Climate Change

Another “promising” climate summit

The 27th Conference of the Parties to the UN’s climate change agenda ended November 20 with an agreement whereby wealthier countries ostensibly will compensate poorer ones for damage and economic losses cause by global warming. However, despite a familiar pattern of last-minute negotiations, the latest accord does not satisfy many delegates’ concerns about continued fossil fuel use. [node:read-more:link]

Amazon a priority for Brazilian leader

Newly-elected Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said November 16 that curbing Amazon basin deforestation will be a high priority as his government tries to undo aggressive development policies promoted by his predecessor, Jair Bolsonaro. “We are going to undertake a big fight,” Lula said at the latest UN climate change summit, promising to strengthen oversight and monitoring systems dismantled over the last four years. [node:read-more:link]

New global population milestone

The United Nations says the world’s population has topped eight billion only 11 years after surpassing the seven-billion mark, renewing concerns about the world’s capacity to meet demands. However, in publishing its estimate November 15, the UN said that decelerating growth could mean it will be 15 years before the population reaches nine billion. [node:read-more:link]

Trudeau presses Xi on issues at G20

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Chinese President Xi Jinping spoke only briefly today on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Bali, buy Trudeau broached alleged Chinese interference in Canada’s electoral system, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, climate change and the upcoming UN biodiversity summit in Montreal. A Canadian readout of the chat did not say how Xi reacted, only that the leaders “discussed the importance of continued dialogue.” [node:read-more:link]

Canada’s northern presence ineffectual

A report today from the Office of the Auditor General says that Canada lacks a complete picture of who is entering or traversing Arctic waters, partly due to the fact that a naval surveillance station can only operate four weeks a year. Overall, it says, the country cannot stay on top of threats to national security, illegal fishing or pollution posed by marine traffic which has tripled in recent years as sea ice diminishes. [node:read-more:link]

Emissions cap or carbon pricing?

Environment & Climate Change Minister Steven Guilbeault said today while at the global climate change summit in Egypt that capping greenhouse gases has one advantage over a pricing system in that “a cap would allow the government to predict with some degree of accuracy that Canada’s emissions targets would be met.” However, he said, the government has not decided which option is preferred as it contemplates regulation by the end of 2023. [node:read-more:link]

Natural gas: cleaner but not “clean”?

Canada’s natural gas industry is under a Competition Bureau microscope after the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment accused the industry’s lobby group of misleading claims about its carbon emissions. The CGA’s latest advertising campaign promotes gas as a form of low emission energy but the CAPE argues that natural gas is not as “clean” as the industry claims and that extraction and production “pose a serious health risk.” [node:read-more:link]

Climate change bites into economy

The effects of climate change took a $20-billion bite out of Canada's economy in 2021, according to a report released November 8 by Parliamentary Budget Officer Yves Giroux. Looking ahead to the ongoing impact, the report says that even if all global commitments to reduce greenhouse gases are fulfilled, the Canadian economy can continue to be expected to fall short of its potential. [node:read-more:link]

Arctic summer ice loss accelerating

A State of the Cryosphere report released at the latest UN global climate change conference predicts that the Arctic will lose its entire summer sea ice cover at least once in the next few decades and probably more frequently “It's a threshold tipped,” Pamela Pearson, a former U.S. diplomat and one of the report’s editors, said November 7. “Loss of summer sea ice is now inevitable.” [node:read-more:link]

Global warming irreversible?

As representatives from most nations gathered in Egypt for the latest global climate conference, the World Meteorological Organization sounded yet another warning about the accelerating impact of global warming. WMO chief Petteri Taalas said “there are no positive indicators so far” and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres described the agency’s report as “a chronicle of climate chaos.” [node:read-more:link]

World “far behind” emissions goals

The UN Environment Program says the world is neither doing enough, nor even promising to do so to addres climate change attributed to greenhouse gas emissions. “Global and national climate commitments are falling pitifully short,” says Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Thursday. “We are headed for a global catastrophe.” [node:read-more:link]

Addressing climate change and energy security

The Ontario Power Generation utility is being loaned $970 million by the federal government to support development of grid-scale small modular nuclear reactors as a key element of its fight against global warming. “We are doing this because nuclear energy – as a non-emitting source of energy – is critical to the achievement of Canada's and the world's climate goals,” Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said. “Nuclear power is one source that can help in reaching our climate targets while addressing growing future demand.” [node:read-more:link]

B.C. breaking own environmental law?

The Sierra Club environmental lobby group is accusing ng the British Columbia government of failing to report, as required by its own legislation, on whether its climate plans will achieve key greenhouse gas emissions targets. It is suing in provincial supreme court on grounds that the 2019 law requires annual public reports on progress toward emissions targets out to 2050. [node:read-more:link]

Climate “damage control” critical

The Canadian Climate Change Institute said in a report released today that Canadians can expect to have to choose between higher taxes or reduced government services if more isn’t done to adapt to climate change. “We have some ability to change this future,” said Ryan Ness, director of adaptation research for the registered charity, which said that if the public and private sectors begin investing in making the country more resilient to extreme weather, the economic impact could be reduced by 75 per cent. [node:read-more:link]


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