World

South Australia to hit 100% renewable power by 2025 – market operator

Contrary to federal government modelling, as old gas turbines switch off in the next decade, renewable electricity share will soar

China solar industry struggles through sudden subsidy cuts

After years of breakneck growth, solar panel manufacturers are tightening their belts as the government slashes support

Brazil: Bolsonaro threatens to quit Paris climate deal

De facto presidential frontrunner says he would follow Donald Trump out of the international pact, drawing criticism from the UN’s environment chief

Why are German coal workers so powerful, when there are so few?

With Germany slipping from its position as a climate leader, an industry with just 20,000 jobs is dictating policy to the federal government

The US’ hidden methane problem

Unregulated, unnoticed coal mines across the US are leaking a potent greenhouse gas with the same greenhouse effect as 13 million cars

China restarts coal plant construction after two-year freeze

Satellite pictures show building work progressing as power demand picks up, but experts say there is still excess coal capacity

Oil pipeline inspection industry ‘going wrong’ as surveys fail to prevent spills

Three separate companies inspected the San Pablo Bay pipeline for faults during a series of spills that dumped 900 barrels of crude onto farmland in California

The excuses are wearing thin: Eastern Europe must tackle its climate impact

The Czech Republic overtook Germany in emissions per person three years ago; it is time to stop pleading poverty and start cleaning up the region’s pollution

World

US

EU relaxes climate stance in trade sop to Trump

Tough words on the Paris Agreement took a back seat as Jean-Claude Juncker sought protection for Europe’s car industry

Trump is wrecking the climate and free trade. Here is a common solution for both

Instead of tit-for-tat retaliation to US tariffs, trade partners should link their response to climate goals and kill two birds with one stone

‘Trump’s climate denial threatens all of us’: protestors hit London’s streets

A massive baby Trump balloon, organised by climate activists, was part of rolling protests that greeted the president in the UK on Friday

Trade war would harm the environment, warns UN green chief

Donald Trump’s punitive tariffs and the reaction could undermine global cooperation and slow the transition to a sustainable world, says Erik Solheim

Hawaii signs law to become carbon neutral by 2045

Pacific islands note threat of sea level rise while setting toughest climate target of any US state

US Republican mayors pursuing climate policies undercover

Study shows that while Republican mayors are unwilling to join climate coalitions, they and their voters favour action on emissions

Trump has damaged the Paris Agreement, say its architects

One year on from Donald Trump’s announcement he would withdraw the US from the UN climate pact, leading figures assess the “dire consequences”

US cities sue Big Oil, but ignore their own climate guilt

Rich cities and counties claiming reparations from oil companies increases the inequality at the heart of climate change. But it can be fixed

US

China

New Chinese-led development banks missing the point on climate

Both less than five years old, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and Brics Bank are failing to back sustainable development models

#MeToo reaches China’s NGOs

After being outed on social media, a prominent environment activist admitted harassment of multiple women with whom he worked, blaming alcohol

Fragile China-EU climate pact must be backed by action

Leaders overcame differences on climate. But in the EU-China relationship, trouble is never far away

EU and China agree sweeping joint statement on climate action

Leaders put climate at centre of relationship, push for agreement on the Paris deal rulebook and reject Trump’s efforts to undermine global cooperation

China and EU can lead on climate action

After the US surrendered its influence, the upcoming EU-China summit in Beijing will be yet another moment for both economies to show leadership on climate action

Mysterious emissions of banned greenhouse gas traced to Chinese factories

Illegal production of CFC-11 in China has a climate impact equivalent to 16-20 coal power plants, the Environmental Investigation Agency estimates

The ice beneath the EU-China climate bonhomie

When it comes to clean technology, German chancellor Angela Merkel says China is no longer seen as a developing country but a competitor

China should consider increasing Paris climate pledge early – government thinktank

Influential agency recommends China, which is likely to beat its 2030 target for cutting carbon, revisit the pledge it made to the UN deal

China

India

Pakistani senator calls for climate cooperation with India amid water crisis

As drought bites, senate opposition leader Sherry Rehman says climate action is a security priority for South Asia

India’s power minister says the country can smash its 2022 renewable power goal. Will it happen?

