Japan aims for 25% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2020

Japan’s next leader has promised a big cut in greenhouse gas emissions, saying he will aim for a 25% reduction by 2020 compared with 1990 levels.

Democratic Party leader Yukio Hatoyama is due to take over as prime minister on 16 September, after a resounding election victory in August.

His predecessor, Taro Aso, had pledged cuts of only 8%.

Mr Hatoyama said the plan was dependent on other nations agreeing targets at December’s climate talks in Copenhagen Continue reading Japan aims for 25% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2020

Paul Gilding: “Don’t sweat the small stuff, Copenhagen is just a training exercise”

Paul Gilding, a climate change activist and independent writer has published an astonishing piece on his blog (‘The Cockatoo Chronicles‘) on why we shouldn’t worry too much about the outcome at Copenhagen Conference in December this year: Now the world is slowly waking up to the climate threat, passionate debates are raging around the world … Continue reading Paul Gilding: “Don’t sweat the small stuff, Copenhagen is just a training exercise”

US ‘global warming bill’ one step closer?

A bill to create the first national limit on greenhouse-gas emissions was approved by a House committee yesterday after a week of late-night debates that cemented the shift of climate change from rhetorical jousting to a subject of serious, if messy, Washington policymaking.

The legislation would create a cap-and-trade system: Over the next decades, power plants, oil refineries and manufacturers would be required to obtain allowances for the pollution they emit. Those who need more or less could turn to a Wall-Street-like market in the allowances. The 33 to 25 vote was a major victory for House Democrats, who had softened and jury-rigged the bill to reassure manufacturers and utilities — and members of their own party from the South and Midwest — that they would not suffer greatly. Continue reading US ‘global warming bill’ one step closer?

Australia delays emissions trading, but is still comitted to “saving the Great Barrier Reef”

The Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has ‘changed tack‘ from his post election promises last year in which he said that ‘failure to act on climate change could be disastrous’, and that delaying emission reductions would be “reckless and irresponsible”. Due to the global recession (and presumably other factors), local emissions trading is now halted … Continue reading Australia delays emissions trading, but is still comitted to “saving the Great Barrier Reef”

Policy changes and paradigm shifts following Copenhagen

The United Nations  climate conference in Copenhagen (which I attended ) was an excellent initiative, with some fairly interesting insights into the gulf between science and policy making. Following the conference, we were contacted by The Guardian newspaper to participate in a poll on global warming. The results are striking – almost 90% of climate … Continue reading Policy changes and paradigm shifts following Copenhagen