Climate Progress: New Prime Minister Could Signal a Change in Direction for Australia’s Climate Efforts

Former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, who once publicly said “the climate change argument is absolute crap,” was defeated in a leadership battle Monday evening.

His replacement, Malcolm Turnbull, requested a Liberal Party leadership ballot to challenge Abbott amid flagging poll numbers. In a vote of 54 to 44, Turnbull displaced Abbott as leader of the actually conservative Liberal Party, meaning Turnbull became Australia’s 29th prime minister.

The question for many around the world is whether Turnbull will be more progressive on climate or energy policy than Abbott was.

San Diego Tribune: Will Solar Energy Shine on Poor Communities?

A billion-dollar effort to bring more rooftopsolarto multi-family housing projects in poor communities is among a raft of clean-energy remedies approved late last week by California lawmakers, and now awaiting the governor's signature.

As the legislative session ended, last-minute political wrangling focused primarily on aggressive new mandates for 2030 to double energy efficiency, generate half of California's energy from renewable sources like solar, and a defeated effort to cut petroleum consumption in half.

Tucked into several approved bills are provisions designed to address the relatively slow spread of rooftop solar within low-income communities and at multi-family housing complexes.

The Independent: Scottish Wind Farm Projects 'Put at Risk by Government Subsidy Cuts'

Wind energy projects that could power 1.2 million Scottish homes have been put at risk after a cut in subsidies by the U.K. government caused an "investment hiatus" in the industry, a major new report has found.

Investment in Scottish wind farms has stalled after U.K. ministers announced in June that any new wind projects would be excluded from a subsidy scheme for renewable energy from April 2016.

Reuters: Chinese Emissions of Two Key Pollutants Drop Slightly in First Half of 2015

China's emissions of two key pollutants fell slightly in the first half of 2015, according to the environment ministry, as authorities stepped up punitive measures to combat environmental degradation.

Emitted levels of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide -- both associated with acid rain -- were down 4.6 percent and 8.8 percent, respectively, over the same period last year, the Ministry of Environmental Protection said in a statement on its website last week.

AltEnergyStocks: Demand Picture Cloudy for Trina's Solar Farm Spinoff

A new plan by Trina to separately list some capital-intensive assets has overtones of desperation. The intense pressure solar-panel makers continue to feel as their sector struggles to recover from a downturn that dates back four years and is due to massive oversupply.

Panel prices have rebounded somewhat over the last two years, and many of the best-run companies have returned to profitability during that time. Even better performers like Trina are feeling pressure as they pour massive money into construction of new solar power plants, in a bid to create more demand for their products.