs on to others,” the researchers stated in a new paper: Three Decades of Climate Mitigation: Why Haven’t We Bent the Global Emissions Curve?
Hundreds of Thousands Take to Streets Worldwide for ‘Uproot the System’ Climate Strikes
September 24, 2021 -Jake Johnson – Common Dreams
“The climate crisis has not disappeared,” said Swedish activist Greta Thunberg. “It’s the opposite—it’s even more urgent now than it was before.”
Young people by the hundreds of thousands took to the streets across the globe on Friday to deliver a resounding message to world leaders: The climate crisis is getting worse, and only radical action will be enough to avert catastrophe and secure a just, sustainable future for all.
Australia smashes renewables record again, hits 58.3 per cent on main grid
September 9, 2021 – Renew Economy – Giles Parkinson
Australia has easily beaten its previous record for the share of renewables on its main grid, reaching 58.3 per cent just after noon on Thursday – and also setting a new record for the share of wind and solar in the grid.
Why is life on Earth still taking second place to fossil fuel companies?
Aug 19, 2021 – the Guardian – George Monbiot
The human tragedy is that there is no connection between what we know and what we do. Almost everyone is now at least vaguely aware that we face the greatest catastrophe our species has ever confronted. Yet scarcely anyone alters their behaviour in response.
Summer of Anxiety
Have We Finally Broken the Climate?
Aug 12,2021 – Der Spiegel
By Francesco Collini, Johann Grolle und Thomas Milz
Heat domes in Canada, flooding in Germany, droughts in Africa and Central Asia: This summer has seen some worrying weather. How closely is it tied to climate change? Scientists around the world are trying to find out.
Whatcom County Becomes First U.S. Refinery Community to Ban New Fossil Fuel Infrastructure
July 29, 2021 – the Energy Mix
A county on the northwest coast of Washington State has made a landmark decision to ban new fossil fuel development, reversing a trajectory that had it on course to become a gateway for oil, gas, and coal exports to Asia.
‘We Are in Deep, Deep Sh*t’: Climate Experts Shocked at Severity of Floods in Germany and Belgium
“This is your climate on fossil fuel.”
July 16, 2021 – JULIA CONLEY – Common Dreams
Climate scientists on Friday were stunned by the intensity of flooding in Germany and Belgium that killed at least 120 people and damaged tens of thousands of homes, with experts saying they did not expect such extreme weather to result from the human-caused climate crisis as rapidly as it has.
American west stuck in cycle of ‘heat, drought and fire’, experts warn
July 13, 2021 – The Guardian
As fires propagate throughout the US west on the heels of record heatwaves, experts are warning that the region is caught in a vicious feedback cycle of extreme heat, drought and fire, all amplified by the climate crisis.
Destroying Unsold Products Isn’t a Scandal, It’s How Amazon works
June 22, 2021 – Kevin Purdy – ifixit.com
… It’s cheaper for Amazon, and the companies leasing space in Amazon hubs, to simply destroy old inventory to make room for new items, rather than deal with the messy business of reselling, redistributing, or refurbishing them.
The media is still mostly failing to convey the urgency of the climate crisis
June 3, 2021 – Mark Hertsgaard and Kyle Pope – the Guardian
… Today, all of humanity is under attack, this time from an overheated planet – and too many newsrooms still are more inclined to cover today’s equivalent of dance competitions.
1.5°C ‘Not Impossible’ with rapid action this decade, Climate scientists say.
May 24 –The Energy Mix
But whether Earth can stay within 1.5℃ warming involves two distinct questions, write veteran climate scientists… First, is it physically, technically and economically feasible. Second is whether governments will take sufficient action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This answer depends on the ambition of governments, and the effectiveness of campaigning by non-government organizations and others.
IT’S THE END OF OIL: BLOCKBUSTER IEA REPORT URGES NO NEW FOSSIL DEVELOPMENT
May 19, 2021 – Mitchell Beer- the Energy Mix
No new investment in oil, gas, or coal development, a massive increase in renewable energy adoption, speedy global phaseouts for new natural gas boilers and internal combustion vehicles, and a sharp focus on short-term action are key elements of a blockbuster Net Zero by 2050 report released Tuesday morning by the International Energy Agency (IEA).
Climate scientists: concept of net zero is a dangerous trap
April 22, 2021 –
… a great idea, in principle. Unfortunately, in practice it helps perpetuate a belief in technological salvation and diminishes the sense of urgency surrounding the need to curb emissions now.
What next for councils who have declared a climate emergency?
March 24, 2021 – Centre For Alternative Technology, UK
Around three-quarters of local authorities in the UK have already declared a climate emergency. CAT’s Anna Bullen and Anthony Hurford look at how to move beyond declarations towards effective action.
New report Counts 600+ Cities In 72 Countries With 100% Renewable Energy Plans
March 23, 2021 – the Energy Mix
The latest global status report on renewable power in cities shows that 2020 was a good year for the development of targets and policies at the municipal level, with more than 610 municipalities in 72 countries setting 100% renewable energy targets by year’s end.
