In today’s edition, news from a newcomer on the world climate scene: Iran. The country says it can quadruple its carbon cuts – if sanctions are lifted. And also, another story on Canada’s new PM: Justin Trudeau has vowed to set a national carbon standard — but not a target — and give provinces the flexibility to meet it as they wish through cap and trade, a carbon tax or emissions standards. Finally, India’s climate pledge rests on a green growth story.
Quote of the day
“The energy industry needs a strong and clear signal from the Paris climate summit. Failing to send this signal will push energy investments in the wrong direction, locking in unsustainable energy infrastructure for decades.”
Fatih Birol, executive director of the IEA, in the Guardian’s story Paris climate pledges ‘will slow energy emissions’
2015 Likely to Be Hottest Year Ever Recorded
By Justin Gillis – The New York Times
Just one year after 2014 set a record as the hottest year in the historical record, 2015 is on track to beat it by a substantial margin, possibly signaling a return to a sustained period of rapid global warming.
Paris climate pledges ‘will slow energy emissions’
By Fiona Harvey – The Guardian
Pledges on greenhouse gas emissions made by governments ahead of landmark climate talks this December will result in a rapid and dramatic slowdown in the growth of carbon from the energy sector – but will not reverse that growth within the next 15 years, the world’s energy watchdog said on Wednesday.
Trudeau to Reset Canada’s `Crystal Meth’ Approach to Climate
By Jeremy Van Loon – Bloomberg News
Trudeau, who swept to power in elections on Monday, has vowed to set a national carbon standard — but not a target — and give provinces the flexibility to meet it as they wish through cap and trade, a carbon tax or emissions standards.
***LB: Also in this story “He also plans to introduce regulations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, something Canada failed to do under both the Conservatives and a previous Liberal government. Better climate policy might even help the country’s ailing oil industry, he has said.”
Iran Says It Can Quadruple Carbon Cuts If Sanctions Lifted
By Alex Morales – Bloomberg News
Iran could as much as quadruple its efforts to curb fossil fuel emissions if economic sanctions imposed by the U.S., United Nations and European Union are ended, the country’s lead envoy at UN climate negotiations said.
India’s climate pledge rests on green growth story
By Prachi Bhuchar – India Today part of the Climate Publishers Network
Every summer, as India’s biggest cities resort to ‘load shedding’ to keep pace with the demand for power, its residents cuss and sweat, waiting for the comforting whirr of the fan and the hum of the air conditioner that allows them to stay insulated from the reality that millions of others live with – a life without electricity.
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EC mulls adding pollutants to car labels
By Simon Roach – ENDS Europe (part of the Guardian Environment Network)
The European commission is considering the inclusion of pollutants such as nitrogen oxides (NOx) in car labelling rules as a result of the Volkswagen emissions scandal.
Natural gas / coal
Ukraine’s Coal War: Sales to Loyalists Fund Separatist Fighters
By Kateryna Choursina, James M. Gomez and Daryna Krasnolutska – Bloomberg News
Just 200 yards from where Malaysia Airlines MH17 crashed last year in rebel-held eastern Ukraine, commerce is winning over war.
In the Heart of the Texas Oil Patch, It’s Gas That’s Taking Off
By Harry Weber – Bloomberg News
The oiliest county in Texas has seen its new natural gas production capacity more than double as drillers home in on their most profitable acreage.
Britain to Grant China a Large Stake in Nuclear Industry
By Stanley Reed and Steven Erlanger – The New York Times
In an important breakthrough for Chinese industry and global influence, the British and Chinese governments agreed on Wednesday to give China a substantial stake in the British nuclear industry, both as an investor and as a contractor.
These students designed a 100% solar house that laughs at hurricanes
By David Roberts – Vox
“Sustainability” and “resilience” are the two most annoyingly overused words in today’s green-o-sphere, but occasionally something comes along to remind us what the real deal looks like.
Ecotricity to marry sun and wind in ‘hybrid’ clean energy parks
By Madeleine Cuff – BusinessGreen
Ecotricity has today announced plans for three new “hybrid” renewable energy parks featuring a mix wind and sun generation on the same site, in a bid to encourage a more efficient system of renewable energy generation.
What happens when Tesla’s AutoPilot goes wrong: owners post swerving videos
By Samuel Gibbs – The Guardian
Tesla’s latest software update gave its Model S electric car the ability to drive itself with a new AutoPilot mode, but as a collection of owners have found out, two hands on the wheel are most definitely needed at all times.
Damning California’s Future
By Will Parrish – East Bay Express
Proponents contend that dam-building will create “a new era of abundance.” But critics argue that dams, such as Los Vaqueros in Contra Costa County, are environmentally destructive and too expensive.
Seagrass gardens are needed to cap the carbon bomb in the oceans
Stopping the underwater carbon emissions time bomb could require widespread seagrass transplantation.
***LB: Also in this story “Seagrass is up to 35 times more efficient at sequestering carbon than rainforests, and stores it for millennia in the sediment below.”
Clock is ticking on bid to block EPA water rule
By Daren Bakst – The Hill
If ever a rule deserved killing, it’s the new water rule issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.