World

Commission president hopeful calls for EU net-zero carbon by 2045

‘EU must put decarbonisation at the heart of its programme,’ said Alex Stubb, who is fighting to be the candidate of Europe’s largest political bloc

Bill Gates throws new weight and cash into climate fight

In back-to-back events this week, the billionaire launched projects to slow global warming and limit the damage it causes

UK court frees fracking protestors from ‘excessive’ prison sentences

Three protesters were sentenced to jail for 2017 blockade, but court of appeal found that a community work order would have been appropriate

Bavarian vote shakes Berlin coalition, threatens climate limbo

The demolition of Angela Merkel’s coalition partners in the south further weakens the chancellor, undermining hope for tough calls on climate policy

Fracking ‘part of a low carbon future’, says UK minister, as drilling restarts

Claire Perry requested a net-zero emissions probe on Monday but defended fracking, saying gas was ‘absolutely part of our future’

‘Unacceptable’: Scotland and Wales reject post-Brexit carbon tax plan

Two devolved governments attack ‘unilateral’ tax on carbon pollution proposed by UK if Brexit talks end with no deal

Brexit: Avoiding the nuclear fallout

UK government report card on replacing the EU’s atomic energy community shows progress, but no deal on March 29 still threatens power and medical supply

EU lawmakers support 55% emission cuts as IPCC spectre lurks

MEPs are calling on the EU to bump its 2030 target in light of this week’s scientific report of 1.5C of global warming

World

US

Todd Stern: Remain faithful to the Paris Agreement

The deal moved away from the firewall between developed and developing countries; going backward would undermine ambition

Exxon, Chevron first US companies to join oil and gas climate alliance

ExxonMobil, Chevron and Occidental Petroleum join ten other major fossil fuel producers that say they recognise the goals of the Paris climate deal

‘Major shift’: Nations face bottom-up pressure to act on climate change

A California summit of business, city and state leaders ends with a call on national governments to increase their pledges to the Paris climate deal

Call for climate justice as millions brace for intense storms

Typhoon Mangkhut and Hurricane Florence are set to make landfall on opposite sides of the world, bringing destruction likely exacerbated by climate change

Let down by Trump on climate, China goes around him in California

At the Four Seasons hotel in San Francisco, the superpower and the US state cut diplomatic deals that fly in the face of White House policy

Even without the Trump administration, the US is upholding the Paris Agreement

States, cities and companies alone will put the US in touching distance of its climate goals, say governor Jerry Brown and UN special envoy Michael Bloomberg

‘Everyone was frustrated’: US-China stand-off holds up climate talks

A week of climate negotiations in Bangkok proceeded unevenly, as old fights about the firewall between rich and poor countries resurfaced

As he prepares to host climate bash, will California’s Brown bring gifts?

With a sweeping climate bill waiting for signature and an oil industry of his own, activists pressure governor Jerry Brown to live up to the vision of his own summit

US

China

Reality check: is the 1.5C warming target even possible?

Scientists have warned that warming more than half a degree above now is dangerous, but can we stop it?

What does the Chinese public think about climate change?

Ninety-four percent of the public think China should be in the Paris climate deal, although many don’t know exactly what that means

Pakistan to apply strict green rules on Chinese coal deals: Imran Khan advisor

The country is locked into “potential disaster” coal projects, says new PM’s climate chief Malik Amin Aslam, promising to make the “best out of a bad situation”

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

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

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

China

India

Kerala shows how floods are changing

Across the world, cities and communities are underprepared for the new flooding regime that climate change is ushering in

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’

India

EU

Brexit: What it means for UK-EU energy trade

The UK says it wants to keep ties with the EU energy market – but it’s complicated

World Bank dumps Kosovo plant, ending support for coal worldwide

The Kosova e Re lignite plant could not compete with renewables on price, said bank president Jim Yong Kim

Dutch court shoots down government appeal of landmark climate ruling

Campaigners celebrated as an appeals judge endorsed their 2015 victory, confirming the Netherlands must cut emissions faster or breach its duty of care

Dear EU leaders, this is why we are suing you for a 1.5C global warming limit

Across Europe, we already feel the impacts of climate change on our farms, forests and livelihoods. Yesterday’s UN science report showed the urgency of action

EU environment ministers to consider stronger climate target, in light of 1.5C warming impacts

Leaked draft conclusions of meeting next Tuesday call for urgent response to UN landmark climate science report, but stop short of commitment to higher ambition

19 countries team up to go carbon neutral

The UK, Canada, Denmark and Spain joined a coalition to slash emissions to net zero on the sidelines of the UN general assembly in New York

Canada and EU add climate clause to trade pact

In a move that underscored Donald Trump’s isolation on trade and climate change, the two major economies inserted a reference to the Paris Agreement into Ceta

Post-Brexit carbon tax would set Scotland against UK

UK weighs future carbon pricing options, but Scotland will not abide a national tax it says will stomp on devolved powers

EU

Africa

Edna Molewa, who fought for unity on climate change, dies aged 61

South African environment minister, who made crucial interventions during the Paris climate conference, died on Saturday while still in office

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

Africa

South America

Bolsonaro has made grim threats to the Amazon and its people

Presidential favourite would abolish Brazil’s environment ministry, exposing world’s largest rainforest and its indigenous owners to criminal gangs of loggers and miners

Carbon trading rules meet socialist sticking point

Progress on market rules for climate credits faces ‘a giant sticking point’ as Venezuela and others push for similar progress on ‘non-market’ tools in Bangkok

Struggling climate funds must be renewed, says Uruguay minister

Promises of climate cash remain unfulfilled, said Eineda de León, who also called for unity in a region split by the collapse of Venezuela

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

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

South America

Middle East

Saudi Arabia eyes Ethiopian hydropower link to cut reliance on oil and gas

The Gulf Cooperation Council’s grid operator is studying the feasibility of a cable to Ethiopia, which would run through currently war-torn Yemen

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

Middle East

Asia

South Korean province joins international coal phase-out club

South Chungcheong becomes the biggest coal user and first Asian region in the Powering Past Coal Alliance, reflecting local opposition to polluting plants

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

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

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

Asia

Pacific

Australia won’t give money to Green Climate Fund, says PM

The country won’t withdraw from the Paris Agreement, but it’s not obliged to follow UN recommendations either, Scott Morrison said

Marshall Islands commit to going carbon-neutral by 2050

First plan of its kind from an island nation says adopting new shipping technologies ‘could have ripple effects across the international sector’

Record evacuations cut Typhoon Mangkhut death toll, says UN

Philippines learned life-saving lessons from 2013 Typhoon Haiyan as residents heeded warnings and fled their homes

End of coal power in Australia ‘inevitable’ – report

Market forces alone will see huge drop in coal use over next decade, academics find, adding that planning for a future without coal is ‘prudent risk management’

Australia joins Pacific to declare climate ‘single greatest’ security threat

Region of island states calls for the Paris Agreement to be upheld, with Australia joining despite recent political turmoil over climate policy

Australia’s new PM risks climate trade-off with EU

Scott Morrison is not expected to quit the Paris Agreement, as it could jeopardise ongoing trade talks with the EU, although he has no plan to meet climate targets

Ousted Australian PM: This government cannot address climate change

Turnbull says party is captured by ideologues with views not based in ‘engineering and economics’. He is replaced by treasurer who brought lump of coal to parliament

Australian leadership spill brings Paris climate exit into play

A challenge against Malcolm Turnbull, triggered by the collapse of a key energy policy, shows an anti-Paris faction is on the rise in Australia’s governing party

Pacific