Just Peace through Climate Action

Display at India's COP Pavilion

This year, the COP demonstrated the priority of climate justice by recognizing the first official Climate Justice Day on the UNFCCC Programme. The celebration of Climate Justice Day explored the social dimensions of climate action while elevating the spirit of cooperation and solidarity that led to the Paris Agreement. In fact, COP 22 highlights the…
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Human Health and Climate Change

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Yesterday, the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA) held the 10th Focal Point Forum on Health and Adaptation under the Nairobi Work Programme. The meeting was an opportunity for UNFCCC national focal points, Nairobi Work Programme (NWP) focal points, and health experts to discuss emerging health issues resulting from climate change. Discussions also…
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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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Eating for personal and planetary health

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A study just published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) reaffirms that reducing meat consumption can improve your health and lower your carbon footprint. It starts with the premise that the food system accounts for more than 25% of GHG emissions (80% associated with livestock production) and that poor eating habits contribute to more than a…
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Individually Survivors, Together a Force – World’s Vulnerable Take Action at COP21

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Today, at the Third High-Level Meeting of the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF), government leaders representing over 40 countries that are the most vulnerable to impacts from climate change adopted a historic joint declaration, the Manila-Paris Declaration. The Declaration, and its associated three-year Road Map, calls for a more ambitious long-term temperature goal of 1.5˚C, zero…
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The Secret Weapon Against Climate Change? Family Planning

Photo by Pippa Ranger/ UK Department for International Development

Family Planning may be the most cost-effective weapon against climate change. At least according to a new report from the University of California, San Francisco’s Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health. According to the report, family planning could provide between 16 and 29 percent of the needed greenhouse gas emission reductions. Additionally, last year the Intergovernmental…
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Economic growth and climate change

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Each generation inherits a world that was created out of beliefs contemporary and relevant to a certain time. These beliefs affect prevailing values, values, which become embedded within the framework of decision-making. Often times, these values are based on beliefs that may no longer be understood, known or even correct. Nonetheless, they are transferred from…
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Quick boost from short-lived climate pollutants

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The Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) says that “due to their short lifetimes, compared to CO2 which remains in the atmosphere for approximately a century, actions to reduce emissions of short-lived climate pollutants will quickly lower their atmospheric concentrations, yielding a relatively rapid climate response. Fast action to reduce short-lived climate pollutants, especially methane and…
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Climate change is still “the biggest global health threat of the 21st century”

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Two recent reports add to the growing call for linking climate change laws with public health. From the U.K., the Lancet Commission on Health and Climate Change followed up on its 2009 announcement that global warming “is the 21st century’s greatest threat to human health” by issuing a new report last week that also labels…
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“Well, I’m not a scientist either, but . . .”

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In his State of the Union address last night, President Obama picked up climate change deniers’ well-used “I’m not a scientist, but” phrase, and turned it on its head. “I’ve heard some folks try to dodge the evidence by saying they’re not scientists; that we don’t have enough information to act. Well, I’m not a scientist,…
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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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