Climate News

G7 offers ‘peanuts’ to developing world, putting climate ambition in doubt

While Canada and Germany set out new climate finance pledges, rich countries are still falling short of a target they promised to meet in 2020

Swiss public reject climate law over cost of living fears

In a referendum on Sunday, Swiss citizens narrowly voted against a package of measures including increased taxes on petrol and flights

Norway eyes expansion of oil and gas industry under policy proposal

The government wants to hand out more exploration licences – ignoring modelling that shows fossil fuel expansion must end now to meet global climate goals

Vaccines for climate negotiators – Climate Weekly

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UK to provide Covid-19 vaccines for Cop26 delegates

The host nation of UN climate negotiations in November says it will help participants to access Covid-19 vaccines, as part of a support package to developing countries

Tar sands companies aim for ‘net zero’ by 2050 – with no plan to extract less oil

The alliance of Canadian oil producers makes no mention of winding down oil production, which modelling shows is necessary to achieve global climate goals

New Zealand climate plan criticised over ‘cow-shaped hole’

Aotearoa Climate Change Commission set out detailed advice to cut emissions to 2035 but stopped short of recommending fundamental change to the dairy industry

Elections dash Mexican President’s hopes for dirty energy reform

Amlo does not have the two thirds majority in Mexico’s parliament to pass proposed constitutional reforms in favour of state-owned coal and gas power generation

G7 leaders told solidarity with poorer nations is critical to Cop26 success

The UK is hoping to broker agreements on climate finance and vaccine support to developing countries when G7 leaders meet in Cornwall next week

Flooding and drought fuels mental health crisis in Kenya

Many Kenyans are suffering post-traumatic stress, depression and anxiety after being hit by extreme weather, but lack access to mental health services

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Politics

Joe Biden’s trip to Europe offers a chance for a new transatlantic climate alliance

With a US-EU summit scheduled following the G7 meeting, Biden and EU leaders have an opportunity to usher in a new era of collaboration on climate action

Shipping sector’s climate obstruction exposed, again – Climate Weekly

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All hands on deck! We must use online tools to make climate talks more inclusive

Digital communication is not just for pandemic times; it can empower citizens to make their voices heard in international climate negotiations

UK calls on Indonesia to set out roadmap to net zero emissions

During a three-day visit to southeast Asia’s largest economy, Alok Sharma met with a host of ministers to discuss how to transition the nation from coal to renewables

Why Denmark and Guinea are working together to tackle climate loss and damage

Solidarity and innovation are needed to provide a safety net for communities vulnerable to droughts, floods and intense storms

To meet net zero by 2050 we need a long-term vision for carbon pricing

Only about 3.8% of global emissions are covered by a carbon price above $40 a tonne – that needs to change if the world is to meet the Paris Agreement goals

G7 commits to end unabated coal finance in 2021 to ‘keep 1.5C within reach’

After initial resistance, Japan agreed to the ministers’ statement, leaving China isolated as the last significant coal funder overseas

Facebook fuels climate misinformation online, report finds

Facebook says it is tackling misinformation with a global network of independent fact checking partners but campaigners say it is not enough to contain misleading posts

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Finance

The EIB won’t become a climate bank until it fully stops supporting fossil fuels

The bank has committed to end fossil fuel financing by the end of the year but has handed out billions in support for companies wedded to the industry

Shell’s net zero plan will be judged on science, not spin

Shell’s net zero plan is better seen as a defence of its core oil and gas business, which it is planning to expand, than a genuine energy transition

Youth activists prank Standard Chartered in critique of coal lending policy

Fridays for Future activists donned false moustaches in a stunt to put pressure on Standard Chartered to stop financing fossil fuels

Merkel ‘wasted opportunity’ to show international solidarity at climate summit

The German chancellor resisted calls to announce an increased climate finance pledge at the Petersberg Climate Dialogue, her last before leaving office in September

UK aid cuts hit developing cities’ plans to protect against floods and fires

The urban poor in Nairobi, Kathmandu, Quito and Istanbul will lose out from deep budget cuts to the UK-backed Tomorrow’s Cities programme

