Climate Progress: This Christmas Shattered Heat Records
There was no white Christmas for the eastern half of the U.S. this year, far from it in fact. Record-high holiday temperatures in several states -- 86 degrees in Tampa, Florida, 83 degrees in Houston, Texas, 67 degrees in Boston, Massachusetts, 68 degrees in Burlington, Vermont and 66 degrees in New York City, just to name a few -- are an exclamation point on the end of what will be the globe’s hottest year to date.
The heat is adding fuel to severe weather in several states, storms that turned deadly across the South.
AFP: Russia Warming '2.5 Times Quicker' Than Global Average
Russia is warming more than twice as fast as the average for the rest of the world, the environment ministry said Friday, sounding an alarm on the rise in floods and wildfires nationwide.
A government report on environmental protection said temperatures in Russia had warmed by 0.42 degrees Celsius per decade since 1976, or 2.5 times quicker than the global warming trend of 0.17 degrees.
"Climate change leads to growth of dangerous meteorological phenomena," the ministry said in a comment to the report published Friday.
Guardian: Australia's Carbon Emissions Are Increasing, Government Report Shows
Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions increased in 2014-15, a report released with obscure timing by the Australian government has shown.
The December 2015 quarterly update of carbon emissions, which covers the period to the end of June 2015, was released with no fanfare on Christmas Eve. The quarterly update forms part of Australia’s international reporting of its emissions
It shows that Australia’s emissions increased by 0.8% last financial year compared with the previous one, and 1.3% when land use and deforestation were taken into account. Australia generated 549.3 mega-tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2014-15.
MIT Technology Review: Our Energy Transformation in 2015
In 2015 a series of events combined to drive what may well to be profound shifts -- even turning points -- in the history of the energy sector.
The ongoing decline in oil prices, which began as early as 2012, accelerated noticeably in 2015. The benchmark West Texas Intermediate oil price fell to $34.53 a barrel on December 18, lower than it’s been since before the financial crash of 2008, with no floor in sight. Goldman Sachs has predicted that oil could fall as low as $20 a barrel, a development that would cripple most oil-producing economies and have geopolitical ripple effects for years to come. At the same time, the price of natural gas remains near historic lows. Cheap oil and natural gas are conventionally thought to be negative influences on the adoption of renewable energy, lessening the incentives of businesses and consumers to give up fossil fuels. But that doesn’t seem to have slowed the shift away from fossil fuels in 2015.
Al Bawaba: Iran Sets Up Growth Plan to Develop Renewable Energy
Iran has set up an aggressive growth plan to boost green energies as a key sustainability factor as part of the economic diversification goal under its sixth Development Plan, according to Frost & Sullivan.
The environmental and economic sustainability issues in Iran’s Economy Mission 2025 have led to incentive plans to attract the private sector to renovate obsolete power technologies and develop renewable and biomass energies across the country.
Based on Iran’s energy road map, the government plans to embrace green technologies to increase nominal capacity of power plants from 74 GW to over 120 GW by the end of 2025.