World Meteorological Organization Says Recent Years Hottest on Record + Trump Climate Denial Threatens U.N. Climate Change Agreement

World Meteorological Organization Says Recent Years Hottest on Record

November 09, 2016 Headlines

In climate news, the World Meteorological Organization said Tuesday that the five years from 2011 to 2015 were the hottest on record, with hundreds of thousands of deaths likely due to global warming from human activity. The findings were presented in Marrakesh, Morocco, where United Nations climate talks got underway this week. The report found human-induced climate change was directly linked to extreme events, including an East African drought and famine in 2011 that claimed over a quarter-million lives. Elena Manaenkova of the World Meteorological Organization says the Earth’s temperature has already risen by 1 degree Celsius, which is nearing the limit of a 1.5 degree rise set by the Paris Agreement.

Elena Manaenkova: “The conclusions are very clear that that was the warmest five-year period on record. We also confirm that the 2015 was the year when the global surface temperature exceeded 1 degree, and it links to the debate during this climate conference and the Paris Agreement targets.”

Trump Climate Denial Threatens U.N. Climate Change Agreement

November 09, 2016 Headlines

Meanwhile, many delegates to the U.N. talks are expressing panic over the election of Donald Trump, saying the outcome threatens the future of any international agreement to slow catastrophic climate change. The Republican president-elect has said he will “cancel the Paris climate agreement and stop all payments of U.S. tax dollars to U.N. global warming programs.” Trump has also promised to promote coal power and fracking, and says he will allow for oil and gas drilling on federal lands. He has also promised to ask TransCanada to renew its permit application for the Keystone XL pipeline.

Indian Supreme Court Orders Action on Toxic Air Pollution Crisis

November 09, 2016 Headlines

India’s Supreme Court has ordered the federal government to come up with a plan to combat toxic air pollution so thick that it’s being described as “beyond measurable limits.” The government has 48 hours to respond. A recent UNICEF report found 600,000 children under five die of air pollution every year, with about a third of the world’s at-risk children living in northern India and surrounding countries.

North Dakota: Pipeline Company Says It Will Soon Begin Drilling Despite Lack of Permit

November 09, 2016 Headlines

In North Dakota, the company building the Dakota Access pipeline says it is preparing to drill beneath Lake Oahe on the Missouri River within two weeks, even though the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has not granted a permit. The announcement shocked and infuriated opponents of the $3.8 billion pipeline, which has faced months of resistance from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe along with representatives of over 200 other indigenous tribes and non-Native allies. Opponents, who call themselves “water protectors,” say they were promised by an Army Corps of Engineers official that the Dakota Access pipeline would be delayed by at least 30 days, should the Obama administration agree to a permit. But pipeline builder Energy Transfer Partners said Tuesday the Army Corps was mistaken when it said the company had agreed to slow construction. The announcement came one week after President Obama said the Army Corps was looking at a possible “reroute” of the pipeline.

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