Friday, August 19, 2022

What Are The Government Doing To Stop Climate Change

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Phasing Out Fossil Fuel Heating

Why politicians have failed to tackle climate change | The Economist

The aims to phase out fossil fuels for “space and water heating in all new buildings” and will establish a national retrofit plan to provide loans and grants to those in older homes and buildings.

It calls for the use of electric heat pumps and other low carbon technology to be promoted in new and existing buildings.

The Taoiseach added: “As I said in Glasgow, the scale of the challenge is unprecedented, but it is not too late to act.

“It is now crystal clear that we need to dramatically reduce the amount of greenhouse gases we are putting into the atmosphere, to have hope of limiting temperature rise to 1.5C, keep our ecosystems functioning and ensure that our planet is safe and liveable for generations to come.”

Advancing Environmental Justice And Empowering Workers

President Biden and Vice President Harris have worked since Day One to confront environmental injustices, toxic pollution, underinvestment in infrastructure and critical services, and disproportionate impacts from climate change on communities across the nation. The Administration has activated the entire federal government to advance environmental justice and for the first time in our nations history, elevate the voices, perspectives, and lived experiences of environmental justice communities to guide White House and Federal Government priorities, policies, investments, and decision-making.

The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to continually fighting for environmental justice through early, meaningful, and sustained partnership with communities and dedicated leadership in Federal agencies.

Corporate Climate Change Mitigation

Under the B.C. Climate Action Charter local governments commit to becoming carbon neutral in their corporate operations. Many local governments develop corporate climate action plans.

When local government leaders work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in their own corporate operations, they lead by example and set the stage for citizens, business and industry to take action and help move whole communities towards greater energy efficiency and sustainability.

Local governments are supported by:

  • Carbon Neutral Framework: This unique-to-B.C. approach helps local governments determine carbon neutrality. The framework identifies four steps to tracking corporate emissions: measure, reduce, balance/off-set and report. Local governments can achieve or work towards carbon neutrality by undertaking green communities committee-approved reduction projects , investing in third-party verified reduction projects or purchasing carbon off-sets.

Local governments are recognized for their efforts through:

  • Green Communities Committee Climate Action Recognition Program: This program publicly recognizes the progress and achievements of each Charter signatory towards achieving carbon neutrality based on their climate action revenue incentive program reports.

Local government progress toward carbon neutrality has involved the implementation of a number of innovative projects including fleet replacement and efficient heating and cooling energy systems.

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Reforming Global Financial Institutions

Global economic structures support unending growth, which currently, also promotes unending environmental degradation and climate change.

Precedent for the transformation of global economic structures to prevent future crisis can be seen in the wake of the Second World War. The Bretton Woods conference of 1944 consciously reshaped the global economic order with the aim of averting future threats to peace and fostering economic growth and stability. The summit led to the creation of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank which remain influential proponents and enforcers of economic and development policies.

The Bretton Woods conference of 1944 reshaped the global economic order with the aim of fostering economic growth and stability.

Since 2008, there have been calls for a new Bretton Woods. In 2019, outgoing UN Sustainable Energy for All chief and former World Bank vice president, Rachel Kyte, called for a new generation of institutions to reshape multilateralism and align all public investments with climate action. Public engagement with such a transformation is needed to help ensure that transitions to sustainability are just and fair for all.

Using Subsidies For Positive Change

Stop climate change

At COP26, US Special Envoy for Climate Change, John Kerry, described fossil fuel subsidies as the definition of insanity supporting, as they do, the very activities we most need to change. Agricultural subsidies, too, promote resource-hungry, carbon-intensive meat and dairy production and consumption, actively working against diets that are both healthy and sustainable. Meanwhile, during COP26, the UK government unveiled new subsidies for domestic flights, while rail fairs continued to climb.

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Leveraging Domestic Ambition To Rally Global Peers

While the U.S. has committed itself to addressing the climate crisis, countries across the globe must also step up given that more than 85% of global climate pollution comes from beyond our borders. President Biden and his team are rallying the world to take the decisive action needed in this decade to tackle the climate crisis.

Reducing Demand And Consumption

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated that swift and significant behaviour change is possible. COVID-19 lockdowns, for example, had the short-term side-effect of crushing rates of unsustainable behaviour such as air travel, food waste, commuting by car and fast fashion consumption. Similarly, in the UK during the Second World War, demand for resources was moderated through the use of coupons for food, clothing and fuel.

In the UK during the Second World War, demand for resources was moderated through the use of coupons for food, clothing and fuel.

The idea of rationing emissions to tackle climate change and level individual use of global resources is not new but it is challenging for those in rich countries. In 2009, UK think-tank, the New Economics Foundation , commissioned carbon budgets in the form of wartime ration books where coupons covered activities such as drying your hair, buying a t-shirt or having a bath.