Time To Invest Now As Governments Devote Just 18% Of Covid Spending To Green Recovery
March 12, 2021 – the Energy Mix
The world’s 50 biggest economies devoted just 2.5% of their budgets in 2020 and only 18% of their pandemic spending to green recovery measures, according to a new analysis released this week by the University of Oxford and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).
Sketchy Carbon Accounting Turns Net-Zero Targets Into “Weapons-Grade Greenwash”, Scientist Warns
March 10, 2021 – the Energy Mix
… but while new national climate commitments, or Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), roll out ahead of this year’s UN climate conference in Glasgow, “a more insidious problem is emerging,” Lewis writes. “Net-zero increasingly involves highly questionable carbon accounting. As a result, the new politics swirling around net-zero targets is rapidly becoming a confusing and dangerous mix of pragmatism, self-delusion, and weapons-grade greenwash.”
Thousands of Indian women join farmers’ protests against new laws
Thousands of female farmers hold sit-ins and a hunger strike outside India’s capital on International Women’s Day against new agricultural laws.
Thousands of women have joined protests by farmers on the outskirts of New Delhi to mark International Women’s Day, demanding the scrapping of new agricultural laws that open up the country’s vast farm sector to private buyers.
The tweet below and the next two stories are the same story. It’s all about Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) and the Gulf Stream. You need to know about this stuff. We are running out of time.
Atlantic Ocean circulation at weakest in a millennium, say scientists
Fiona Harvey – Environment correspondent – the Guardian – Fri 26 Feb 2021
Decline in system underpinning Gulf Stream could lead to more extreme weather in Europe and higher sea levels on US east coast
A Major Ocean Current Could Be on The Verge of a Devastating ‘Tipping Point’
DAVID NIELD -sciencealert.com – 25 FEBRUARY 2021
The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) sea currents are vital in transporting heat from the tropics to the Northern Hemisphere, but new research suggests climate change might knock the AMOC out of action much sooner than we anticipated.
Mark Carney: Climate crisis deaths ‘will be worse than Covid’
By Sharanjit Leyl
BBC News Published 5 February,2021
The world is heading for mortality rates equivalent to the Covid crisis every year by mid-century unless action is taken, according to Mark Carney.
Polar Vortex: How the Jet Stream and Climate Change Bring on Cold Snaps
It might seem counterintuitive, but global warming plays a role in blasts of bitter cold weather. The reason: It influences the jet stream. Here’s how.
By Bob Berwyn – Inside Climate News – February 2, 2018
CAPITAL MARKETS ‘SHIFT DECISIVELY’ OUT OF OIL AND GAS AS INVESTORS PLACE THEIR BETS ON RENEWABLES
FEBRUARY 10, 2021 – the Energy Mix
Investors are increasingly placing their bets with renewable energy and abandoning oil and gas, the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis reports, in an analysis that shows capital markets “shifting decisively towards cleaner investments”.
Investors Are Backing Away From Fossils
As more movers and shakers begin to agree with climate advocates for financial as well as environmental reasons, a permanent shift within the energy industry seems to be taking shape.
By Below2C | Yale Climate Connection| @CC_Yale -January 24, 2021
German EV Market Reaches Escape Velocity — Record 27% Share In December
January 8th, 2021 by Dr. Maximilian Holland – Germany, Europe’s largest auto market and the 4th largest in the world, achieved 26.6% plugin electric vehicle share in December. This is a stunning ascent from the 4.0% share seen in December 2019… 2020’s plugin vehicle sales grew over 2019 by a huge 263% to 394,632 units.
Denmark Wants to Make It Illegal to Ignore Climate Change
BY AUDREY ENJOLI Denmark has passed an ambitious law that makes it illegal to not act on climate change. The country’s new law, called the Climate Act, aims to ensure that Denmark will reduce its carbon emissions by 70 percent in 2030 compared to 1990 levels. The law also aims to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.
Windfarms in Great Britain break record for clean power generation
Sat Dec 19, 2020 – the Guardian- Blustery winter weather helped Great Britain’s windfarms set a record for clean power generation, which made up more than 40% of its electricity on Friday.
Our Stuff Weighs More Than All Living Things on the Planet
2020 was the year in which the weight of “human-made mass”—all the stuff we’ve built and accumulated—exceeded the weight of biomass on the planet.
By Bill McKibben – the New Yorker – December 17, 2020
Emergency ? – December 3, 2020
bloomberg.com – – Denmark will stop offering new oil and gas licenses in the North Sea and will phase out production all together in 2050 as part of the country’s goal to become fossil free.
@GretaThunberg – – The real news here is that Denmark will apparently go on extracting fossil fuels for another 3 decades. To us children, this is not the “good news” that some people seem to think. We’re in a climate emergency. Act accordingly.
