The pro-coal position of Poland’s energy ministry has thrown sand into the country’s climate diplomacy as COP24 president-designate Michał Kurtyka intensifies his diplomatic tour ahead of the United Nation’s annual climate meeting later this year in Katowice.
The UK has been accused of trying to “fudge” how much money it spends on subsidising coal mining and fossil fuel use despite its pledge to phase out environmentally harmful subsidies by 2020.
The EU’s decision to phase out palm oil biodiesel is likely to backfire, with negative repercussions not just on the countries concerned but also on international relations and the climate. The EU should hence invest more heavily in climate diplomacy in order to find a real solution to problems such as deforestation and wildlife loss.
Former UN climate Chief Christiana Figueres, one of the architects of the Paris Agreement, has called on the European Union to step up regulatory action against deforestation in the global south by tackling emissions of imported agricultural goods like beef, soy and palm oil.
France likes to be seen as a leader on climate action, but when it comes to the role of forests, the country’s priorities lie elsewhere.
Assessing the positive impacts of climate action, an approach which considers the broad spectrum of social, economic and health benefits, has increasingly gained global recognition. This is due, in part, to the insightful work done by the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate. On this platform, Christian Friis Bach from UNECE noted on February 2016: “Taking into account such co-benefits can radically change the picture and demonstrate that action can pay off, not only in the long term, but also in the short to medium term.” With the Paris Agreement recently ratified by the European Union (EU), what is the potential of the benefits approach for achieving these new commitments in Europe?
One of the last biodiversity hotspots in Europe was also backdrop to one of its last violent conflicts and now home to its newest nation states. The Prokletije/Bjeshket e Nemuna Mountains, often referred to as the Southern Alps, are a large expanse of wilderness and stunning alpine landscapes that form the border between Montenegro, Albania, and Kosovo.
How can Arctic states prevent the region from becoming a pawn in outside conflicts or domestic crises? Mikkel Runge Olesen believes that the states must inject greater consistency and stability into their national Arctic strategies.
Indian President Pranab Mukherjee’s visit to Norway in mid-October, the first by an Indian head of state, was a signal of India’s rising profile in the Arctic.
The lack of engagement with local communities is at the root of many conflicts arising in the extractives industry.
In March 2014, the EU Commission published a proposal on conflict minerals reporting, criticized by some as falling behind both expectations and comparable regulation in the U.S. Driven by a steady growth in global demand, prices for metallic raw materials have risen over the past years.
A row over palm oil is brewing between one of the biggest producers and biggest consumers of the product.
The Malaysian palm oil industry has accused the EU of telling “major inaccuracies and untruths”, after it expressed concern last week over illegal logging across South East Asia.
Concerns are being raised over Poland’s suitability to host UN climate talks in a month, after a government-run blog appeared to suggest melting ice in the Arctic could benefit the world.