The NEFs ration books were shocking in illustrating just how drastically life would need to change to stay within a fair carbon budget. Recent research by the Center for Global Development has reiterated this, finding that that in a single day, the average US citizen is responsible for the total annual emissions of someone from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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Global Climate Change Activism

Around the world, millions of us are taking steps to defend our climate.

Tens of thousands of school strikers and people from all walks of life have taken to the streets demanding a solution to the climate emergency.

Over the years, Greenpeace has challenged oil companies chasing new fossil fuels to extract and burn. Weve also called out the UK government for their failure to act fast enough on the climate emergency. Meanwhile, ordinary people have blocked tankers and fracking rigs, letting everyone know that renewable energy is the answer to fossil fuels.

Indigenous Peoples are most severely affected by both the causes and effects of climate change. They are often on the front lines, facing down deforestation or kicking out fossil fuel industries that want to put their water supplies at risk from oil spills.

Communities in the Pacific Islands are facing sea level rises and more extreme weather. But they are using their strength and resilience to demand world leaders take quicker climate action in global meetings, such as COP21 in Paris 2015.

For many of these communities, climate change is a fight for life itself. And for many countries around the world, including the UK, climate change is having more and more of a negative impact on people. As a country with the wealth and power to really tackle climate change, its never been more important to demand that our leaders act.

Local Government Climate Change Mitigation

Do we Need Nuclear Energy to Stop Climate Change?

Climate change mitigation refers to efforts taken by local governments to reduce or prevent the emission of greenhouse gases.

Municipalities and regional districts in B.C. play an important role in climate change mitigation. Currently 187 out of 190 local governments have signed the B.C. Climate Action Charter. By signing the Charter local governments commit to taking action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions within their corporate operations as well as taking steps to reduce community-wide emissions.

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Consume Less Waste Less Enjoy Life More

We use too much, too much of it is toxic and we dont share it very well. But thats not the way things have to be. Together, we can build a society based on better not more, sharing not selfishness, community not division. The Story of Stuff

Focusing on lifes simple pleasures spending time in nature, being with loved ones, making a difference to others provides more purpose, belonging and happiness than buying and consuming. Plus, when we consume less, we produce fewer emissions and are gentler on the earth. Sharing, making, fixing, upcycling, repurposing and composting are all good places to start.

Fire up your commitment to the people and places you love by acting every day on the understanding that we are one with nature.

Start A Climate Conversation

Solving climate change requires us all to work together. We cant do that without finding common ground with those who may not share our perspective.

Since people often trust peers, family members and loved ones more than they trust experts, scientists and environmental organizations, you can talk to people about climate change in ways we cant. You are more likely to open peoples minds.

Learn from CliMate, a fun and interactive chatbot that teaches you how to have conversations about climate change that decrease divisiveness and help cultivate empathy and find common ground. Overcoming polarization is key to moving forward on climate solutions.

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Urge Government To Take Bold Ambitious Climate Action Now

Top climate scientists issued acode red for humanity recently,warning that this is our last chance to implement the transformational changesnecessaryto keep warming below 1.5 Candavoid the most dangerous impacts of climate chaos.

Canadasclimate targets are still critically insufficient to do our fair share on the global scale and wearethe only G7 country whose emissions have increased since the Paris Agreement was signed.

The climate crisis wont wait. Join us in calling on all federal parties to cooperate and get Canada to act on climate change with the ambition and urgency this crisis demands.

Reducing Emissions And Accelerating Clean Energy

The most effective individual steps to tackle climate change aren

President Biden and Vice President Harris have mobilized a whole-of-government effort in every sector of the economy taking executive actions that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, accelerate clean energy production and deployment, and create good-paying jobs that strengthen the economy. In addition to the actions below, the Administration is leading by example across federal operations and procurement through the Presidents Federal Sustainability Plan.

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Climate Change Regulatory Actions And Initiatives

President Biden is committed to meeting the urgent threat of climate change while empowering American workers and businesses to drive our nation toward a clean energy future. As directed in Executive Order 13990, Protecting Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science to Tackle the Climate Crisis, EPA is considering rulemaking proposals to address some of our nations largest sources of both climate- and health-harming pollution, such as the transportation, oil and natural gas, and power sectors. EPA will update this information as we move forward with new regulatory actions.

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Wind And Solar Energy

The Climate Action Plan seeks a cut in electricity emissions of between 62%-81%.

It says there will be a phasing out of coal and peat-fired electricity generation and wind and solar energy will account for 80% of Ireland’s energy supply by the end of the decade.

Homeowners, farmers, businesses and communities will be able to avail of support schemes to help them generate their own electricity and sell any over-supply back to the grid.