Power ministry officials say renewable capacity could exceed the 175GW goal, reaching 227GW, but analysts caution it depends on demand growth

Indian authorities claim progress in campaign to end heatwave deaths

After nearly 200 die in extreme weather, national disaster agency reiterates zero-mortality goal and says toll could have been higher without action plans

France’s Macron pledges €700m to solar energy push

The French president announced extra finance to help developing countries adopt clean energy at the International Solar Alliance launch in New Delhi

Coal India report finds renewables will ‘substantially decrease’ coal demand

The falling cost of solar power and batteries is having a “significant impact” on the coal sector, says national mining company in Coal Vision 2030 consultation

International Solar Alliance to launch 121 projects at New Delhi summit

India and France are leading a push to roll out solar power, with an event next month to focus on water pumps, affordable finance and mini-grids

Indian mogul Mahindra pledges to align with Paris climate agreement

The chair of a $19bn Indian conglomerate committed to science-based targets, saying all efforts to cut carbon ‘have given us a return’

No legal action taken against Delhi’s polluters since 2014

Despite desperately toxic air and powerful anti-pollution legislation, not a single case has been taken up against polluters in India’s capital

India

EU

German 2030 climate target ‘very, very challenging’ to reach, says Merkel

Planned climate protection law means 2030 target would ‘ideally’ be met, chancellor says, and flags closure of coal plants

As the UK swelters, government plan for extreme heat is criticised

The UK’s new five year plan to adapt to climate change lacks proper action to deal with the rising threat of extreme heat, according to its own advisers

EU-Japan trade deal first to carry Paris climate clause

The world’s largest ever trade deal is also the first Europe has signed that commits both parties to upholding the UN climate accord

German renewables overtake coal power generation for six months

Wind, solar, hydro and biogas met 36.3% of electricity demand in the first half of 2018, industry data show, while coal dropped to 35.1% of the mix

Netherlands proposes 95% emissions cut by 2050 in draft climate law

Under proposals backed by seven political parties across the spectrum, the Netherlands could set one of the most ambitious carbon targets in the world

Half of member states back stronger EU climate action

The “green growth group” is calling for an increased climate commitment by 2020 in line with the tougher 1.5C warming limit in the Paris Agreement

Gas is not the answer to shipping’s climate impact, study warns

The EU is investing heavily in LNG as a cleaner fuel for shipping, but it will not go far enough to cut emissions by 2050, according to consultancy UMAS

Eight EU countries signal openness to increased Paris climate pledge

UK among signatories of call for greater ambition, one day after the EU climate chief said the bloc could raise its Paris commitment. Poland was notably absent

EU

Africa

UN issues warning of climate instability across Arab region

Development agency says dry countries face ‘famine and food insecurity, loss of livelihoods and life, and the displacement of millions’

Cape Town ‘Day Zero’ drought odds tripled by climate change

Such a dry spell would once have only occurred only once every 300 years. Now it is a once-a-century event and will get even more frequent with further global warming

South Africa draft climate law would set emissions targets for every sector

The bill calls on every part of government to coordinate in climate action, but South Africa’s heavy use of coal remains its biggest challenge

Global funds back desert solar to bring power to 250 million Africans

Desert to Power project aims to expand solar power across the Sahel region, where electricity access remains critically low

Norway at loggerheads with DR Congo over forest protection payments

International donors have frozen funding to conserve the world’s second largest rainforest, with the DRC environment minister said to have gone “rogue”

London’s ‘light touch’ regulatory hub for African oil ventures exposed

DeSmog UK investigation finds secretive companies using UK’s Alternative Investment Market to raise finance for new oil and gas projects

Africa holds EU climate agenda ransom

As a tough year of talks begins, the EU is searching for allies in a fight with China over the rules of the Paris Agreement, but Africa’s help will come at a cost

UN Security Council makes ‘historic’ warning on climate threat to Somalia

Drought, desertification, land degradation and food insecurity are driving conflict in the Horn of African country, says security council

Africa

South America

Canada and Argentina to peer review each other’s fossil fuel subsidies

G7 and G20 hosts commit to a process they hope will help them phase out taxpayer support for coal, oil and gas

Norway oil fund omits meatpacker JBS from deforestation watch list

The $1 trillion investor is raising deforestation concerns with a number of beef companies but not the Amazon’s biggest cattle buyer, despite evidence against it

Costa Rica president-elect promises to lead the country towards an oil-free future

Carlos Alvarado Quesada is promising to replace petrol and diesel in the transport system with clean energy, comparing the task to abolishing the army

US, EU biggest importers of illegal Amazon ipe timber: report

Dodgy credits allow exporters to ship the valuable timber overseas, to unsuspecting consumers who are unaware the timber may be illegal

Avocado trade threatened by shipping climate measure, say Chile, Peru

Speed limits at sea could cut shipping’s carbon footprint fast, but fresh fruit exporters are raising concerns about trade impacts ahead of a critical UN meeting

Brazil fights emissions cap for shipping, citing cost concerns

Ahead of a key meeting at the International Maritime Organisation in April, Brazil is leading objections to setting tough climate targets for the sector

