Southeast Asia Stumbles on Biofuels

Southeast Asia Stumbles on BiofuelsAlthough countries in Southeast Asia have respectfully committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the landmark pact adopted in Paris in 2015, regional economic and political developments have either slowed or halted the momentum for biofuel production and slowed the development of other renewable energy sources. These countries, collectively growing at a 5 percent annual…

Bonn Climate Negotiations

Bonn Climate NegotiationsThe past few days of United Nations-sponsored climate negotiations in Bonn, Germany, have been the focus of heated discussions over whether or not private companies should be allowed to participate as observers in the Conference of Parties (COP) 22 in Marrakech. Last week, a group of developing countries — Ecuador, Guatemala, Bolivia, and Nicaragua —…

Global Climate Change: Impossible Goals?

Global Climate Change: Impossible Goals?Given the overwhelming and seemingly almost uncontrollable amount of greenhouse gases pouring into the world’s atmosphere, it is starting to seem impossible to meet the 1.5C rise limit in temperatures by 2030. Governments may have to turn to carbon capture – so-called “negative emissions” – in the effort to control temperatures, a solution that critics…

Duterte Likely to Go His Own Way on Energy

Duterte Likely to Go His Own Way on EnergyWhile presumptive Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte has named the men who will hold several key posts in the incoming government, he has yet to name the individual who will head the Department of Energy, which plays a crucial role in shaping the energy roadmap of the Philippines. The new DOE chief will have to decide…

Post-Paris: Call for Deeper Commitment to Slow Climate Change

Post-Paris: Call for Deeper Commitment to Slow Climate ChangeWith the world having just gone through the seventh straight month of record average global temperatures, climate change advocates are meeting in Bonn this week, seeking to push government bodies into following up on last December’s historic climate pact in Paris. Climate intersessional negotiations began on May 16 as countries begin to prepare for the 22nd…

Anti-Coal Movement Grows in Philippines

Anti-Coal Movement Grows in PhilippinesA year ago, with the Philippine economy soaring upward along with its expanding population, energy officials issued environmental compliance certificates for 21 new coal-fired plants to meet the country’s burgeoning energy needs. Some 40 percent of the country’s energy needs are now provided by coal, in a country whose citizens are fearful of superstorms that…

US Top Court Imperils Asia Climate Control Efforts

US Top Court Imperils Asia Climate Control EffortsOnly a few months after the historic signing of the United Nations-sponsored COP-21 climate agreement in Paris in December, there are already signs of its possible failure. Early last week, the United States Supreme Court stayed the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Power Plan (CPP) until its legality can be adjudicated, which could take…

The Philippines in 2016

The Philippines in 2016After five years of moderate success, the Philippines in 2016 will enter into one of the highest risk scenarios for doing business that the country has experienced in years, according to a report by the Manila-based country risk firm Pacific Strategies and Assessments. “A confluence of political, security, geopolitical and economic conditions in the coming…

Vulnerable Countries Demand More Stringent Greenhouse Cuts

Vulnerable Countries Demand More Stringent Greenhouse CutsSome 140 of the world’s 196 countries – more than 70 percent – have demanded a more ambitious global warming target of 1.5 degrees Celsius from pre-industrial times against a 2C target being sought by countries attending the United Nations-sponsored Congress of Parties in Paris this week. They were joined in an unprecedented move by…

Climate Finance: Make or Break in Paris Deal

Climate Finance: Make or Break in Paris DealAlthough proposed language for mitigating climate change was supposed to be mostly set in talks in Bonn, Germany in November, the so-called Congress of Parties, meeting in Paris through Dec. 11 may have stumbled over new language proposed by the United States that developing countries have a responsibility to help finance combating global warming. Two…
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