State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

Climate News Roundup: Week of 2/6

Three States to Require Insurers to Disclose Climate-Change Response PlansNew York Times 2/2

California, New York and Washington have announced a new requirement for insurance companies to disclose their plans for responding to climate change risks. The new regulation expands a requirement already in place for the largest insurers in those states. While insurance companies have been proactive in identifying climate change risk, advocacy groups and the insurance commissioners believe that these risks have not been adequately incorporated into business planning.

Steroids, Baseball and Climate Change: What do home runs and weather extremes have in common? National Center for Atmospheric Research

A new series of pieces on NCAR’s website discusses the state of scientific knowledge about the connections between (extreme) weather and climate change.

Sacrificing the Desert to Save the Earth, Los Angeles Times 2/5

Large solar energy installations are being developed in the deserts of the US southwest with the help of federal and state subsidies. In spite of their scale and environmental impacts, solar projects have also benefited from the support of environmental interest groups. Protection of public lands and endangered habitats has historically been a high priority for environmental advocates in the western US, but controversy over the large scale solar development has been muted as climate change mitigation becomes a primary focus.

EU  Rebuffs China’s Challenge to Airline Emission System, New York Times 2/7

The EU will continue with its plan to charge airlines for their greenhouse gas emissions, even though China has announced its airlines may not do so without official permission from the government, raising the specter of an aviation trade war which many have predicted. The law, which went into effect January 1, requires airlines to account for all emissions on flights using European airports and has been highly controversial.

Airline Emissions Restraints May Be Relaxed in Europe, New York Times 2/8

The EU may relax its rules on aviation emissions if countries show progress toward an international system for regulating emissions from aviation. The first payments under the system are not due until early 2013, allowing time for the industry to come up with an alternative it finds more agreeable.

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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