UK faces legal action over public finance for Mozambique gas project

Friends of the Earth is launching a judicial review over the UK government’s decision to back the multi-billion development, arguing it is inconsistent with the Paris Agreement

US, UK and Norway launch $1bn initiative to protect tropical forests

The Leaf Coalition aims to mobilise $1 billion of public and private finance this year to cut emissions from deforestation and forest degradation

US pledges to double international climate finance at Earth Day summit

Joe Biden made a start on restoring US climate credibility after four lost years, with finance and emissions pledges, but campaigners say more is needed

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Justice

Paris deal enters boardrooms – Climate Weekly

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Shell ordered to slash emissions 45% by 2030 in historic court ruling

This is the first time a company has been held legally liable for its contribution to climate change – setting a precedent for future lawsuits against the fossil fuel industry

How youth climate court cases became a global trend

From the rise of the youth plaintiff to greenwashing claims, Climate Home News explores the major trends in climate litigation

Top court rules German climate law falls short, in ‘historic’ victory for youth

In a surprise verdict, Germany’s highest court found that government climate targets violate the freedoms of youth plaintiffs by deferring emissions cuts

Total’s play for Ugandan oil tests the climate commitment of international banks

A final investment decision on the East African Crude Oil Pipeline is expected at the end of March, as campaigners urge financial institutions to avoid fossil fuels

Climate Home News seeks pitches for climate justice reporting programme

Send us your story ideas about how communities on the frontlines of climate change are building resilience and confronting injustice

Unequal vaccine rollout threatens inclusivity of Cop26, climate diplomats warn

Negotiators are worried that requiring a vaccine passport to attend November’s critical UN climate summit will exclude developing countries with limited supplies

Why Grenada had to nationalise its electricity for $60m to pursue renewables

A one-sided privatisation deal and flawed World Bank advice landed Grenada with a hefty legal bill to reform its electricity sector and cut reliance on polluting diesel

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Energy

Governments are overlooking a key piece in the climate puzzle: community energy

Failure to engage people in local energy projects risks slowing down the transition to a low-carbon future at a time when leaders need to speed it up

Fossil fuels on notice – Climate Weekly

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IEA: End fossil fuel expansion now for net zero energy emissions by 2050

The International Energy Agency has mapped a path to net zero emissions for the first time – and it involves ending investment in new coal, oil and gas production today

UK calls on countries to ‘consign coal to history’ at Cop26

As a global shift away from coal gathers momentum, the UK government is putting it at the heart of its the vision for this year’s UN climate talks in Glasgow

Indonesian utility pledges to stop building coal plants beyond existing pipeline

State-owned electricity company PLN said it will finish building 20GW of planned coal capacity before turning to renewables

Tar sands executive named as Canadian ‘climate champion’ ahead of Cop26

Suncor’s chief sustainability officer is one of 26 people praised for moving Canada towards net zero emissions, despite the oil company expanding production

California is the biggest producer in the world planning to go beyond oil

Governor Gavin Newsom has ordered a plan to phase out oil and gas production in California by 2045, but the industry won’t go down without a fight

Putin sounds methane alarm, under satellite surveillance and EU pressure

The Russian president has raised concern about the warming impact of methane emissions, calling for research collaboration but making no policy promises

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Land

Biodiversity talks are running out of time for robust deal, says top diplomat

Pandemic delays and gruelling online talks threaten the ambition of a Kunming global pact to protect nature due to be finalised in October

Brazil’s environment minister investigated for illegal logging cover-up

The Supreme Court authorised the federal police to investigate Ricardo Salles over suspicions of a ‘serious scheme’ to facilitate the export of illegal timber out of Brazil

Southern Madagascar at risk of famine amid worst drought in 40 years

UN agencies are urgently calling for international support as a million Madagascans go hungry, with some surviving on insects and wild roots

Pakistan explores debt-for-nature scheme to accelerate its 10 billion tree tsunami

