It’s one of the oldest tricks in politics: Talk down expectations to the point that you can meet them.
Less than a week after everybody celebrated the historical agreement
on Nov. 17 between the United States and China on reduction of CO2
emissions, a very cold shower has come from India.
“If they go ahead and dig those wells, all my work will be destroyed, all my life, everything,” says Franca Tognarelli, looking at the hills and vineyards around her house in Certaldo, Val d’Elsa, in the heart of Tuscany.
The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change has set a target of reducing emissions of greenhouse gases such as CO2
. One way countries can meet their obligations is to switch energy production from the burning of fossil fuels to “renewables”, generally understood to include wind, wave, tidal, hydro, solar and geothermal power and biomass.
From small villages to big cities, wherever you go in Kazakhstan these days, billboards offer reminders that Astana is gearing up to host Expo 2017, the next World’s Fair. Kazakhstan helped secure the right to host the event with a pledge to emphasise green energy alternatives. But now it appears that Kazakhstan is red-lighting its own green transition.
Ruth Spencer is a pioneer in the field of solar energy. She promotes renewable technologies to communities throughout her homeland of Antigua and Barbuda, playing a small but important part in helping the country achieve its goal of a 20-percent reduction in the use of fossil fuels by 2020.
Speaking to more than 120 heads of state at the U.N. Climate Summit, actor and newly appointed U.N. Messenger of Peace Leonardo DiCaprio made clear the long-ranging impact of the attendees’ decisions.
On Sunday, Sep. 21, at least 300,000 people filled the streets of New York City ahead of the U.N. General Assembly and special one-day Climate Summit Sep. 23 to protest the ongoing lack of political will to cut global CO2 emissions and kick-start a greener economy. They came by bus and bike and train. They came with their kids -- some in strollers, others old enough to proudly carry signs. By afternoon, it had become clear that the march in New York was the biggest climate-change gathering in history. Protesters also turned out in more than 150 other cities around the world.
Acting on climate change will not hurt domestic economic growth, and in fact is more likely to boost growth, most analyses now show.
World leaders gathered at the Climate Change Summit during the United Nations General Assembly on Sep. 23 will have a crucial opportunity to mobilise political will and advance solutions to climate change.
A widespread perception exists that developing countries must make a choice between tackling climate change and fighting poverty. This assumption is incorrect, according to the authors of a new report on green growth.
On Sep. 23, I have invited world leaders from government, business, finance and civil society to a Climate Summit in New York so they can show the world how they will advance action on climate change and move towards a meaningful universal new agreement next year at the December climate negotiations in Paris.
The much-ballyhooed one-day Climate Summit next week is being hyped as one of the major political-environmental events at the United Nations this year.
“People have gathered here to tell their politicians that the way in which we used energy and our environment in the 19th
centuries is now over,” says Radek Gawlik, one of Poland’s most experienced environmental activists. “The time for burning coal has passed and the sooner we understand this, the better it is for us.”
Johannes Kapelle has been playing the organ in the Protestant church of Proschim since he was 14. The 78-year-old is actively involved in his community, produces his own solar power and has raised three children with his wife on their farm in Proschim, a small village of 360 inhabitants in Lusatia, Germany.