Recently, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) took a look at their earlier predictions on global warming, and guess what? They significantly underestimated the rate of increase in global emissions, particularly between 2000 and 2008. This was mainly due to the unforeseen (and rapid) increase in coal-burning by developing countries like China. But even still, it’s quite scary that we surpassed the worst-case-scenario predictions for 2000-2008. So, will we need some type of “Holy Grail” technology to stop global warming? Is the combination of renewable energy and possibly carbon capture and sequestration really enough?
How does climate change affect life 3000 feet below sea level? Take a look through the Ocean Research and Conservation Association’s “Eye-in-the-Sea ” and see for yourself. The casual viewer will not likely notice anything out of the ordinary but for the scientists and researchers who continually monitor the real-time data, the Eye-in-the-sea can literally shed light on key climate change indicators. The camera, which weighs in at a modest 502 pounds, illuminates the ocean in front of it using “far-red” lights. This lighting system does not disturb local sea-life as it operates at a luminescence invisible to undersea animals – an important feature of the camera since deep-sea animals are often very sensitive to light. This week ClimatePULSE will take a look at the Eye-in-the-sea technology and a few other facts about climate change and the ocean.
Finally. Change. Along with the new President comes a bright and contemporary perspective on how to tackle climate change. So what can we expect from the fresh-faced Obama and his team of scientifically renowned advisors? Hopefully decisive action, and a lot of it. This week in ClimatePULSE we take a look at the recently published (January 15th) US Climate Action Partnership’s (USCAP) “Blueprint for Legislative Action.” A self-described “detailed framework for legislation to address climate change”. So, is the US Climate Action Partnership Blueprint the answer to our prayers for an economically sustainable approach to solving our climate concerns?
What’s the atmospheric density of carbon dioxide 200 miles off the East coast of Greenland? At this point we can’t accurately say, but that may soon change. The Greenhouse Gas Observing Satellite (GOSAT), expected to be launched one week from today by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, is planned to orbit the Earth for approximately 5 years while sending monthly reports of carbon dioxide and methane densities from around the globe. The satellite represents a major step towards gathering accurate GHG data in the atmosphere, which can aid the development of carbon-trading by improving accountability.
As 2008 comes to a close and we take a look at the year in review, we reflect on the year that has passed and begin to think about the future. There have been many climate change-related headlines over the past year, from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative holding its first two auctions, to global representatives meeting in Poland to discuss climate change, to global warming as a major issue in the most publicized U.S. election in history, and more. As this exciting year in climate change comes to a conclusion, we look forward to the major (and minor) events that will take place in 2009. This week, ClimatePULSE will take a look at the top 3 climate change headlines to watch for in the upcoming year.
This week in ClimatePULSE we take a look at the recently concluded UN Climate Change conference in Poznan, Poland. Although the conference brought together some 200 countries to discuss how to tackle global climate change, it was largely shadowed by a global economic crisis and a leadership vacuum in the U.S. The conference was apparently more about process than measurable targets, as hardly any firm targets were set. And even though expectations for the conference weren’t high, it seemed as if the talks were merely a pre-cursor to much more anticipated discussions in Copenhagen next year where a new Kyoto Protocol will be agreed upon. So what did the conference actually accomplish? Well, not much, but some progress was made, particularly regarding deforestation and so-called “adaptation funds” (money to help poor countries counter the future impacts of climate change). In this article we’ll present some of the booms and busts of the conference.
As much as we might like to think that everyone would voluntarily reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, regulations are the only way to ensure that GHG emissions are reduced at the rate needed to mitigate catastrophic climate change. Regardless of the notice given, any such legislation will come as a shock to those companies most affected. This is indeed the case currently for many in the agricultural industry, as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recently announced a proposal to regulate GHGs under the Clean Air Act. This week, ClimatePULSE will take a look at this potential piece of GHG legislation and the importance of turning these regulatory risks into opportunities.
This week in ClimatePULSE we take a look at some of the best techniques for hosting an environmentally friendly conference or event. Given the current hysteria surrounding corporate sustainability projects, the simple task of promoting your organization’s green goodwill through hosting enviro-friendly events is often overlooked. So just how do you easily conform to environmentally sound behavior? It’s quite simple. Without overlooking the importance of ditching bottled water, there are 5 simple steps your company can take to portray a green image at your next big conference or meeting. Check below for the top solutions.
The big news of the day is, of course, the U.S. presidential election. This week ClimatePULSE will take a look at a topic where the parties found some common ground during the campaign – a cap-and-trade system. While each party has made its own adjustments, both Obama and McCain seem poised to implement a cap-and-trade system once the new administration is settled. The Democrats favour a 100% auction, in which all emitters will purchase credits, while the Republicans plan to issue credits for free market trade with the possibility of moving towards 100% auction in the future. Both plan to stimulate the growth of clean technologies, but the actual operation may vary significantly between the two approaches.
This week of Halloween, I thought we’d settle on a creepy, nay terrifying, topic – the topic of how far we actually are from preventing runaway climate change. In a Time Magazine article I read this morning, it was noted that even some of the most well-educated and prestigious young minds in America don’t really understand what level of effort is required to prevent catastrophic climate change. These are MIT students, strong in math and science, and yet 84% of the respondents got the question wrong. Before you read any further take a moment to answer these two questions: (1) How much do we need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to stabilize their concentration in the atmosphere at safe levels? (2) How much time do we have to do it?
This week in ClimatePULSE we take a look at the top 10 green states. But more specifically, those states that have recently taken the lead in accommodating small-scale renewable energy projects. So, what U.S. states are taking that extra step to help individuals and small businesses that want to “go green”? This article will tackle that question with uninhibited enthusiasm and a touch of objectivity. And although this is by no means a general assessment of the environmental policies and practices of each U.S. state, it should help us better understand this year’s “Freeing the Grid” report and particularly which states have the best net metering and interconnection policies – those that allow customers to easily sell power back to the grid.
Recycling highly-concentrated streams of CO2 from large-scale emitters sounds like a fantastic way to slow down climate change. So does finding a new, abundant source of fuel that doesn’t require drilling. Why not tackle both of these issues at the same time? It’s certainly intriguing, but more importantly, it’s possible. This week ClimatePULSE will take a look at such a technology and discuss the possible impacts it can have both nationally and globally.
This week in ClimatePULSE we take a look at some of the most promising clean technology solutions. And now that the enthusiasm regarding corn-ethanol has (rightfully) faded, what better time to do so? While this list is far from exhaustive, it should provide some insight into (hopefully) safe bets within the clean tech sector. We have chosen to profile 5 companies considered to have high potential. So, let’s get started…
In wake of yesterday’s disapproval of the financial rescue package, ClimatePULSE will take a look at the status of the carbon market and how it is affected by the financial services sector. Although carbon and stock trading do not occur side-by-side, they certainly interact and influence one another through various connections. In many ways, the carbon market relies heavily on the financial status of both the country and individual companies. A sliding financial market may affect the allocation of money and credit and slow the development of the national carbon market. Recent and future milestones in the carbon industry, however, are more than capable of powering the carbon market to a very successful future.
GHG inventories, are they really worthwhile? Some may argue that it’s wiser to skip straight to energy efficiency and clean technology solutions that have already proven effective. And let’s face it, what CEOs want to spend a small fortune having some green-collar consultant tell them just how bad the situation really is. But the truth is, those inventories, and even that green-collar stock boy might just be worth the time and money. Why is that you might ask? Let’s look a little deeper at the purpose of GHG inventories and how they act as an important first step towards both environmental and economic savings for a company.