Today's climate and energy headlines:
- 10 charts showing why carbon emissions stalledlast year
- BP cautions on China energyslowdown
- UN climate conference: Silence over emissionstargets
- Ethiopia submits carbon cutting plan for UNclimate deal
- E.P.A. Takes Step to Cut Emissions FromPlanes
- Majority of MEPs support fracking moratorium insymbolic vote
- Australia overstating greenhouse gas forecasts,making climate targets easier
- Why the G7 is talking aboutdecarbonisation
- The real science on wind farms, noise, infrasoundand health
- The Energetic Value of Land-Based Foods in WesternHudson Bay and Their Potential to Alleviate Energy Deficits ofStarving Adult Male Polar Bears
Strong growth in solar and wind was accompanied by stalling growthin fossil fuels use and energy-related emissions last year, the BPStatistical Review of World Energy 2015 shows. Carbon Brief breaksdown the reasons behind last year’s shifting energy use into 10charts and maps, with China dominating the picture.
Climate and energy news.
BP’s latest energy statistics generated a number of headlinestoday. The FT highlights how China’s energy consumption grew at itsslowest rate last year since the 1990s.The Telegraphpoints out that this was atrend echoed globally, with total energy consumption growth slowingto just 0.9% in what BP’s chief economist called a “watershed”moment.The Guardianreports BP chief BobDudley’s comment that “something substantial” needs to be done totackle climate change at the UN climate summit this December, whichthe Guardian says widens the “transatlantic rift” between energycompanies over global warming.Carbon Briefalso covers the story.
As UN talks on climate change rumble into their final day, mediacoverage has focused on the slow pace of the negotiations.Procedural concerns have overtaken discussions of the adequacy ofproposed emissions cuts, a Chinese diplomat tells the BBC.RTCCadds that a new draft text of thefuture deal is expected to be presented today by the two menresponsible for shepherding the talks.
Ethiopia has become the first least developed country and thirdAfrican nation to submit its intended pledge to the UN’s climatebody. It’s target of a 64% cut in emissions on business-as-usual by2030 has been hailed as “ambitious” and “far-reaching” by Oxfam.
The US has moved to regulate emissions from planes for the firsttime, with the Environmental Protection Agency warning that theindustry endangers human health because of its contribution toclimate change. The agency is now required to develop rules for theindustry, as it did for power plants and vehicles. However, alengthy rule-making process and likely heavy lobbying means thatnew standards are unlikely to be completed during Obama’sadministration.The Hilland theWashington Postalso cover thestory.
338 MEPs have voted for a moratorium on fracking, defeating the319 that voted against. The vote will have no practical effect, asit concerned an amendment to a report that was not adopted, but itcould send a signal to the European Commission and to the industry,reports the Guardian. Benedek Javor, the Green MEP who co-sponsoredthe amendment, said that it sent a “clear political message”.
Australia has been overestimating the volumes of greenhouse gasesit emits, meaning it can achieve the level of cuts it has pledgedwithout making much effort, according to analysis by energy marketanalysts Reputex. It says the country could be overstating itsemissions by more than 200m tonnes over the next four years. In aseparate article,The Guardianpoints to comments byAustralian prime minister Tony Abbott that windfarms are “visuallyawful” and that he plans to reduce their number.
Climate and energy comment.
The Economist looks at the G7’s declaration earlier this week thatit will seek “decarbonisation of the global economy over the courseof this century”. The weekly says the announcement “matters”because “it puts the logic of full decarbonisation into theofficial sphere for the first time” and “might also shiftinvestment patterns between different fuels”.
Responding to Australian prime minister Tony Abbott’s claims thatwind farms have “potential health impacts”, UNSW Australiaprofessor Con Doolan runs through the rumours and science on windturbine infrasound and noise.
New climate science.
As climate changes extends the sea ice-free season in the Arctic,28-48% of adult male polar bears are projected to starve in theHudson Bay region unless they can find enough food on land instead.New research examines the nutritional value of snow geese, eggs andcaribou for polar bears, concluding that if polar bears cantransition their foraging behaviour to exploit these resources onland, predictions for starvation-related deaths may beoverestimated.
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