Climate News

Nations fail to agree ban or research on solar geoengineering

At talks in Nairobi, governments could not find consensus on new global governance for SRM, including proposals for “non-use” and a UN expert panel

Global energy-related CO2 emissions hit record high in 2023 – IEA

Global emissions from energy rose by 410 million tonnes, or 1.1%, in 2023 to 37.4 billion tonnes, hitting a record hight

Aid watchdog questions UK’s climate finance accounting

Britain has changed how it calculates its international climate aid, boosting its progress towards a 2026 goal without providing additional money for vulnerable countries, a review finds

When governments fund fossil fuels, it’s time to take them to court 

A new wave of climate litigation is targeting state institutions that are still providing public finance for fossil fuels, despite pledges to turn off the funding tap

Clean, cheap or fair – which countries should pump the last oil and gas?

The world will need oil and gas for a few decades more – and the debate is heating up over who should get to produce and sell it

Revealed: UK civil servants’ secret doubts over climate techno-fixes

The government is relying on special cow food and green plane fuel to cut emissions – but officials warn some solutions may fall short

Despite Cop28 pledge, France keeps fossil fuel subsidies for farmers

France has abandoned plans to phase out tax breaks on agricultural diesel in efforts to appease its increasingly disgruntled farmers

Oil drilling while in the Energy Charter Treaty is economically reckless

The UK is opening itself up to repeated lawsuits from foreign oil and gas firms if it passes the Offshore Petroleum Licensing Bill

Countries draw battle lines for talks on new climate finance goal

Developed and developing countries are gearing up for heated discussions over the size of the goal and who should provide money for it

Loss and damage must be a focus of IPCC’s next reports

Without proper interventions anchored on the latest and best available science, even more people would be vulnerable to disastrous impacts of tremendous economic and non-economic costs.

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Politics

Switzerland proposes first UN expert group on solar geoengineering

A draft resolution aimed at creating a space for discussion on sun dimming technologies will be debated at the summit of the UN’s environment body this month

Azerbaijan orders Baku hotels to freeze Cop29 room booking

The move has sparked fears of price hikes, which would exclude poorer activists and government delegates

Rich nations miss loss and damage fund deadline

Their failure to agree risks delaying help for victims of climate disasters in developing countries

John Podesta replaces Kerry as top US climate diplomat

Podesta will lead US international climate diplomacy alongside his current job overseeing the rollout of domestic clean energy subsidies

Saudi Arabia cancels plan to raise oil pumping cap

Analysts said Saudi Arabia’s government may be losing faith that the world wants to keep buying more of its oil

For Cop29 to succeed, rich nations must get their parliaments to agree more finance now

Rich nations always say they need their parliaments approval for climate finance at Cops – now is the time to start

Cop29 host Azerbaijan launches green energy unit to sceptical response

Azerbaijan’s state oil and gas firm promises a green push but a lack of climate policies and plans to expand gas production are causing scepticism

Governments fail to agree timeline for climate science reports in fraught IPCC talks

Saudi, India and China led opposition against a proposal to link the IPCC’s assessment cycle with the global stocktake, sources told Climate Home.

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Finance

Blended finance can perpetuate climate colonialism

‘Blended finance’ took centre stage at Cop28, with the Green Climate Fund among its supporters. But there are still major problems with the concept that must be addressed before considering any further expansion.

US trade agency backs oil and gas drilling in Bahrain despite Biden pledge

Ex-Im’s financing would boost fossil fuel production in the Gulf state with the construction of over 450 new oil and gas wells

“Shameful”: Shell uses carbon credits under investigation to meet climate targets

The oil and gas giant offset part of its emissions with over a million credits from Chinese projects suspended because of integrity concerns

Junk offset sellers push to enter new UN carbon market

Renewable energy schemes make up four-fifths of Kyoto-era projects hoping to keep selling offsets under Article 6, sparking concerns over the credibility of the new market.

High stakes for climate finance in 2024

Setting finance goals without the revenues and systems to deliver on them is a recipe for disappointment – this year it must be different.

Witness bribing minister’s family own Congolese carbon credit company

The minister Jean-Pierre Bemba bribed witnesses in his war crimes trial and holds power over the environment minister Eve Bazaiba

First ever Paris Agreement offsets face integrity questions

As Switzerland buys the first ever bilateral offsets, civil society’s analysis suggests the claimed emissions reductions from Thai buses would have happened anyway

Ten climate questions for 2024

The US election and negotiations on a new global finance target are the most important things for the climate in 2024

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Justice

Ecuador’s new president tries to wriggle out of oil drilling referendum

To fund a crackdown against gang violence, Ecuador’s recently elected president Daniel Noboa suggested a moratorium on a vote to ban an Amazon oil drilling project.

Germany and US warn Brazil against using Amazon Fund to pave rainforest road

The Brazilian government wants to tap forest protection funds to pave a major highway. Western donors say that goes against the fund’s rules.

Vietnam charts uncertain coal path as finance falls short

Vietnam’s just energy transition partnership plan has no timeline for retiring coal, as backers offer mainly commercial loans, not grants

We need more humanists in climate campaigning

Climate advocacy is overly dominated by scientists and engineers and is weakened by the lack of historians, philosophers and artists

Meet the Italian fugitive advising Emirati start-up Blue Carbon

Samuele Landi has been convicted for bankruptcy fraud in Italy. That was no problem for the UAE firm doing forest carbon credit deals across Africa.

Fearing repression in Dubai, non-binary people stay away from Cop28

Non-binary and trans people have been detained and deported at Dubai airport and being gay is effectively criminalised in the UAE

France, Kenya set to launch Cop28 coalition for global taxes to fund climate action

The taskforce, set to be launched at Cop28, will consider the feasibility of levies on shipping, aviation, financial transactions and fossil fuels.

