In the aftermath of COP21, we need to shift rapidly to renewables in order to meet the goals set in the Paris Outcome. For some reason, the United Kingdom doesn’t want to play along.
Policy & Government
A catch all category for government, politics and initiatives to influence either.
As the Paris climate negotiations closed, you heard a great deal of hope and optimism as well as congratulations for vision and progress emanating from COP21. Indeed, important commitments have been made – but they’re pledges, not actions, and they don’t reverse the adverse climate change underway. Which is why adaptation is more important than ever.
In response to these schemes, or in anticipation of future carbon-pricing legislation, this year the CDP reported that 437 large companies say they now use an internal carbon price in decision-making. This is an increase from just 150 in 2014. But what actually is an internal carbon price, and what are the advantages of implementing one?
Humanist psychologist Abraham Maslow believed that people have an inborn desire to be self-actualized, to be all they can be. In order to achieve this ultimate goal and be productive, however, a number of more basic needs must be met first, such as the need for food, safety, love and self-esteem — known as Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Similarly, environmental protection and compliance in a country like India will be successfully implemented and monitored if the basic needs and demands of human life are met first.
SPECIAL SERIES: The Problem with Food Waste
Commercial composting solves a myriad of problems in big cities: It reduces carbon emissions in landfills, creates jobs and businesses, and turns out some great soil. So, why is there such a lack of composting facilities that handle food waste?
A handful of cities are moving strategically to make their electric grids more secure, reliable and sustainable. That may not sound sexy even by energy industry standards, but the return on their investments gets more appealing with each dollar spent.
The Obama administration’s ‘moonshot for water’ initiative is an effort to mitigate the increased stress on groundwater supplies across the United States.
In the aftermath of COP21, private-sector action is key to reaching emissions reduction goals. The marketplace needs to feel confident that the technologies that help reduce carbon dioxide emissions, whether they are renewable energy or clean technology, are worthy of investment. Proven technologies such as solar and wind are fast emerging as attractive investment asset classes that provide investors with low technology risk and stable, higher returns over a period of 20 years or more. Now is the time for these technologies to take center stage in the financing world.
A semi-remote Brazilian tribe has turned high-tech in an effort to protect its tropical forest, which is being devastated by poachers. It’s the latest effort to safeguard indigenous lands, which hold more than a fifth of the worlds trees. That’s according to a report that was released at COP21 last week, calling for global action to ensure that the forests that are vital to offsetting carbon emissions aren’t cut down for commercial profit.
Bill McKibben, co-founder of 350.org said, “This didn’t save the planet, but it may have saved the chance of saving the planet.” Climate crusader James Hansen, who was among the first to sound the alarm, was less pleased with the level of compromise, calling the outcome a “fraud.” So, how should we feel about the COP21 outcome? Is it enough?
As an economist, I have a jaundice view of the COP21 agreement. My skepticism ties to a lack of price signals included in the agreement. My question is: Can the world can realize a green economic revolution that delivers less pollution plus economic growth without including the cost of pollution at the cash register, meter and pump?
This morning, Nick Nuttall, coordinator of communications and outreach for the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), told the press that COP21 negotiations will continue into Saturday “to reach the best possible deal.” While we’re waiting to see if the Paris talks will culminate in a long-awaited global agreement on climate change, let’s catch up on all the big news of the week.
While observers wait on pins and needles for the final outcome of this year’s COP21 climate talks, GRI’s Deputy Director takes a moment to reflect on the 15+ years of negotiations she’s witnessed and participated in.