The United Nations Climate Action Summit on Monday was meant to highlight concrete promises by presidents, prime ministers and corporate executives to wean the global economy from fossil fuels to avoid the worst effects of global warming. But despite the protests in the streets, China on Monday made no new promises to take stronger climate action. The United States, having vowed to pull out of the Paris Agreement, the pact among nations to jointly fight climate change, said nothing at all. A host of countries made only incremental promises. The contrast between the slow pace of action and the urgency of the problem was underscored by the Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, 16, who excoriated world leaders for their “business as usual” approach. “The eyes of all future generations are upon you,” she said, her voice quavering with rage. “If you choose to fail us, I say we will never forgive you.” There were some concrete measures. The United Nations secretary general, António Guterres, said in closing remarks that 77 countries had announced efforts to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, several asset fund managers said they would aim to get to a net-zero portfolio of investments by the same year, and dozens of businesses said they would aim to abide by the Paris Agreement targets.
New York Times 23rd Sept 2019 read more »
Greta Thunberg accused world leaders of stealing her childhood with their “empty words” in an emotional speech at the start of the UN climate summit in New York yesterday. The Swedish activist, 16, said that they would be “evil” if they failed to implement the drastic cuts in emissions that scientists say are necessary to avoid catastrophic climate change. “This is all wrong. I shouldn’t be up here. I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean, yet you all come to us young people for hope. How dare you,” she said. “You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words.” She attacked leaders who suggested that their countries could not afford faster cuts in emissions. “We are in the beginning of a mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairytales of eternal economic growth,” she said. The science on climate change had been “crystal clear” for more than 30 years, she added.
Times 24th Sept 2019 read more »
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Independent 23rd Sept 2019 read more »
It will be the clearest declaration yet on how an overheating world is hammering our oceans and frozen regions. Scientists have been meeting in Monaco to finalise a report on the seas and the cryosphere. Published tomorrow, it will outline how the oceans have been our best friend in coping with rising temperatures. But it will warn that warming is turning the seas into a huge potential threat to humanity.
BBC 24th Sept 2019 read more »
The UN Climate Action Summit in New York has brought together representatives from around the world. They have been asked to take dramatic action to save the planet. Around 60 world leaders, governments, the private sector, international organisations as well as climate activist Greta Thunberg were invited. UN Secretary-General António Guterres has urged governments to make changes in four main areas. He has called on countries to commit to becoming carbon neutral by 2050. As well as this, he wants a strengthened commitment to cut greenhouse gas emissions and to stop fossil fuel subsidies. A ban on new-coal fired power stations by 2020 is also on the list. This does not apply to the UK, where coal power is being phased out, but it is aimed at countries such as China which is still building new plants. Other demands from the Summit include a pledge that the economy must also transform to enable these plans to be realised. The message is that such reforms should not add to economic inequality. Instead they should offer opportunities for all.
iNews 23rd Sept 2019 read more »
The Scottish Government has launched a new programme aimed at protecting communities from the effects of climate change. The Climate Change Adaptation Programme sets out 170 policies and actions to be taken by Holyrood to mitigate the harm caused by storms, flooding and coastal erosion. It is the second of its type to be compiled by the Scottish Government and will run until 2024.
Scotsman 23rd Sept 2019 read more »
More than four fifths of the world’s largest companies are unlikely to meet the targets set out in the Paris climate agreement by 2050, according to fresh analysis of their climate disclosures. A study of almost 3,000 publicly listed companies found that just 18% have disclosed plans that are aligned with goals to limit rising temperatures to 1.5C of pre-industrialised levels by the middle of the century. The report covers companies across the global economy and was undertaken by investment data provider Arabesque S-Ray which assigned each company a temperature score based on its publicly disclosed plans. The companies are scored based on their publicly disclosed emissions-intensity today and scientifically accredited plans to reduce their emissions in future. The analysts found more than a third of the world’s top 200 companies still do not disclose their greenhouse gas emissions, despite rising concern that urgent action is needed to avert dangerous levels of global heating.
Guardian 24th Sept 2019 read more »