White House links ‘Polar Vortex’ to climate change

Today’s top five climate change stories chosen by RTCC
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1. Warming caused cold says Obama advisor
The USA’s recent cold spell may be linked to climate change, President Obama’s Science and Technology Advisor, Dr John Holdren has said in an address on the White House You Tube channel. “I believe the odds are as a result of global warming we can see more of this pattern of extreme cold in the mid-latitudes, and some extreme warming in the far north,” he says. The White House will air a “We The Geeks” Google+ Hangout on Friday to discuss the links between the recent cold snap and climate change.

2. China coal faces ‘black outlook’
Yanzhou Coal and China Coal Energy both lost 50% of their value recently, a sign China’s coal industry is starting to feel the heat from the country’s move away from coal, suggests the FT. “The problem is finding a catalyst for coal prices, or miners’ stocks, to rally in the face of overcapacity and a gradual policy shift away from coal,” it says.

3. Cameron blasted for climate warning
British PM David Cameron has been fiercely attacked by the Sun Newspaper for making link between recent stormy weather and global warming. It says: “Leave aside how many thousands of years it would take Britons, by becoming greener, to affect the global temperature sufficiently to “protect people and property” – scientists are NOT linking the storms with climate change.”

4. US electric sales soar
Sales of plug-in electric and hybrid vehicles nearly doubled over the past two years, soaring 84% to 96,600 of the vehicles sold, reports the TriplePundit website. “Cars in 2013 also broke a record for average fuel efficiency in new cars at 24.9 MPG,” it adds.

5. Tighter shipping emission controls could save millions
Ship owners could save €9 million a year by investing in efficiency savings, according to a new study published by sustainable transport group Transport and Environment. The Marine sector is currently responsible for 3% of global emissions – but it is expected to grow by 40-50% by 2020. Savings would come from lower operational costs of using automated systems such as fuel flow meters or continuous emissions monitoring, which are already used by many of the world’s largest shipping companies.

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