Archives for posts with tag: climate change

The UK is one of the leading countries in addressing climate change. As well as signing international agreements, the country has its own target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80% from 1990 levels by 2050. And as part of the effort to meet that target, the government has added a levy to business and household energy bills. The average household energy bill is around £1,030 a year and the levy costs an average of £132 (2016 figures).

The good news is that the levy is working. About 20% of the levy is spent on improving the efficiency of homes. This is done by funding schemes such as the Energy Company Obligation, which provides insulation and other energy-saving measures to low-income households. The average household energy bill would be £490 higher without these improvements. The money is also spent on research to improve renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar power, and help bring down their cost.

But is this really a fair way to raise the money? Our new research shows that the poorest households not only are hit hardest by the levy but also receive less money back in the form of home improvements than they contribute in the first place.

To study the levy, we divided the UK into “income deciles”, ten groups each representing 10% of the population, divided from the lowest to the highest income. We then looked at how much energy use they were responsible for, both directly through their electricity, gas and fuel use, and from the other goods, services and infrastructure they use. The levy is only raised on a limited number of these “energy service demands”, namely home heat and power. So if your overall energy demand is higher for heat and power and lower for other services, you’ll pay a proportionally higher amount of the energy policy costs.

 

Source: Poorest households hit hardest by UK climate change levy despite using least energy : The Conversation

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Bitterly cold weather across the northern United States has brought record snow fall and frozen parts of New York’s Lake Erie.

President Donald Trump say in a tweet that it’s proof he was right to pull the country out of the Paris climate agreement.

“In the East, it could be the COLDEST New Year’s Eve on record. Perhaps we could use a little bit of that good old Global Warming that our Country, but not other countries, was going to pay TRILLIONS OF DOLLARS to protect against. Bundle up!”

 

Source: Storm over Trump climate tweet : euro News


Insecurities across a wide spectrum, including food supply and infrastructure, are going to be severe obstacles

Source: Puerto Rico’s bankruptcy will make hurricane recovery brutal – here’s why – Salon.com


The scale from one to five that is used to measure the destructive power of a hurricane may no longer be enough.

Source: Hurricanes may be getting more severe – do we need a whole new category to describe them?


We can’t say that Hurricane Harvey was caused by climate change. But it was certainly worsened by it

Source: It’s a fact: climate change made Hurricane Harvey more deadly | Michael E Mann | Opinion | The Guardian


Political Concern

A comprehensive briefingupdated in June, forwarded by the author of Three Generations Left

The BBCreports today that after President Donald Trump warned North Korea it should be “very, very nervous” if it does anything to the US, Defence Secretary James Mattis warned that armed conflict with North Korea would be “catastrophic” and said diplomacy was bearing fruit. “The American effort is diplomatically led, it has diplomatic traction, it is gaining diplomatic results,” he said.

Edited extracts:

At a series of intergovernmental conferences starting in 2013, extensive evidence was presented of the enormous ‘humanitarian consequences’ should nuclear weapons ever be used again in war.

One study published by the organisation Article 36 was a detailed analysis of the impacts of a single modern nuclear warhead exploding over a typical city within an industrialised nation. The target was Manchester in the UK as a model medium-sized modern city. The yield…

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By the end of the century, two out of three people living in Europe will be affected by weather-related disasters largely due to global warming and climate change, according to a new study.

Source: Weather disasters to impact 2 out of 3 people in Europe by 2100, study says – CNN


These bases will see hundreds of floods and in some cases could be submerged by 2100, a new report warns.

Source: Rising oceans threaten to submerge 128 military bases: report


German Chancellor Angela Merkel pressed fellow Group of 20 leaders to compromise at the start of talks on climate and trade that have pitted U.S. President Donald Trump against virtually every other country in the club of leading economies.

The host of the G20 summit addressed her counterparts on Friday in a hall at the Hamburg convention centre, after video footage showed Trump shaking hands with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the first face-to-face encounter between the two men.

Merkel was shown talking casually with Putin as the leaders entered the hall, then joining French President Emmanuel Macron in a three-way discussion with Trump, who was seated between Chinese leader Xi Jinping and Britain’s Theresa May.

“We all know the big global challenges and we know that time is pressing,” Merkel told the group.

“And so solutions can only be found if we are ready for compromise and move towards each other, but without – and I stress this – bending too much, because of course we can also state clearly when there are differences.”

Trump later held bilateral talks with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Putin.

The meeting with the Russian leader is drawing intense scrutiny because of Trump’s election campaign pledge to seek a rapprochement with Moscow. So far he has been unable to deliver on that promise amid accusations from U.S. intelligence services that Russia meddled in last year’s presidential election and investigations into the Trump campaign’s links to the country.

Merkel, who is gearing up for a parliamentary election in September, faces the daunting task of steering the G20 towards a consensus on trade, climate change and migration – all

 

Source: Merkel calls for G20 compromise as crunch climate talks start | Reuters


Are we in the middle of a mass extinction caused by Homo sapiens? Past events can help us to understand the current crisis.

Source: Five mass extinctions – and what we can learn from them about the planet today

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