Jan 13 2014

Climate Roundup: EU Cuts Goals, Australia Spews More Carbon, Climate Deniers Take Scientists to Court

Each week Uprising will analyze the most pressing climate change stories of the past week with our guest Kelly Mitchell, Coal Campaigner for Greenpeace.

Although the European Union had vowed to take the lead on combating climate change, it seems that Europe’s dismal economy has put a damper on those efforts. EU Commissioners on Friday reduced their previously stated goals for cutting down carbon emissions by 2030. In 2012 they had promised to cut carbon emissions by 40% and have renewable energy sources supply 30% of their total energy supply. Now they have lowered those targets to 35% to 40% with a renewables goal of 24% to 27%. There has been an overall lack of agreement between the countries in setting up their various approaches to fighting climate change. Click here for a Guardian newspaper article about the story.

Among the major economies of the world Australia is failing abysmally at reducing its carbon emissions. A new report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development or OECD has found that Australia ranks number 2 on a list of the top 34 advanced countries according to the level of their greenhouse gas emissions per unit of GDP. Australia’s heavy dependency on coal is the main culprit. And while Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott remains skeptical about climate change despite record shattering heat in his country over the last couple weeks, UK Prime Minister David Cameron faced criticism from his government for connecting the increasing numbers of powerful storms in the UK to climate change. Sadly Cameron has now whole heartedly backed the fracking industry. Click here for a Guardian newspaper article about the story.

A climate change denial group called the American Traditions Institute is in a Virginia Supreme Court this week trying to obtain copies of private emails of climate change researchers. The group, which has had financial backing from the Koch brothers as well as corporations like Exxon Mobil is arguing that they can have access to these emails under the Freedom of Information Act. Among the scientists they are going after is Michael Mann who created a graph showing the alarming outcomes of global warming for the documentary film ‘An Inconvenient Truth.’ Click here for a Guardian newspaper article about the story.

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