Implementing Adaptation for Resilient Mediterranean-climate Regions

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One of the side events at COP 22 today presented best practices and case studies for implementing adaptation in Mediterranean-climate regions, with a focus on: consumer behavior; stakeholder and citizen participation; health; and climate policy. The speakers identified ways that sub-national governments can increase adaptation efforts. Surprisingly, few of the case studies involved countries along…
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Ecological Migration and Migrating Towards Ambitious Climate Change Commitments at COP22

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In 2011, the UN projected that the world will have 50 million environmental refugees by 2020. These are people who need to resettle due to climate change impacts such as drought, food shortage, disease, flooding, desertification, soil erosion, deforestation, and other environmental problems. This past week the New York Times released two stories about the…
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Climate Change influences extreme weather events, but by how much?

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  We know that our climate system is changing as global temperatures rise. It is also now possible, in many cases, for science to credibly speak to the influence of climate change on the likelihood and/or the extent/severity of a certain type of event. However, according to a pre-publication version of a new National Academies…
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Is Climate Change a Threat to National Security?

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COP21 began Monday with a moment of silence for victims of the November 13 terror attacks in Paris, and the tragedy served as a touchstone for world leaders urging unity and action. Nearly every speaker at the daylong Leaders Event expressed condolences for the Paris attacks, and some, including the Prince of Wales who opened…
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Growing Pains: Are GMOs an Adaptation Solution for Growing, Hungry Populations Affected by Climate Change?

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Chronic hunger plagues 805 million people worldwide. Although this is 100 million less than 10 years ago, the future of food security remains uncertain in the face of climate change. The world is growing, and so is the demand for food. The World Resources Institute projects the world will face a 69% food gap in…
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Loss and Damage – Hot Topic for Climate Negotiations

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Through multiple meetings this year, the ADP (Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform) is seeking to craft a viable negotiating text for a new, legally binding and long-lasting international climate change accord for consideration at the 21st meeting of the UNFCCC Conference of Parties meeting (COP21), being held in Paris in December. By…
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As goes California, so goes the Nation?

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Just a month after the U.S. submitted its Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) to the UNFCCC Secretariat, California Governor Jerry Brown has announced new, ambitious GHG emission mitigation goals for the state. While the U.S. is being chided internationally for its INDCs’ lack of mitigation and adaptation “ambition,” California is getting the limelight for stepping…
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NPR on Climate Change and Health

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Although the UNFCCC negotiators express concerns about climate change’s impact on human health, there is little in the treaty’s governance structure to induce specific action on the issue.  A 2014 round up on NPR this week singled out the contribution of Tony McMichael, an Australian doctor and epidemiologist who said of dealing with climate change…
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Mapping resilience

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As delegates begin arriving in Lima for the start of COP20/CMP10 on Monday, a new report from the Royal Society underscores the need for more urgency in climate change mitigation negotiations.  The Royal Society, which was founded in 1660 and serves as the United Kingdom’s independent scientific academy, released today Resilience to Extreme Weather, which…
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Climate Resilience and the California Drought

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California’s forward looking climate change policy has definitely staked out significant policy-making ground as the U.S. formulates its “nationally determined” commitments/contributions for the post-2020 international agreement. Will its current drought do even more? Check out this post on our VLS Environmental Health blog about President Obama’s recent creation of a Climate Resilience Fund, a U.S. domestic version…
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