Obama to pledge cuts in government waste
March 4, 2009 08:19 AM - MSNBC
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama plans to change how government contracts are awarded and who can earn them, a move his aides say would save taxpayers about $40 billion a year by making the process more competitive. Obama will sign a presidential memo Wednesday that changes government contracting procedures, an administration official told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity in order to discuss the decision before it was announced.
Indonesia applies for World Bank forest CO2 scheme
March 4, 2009 08:00 AM - Reuters
SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Indonesia has applied to join a World Bank program that supports developing nations' efforts to fight deforestation and help them earn cash through the sale of tradable carbon credits. The Bank's $350 million Forest Carbon Partnership Facility aims to support developing states design and create projects under a U.N.-backed scheme that could eventually earn poorer nations billions of dollars a year by protecting their forests.
Hungary burns carbon credibility propping up budget
February 27, 2009 09:08 AM - WWF
Hungary - a major seller of carbon credits— will weaken its credibility in the growing international carbon markets by using revenues to prop up its budget rather than green its energy production, WWF-Hungary has warned. Mr Imre Szabo, the Minister of Environment, announced that "the Ministry will cut its annual budget this year by freezing 67 million Euros from its 2009 Kyoto carbon trading revenues".
Polluters pay in Obama's 'green' budget
February 27, 2009 08:57 AM - Agence France-Presse
US President Barack Obama is banking on a landmark carbon gas cap-and-trade system to both fight climate change and pump 80 billion dollars into the Treasury purse to fund renewable energy programs. The innovative program -- similar to one already in place in Europe -- would rev up US efforts against global warming by reducing the output of carbon dioxide and other polluting gases, while raising direly-needed revenue.
Study urges U.S.-China climate change summit
February 26, 2009 08:43 AM - Reuters
BEIJING (Reuters) - The United States and China should hold a summit featuring an agreement on climate change, helping to create international support for a new global pact by the end of 2009, a former White House adviser said on Thursday. China and the United States have often been icy rivals over trade and security, and they are also the world's top two emitters of the greenhouse gases from burning fossil fuels that are stoking global warming.
EPA Set to Move Toward Carbon-Dioxide Regulation
February 23, 2009 09:48 AM - The Wall Street Journal
WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama's climate czar said the Environmental Protection Agency will soon determine that carbon-dioxide emissions represent a danger to the public and propose new rules to regulate emissions of the greenhouse gas from a range of industries. Carol Browner, special adviser to the president on climate change and energy, said in an interview Sunday that the EPA is looking at a 2007 Supreme Court ruling that requires the agency to determine whether carbon dioxide endangers public health or welfare. And the agency "will make an endangerment finding," she said.
UN Reaches Landmark Agreement to Reduce Global Mercury Pollution
February 23, 2009 09:20 AM - Organic Consumers Association
Representatives from more than 140 countries today committed to reduce global mercury pollution, which will help protect the world's citizens from the dangerous neurotoxin. This agreement was propelled by the United States' reversal in policy, which also influenced policy reversals of other countries, including China and India. The announcement is a historic step forward in the fight against mercury pollution, according to scientists and policy experts at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). "This is great news for reducing mercury pollution around the world, and shows a commitment from the Obama Administration to international environmental issues," said Susan Egan Keane, policy analyst for NRDC. "The United States has taken a leadership role that will chart a new course on mercury protections around the world. We have set a strong example that is already influencing others to do the same."
A collapsing carbon market makes mega-pollution cheap
February 23, 2009 09:05 AM - The Guardian
'Roll up for the great pollution fire sale, the ultimate chance to wreck the climate on the cheap. You sir, over there, from the power company - look at this lovely tonne of freshly made, sulphur-rich carbon dioxide. Last summer it cost an eyewatering €31 to throw up your smokestack, but in our give-away global recession sale, that's been slashed to a crazy €8.20. Dump plans for the wind turbine! Compare our offer with costly solar energy! At this low, low price you can't afford not to burn coal!" Set up to price pollution out of existence, carbon trading is pricing it back in. Europe's carbon markets are in collapse.
Western states' climate laws: the cost of inaction
February 19, 2009 09:37 AM - LA Times
If Western states don't substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions, they could face billions of dollars in health care and other related costs by 2020, according to reports by economists for the University of Oregon's Climate Leadership Initiative's Program on Climate Economics. Washington, Oregon and New Mexico will probably face associated annual costs of $3.8 billion, $3.3 billion and $3.2 billion by 2020, respectively, if they don't rein in greenhouse gas emissions, logging and other factors that drive climate change, according to reports released Monday.
E.P.A. Expected to Regulate Carbon Dioxide
February 19, 2009 09:34 AM - NY Times
WASHINGTON - The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to act for the first time to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that scientists blame for the warming of the planet, according to top Obama administration officials. The decision, which most likely would play out in stages over a period of months, would have a profound impact on transportation, manufacturing costs and how utilities generate power. It could accelerate the progress of energy and climate change legislation in Congress and form a basis for the United States’ negotiating position at United Nations climate talks set for December in Copenhagen.