3 WAYS TO TELL IF CORPORATIONS ARE GENUINE ABOUT FIGHTING CLIMATE CHANGE

ensia.com

When Larry Fink announced in mid-January he’d be putting solving the climate emergency at the center of his US$7.43 trillion investment company BlackRock’s strategy, even long-time critics acknowledged it was a huge deal. “It takes leadership and a certain kind of courage to admit that change is needed,” wrote Sierra Club executive director Michael Brune at CNBC. “Now we must keep the pressure on.”

BlackRock had earlier stated a commitment to “sustainability,” yet for years faced pressure from the Sierra Club and others over its investments in fossil fuels and Amazon deforestation. In a letter last month to shareholders, Fink promised measurable change: BlackRock would no longer invest in companies deriving 25% or more of their revenues from thermal coal.

Shortly after, however, the environmental and human rights group Urgewald calculated that less than 20% of the coal industry would be affected. “The scope of the policy is still far too limited and further steps will need to follow quickly,” it argued.

In January, CEO Larry Fink announced that BlackRock would make the environment a key consideration in shaping its investment policy. Photo courtesy of BlackRock, Inc.

This is a familiar cycle these days: A large company makes an impressive-sounding climate commitment, but on closer inspection the reality ends up being messier and less inspiring than it first appeared. For example: Microsoft pledges to go “carbon negative” by 2030, removing more carbon from the atmosphere than it emits, while donating to the election campaign of U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell, who has questioned the science of climate change and has a 7% lifetime score from the League of Conservation Voters.

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Three ways national development banks can unlock climate-smart growth

28 January 2020
ATMs in Yangon, Myanmar. Photo: Asian Development Bank, 2015. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

There is no doubt the world is facing a climate emergency. We must all act now to shift to climate-smart growth by redirecting our current investment and financing flows towards the Paris Agreement. National development banks (NDBs) have huge untapped potential to support this transformation. But our new report finds that despite their collective firepower – which far exceeds that of the multilateral and bilateral development banking system – NDBs have yet to step out of the shadows and into the international and domestic limelight. It is now time for NDBs to claim their rightful place at the policy table.
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Children to bear the burden of negative health effects from climate change

sciencedaily.com 

Date: January 27, 2020

Source: University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

Summary: The grim effects that climate change will have on pediatric health outcomes was the focus of a recent article.Share:

The grim effects that climate change will have on pediatric health outcomes was the focus of a “Viewpoint” article published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation by Susan E. Pacheco, MD, an expert at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth).

Pacheco, an associate professor of pediatrics at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth, along with professors from Johns Hopkins Medicine and the George Washington University, authored a series of articles that detail how increased temperatures due to climate change will negatively affect the health of humanity. In the article authored by Pacheco, she shines a light on the startling effects the crisis has on children’s health before they are even born. Tiếp tục đọc “Children to bear the burden of negative health effects from climate change”

Iceland holds funeral for first glacier lost to climate change

 

thguardian.com

Nation commemorates the once huge Okjokull glacier with plaque that warns action is needed to prevent climate change

A ceremony to mark the passing of Okjokull, Iceland’s first glacier lost to climate change. It once covered 16sq km but has melted to a fraction.
 A ceremony to mark the passing of Okjokull, Iceland’s first glacier lost to climate change. It once covered 16sq km but has melted to a fraction. Photograph: Jeremie Richard/AFP/Getty Images

Iceland has marked its first-ever loss of a glacier to climate change as scientists warn that hundreds of other ice sheets on the subarctic island risk the same fate.

As the world recently marked the warmest July ever on record, a bronze plaque was mounted on a bare rock in a ceremony on the barren terrain once covered by the Okjökull glacier in western Iceland.

Information and public health advice: heat and health

Protecting health from rising temperatures and extreme heat

WHO

Key facts

  • Population exposure to heat is increasing due to climate change, and this trend will continue. Globally, extreme temperature events are observed to be increasing in their frequency, duration, and magnitude. Between 2000 and 2016, the number of people exposed to heat waves increased by around 125 million. In 2015 alone, 175 million additional people were exposed to heat waves compared to average years.

