Climate Change

Election 2021: Conservative platform

A 160-page election campaign platform released by the Conservative Party of Canada today promises billions in new spending to support a pandemic-ravaged economy. It also promises, among other things, revisions to carbon tax and child-care and a balanced budget in 10 years. [node:read-more:link]

July hottest month on record

The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports that global average temperatures in July were the hottest since record-keeping began 142 years ago. The combined land and ocean-surface reading was 0.93°C above the average for the last century and in the northern hemisphere, land temperatures in July were an “unprecedented” 1.54° higher than average. [node:read-more:link]

A “code red for humanity”

The International Panel on Climate Change said today that global warming is dangerously close to being out of control as previously severe weather anomalies appear to be becoming the norm. Its report to the UN, which draws on more than 14,000 scientific studies, was described by UN Secretary-General António Guterres as a “code red for humanity” as the world body prepares for its 26th global climate conference later this year. [node:read-more:link]

National security climatically offensive

The Department of National Defence, the RCMP and the Canadian Coast Guard account for 45 per cent of greenhouse gases emitted by federal government operations, according to a Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives report released today. However, as its authors point out, “the most obvious and serious challenge” is that all three are exempt from the government’s current “greening” strategy. [node:read-more:link]

Car owners underestimate total vehicle costs

Private cars are responsible for about 11% of the world’s total carbon dioxide emissions. That’s the greatest share in the transport sector, which accounts for 24% of emissions overall. More than 99% of new passenger cars sold worldwide still rely on fossil fuels. If consumers systematically underestimate total costs, this could make alternative forms of transport — car sharing, alternative-fuel vehicles, public transport, biking or walking, say — seem less attractive. [node:read-more:link]

Environmental Change and Emerging Diseases

With climate change, and environmental change more generally, disrupting ecologies, and people interacting with wildlife in new ways, it creates the conditions for new diseases to emerge: a better understanding of the health dimensions of environmental change will be critical to managing pandemic risks in future. [node:read-more:link]

Remote Sensing Can Predict Coastal Storm Impacts

To predict the path and landfall of a hurricane or other coastal storm and assess the damage, emergency managers and scientists need continuous information on the storm's path, strength, predicted landfall, and expected damage over large areas. Satellite and airborne remote sensors can provide the required information in a timely and reliable way. The lessons learned from hurricane Katrina are helping optimize future approaches for tracking hurricanes and predicting their impact on coastal ecosystems and developed areas. [node:read-more:link]

New Governor General sworn in

Mary Simon, an Inuk from northern Quebec, was sworn in as Canada’s 30th Governor General, the first indigenous vice-regal appointee. In a ceremony held in the Senate chamber, she pledged to use her role to work against climate change, advocate for mental health and work toward reconciliation. “I have heard from Canadians who describe a renewed sense of possibility for our country and hope that I can bring people together," she said. [node:read-more:link]

New climate change assessment under way

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has begun preparing the most comprehensive assessment on the state of global warming since 2013, meeting virtually this week and next to review their findings with representatives of 195 governments. Their work is expected to be a key element of the 27th UN climate conference scheduled for November in Scotland. [node:read-more:link]

No election for Mark Carney

Mark Carney, who governed the Bank of Canada before taking on the same role at the Bank of England, has said he will not be a Liberal candidate in a federal election rumoured for this fall. He had been considered a likely contender in an Ottawa seat but said July 20 that he is committed to tackling climate change as the UN special envoy on climate and finance. [node:read-more:link]

Zero-emission vehicle target a challenge

A Toronto-based think tank, the C.D. Howe Institute, says that at least 70 per cent of automobiles would have to be electrically-powered by 2030 if the federal government is to achieve its zero-emissions goal by 2030. So-called “zero emission” vehicles comprised 3.5 per cent of total vehicle sales in Canada last year. [node:read-more:link]

Canada accelerating emissions agenda

The UN has been advised by Canada that it plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 45 per cent from 2005 levels by the end of this decade. Environment and Climate Change Minister Jonathan Wilkinson also has told his provincial counterparts he plans to amend the federal carbon-price benchmark to eliminate some discrepancies and exemptions that emerged as provinces implemented their own policies. [node:read-more:link]

Renewed U.S. climate push

Allison Crimmins, who has worked on climate issues for the past decade at the Environmental Protection Agency, has been put in charge of the next major U.S. climate assessment required by law every four years. Her appointment and others are seen as the end of turbulence in the Global Change Research Program office which coordinates the efforts of 13 departments and agencies. [node:read-more:link]

First Nation backs LNG project

A $10-billion plant to liquefy natural gas in northern B.C., including a pipeline to tidewater for export, is being backed by the Nisga'a Nation, whose territory is north of Prince Rupert near the Alaska border. It has joined two corporations, Rockies LNG Partners and Texas-based Western LNG, committing to net-zero carbon emissions within three years of startup. [node:read-more:link]

Deforestation hampering carbon uptake

Significant parts of the Amazon, the world's largest tropical forest, have begun emitting more carbon dioxide that they absorb, according to a team of researchers led by a scientist from Brazil's National Institute for Space Research assessing the impact of deforestation. Among other things, their report notes that regional temperatures rose by three times the global average during the hottest months. “This is . . . accelerating climate change,” says lead author Luciana Gatti. [node:read-more:link]


Subscribe to RSS - Climate Change