Edition for 04 May 2020

Top Stories

The new Great Depression is coming. Will there be a new New Deal in US? (Straits Times)

  • Mr Markey is co-sponsor of the Green New Deal resolution, which calls for a public programme to build environmentally sustainable infrastructure.
  • During the primaries, Mr Biden's environmental proposals were generally more modest than his rivals', but with the pandemic ravaging the economy, he's called for a trillion-dollar infrastructure programme focused on green jobs.
  • "In lots of ways I do think we're closer to a Green New Deal than we were before because the necessity of one has become more apparent," said Ms Rhiana Gunn-Wright, director of climate policy at the Roosevelt Institute and one of the thinkers who first conceptualised the Green New Deal.

16 Japan lenders refrain from investing in nuke-linked companies (Kyodo News)

  • Sixteen Japanese financial institutions have refrained from investing in and extending loans to companies involved in the manufacturing of nuclear weapons and delivery missiles, according to a Kyodo News survey released Sunday.
  • Twelve respondents including Tohoku Bank, Higo Bank and the Bank of Toyama in Toyama Prefecture said they think the adoption of the U.N. pact would generate risks in the future to investment in nuclear-related companies.

Greens enter Irish coalition talks with climate on agenda (Reuters)

  • “Any proposal must be transformative on climate action and commit to strong progress towards a more sustainable and fairer society.
  • Some Green Party members are sceptical that the two larger parties will pursue ambitious enough environmental policies, with the main sticking point being a commitment to a 7% average annual cut in greenhouse gas emissions.
  • “We are absolutely committed to seeing are there ways in which we can significantly improve the ability of our country to reduce emissions,” Donohoe told the Newstalk radio station.

Is a 7% annual emissions cut possible? Yes, say NGOs (Irish Times)

  • Some of the country’s best climate and energy experts, including policy analysts within environmental NGOs, say it will be immensely challenging, require great vigilance and regular adjustment, as well as a shift in mindset from the bigger political parties, but it is doable.
  • The UN Environment Programme said in December if we want to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees – the Paris Agreement goal – global average emissions reductions need to be 7.6 per cent a year.
  • “A climate emissions reduction rate of 7 per cent is not ‘the Greens demand’ anymore than a Covid transmission reproduction rate of less than one is ‘a Fine Gael demand’.

$300m clean energy fund to back fossil-fuel hydrogen projects (The Sydney Morning Herald)

  • The move makes clear the government's position on the debate over the potential to develop an emissions-free hydrogen industry powered exclusively by renewable energy.
  • "Gas and gas transmission networks already play an essential role in energy reliability, but gas has even more potential as a resource to produce and transmit hydrogen," said Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor.

East Africa: Desert Locusts - Another Disaster Looms as Second Wave Arrives (AllAfrica News)

  • While the overwhelming uncertainties and apprehensions caused by COVID-19 permeate the whole African continent, countries in eastern African are preparing for yet another disaster - the second wave of desert locusts.
  • More importantly, given the fact that the region has become increasingly fragile due to the climate change and lack of peace and political stability, there ought to be highly responsive and rigorous development institutions along proper crises management capacities to sustain the livelihood of pastoralists and crop farmers who are the mainstay of the economy.

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