In today’s edition, even with a commitment to cut greenhouse gas emissions, Australia remains a laggard, most specialists say. But is it worse than Canada’s Conservative government spending several million dollars on a tar sands advocacy fund? The Guardian has the story. Or is it worse than the Republican hopefuls, who reap $62m in support from donors with fossil fuel ties? Again, a Guardian’s story to read.
Quote of the day
“Australia is fundamentally out of step and this decision puts Australia among the ‘don’t cares’ of the international community.”
Lord Deben, previously a minister in the government of Conservative prime minister Margaret Thatcher, and now the chairman of the Committee on Climate Change., in the Guardian’s story ‘Tony Abbott’s hubris is staggering’: UK’s climate adviser on emissions target
‘Tony Abbott’s hubris is staggering’: UK’s climate adviser on emissions target
By Oliver Milman – The Guardian
Australia’s “pathetic” 2030 emissions reduction target shows the country has opted out of the global effort to limit warming, according to the head of the British government’s climate change advisory body.
India coordinating with nations for balanced agreement in climate change summit: Prakash Javadekar
India is coordinating with various countries to ensure an “equitable and balanced” agreement at the forthcoming UN climate change summit in December, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said today.
Revealed: Canadian government spent millions on secret tar sands advocacy
By Martin Lukacs – The Guardian
Canada’s Conservative government spent several million dollars on a tar sands advocacy fund as its push to export the oil faltered, documents reveal.
***LB: Also in this story “In its 2013 budget, the government invested $30 million over two years on public relations advertising and domestic and international “outreach activities” to promote Alberta’s tar sands.”
Republican hopefuls reap $62m in support from donors with fossil fuel ties
By Ed Pilkington – The Guardian
Republican presidential candidates have banked millions of dollars in donations from a small number of mega-rich individuals and corporations with close ties to the fossil fuel industries that stand to lose the most from the fight against climate change.
US Catholic fossil fuel investments at odds with pope’s climate push
Pope Francis heartened environmentalists around the world in June when he urged immediate action to save the planet from the effects of climate change, declaring that the use of “highly polluting fossil fuels needs to be progressively replaced without delay”.
Obama issues challenge on climate change with power plant rule
By Jeff Mason and Valerie Volcovici – Reuters
President Barack Obama challenged America and the world to step up efforts to fight global warming on Monday at the formal unveiling of his administration’s controversial, ramped-up plan to cut carbon emissions from U.S. power plants.
UK lobbying for even weaker EU air pollution laws, leaked papers show
By Arthur Neslen – The Guardian
Leaked documents show the UK is pushing for watered-down EU air pollution laws to be weakened further, arguing they would cause pit closures leading to substantial job losses and the need to import coal.
Wind and solar surge sends EU emissions tumbling
By Paul Brown – Climate News Network
Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions are falling fast, mainly because of the rapid spread of the wind turbines and solar panels that are replacing fossil fuels for electricity generation.
The Rise of Green Bonds, Explained
By Julian Spector – The Atlantic City Lab
Seattle-based Sound Transit issued more than $900 million in so-called “green bonds” last week to improve the bus and train system, with a goal of cutting down on carbon emissions from transportation in the region.
EMA Annual Meeting
October 28-30, 2015
Omni Parker House Hotel
2015 Rising Seas Summit
Association of Climate Change Officers
November 12-13, 2015, Cambridge, MA
How the Midwest’s Corn Farms Are Cooking the Planet
By Tom Philpott – Mother Jones
I’ve been thinking a lot recently about how fertilizer from the Midwest’s big corn farms seeps into streams and causes trouble—fouling water supplies in Columbus,Toledo, Des Moines, and 60 other towns in Iowa, and generating a Connecticut-sized dead zone at the heart of the continental United States’ most productive fishery, the Gulf of Mexico.
Is this the world’s greenest toilet? Minimise Water unveils new system for flushing away carbon emissions
By James Phillips – BusinessGreen
An innovative toilet could help businesses shave up to 60 per cent off their water bills, as well as reduce their carbon footprint.
Natural gas / coal
(Indonesia’s) Joko Widodo criticised over coal power expansion plans
By Avantika Chilkoti – Financial Times
President Joko Widodo’s ambitious plans to ramp up Indonesia’s investment in coal-fired power stations have been criticised by academics and campaign groups concerned about the health effects of pollution, as the country struggles to meet growing energy demand.
Exxaro Cuts Price, Completes Total South Africa Coal Deal
By Andre Janse Van Vuuren – Bloomberg News
Exxaro Resources Ltd. said it finalized the purchase of Total SA’s South African coal unit for at least 19 percent less than first announced amid a slump in prices for the fuel.
Natural Gas Drillers Can’t Catch a Break
By Christine Buurma and Mario Parker – Bloomberg News
Natural gas drillers who flocked to liquids-rich basins in search of better profits just can’t seem to catch a break.
Europe’s offshore wind industry has a ‘dream year,’ begins to expand rapidly
By Eric Marx – E&E
For an offshore wind industry accustomed to decades-long development, 2015 is turning into a banner year.
***LB: Also in this story “In the first six months, European offshore wind installations touched 2.34 gigawatts — establishing the best year ever for installed capacity. Output tripled over the same six-month period a year ago, and total installed offshore wind capacity in Europe hit 10.4 GW generated from 82 wind farms in 11 countries (rivaling the power production of 10 large nuclear power plants).”
Iranian and Spanish firms sign agreement to boost renewables development
By Madeleine Cuff – BusinessGreen
Sunir, a state-run Iranian electrical equipment exporter, has signed an agreement with Bester, a Spanish renewable energy project developer, to jointly accelerate the development of Iran’s renewable energy capacity.
Eon profits fall amid big restructuring
By Jeevan Vasagar – Financial Times
Cold weather boosted sales at Eon, Germany’s biggest utility by market value, but income declined sharply as the business came under pressure from expanding renewables and lower oil prices.
***LB: Also in this story “Energy from clean sources has favourable access to the power grid in Europe’s biggest economy, squeezing the earnings of businesses that generate power from nuclear energy and fossil fuels. Nearly 26 per cent of Germany’s power generation came from clean sources last year. The country aims to generate up to 60 per cent of electricity from renewable energy by 2035.”
What will Obama’s power plan do to the grid?
By Darren Samuelson – Politico
Environmentalists cheered last week when President Barack Obama and the Environmental Protection Agency issued the country’s first-ever mandatory greenhouse gas standards for power plants.
Here’s How Elon Musk Gets Tesla to 500,000 Cars a Year by 2020
By Tom Randall – Bloomberg News
Tesla’s $31 billion stock value is built on a dream—that a startup might somehow be able to produce a half-million all-electric cars per year by 2020.
Plastic ‘shade balls’: The hypnotizing tool California is using to save water
By Robert Gebelhoff – The Washington Post
California is experiencing one of its most severe droughts on record, and its local municipalities have an astounding strategy to save water: turn their reservoirs into massive, floating ball pits.
Who’s Behind the 96 Million ‘Shade Balls’ That Just Rolled Into L.A.’s Reservoirs?
By Eric Roston – Bloomberg News
They emerged from obscurity Tuesday morning on the Internet with all the markings of Buzzphrase of the Year. It’s shady. It’s enigmatic. To stoke juvenile social media glee, it has the word “balls” in it. And it’s dead serious.
United Church to drop fossil fuels from investments due to climate concerns
The Canadian Press
The general council of one of Canada’s largest churches has voted to drop fossil fuels from its investment portfolios, with advocates for the motion saying the decision is based on the Christian duty to care for the earth.