Tasmania declares itself 100 per cent powered by renewable electricity
The Tasmania government has declared that it has become the first Australian state, and one of just a handful of jurisdictions worldwide, to be powered entirely by renewable electricity.
Michael Mazengarb –
FYI — Renew Economy is a great site to read about Clean Energy transition down under. You can also subscribe to their daily newsletter.
The Driven, EV news from Australia, features on the Renew Economy website and in every newsletter
“Age of the Jetsons”: Australian company unveils what it claims to be the world’s first electric air ambulance– Michael Mazengarb – 25 November 2020
MANUFACTURER SHUTS 3,400 MW OF CAPACITY AS COAL BECOMES ‘LITMUS TEST’ FOR CHINA’S CARBON NEUTRAL PLEDGE
The world’s biggest aluminum and textile producer has shuttered 3,400 MW of coal-fired generating capacity in China’s Shandong province, even as the country weighs the more than US$300 billion in stranded asset risk it could face if it doesn’t begin restricting construction of new coal plants.
NOVEMBER 26, 2020 the Energy Mix
Greenpeace Releases Far-Reaching ‘Just Recovery Agenda’ to Tackle Interlocking Crises of Inequality, Racial Injustice, Covid-19, and Climate Chaos
The report expands on what that means by pointing to “dignified work, healthcare, education, housing, clean air and water, healthy food, and more.” In this new work, says Greenpeace, the world must “shift from an economy that is extractive and exploitative to one that regenerates and repairs.”
November 17, 2020 by Andrea Germanos, staff writer Common Dreams
1% of people cause half of global aviation emissions – study
Airlines produced a billion tonnes of CO2 and benefited from a $100bn (£75bn) subsidy by not paying for the climate damage they caused, the researchers estimated. The analysis draws together data to give the clearest global picture of the impact of frequent fliers.
Damian Carrington – Guardian’s Environment editor – Nov 17, 2020
Tiny Atlantic island takes giant leap towards protecting world’s oceans
UK overseas territory Tristan da Cunha’s new marine protected area will be fourth largest sanctuary of its kind. A community of 250 people on one of the most remote inhabited islands on Earth has made a significant contribution to marine wildlife conservation by banning bottom-trawling fishing, deep-sea mining and other harmful activities from its waters. — The Guardian
‘This Is a Really, Really Big Deal’: Michigan Gov. Moves to Shut Down Line 5 Pipeline to Protect Great Lakes
“Enbridge has imposed on the people of Michigan an unacceptable risk of a catastrophic oil spill in the Great Lakes that could devastate our economy and way of life.”
by Jessica Corbett, staff writer – November 13, 2020 – Common Dreams
New Single-Use Tableware Biodegrades Fully in 60 Days
Made from sugarcane and bamboo, it could revolutionize the disposable container industry. It’s nice to dream of a zero waste world, in which people always remember to take their reusable containers to stores that happily fill them. — There will be a need for single-use, disposable containers for a long time yet, whether it’s for hygiene reasons (hello, COVID-19) or on-the-go convenience.
By Katherine Martinko – treehugger.com – Published November 12, 2020
‘Hypocrites and greenwash’: Greta Thunberg blasts leaders over climate crisis
Exclusive: Leaders are happy to set targets for decades ahead, but flinch when immediate action is needed, she says.
Damian Carrington Environment editor, The Guardian – Mon 9 Nov 2020
PHILIPPINES PUTS BRAKES ON COAL POWER DEVELOPMENT, BOOSTS GEOTHERMAL
“The costs trajectory and the current costs of renewable energy…when generated domestically is getting cheaper than imported coal and imported gas,” said Sara Ahmed, energy finance analyst at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA).
NOVEMBER 1, 2020 00
INTERNATIONAL ‘RIGHT TO REPAIR’ MOVEMENT CALLS FOR END TO FORCED OBSOLESCENCE
A growing movement calling for the “right to repair” is finding deep, cross-partisan support. By 2021, EU citizens should find it easier to get laptops, phones, and tablets fixed, courtesy of new right-to-repair rules that were announced this past spring as part of the continent’s plan for a more sustainable and competitive circular economy.
The Energy Mix – OCTOBER 29, 2020
A new era in maritime travel: Electric boats
Maid of the Mist in Niagara Falls has launched North America’s first all-electric, zero-emissions tour boats. Earlier this month, the Maid of the Mist launched two electric catamarans into the gorge, the first of their kind in North America. The hulking double-deckers run on dual banks of lithium-ion batteries.
The Washington Post – OCTOBER 29, 2020
C40 Global Mayors’ Statement for a Green and Just Recovery
New research shows that investing COVID stimulus funds in green solutions would create 50 million jobs, prevent 270,000 premature deaths, and deliver $280bn in economic benefits globally
Just 3 – 5% of COVID stimulus funding is currently directed to sustainable recovery
C40 Global Mayors COVID-19 Recovery Task Force warns that, by ignoring these opportunities, “national governments and global institutions are likely leading us towards catastrophic climate change”
London, UK (28 October 2020)