The Cancun conference is being credited with keeping international climate talks alive. But the real potential for bringing emissions under control may lie in a Plan B, with nations acting on their own in moving toward a low-carbon economy.
Progress was made on a number of important issues at the UN Climate Change Conference in Cancun last week, but the US Senate’s failure to pass clean energy legislation tied the hands of negotiators to come to a full global deal.
While the scientific evidence for climate change grows, the policy responses have so far had little or no impact on the build-up of emissions. Following the recent developments in Copenhagen, there are few signs that this will change in the near future. With this in mind, this article examines why there is still such a gap between what science says is needed, and what is actually achieved through policy.
Investors Identify Good Risk-Adjusted Returns in Climate Change Investment Opportunities around the world
The Deutsche Bank’s Asset Management Division (DeAM) recently released a scientifically researched report which gives investors an analysis of climate change policies and shows risk factor to 109 countries, states and regions on key government mandates and supporting policy frameworks. This report provides DB’s investors a reference for policies that are being discussed at upcoming “Climate Change Summit” in Copenhagen (Denmark).
Just as President John F. Kennedy inspired America to race to the moon, the need to go green is a call to action that shares similarities. Both are challenges for America to step up to the plate in the area of scientific progress. Just as the Soviet Union challenged U.S. technological power with the launch of Sputnik in 1957, nations around the world today are advancing in the environmental sciences like never before. If America is to remain economically and socially strong in this era of globalization, we must join in this cause or risk losing the prestige that we have so long enjoyed.
According to a report released last month by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), the world’s largest companies need to double the pace of CO2 reduction to avoid dangerous climate change. Based on current reduction targets, the world’s largest companies are on track to reach the scientifically-recommended level of greenhouse gas cuts by 2089. This is 39 years too late to avoid dangerous climate change.
According to a new report release by New Energy Finance, the volume of carbon credits bought and sold in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) in the United States matched the entire volume of credits traded on the international carbon market in the second quarter of this year. The number of carbon credits sold under the CDM in Europe, in the second quarter of this year, increased by 25% on the first quarter. However the volume of credited traded on the secondary market decreased by 15% during this period. Most of this decline was due to reductions in the volume of future contracts, possibly in reaction to the higher volume of European Emission Allowances now on the markets as a result of the economic downturn. In stark contrasts, the number of carbon credits traded in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative in the Northeast region here in the States, increased by 319% over the first quarter of this year.
Grassroots Environmental Education recently launched a new web portal called, “HowGreenIsMyTown.org (HGIMT ), which is designed to provide local citizens and decision makers the tools they need to bring about meaningful and lasting environmental change in their communities. The 200-plus page online initiative draws together resources from government agencies and non-profits across America to address the issues of climate change, sustainability and environmental health in one web site.
The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) recently announced their list of the greenest cities in the United States and have released their findings on a new web site, called Smarter Cities. The survey includes all cities in the United States with populations larger than 50,000. Smarter Cities is considered to be one of the nation’s most comprehensive and robust database of U.S. urban progress toward sustainability. Seattle ranked number one and San Francisco ranked number 2 among the 67 large cities that were evaluated. Madison, Wisconsin placed firstand Santa Rosa, California came in second among the 176 medium cities that were surveyed. Among the 402 cities that were evaluated, Bellingham, Washington came in first place and Mountain View, California came in second.