EU Environment Ministers fast-track ratification of the Paris Agreement

Commissioner Cañete and Slovak minister Solymos spoke of the EU ratification decision historic moment (Photo: Council of the European Union)

The EU Environment Ministers voted on Friday at the extraordinary meeting of the Environment Council a historic decision to ratify the Paris Agreement. The decision proposal was adopted in June by the European Commission, thus starting the ratification process of the Paris Agreement on behalf of the EU, in accordance with the provisions of the…
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COP21 Begins in 24 Hours: Will a Paris Agreement [Decrease] [Solve] [Do Nothing On] Climate Change?

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If all politics are local, but greenhouse gases find their way into the atmosphere’s international space, how can the global community act collectively on climate change? In 1992, the solution was to adopt an international treaty. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) declared climate change a “common concern of mankind,” and committed…
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A Woman Saving the Planet

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This week’s New Yorker leads off with a “Reporter at Large” article by science writer Elizabeth Kolbert (The Sixth Extinction), The Weight of the World: Can one woman get the U.N. to save the planet?  While ostensibly about UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres – answering the subtitled question, “can [she] persuade humanity to save itself?”…
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“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times”

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“… it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we…
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COP15 coming to a close…

As the negotiations are coming to a close, a select number of world leaders are struggling to come to an agreement. Here is a smattering of recent press: World leaders come together to continue meeting The world’s leaders have come together once again to move the climate negotiations forward, after having gathered in smaller groups…
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Half Way

With the first week of the COP 15 coming to an end, a draft proposal is finally on the table, although it leaves many of the details still “to be determined.”  http://unfccc.int/files/kyoto_protocol/application/pdf/draftcoretext.pdf During negotiations this morning, Tuvalu made another impassioned plea for the world to realize that its very survival depends on a binding and…
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Renewable Energy Advocates Get Upclose Look at Middelgrunden Windfarm.

Denmark has been a leader in renewable and clean energy for over 40 years.  While some policies were perhaps misguided, like banning car use on Sundays in the 1970’s, slow but steady expansion of the country’s renewable energy portfolio has allowed the country to maintain its emission levels while boasting of continuing healthy economic expansion. …
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Dramatic November Leaves Hope for Significant U.S. Contribution at COP15

Reading a recent article highlighting Sen. James Inhofe’s now-international obstructionism on efforts to stem climate change, I was struck by how eventful and dramatic the last few months have been for folks who have been paying attention and are holding their breath for actual progress at the Copenhagen Conference of Parties.