Why airlines are perfect targets for anti-greenwashing legal action

Airlines are proving perfect targets for anti-greenwashing litigation, due to their dubious advertising claims

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Energy

US government pauses new gas export terminals in ‘historic win’ for climate

The Biden administration is freezing approvals of new LNG export permits as climate considerations take centre stage.

Six takeaways from 2023’s climate change news

Fossil fuel fights, finance struggles, a resurgent relationship, and much more. We recap the most impactful international climate developments in 2023.

No ‘phase-out’, but Dubai deal puts oil and gas sector on notice

One day into overtime at Cop28, countries agreed to transition away from fossil fuels in energy systems: a first for the UN climate process

Don’t be fooled: CCS is no solution to oil and gas emissions

The oil and gas industry wants you to believe it can capture its emissions and keep drilling as usual. That’s no way to avert climate chaos

Ten years on from Haiyan, Shell’s intimidation won’t silence me

I am named in a Shell lawsuit against Greenpeace for trying to board their oil rig, but I won’t stop fighting their climate vandalism

The Cop28 climate summit must set us free from fossil fuels

My homeland of Denmark played its part in causing the climate crisis but is now phasing out fossil fuels. In Dubai, the world must follow

The ‘inevitable’ fossil fuel fight set to dominate Cop28

Could petrostate UAE be the climate summit host that lands an international agreement to exit coal, oil and gas?

Shades of green hydrogen: EU demand set to transform Namibia

Backed by the EU, Namibia has a $20 billion plan to export green hydrogen. A secretive tender process raises concerns for nature and citizens.

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Land

While Europe’s green backlash grows, Poland tells different story

As the backlash against laws protecting nature intensifies across Europe, public pressure has helped push forests centre stage in Poland

Amazon nations to tackle rainforest crime together in donor-funded new office

The $1.8 million Centre for International Police Cooperation will be built in the Brazilian Amazon city of Manaus and funded by the Norwegian-backed Amazon Fund

UK aid cuts leave Malawi vulnerable to droughts and cyclones

After the UK cut short a £52m climate adaptation scheme in Malawi, vulnerable communities saw their livelihoods destroyed by Cyclone Freddy

Forests, methane, finance: Where are the Cop26 pledges now?

Climate Home analysed how highly-publicised commitments are faring two years on from their announcement

Exposed: carbon offsets linked to high forest loss still on sale

Project owners in Cambodia and Brazil are selling carbon offsets to Uber, Marathon and ArcelorMittal despite an uptick in deforestation

Brazilian government eyes money from Amazon Fund for controversial road

Brazil’s transport ministry plans to bid for money from the Amazon Fund to pave the world’s “most sustainable highway”

Sugar rush: how farmers spurred India’s G20 biofuels alliance

Nineteen countries signed up to an India-led alliance this month to boost production of biofuels, but experts raise sustainability concerns

Kenyan president William Ruto courts logging controversy

Known internationally as one of Africa’s climate champions, President Ruto faces a legal challenge over plans to restart commercial forestry

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Transport

The EU must take the driver’s seat in fossil fuel-free transport

Transport accounts for a growing share of global emissions. The EU should lead a push for clean travel at home and internationally

The cruise industry says LNG is a climate solution. It’s not

Some of the world’s biggest cruise companies are claiming to be green, while continuing to use weakly regulated fossil fuels

Dozens of oil & industry lobbyists attended secretive shipping emissions talks

Oil and gas companies like Shell, BP and Equinor were represented at shipping climate talks

The EU lacks ambition on Cop28 renewable targets

The EU’s interpretation of a global renewables target is less ambitious than the Cop28 presidency’s and incompatible with the Paris agreement

Shipping catches up – Climate Weekly

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Pacific “mixed feelings” after compromise on shipping’s climate goals

Climate vulnerable Pacific islands struck a deal with emerging economies worried about the targets’ impact on economic development

Governments set to fail to plot shipping industry course for 1.5C

Despite a strong push from Pacific islands, the latest draft does not improve on targets criticised as not ambitious enough

Shipping set to boost climate targets

A draft agreement, which is subject to change, would target net zero near 2050 and set goals for 2030 and 2040

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Science

Adaptation playbook is the true test of Cop28 for world’s vulnerable

While most attention is on fossil fuels, the US is blocking progress on an adaptation playbook, a matter of life or death for many Africans

OECD: Rich countries ‘likely’ to hit $100bn climate finance goal in 2022

Data shows countries provided $89.6bn in 2021, but funding for adaptation declined.

Talks to boost ‘underfinanced’ climate adaptation split over money

Developing and developed countries are wrangling over whether finance should be included in an adaptation framework to be approved at Cop28

Overshoot Commission calls for research into solar geoengineering

Dimming the sun could “complement” emissions cuts, says panel of leaders, while acknowledging concerns about the risks

‘Carbon bomb’ in Argentina gets push from local government

Argentina’s southern city of Sierra Grande started public hearings for a shipping terminal to export from Vaca Muerta, the world’s second largest shale gas reserve

Devastating Beijing floods test China’s ‘sponge cities’

Despite Beijing’s sponge city project, the capital was overwhelmed by recent floods with dozens dying and a new “sponge airport” shut down

Mainstream economists accused of playing down climate threat

Economic models have ignored tipping points, rainfall changes and indoor work, leading them to under-estimate climate change’s economic damage

UN deep-sea mining talks deadlocked over agenda clash

A dozen countries want to officially debate for the first time in history the possibility to halt deep-sea mining, but have faced opposition from China and the island-nation of Nauru.

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