Creditors could grant Pakistan debt relief in exchange for meeting nature restoration targets, under a proposed first-of-its-kind bond

Cyclone Seroja kills 160 people, exposes Indonesia’s climate vulnerability

Campaigners say a government rollback of environmental regulations increases Indonesia’s vulnerability to flash floods and landslides

Saudi Arabia aims for 50% renewable energy by 2030, backs huge tree planting initiative

The target will require huge investments in solar technologies, experts warn, as less than 1% of the oil producing nation’s energy comes from renewables

Ireland’s government agrees on climate bill to set 2050 net zero goal in law

The bill would commit Ireland to cut emissions 51% between 2018 and 2030, raising tough questions about the future of cattle farming

EU ministers demand response to Trump Admin critique of green farming reforms

The EU Commission has been ordered to assess the impact of its green “farm to fork” strategy after the Trump Administration claimed it would harm global food security

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Transport

With Indonesia’s answer to Elon Musk in jail, electric vehicles are going nowhere

Electric vehicle pioneer Dasep Ahmadi was imprisoned over a failed experiment, with a chilling effect on innovation

It took the Suez Canal crisis to highlight the scale of the polluting shipping sector

The growing global shipping fleet is increasing the sector’s climate and environmental impacts. To rein it in, we need a global carbon price for shipping

How the shipping industry can halve climate-warming black carbon in the Arctic

Switching to cleaner shipping fuel would prevent Arctic warming and deliver an easy win for the climate

Mauritius oil spill: questions mount over ship fuel safety

More than six months after the Wakashio spilled fuel oil into a pristine lagoon, Mauritians are still waiting for answers and compensation

UK Supreme Court lifts ban on Heathrow airport third runway 

Heathrow still faces major obstacles to carry out its expansion plans, in light of the UK’s 2050 net zero target and uncertain future demand

EU urged to address aviation’s full climate impact, including non-CO2 emissions

Air travel is heating the climate at approximately three times the rate of the sector’s carbon dioxide emissions alone, report finds, with major policy implications

As UN action on ship emissions falls short, attention turns to regions

The International Maritime Organization set minimal curbs on shipping’s 1Gt carbon footprint this decade. Here’s how the EU, US and China could decarbonise the sector

UN shipping body approves Arctic heavy fuel oil ‘ban’, delayed for a decade

Campaigners describe ban as “meaningless”, as concessions to Russia allow most ships to continue using heavy fuel oil in the sensitive polar region until 2029

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Science

NASA launches mission to better predict climate impacts

Using advanced satellite technology, the programme aims to accelerate the pace of scientific discovery by better monitoring storms and ice sheet melts

Lost to sea: The Ivory Coast villagers saving their ancestors from rising waves

As rising sea levels slowly engulf the ancestral graves of a fishing community in Ivory Coast, residents are moving their relatives before their bodies are lost forever

Germany launches $1 billion biodiversity fund after world misses targets

The Legacy Landscape Fund aims to mobilise public and private finance to support an ambitious nature protection deal at this October’s Kunming summit

Women and youth are leading Kenya’s coral reef revival

A programme to restore Kenya’s damaged coral reefs is creating jobs and boosting the fish catch in economically vulnerable communities

UK pledges to make scaling up adaptation finance a priority at G7 summit

At a ministerial meeting of donor and developing countries, the UK said it would aim to secure additional financial support for vulnerable nations by June

Scientists push to add “huge” fish trawling emissions to national inventories

Bottom-trawling for fish releases more carbon dioxide each year than Germany, a study has revealed, yet this is not included in national carbon accounts

China, US urged to step up as UN warns world ‘very far’ from meeting climate goals

Collectively, updated national targets will only reduce emissions 0.5% by 2030 from 2010, UN analysis finds — far from the 45% scientists say is needed to hold warming to 1.5C

“Science-based” corporate climate targets are no such thing, says former advisor

As the number of businesses setting ‘science-based’ targets surges, experts are calling for more transparency over how those numbers are calculated

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