President Emmanuel Macron said Monday he plans to call a referendum on changing the constitution in order to include a commitment to fight against climate change and for the protection of the environment.
If elected, Joe Biden and his allies are preparing to pass climate change legislation, piece by piece — knowing full well that the candidate’s $2 trillion plan would be a tough sell. While highly unlikely to pass in its entirety, a President Biden could have real impact: solar panels and wind turbines spread across the country’s mountains and prairies, electric charging stations nearly as ubiquitous as gas stations and a gradual decrease in the nation’s planet-warming greenhouse pollution.
In an exciting move of bold leadership and progressive climate action, Japan is aiming to cut greenhouse gases to zero by 2050 and become a carbon-neutral society. Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga made the announcement on Monday, stating “Responding to climate change is no longer a constraint on economic growth.”
While clean technologies like offshore wind, carbon capture and solar power are clearly a huge part of any climate solution, addition measures including new incentives, laws, rules, bans, appliance standards, taxes and institutional innovations are also needed.
The Hawai‘i State Senate announced that a bill protecting Hawai‘i’s coastal ecosystems was signed into law by Gov. David Ige. The enacted legislation includes a provision to ban further construction of sea walls and coastal hardening projects.
Backers of the bill say “the convergence of dense development along shorelines, increasing landward migration of shoreline due to sea level rise and other human and natural impacts, and extensive beach loss fronting shoreline armoring necessitated the revision of existing policies and regulations.”
…the Electoral College also undermines the fight against climate change. If every additional vote in California, Oregon, and Washington—which between them boast roughly 50 million people—mattered as much as every additional vote in a swing state, Biden might have spent the past few weeks touring the West Coast and explaining how his plans can save its residents from a climate apocalypse that threatens to make their home unliveable. But the Electoral College rules that out. Biden has no incentive to run up his margin in three reliably blue states. Instead, he’s singularly focused on purple ones in the Midwest. So far this month, he’s visited Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, and he’s headed to Minnesota next week. Conventional wisdom holds that in a Midwest built on fossil fuels and heavy industry, focusing on climate change is politically risky.
No country has been able to control the virus without a “fence”- policies like travel bans, quarantines, or checkpoints that countries or states put in place to keep out infections. Fences are not enough to stop the virus on their own, but they’re a necessary part of the solution. European countries and U.S. states had hoped otherwise, but they opened their arms to their neighbours too soon and got infected in the hug. As long as states fail to control their borders, the coronavirus will come back.
Although Riskthinking.Ai’s scenarios typically map out climate-related financial risks, the same methodology is currently helping Canadian policy-makers confront the radical uncertainty of COVID-19. Please navigate to the Case Study page on the Riskthinking.AI website to learn more.
Spurious methods used in neoclassical economics have resulted in a gross underestimation of the potential economic harm caused by climate change. Correcting for such errors makes it feasible that the economic damages from climate change are at least an order of magnitude worse than forecast by economists, and may be so great as to threaten the survival of human civilization.
Methane leaks from oil and gas wells will no longer be regulated in the US, as the Trump administration rolls back a set of environmental rules even in the face of opposition from large energy companies. While this is a “gift to beleaguered oil and gas companies, which have seen profits collapse from the Covid-19 pandemic,” it flies in the face of urgently needed climate action.
We couldn’t agree more that it’s time for companies to go “all in” on climate – to base every major decision on the climate bottom line as well as the financial bottom line. This report offers high-level guidance on climate policy for key stakeholders who want to drive change, from CEOs to board directors to concerned employees, and aligns with Riskthinking’s approach to assessing and responding to climate risk.