It took seven years for President Barack Obama to get federal agencies on the same page about considering the climate impacts of proposed projects.
The anticipated rules won’t change what has been the common practice at most federal agencies since President Donald Trump took office three years ago—which has been to check a box on climate change while ignoring a project’s true contribution to global warming when carrying out reviews mandated by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
CEQ was responding to a 2008 petition by the Sierra Club, Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and International Center for Technology Assessment that asked it to update the law’s regulations to account for climate change.
But this fire season has not come out of nowhere—it’s consistent with years of trends, anecdotes, studies, and climate modeling.
In 2008, a major independent study into the impacts of climate change warned that Australian fire seasons would “start earlier, end slightly later, and generally be more intense” in a way that should be “directly observable by 2020”—prescient words now being widely recirculated.
In 2009, a CSIRO (Australia’s national science research agency) and Bushfire Cooperative Research Centre study warned that the kind of rare weather event fueling the current fires—a particular low-pressure system colliding with a particular high-pressure system—would be up to four times more likely under forecast climate change–related warming.
These kinds of storms and other disasters are expected to grow more intense as the climate warms.
The bushfires raging across Australia are an example of how damages from climate change are likely to grow in the future.
Related: This Bangladeshi man's story shows why linking climate change with conflict is no simple matter Cabe is among those looking for someone or something to hold accountable for the damage caused by these catastrophes.
Scott Morrison has rejected criticism of the Coalition’s climate change policies amid the ongoing bushfire crisis, as a growing number of MPs privately concede that the government needs to do more to match the rising tide of concern over the issue.
“The suggestion that there’s any one emissions reduction policy or climate policy that has contributed directly to any of these fire events is just ridiculous and the conflation of those two things, I think, has been very disappointing.” He said the government would “continue to consider our policies carefully here”, while conceding to the ABC that the bushfire crisis had elevated the debate over the government’s stance on climate change.
When asked if a national inquiry into the fires, that canvassed all issues, including climate change, could prompt a “recalibration” of the government’s climate change policies, Morrison said the government would review any recommendations arising from an inquiry.
While most countries worldwide take a “mixed” picture of the consequences, upsides and downsides of global warming amid an ever-growing rivalry between states, the environmental idea is becoming a convenient and attractive tool to discredit opponents.
Moreover, for some pro-Nature organizations, the proclaimed requisite to ensure environmental protection outweighs any objective needs for the development of both individual territories and entire states.
Paradoxically, climate change and demands for a rash change of political priorities to combat it both threaten to increase inequality between countries.
Thousands of climate protesters flooded the streets of Australian state capitals on Friday night as fire authorities warned of another dangerous night ahead in four states.
In the evening more than 10,000 climate change protesters filled the streets in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Canberra, with anger directed towards the Australian prime minister, Scott Morrison.
Conceding climate change had played a role in the fires, he told one radio station his government did not want “job-destroying, economy-destroying, economy-wrecking targets and goals” on climate change.
After the environmental crisis known as “the Great Withering,” much of the world is a dust bowl; climate refugees trek across the continent as children die of a horrifying new strain of tuberculosis called “rib retch.” With aquifers drying up in the United States, Russia under totalitarian rule, and even New Zealand experiencing a coup, “water- and tree-rich Canada has become the global elite’s panic room.” The Canadian prime minister is the most powerful politician in the world.
Many of the best literary novels featuring climate change are apocalyptic, doom saying.
In genre novels, meanwhile, aspects of climate change take on a monster-of-the-week quality: the Ross Ice Shelf breaking free in an ecothriller is a new version of the nuclear sub gone rogue during the Cold War or the Nazi on the loose in London.
A senior News Corp employee has accused the company of “misinformation” and diverting attention from climate change during the bushfire crisis in an explosive all-staff email addressed to executive chairman Michael Miller.
The email accuses News Corp papers, including the Australian, the Daily Telegraph and the Herald Sun, of misrepresenting facts and spreading misinformation to focus on arson as the cause of the bushfires, rather than climate change.
“I have been severely impacted by the coverage of News Corp publications in relation to the fires, in particular the misinformation campaign that has tried to divert attention away from the real issue which is climate change to rather focus on arson (including misrepresenting facts).
Edition for 10 January 2020
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