State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

Climate News Roundup: Week of 9/12 and 9/20

World Bank looks to South African climate talks, Associated Press, Sept. 13

Andrew Steer, special envoy of the World Bank on climate change, is pushing for a focus on the impacts of climate change on agriculture and food security during the upcoming UNFCCC negotiations in Durban, South Africa. Although Durban is not expected to be a “pledging session,” the conference’s South African hosts plan to push for industrialized countries to transfer funds and clean technologies to developing countries, in addition to adaptation aid, to cope with the interface between poverty, food insecurity, and climate change.

‘Serious’ error found in carbon savings for biofuels, NY Times, Sept. 14

The European Environment Agency Scientific Committee estimates that the EU is currently overestimating reductions in greenhouse gas emissions achieved through the use of biofuels. The overestimation stems from an accounting error, whereby the current rules double count some emissions savings.

IEA paper finds well managed Bioenergy generates carbon emissions reductions, Climate L, Sept. 19

A new report by the International Energy Agency finds that responsibly produced bioenergy can result in significant emissions from the energy sector. In addition, when the crops are well grown in an integrated crop system, the land-use pressure of bioenergy crops can be reduced. However, both direct and indirect effects of bioenergy crops on land-use change remain difficult to quantify.

Warming climate triggers sweeping change for some Alaska Natives, Alaska Dispatch, Sept. 25

The Journal of Human Organization has published a study collecting experiences of Alaskan hunters and elders in the Yup’ik community. The study chronicles a changing climate and way of life for the Alaskan community, including decreasing spring snow depth, shorter spring flooding season, less river ice in the winter, and changing species patterns.

Banner featuring a collage of extreme heat images.

Recent record-breaking heat waves have affected communities across the world. The Extreme Heat Workshop will bring together researchers and practitioners to advance the state of knowledge, identify community needs, and develop a framework for evaluating risks with a focus on climate justice. Register by June 15

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