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The World’s Happiest People already Have a Green N...

According to the latest report from the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Solutions Network, the Nordics are once again in the top tier of the World’s Happiest People. This year’s report, which came out March 20, pulled together the scores from the last three years to build a composite score, revealing that the four happiest countries from 2016-2018 are Finland, Denmark, Norway and Iceland, with Sweden coming in...

Getting physical: assessing climate risks

A series of recent extreme weather events — from hurricanes and wildfires in the U.S. to heat waves in Europe and floods in Japan — have put a spotlight on climate-related risks. We offer a new set of tools for assessing such risks to portfolios. Mapping the damage Estimated climate-related impact on U.S. regional GDP, 2060-2080 Sources: BlackRock Investment Institute, with data from Rhodium Group, March 2019. Notes: The map...

EPA Chief: Climate Change Is Not Top Priority

In an in-depth interview with Reuters Thursday, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) head Andrew Wheeler repeated claims that climate change is not the biggest environmental threat facing the world and shed some light on the agency’s plans to help the Trump administration boost fossil fuel development. The interview came a day after President Donald Trump signed two executive orders designed to speed up pipeline...

What a Real Coal Ash Cleanup Looks Like

The toxic mess left behind from burning coal is a growing, nationwide problem. But we’re seeing that state governments can be convinced to do the right thing and clean it up. Recently, North Carolina joined its neighboring state to become a trendsetter in the proper disposal of coal ash waste. Following on the heels of similar news in Virginia, the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) on April 1...

Revised Ohio nuclear ‘bailout’ bill raises more qu...

An updated version of the bill would still exclude most wind and solar from clean air credits, while allowing payments to unspecified “reduced emissions resources” that could include gas and coal. COLUMBUS — Republican lawmakers in the Ohio House introduced legislation Friday that would provide subsidies for two Ohio nuclear power plants owned by FirstEnergy Solutions, while at the same time defunding decade-old renewable...

One thing you can do: Reduce Your Lawn

Spring is here, and that means millions of Americans will soon be seeding, fertilizing and mowing their grass. America has a lot of lawns. Add them all together, and they’d cover an area roughly the size of Florida, making grass the most common irrigated plant in the country. And all that grass comes with an environmental cost. To keep weeds at bay, homeowners dumped around 59 million pounds of pesticides onto their...

House Democrats roll out energy storage tax credit...

Dive Brief: Rep. Mike Doyle, D-Pa., on Thursday introduced legislation long awaited by clean energy advocates: a tax credit for energy storage technologies. H.R. 2096 aims to make energy storage technologies fully eligible for the investment tax credit (ITC) that is currently available to solar and some solar-plus-storage projects. The solar ITC is set to phase down from 30% in 2019 to 26% for projects that start in 2020,...

The problem with ignoring people’s emotions ...

Many people feel helplessness, hopelessness, anger, and fear when they hear about the topic. About 20 years ago, while presenting the science of climate change to a large public group, I stopped in the middle of my talk. Up until this time, my presentations had been filled with 50 minutes of scientific information. However, during my graduate work in psychology, I had become more attuned to the importance of affect in how we...

Plastic Bags, or Paper? Here’s What to Consider Wh...

WASHINGTON — The decision by New York State to ban single-use plastic bags from retail stores makes it a good time to revisit everyone’s favorite environmental quandary: paper or plastic? Unfortunately, there’s not a simple answer on whether paper or plastic bags are better for the environment. They both have downsides, but there are a few broad lessons to keep in mind when you’re hitting the grocery store. Plastic bags,...

Latest Agriculture Emissions Data Show Rise of Fac...

New data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) shows a steady increase in agriculture-related greenhouse gas emissions, much of it linked to industrial systems of crop production and the rise of factory farm systems of animal production. The annually updated GHG data is designed to track U.S. emissions related to the Paris Climate Agreement and to inform national and state-level climate policy. The EPA’s...

What Makes a Catastrophic Flood? And Is Climate Ch...

With floods submerging expanses of the Midwest and government scientists warning that this spring could bring a historic flood season in the United States, it’s natural to ask why it is happening. What causes catastrophic flooding? And what is the role of climate change? The first thing to understand: It’s complicated Each flood is its own phenomenon, tied to the specific circumstances in the area. “Flooding is complex,”...

Global carbon emissions hit record high in 2018: I...

LONDON (Reuters) – Global energy-related carbon emissions rose to a record high last year as energy demand and coal use increased, mainly in Asia, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said on Tuesday. Energy-related CO2 emissions rose by 1.7 percent to 33.1 billion tonnes from the previous year, the highest rate of growth since 2013, with the power sector accounting for almost two-thirds of this growth, according to...

Thank You, Climate Strikers. Your Action Matters a...

I want to say to all the climate strikers: thank you so much for being unreasonable. That is, if reasonable means playing by the rules, and the rules are presumed to be guidelines for what is and is not possible, then you may be told that what you are asking for is impossible or unreasonable. Don’t listen. Don’t stop. Don’t let your dreams shrink by one inch. Don’t forget that this might be the day and the pivotal year when...

Solar and wind firms call the ‘Green New Dea...

WASHINGTON/LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – U.S. solar and wind power companies may have the most to gain from the Green New Deal, an ambitious proposal backed by several Democratic presidential candidates to end U.S. fossil fuel consumption within a decade. But do not expect the renewable energy firms to endorse it. Representatives of America’s clean energy companies are withholding their support for the climate-fighting plan,...

Report: Great Lakes feeling effects of rapid clima...

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — The Great Lakes region is warming faster than the rest of the U.S., a trend likely to bring more extreme storms while also degrading water quality, worsening erosion and posing tougher challenges for farming, scientists reported Thursday. The annual mean air temperature in the region, which includes portions of the U.S. Midwest , Northeast and southern Canada, rose 1.6 degrees (0.9 Celsius) from...