Climate politics

Climate Weekly: Basic goes back to basics

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Indigenous leaders call for Arctic cooperation against wildfires

As high temperatures and dry thunderstorms turn the Arctic Circle into a tinderbox, the Arctic Council has been urged to step up firefighting capacity

China and allies challenge UN chief’s climate vision

‘Basic’ environment ministers stress the responsibility of rich countries, in draft declaration that ignores António Guterres’ call for more ambitious national plans

UN chief’s climate asks fall flat in emerging economies

As Brics environment ministers meet in Brazil, experts see little appetite for meeting António Guterres’ benchmark of climate ambition

Australia seeks to water down climate declaration at Pacific summit

An annotated draft Pacific Islands Forum statement shows the Morrison administration trying to quash references to 1.5C, carbon neutrality and coal development

Glasgow named to host 2020 UN climate summit

If the UK is approved to preside over Cop26, it will hold negotiations in Scotland’s largest city, the government announced

Climate Weekly: Facing the land use squeeze

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It is high time to reboot our relationship with nature

Leaders must take decisive action to support nature-based solutions to the climate challenge, in light of the latest UN science report

Latest climate politics


London bids to host 2020 UN climate talks to show UK remains ‘open’

Mayor Sadiq Khan writes to UK prime minster urging every effort to win the presidency of Cop26 in the face of a competing bid from Italy

UK and Italy bid for 2020 climate talks, amid political uncertainty for both

Both countries face potential general elections and economic problems before the crucial Cop26 meeting and the UK may still be in a Brexit imbroglio

Belfast’s bid to join UK environment law raises post-Brexit border issues

Adding Northern Ireland to the environment law adds pressure on London to keep its regulations in step with the EU’s

New UK green watchdog to be based on EU system, says Gove

‘Whatever else are the defects of the EU – that is a good working model,’ the environment secretary told MPs

UK bill would weaken environmental law after Brexit, legal experts tell MPs

The bill creates ‘get-out-of-jail-free cards’ for ministers and exposes the environment watchdog to government influence, they said

Ireland needs new oil and gas fields to ease reliance on Brexit UK, say drillers

Oil and gas explorers are gearing up to drill offshore Ireland in a bid to boost its energy independence from Britain

Irish energy industry calls for new links to Europe amid Brexit fears

Grid operator boss calls on Brussels to approve funding for a new electricity connection to France to avoid isolation from continent

In Ireland, Brexit proofing must mean climate proofing

Brexit has led to delays in climate action just at the moment when bold plans could soften the impact of the UK divorce, writes MEP Lynn Boylan


UN Climate Talks

Niger shrinks major biodiversity reserve to allow Chinese oil exploration

One of the last havens for Saharan wildlife, including the endangered addax or white antelope, is being cut in half as CNPC plans to expand drilling

China is expanding its UN presence, in belt and road push

UN farming chief is the latest top job to be filled from Beijing, as China promotes ‘ecological civilisation’ and promises to green its foreign investment drive

Bolsonaro under fire for deforestation denial, after sacking space agency chief

The Brazilian president forced a top science official out of his job, in a move experts warned could harm the credibility of agricultural exporters

Former UK energy minister Claire Perry appointed Cop26 president

A champion of phasing out coal power internationally, Perry has been named to lead critical UN climate talks in 2020, which the UK expects to host

Hundreds of Extinction Rebellion activists face court, in summer of prosecutions

The Metropolitan Police plan to charge more than a thousand climate campaigners with public order offences, after they brought London to a halt in April

How Trump’s climate U-turn exposed the limits of European power

When the world needed someone to step up as a climate power broker, why did no-one think it would be the EU?

Russia to ratify Paris Agreement; Putin says wind power ‘shakes worms from ground’

Russia says it wants a seat at the climate negotiations table, but the president warned problems with renewable energy must be considered

Saudi row over 1.5C science raises frustration with UN consensus model

Diplomats are losing patience with players like Saudi Arabia blocking progress at international climate talks, instead looking to other forums for action

UN climate talks

Paris Agreement

Pacific islands criticise Australia’s carbon accounting dodge

Island leaders called out the banking of old carbon credits to meet future climate goals, a trick Australia is relying on in the absence of carbon-cutting policies

Trade deal binds Brazil to Paris Agreement, says top EU official

‘President Bolsonaro chose, and came with us,’ said Cecilia Malmström, as she defended the EU deal with several South American nations

Countries must address this major Paris Agreement blind spot

As countries meet in Abu Dhabi to discuss their climate pledges, they must draw up plans to end the production of fossil fuels, not just their consumption

Bonn climate talks end with Saudis and Brazil defiant

There was bloody-mindedness amid boiling temperatures in Bonn. Catch up with our essential wrap of the latest round of climate talks

UN report on 1.5C blocked from climate talks after Saudi Arabia disputes science

There will be no further formal discussions of the IPCC’s findings at the UN after Saudi Arabia fought to undermine the findings of the global scientific community

Which countries have a net zero carbon goal?

A growing number of governments are setting targets to end their contribution to global warming. Bookmark this page to stay up to date

Australia’s emissions rise again, putting Paris climate promise in doubt

Data showing increase was released late, in defiance of a senate order, but leaked to a major newspaper, leading to accusations of contempt of parliament

UK government mulls emissions fudge, against official advice

The Financial Times reports the government will ignore guidance and use surplus from outperforming one carbon budget to meet the next goal

Paris Agreement