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Bình Định experiences most serious drought in 15 years

VNN – July, 19/2019 – 08:26

The biggest fresh lake in Hoài Nhơn District – Mỹ Bình Lake – had its water level reached the dead level. This means over 5,000 households living in Tam Quan Bắc Area in Hoài Nhơn District is facing risk of water shortage. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyên Linh

BÌNH ĐỊNH — The south central province of Bình Định is experiencing its most serious drought in the last 15 years, with 4,000 households and 3,400ha of crops lacking water. Tiếp tục đọc “Bình Định experiences most serious drought in 15 years”

Sự kỳ diệu của tê giác

TN – By Hoàng Hải Vân     June 17, 2012

Sự kỳ diệu đó không nằm ở chiếc sừng, mà ở chỗ tê giác là một nhà nông nghiệp đại tài, một chiến sĩ chống cháy rừng kiệt xuất, một nhà bảo vệ động vật và một thầy thuốc giỏi…

Một vai trò rất quan trọng của tê giác là chống cháy rừng – Ảnh: Shutterstock

Bí ẩn địa y
“Thần dược” từ sừng tê giác hay… đất ?

Nước ta khởi thủy là vùng đầm lầy, là một trong những quê hương của loài tê giác, trong khi Trung Quốc hầu như không có tê giác. Do tổ tiên ta chủ yếu lấy sừng của những con tê giác chết già, nên số lượng tê giác ở Việt Nam trước chiến tranh vẫn rất nhiều, cho đến những năm 60 của thế kỷ trước người ta vẫn nhìn thấy tê giác trong những cánh rừng ở Đà Lạt và nhiều nơi khác. Tiếp tục đọc “Sự kỳ diệu của tê giác”

Islands to eliminate plastic waste

VNN – Update: July, 05/2019 – 08:43

A training course of solid waste sorting opens on the Chàm Islands, off the coast of Hội An city. The Islands began a plastic waste monitoring programme. — VNS Photo Công Thành
Hoài Nam

CHÀM ISLANDS — The Chàm Islands’ Marine Protected Area (MPA) management board, in co-operation with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), has launched a new garbage sorting programme as part of efforts to reduce plastic waste in Việt Nam.

The project is one of 12 nationwide that IUCN and Greenhub – an NGO working in waste management – have implemented to support the community in classifying waste. Tiếp tục đọc “Islands to eliminate plastic waste”

Arctic stronghold of world’s seeds flooded after permafrost melts

No seeds were lost but the ability of the rock vault to provide failsafe protection against all disasters is now threatened by climate change

The Svalbard ‘doomsday’ seed vault was built to protect millions of food crops from climate change, wars and natural disasters
 The Svalbard ‘doomsday’ seed vault was built to protect millions of food crops from climate change, wars and natural disasters. Photograph: John Mcconnico/AP

https://embed.theguardian.com/embed/video/environment/video/2015/may/20/svalbard-seed-vault-world-crop-varieties-video
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Đà Nẵng lights up with solar power

Update: June, 24/2018 – 09:00

Home energy: A roof-top solar power system on a building in Đà Nẵng. The system supplies enough power for daily use. — VNS Photo Minh Vũ

Viet Nam News Between 2008 and 2011, the central city of Đà Nẵng has cut 12,000 tonnes of carbon emissions after developing environmentally friendly electric cars and household solar powered water heaters. Connecting household solar panels to the grid is seen as a positive way to make Đà Nẵng a ‘green’ city by 2025. Bùi Hoài Nam reports.

Phạm Ngọc Công covered the 12sq.m roof of his 3-storey home with solar panels to generate power for his family’s daily needs. The renewable energy system has helped Công cut his household’s electric consumption by 30 per cent each month, while cooling the penthouse during the scorching heat of summer. Tiếp tục đọc “Đà Nẵng lights up with solar power”

Visualizing Data to Build Climate Resilience

WRI.org

PREPdata, an open-source platform that improves access to the highly credible information that adaptation decision-makers and practitioners need to plan for climate change.

