China launches Effort To Green Inner Mongolian Desert
October 16, 2007 04:00 PM -
Bejing, China - Beijing and Seoul recently signed an agreement to launch a joint program to harness China's eighth-largest desert - the Ulan Buh in North China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.
About 15 million yuan (1.99 million U.S. dollars) will be spent growing trees and building greenhouses to prevent environmental deterioration in the Ulan Buh region, according to officials involved in the project.
Kyoto approach on climate is "bad policy": Bush
October 16, 2007 07:56 AM - Caren Bohan -Reuters
President George W. Bush said on Monday his administration's approach of emphasizing voluntary approaches to address climate change was working and he denounced Kyoto-style mandatory caps as "bad policy."
Bush's comments were the latest sign that his opposition to binding emissions caps remains firmly entrenched, even as he has made efforts to show he wants to be more engaged in the global debate on climate change amid sharp criticism from other countries.
Virgin Atlantic 747 to Test Biofuel in Early 2008
October 15, 2007 10:47 PM - Al Yoon, Reuters
BOSTON (Reuters) - British billionaire Richard Branson said on Monday his Virgin Group hopes to produce clean biofuels by around the start of the next decade and early next year will test a jet plane on renewable fuel.
Virgin hopes to provide clean fuel for buses, trains and cars within three or four years, Branson told a Mortgage Bankers Association meeting in Boston.
In the meantime, Virgin will be conducting a test jet flight on renewable fuels. "Early next year we will fly one of our 747s without passengers with one of the fuels that we have developed," Branson told the annual conference.
Torrential rains, floods kill 20 in Central America
October 14, 2007 10:07 PM -
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica (Reuters) - Emergency officials across Central America worked to clean up towns inundated by recent deadly floods and landslides, and braced for more bad weather on Sunday.
At least 20 people were killed and thousands evacuated across Central America after days of torrential rain sparked landslides and flooding.
The same weather system that killed 23 people in a Haitian village on Friday triggered a landslide that buried 14 people under mud and debris in Costa Rica.
Red Cross workers had been digging through the debris since Thursday, when about 2.5 acres (1 hectare) of land on a steep slope gave way and fell on the small town of Atenas, about 20 miles west of the Costa Rican capital.
Planet Wins Nobel Prize
October 14, 2007 09:18 AM - , Worldwatch Institute
The awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to Al Gore and the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is a triumph for the planet and its inhabitants, who will increasingly struggle to adjust as the world warms.
It is with extreme satisfaction that we receive the news that Gore and the IPCC have been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize,” said Oystein Dahle, Chairman of the Board of Worldwatch Institute and a leading Norwegian environmentalist.
Five Asian nations to study flood, climate risks
October 14, 2007 05:53 AM - Alister Doyle, Environment Correspondent
OSLO (Reuters) - A new U.N. course will help five Asian nations cope with a predicted worsening of floods due to climate change that may threaten cities from Beijing to Hanoi, the U.N. University said on Sunday.
Experts from China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Nepal and Sri Lanka would take part from November in a three-month course run by the U.N. University in Thailand to help map risks of downpours, rivers breaking their banks and rising sea levels.
If successful, the course could be expanded to other regions.
World Bank studies rising seas in Guyana
October 12, 2007 08:17 PM - Lesley Wroughton
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The World Bank and Global Environmental Facility have approved $3.8 million in grant funding to protect low-lying coastal areas in Guyana threatened by rising sea levels, an official said on Friday.
This is the first project of its kind to be approved under the Global Environmental Facility's Special Climate Change Fund. It will look at ways to improve coastal drainage in the small South American country.
Gerald Meier, a consultant with the World Bank's hazard risk management group, said the project was responding to the catastrophic flooding in Guyana in 2005, which affected most of the inhabited northern coast of the country where up to 90 percent of the population lives.
Will Nobel mean Gore will run for president?
October 12, 2007 06:12 PM - Steve Holland
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Now that former Vice President Al Gore has won the Nobel Peace Prize, will he use the buzz from the award to launch a late bid for the presidency in 2008?
People close to Gore, 59, do not think so but thousands of Democratic activists are pleading with him to reconsider and join the crowded Democratic field.
In brief remarks in Palo Alto, California, on Friday, Gore did not address the presidential race but did not rule it out either.
Gore says focused on urgent climate change issues
October 12, 2007 02:53 PM - Reuters
Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday, stressed the urgency of his work on climate change and said he was getting straight back to work on the issue.
"We have to quickly find a way to change the world's consciousness about exactly what we're facing," Gore told reporters in Palo Alto, appearing in public nearly nine hours after the award was announced in Oslo.
World Bank fund to pay for protecting forests
October 12, 2007 02:42 PM - Lesley Wroughton, Reuters
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A new fund being developed by the World Bank would pay developing countries hundreds of millions of dollars for protecting and replanting tropical forests, which store huge amounts of carbon that causes climate change.
The Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF), announced by the World Bank on Thursday, will be part of U.N. climate change negotiations in Bali in December to shape a global agreement for when the Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012.