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Climate Action For Whom

Different kinds of climate action have different costs and benefits for different people. Because of this, choices about what courses of action to pursue are profoundly shaped by relations of power.

We live in a world marked by severe disparities of wealth and power within and between countries, many of which are rooted in longer histories of colonialism and exploitation. These disparities have often allowed powerful companies in sectors like finance and energy to dictate the course of climate action. This has made it very difficult to pursue measures that might threaten their interests, but which would dramatically reduce emissions like banning fossil fuel exploration.

Instead, weve had a slew of measures to address climate change which rely on making emissions reductions profitable. But the quickest ways to reduce emissions arent always the most profitable. And what is profitable for some can be harmful for less powerful people and communities.

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While a large market developed for carbon offsets, it failed to substantially reduce emissions. A major reason for this was its reliance on profit-seeking private investors. Many of the projects funded through the CDM were probably profitable on their own the distribution of CDM credits very closely mirrors patterns of private foreign investment in developing countries, with the vast majority funding projects in China and India.

Our National Response Is Characterised By An Unrealistically Optimistic Effect

Can YOU Fix Climate Change?

Flooded homes in the wake of Hurricane Florence in Lumberton, North Carolina, last month. Ireland will not escape from the negative effects of climate change. Photograph: Johnny Milano/The New York Times

The UNs intergovernmental panel on climate change presented its latest report on Monday. It was a forecast for all our futures. To say that the report was worrying is an understatement.

The predictions regarding climate change are edging towards the catastrophic. We are already seeing the effects. The world is one degree Celsius warmer than it was in pre-industrial times. A continued rise in temperatures will bring risks of drought, floods, extreme heat and poverty. With this will come increased and migration and all of the upheaval and human suffering it entails.

The report was launched with the approval of 195 countries and with an unusually high degree of consensus. There is some important advice in there on how we need to act to facilitate the urgent changes needed to deliver on the Paris Agreement of keeping global warming between 1.5C and 2C.

In the same week as all of this sobering news about climate change, Budget 2019 was unveiled. While there are some laudable offerings in the budget, initiatives to tackle climate change are notable in their absence.

Optimistic bias

Green commuting

Hard choices

Orla Muldoon is professor of psychology at University of Limerick

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Policy Ideas To Protect The Planet

These policies can lead to increased food recycling and related infrastructure. But while preferable to leaving food to release methane in landfills, recycling cant make up for the emissions that went into the foods production, processing, distribution, heating and cooling. Recycling can even be perceived as a justification for discarding good food.

Among food waste mitigation strategies, , the greater climate benefit per ton comes from avoiding unnecessary food production. Accordingly, waste-ban policies should be considered incomplete unless they promote waste prevention and donation as the preferred approaches. California, for instance, has passed a bill requiring that, by 2025, at least 20 percent of edible food that would otherwise be disposed instead be recovered to eat.

Halving waste of food is an audacious target, but its achievable. Food waste bans can dramatically ramp up the prevention, recovery and recycling of food. Most ban policies are fairly new, and more research is needed, but thus far it appears that, approached right, they can be a win-win-win-win-win for waste mitigation, jobs, economic activity, food insecurity and, of course, the climate.

New And Existing Municipal Solid Waste Landfills

Methane is a potent greenhouse gas. In 2016, EPA finalized two rules updating both the 1996 New Source Performance Standards for new and modified landfills and the 1996 guidelines for existing landfills to reduce emissions of methane-rich landfill gas. EPA issued a Federal Plan implementing the 2016 emission guidelines in May 2021.

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Strong Majorities Of Americans Back Policies Aimed At Reducing The Effects Of Climate Change

Majorities of U.S. adults favor each of the five proposals to reduce the effects of climate change included in the survey. The most popular, favored by 90% of Americans, is to plant about a trillion trees to absorb carbon emissions. President Trump announced in this years State of the Union that the U.S. would join the World Economic Forums One Trillion Trees Initiative.

Widespread public support extends to proposals to provide a tax credit to businesses for development of carbon capture and storage capacity and tougher restrictions on power plant carbon emissions .

About seven-in-ten also favor taxing corporations based on their carbon emissions and adopting tougher fuel efficiency standards for cars and trucks .

The Trump administration has taken steps over the past year to roll back regulations on carbon emissions in areas such as fuel-efficiency standards for vehicles and power plants emissions.

Support for these policies aligns with how effective the public thinks they would be. A 2018 survey found majorities of Americans believed restrictions on power plant emissions, tax incentives to encourage businesses to reduce carbon emissions and tougher fuel-efficiency standards for cars would all make a difference at reducing climate change.

Among Republicans, there are large gaps in support for some of these policies by ideology, as well as differences in views between GOP men and women.

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