Webinar Recording

About the Webinar

Decision-makers from urban planners to corporate executives are grappling with tough questions in a changing climate. Should city officials in the Caribbean update building codes to climate-proof infrastructure against storm surges from monster hurricanes like Maria or move to higher ground? Should farmers in drought-prone regions of sub-Saharan Africa adopt more efficient irrigation systems or switch to climate-resilient seeds? Tiếp tục đọc “Visualizing Data to Build Climate Resilience”

Building tough, resilient towns in the Greater Mekong Subregion

Building Tough, Resilient Towns in the Greater Mekong SubregionParks and other green spaces provide both health and environmental benefits, making them a key element in making towns and cities more livable and climate-resilient. Photo: ADB.

greatermekong – Vulnerable towns in Cambodia, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, and Viet Nam are using “green infrastructure” to stave off the impacts of climate change.

The towns of Battambang, Kaysone Phomvihane, and Dong Ha are very different but they have a few things in common. Each is threatened by flooding that stands to get worse in the face of climate change, and each is undergoing a climate resilience makeover to address the problem.

Battambang, Cambodia has a large flood- and drought-prone watershed area and sits near the Tonle Sap Lake. Kaysone Phomvihane in Lao People’s Democratic Republic faces frequent extreme flooding along the Mekong River. Dong Ha in Viet Nam is a typhoon-prone coastline city threatened by sea level rise, storm surge, and flash flooding.

These communities face long-term harm because of the diversion of their scarce resources from social services and other activities to emergency responses to floods and other climate-related disasters. Tiếp tục đọc “Building tough, resilient towns in the Greater Mekong Subregion”

Vietnam and U.N. to build storm-proof housing for coastal communities

Vietnam is one of 10 countries most affected by climate change, according to the latest annual Climate Risk Index published by the research organization Germanwatch.

Coastal residents are particularly vulnerable as storms increase in frequency and intensity. They are often trapped in poverty, accumulating debt or spending savings to rebuild or repair their homes, businesses and possessions.

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Conserving Forests Could Cut Carbon Emissions As Much As Getting Rid of Every Car on Earth

Globalforestwatch.org

By Susan MinnemeyerNancy Harris and Octavia Payne

Cantonal Hojancha was once a major cattle ranching region. Most of this area was cleared for pasture only 30 years ago. Now, many of the residents have moved into the service industry, and the pasture land has slowly converted back to forest. Photo by Aaron Minnick (World Resources Institute)

New analysis from The Nature Conservancy, WRI and others estimates that stopping deforestation, restoring forests and improving forestry practices could cost-effectively remove 7 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide annually, or as much as eliminating 1.5 billion cars—more than all of the cars in the world today!

In fact, forests are key to at least six of the study’s 20 “natural climate solutions,” which could collectively reduce 11.3 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year. That’s as much as halting global oil consumption, and would get us one-third of the way toward limiting global warming to 2 degrees C (3.6 degrees F) above pre-industrial levels — the threshold for avoiding catastrophic effects of climate change — by 2030.

Stopping Deforestation Offers the Biggest Benefit

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Vietnam builds energy efficiency expertise

Cu Nguyen Khanh leading a session during a recent HVAC training under the USAID Vietnam Clean Energy Program.
Cu Nguyen Khanh leads a recent HVAC training session under the USAID Vietnam Clean Energy Program. – USAID VCEP

USAID Engineers and architects learn new ways to save energy

“I really would like to contribute to sector development by promoting energy efficiency principles and methods.”

 
September 2016—Energy efficiency in the building sector is becoming a key area of interest in Vietnam, where energy consumption is growing quickly as a result of increasing industrialization and urbanization. In 2012, the building sector accounted for 38 percent of the country’s power consumption, and energy demand is expected to increase as the urban population continues to grow. Tiếp tục đọc “Vietnam builds energy efficiency expertise”