Brazil should support ambition in the climate deal of the year

With countries set to agree a climate target for international shipping in April, Brazil has the chance to be a green seas leader, not a laggard

Nicaragua assumes top climate finance post despite past Paris scepticism

Paul Oquist has been approved as co-chair of the Green Climate Fund, against Georgia’s objection Nicaragua was not a cooperative international player

South America

Middle East

EU energy chief flies to Tehran to talk gas supply, as US sanctions loom

As companies withdraw from deals involving Iran, fearing US sanctions, the EU scrambles to preserve growing energy cooperation

Palestinian requests to global green fund ignored since 2016

Letters and emails show the Global Environment Facility stonewalled while US pressure built on international bodies that recognise Palestine

US ‘will not speculate’ on climate treaty after leaving Unesco over Palestine

The body that oversees the Paris treaty also recognises Palestine, raising the prospect that Thursday’s decision to leave Unesco sets a precedent

Climate change threatens survival of the River Jordan

New research finds worsening droughts will sap the biblical waterway, which is already under pressure from agriculture and a growing population

Photos reveal Iraq oil fires burning behind ISIS retreat

Satellite images show evidence of the Islamic State’s scorched earth tactics as militants lose territory to Western-backed Iraqi forces

Conflict-hit Syrian hospital goes solar to save lives

Medical charity UOSSM plans to roll out solar power to five more facilities, reducing reliance on diesel generators to keep incubators and other equipment running

UK is in no position to lecture Saudis on oil dependence

PM Theresa May has offered to help wean Saudi Arabia off oil, but her government’s subsidies to North Sea producers are a poor model for the Middle East petrostate

Maldives president defends Saudi atoll deal, but reveals no detail

Maldives “should be afforded the ability to expand our economy” says president in response to criticism of a US$10bn development deal with Saudi Arabia

Middle East

Asia

Imran Khan says Pakistan will plant 10 billion trees

The former cricketer and newly elected prime minister is set to promote tree-planting and green jobs, although coal use will continue to expand

Why is the world’s newest development bank investing in coal despite its green promise?

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank is backing a coal-fired cement works in Myanmar through an intermediary, in a worrying sign for its climate credentials

Tokyo 2020 Olympics confirms use of rainforest timber in stadium build

Admission prompts calls for transparency over Tokyo 2020 supply chain with timber sourced from deforestation hotspot

Standard Chartered ‘breaching climate policy’ with Vietnam coal plant investment

The London-based bank plans to co-finance Nghi Son 2 power plant, which NGOs say uses dirty old technology, against company and OECD guidelines

Oil majors to face London, New York hearings over Philippines climate impact

Philippines human rights commissioner says taking hearings overseas will afford the 47 companies the best chance to confront the impacts of their businesses

Climate change is driving migration from Vietnam’s Mekong delta

Saltwater intrusion and drought are destroying crops in one of the most fertile places on earth, prompting an exodus of farmers

EU bank to decide huge public loan to Europe’s biggest fossil fuel project

Experts refute EU claim that 3,500km gas pipeline from Azerbaijan is necessary for energy security, amid alarm over corruption and human rights issues

Climate-hit Bangladesh struggling to access UN green funds

Developing country institutions lack capacity to meet the Green Climate Fund’s heavy paperwork demands, experts say at Dhaka conference

Asia

Pacific

Australia energy plan may breach Paris climate commitments

Government says it will lock in electricity emissions targets until 2024, undermining an international commitment to revisit its Paris target in 2023

Ecosystems across Australia are collapsing under climate change

The Great Barrier Reef has become a notorious victim of climate change. But it is not the only Australian ecosystem on the brink of collapse

Graphics of Marshall Islands sea level rise ‘brought EU ministers to tears’

Striking sea level rise images have sent shockwaves through the Marshallese community and touched European ministers, says minister David Paul

New Zealand zero carbon law may exempt its highest emitting sector

Jacinda Ardern promised radical carbon cuts, but one option under consultation allows the main greenhouse gases from farming to keep rising

Documents shed light on BP’s failures in the Great Australian Bight

A major oil spill in the region would have covered up to 750km of beaches and disrupted whale migration, reveal government documents BP tried to suppress

Fiji climate lead challenged consultants’ influence before losing job

Nazhat Shameem Khan was removed from her role in the UN climate talks presidency after a protracted power struggle with Australian and European advisers

Why is tiny Nauru getting $26.9m in climate finance to build a port?

Nauru’s biggest donor Australia lobbied for a project that raises tough questions over how climate finance differs from traditional development aid

Tasmania to reach 120% renewable electricity in five years, Labor pledge

An election policy from the state opposition would provide a boost to rooftop solar and see more clean energy shipped to the mainland

Pacific