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Environment

Are cities the key to curbing climate change?

Green city

For several decades, the focus of climate campaigning has been on securing international deals such as the recent Paris Agreement.  To achieve this, campaigners within each country expend a lot of energy trying to push reluctant national governments into honouring and extending agreed international action plans. But are national governments …

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Trump’s environmental reality check

Norfolk Navy Base

It is hard to know what, if anything, Donald Trump really thinks about climate change.  In many public speeches he has claimed that climate change is a hoax.  On the other hand, this did not stop him applying to build a sea wall to protect his golf course on the …

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Biomass fuel is adding to global warming

Wood burning

Using biomass as a replacement for coal in electricity generation was a seductive idea a decade or so ago.  Pellets made from scrap timber, sawdust and shavings could be used to fuel our power stations.  And since these came from trees that could be replaced, they were to all intents …

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Our convenient lie

Fossil Fuel dependency

With the Republicans back in charge of the USA, most environmental campaigners are focused on the damage that might be caused by a bonfire of regulations aimed at regenerating the fossil fuel industry. While these concerns are very real, they also provide a convenient reason not to examine our own …

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This is what climate change looks like

Spanish Snow

News that supermarkets have been rationing broccoli and iceberg lettuces was met with the usual British stiff upper lip.  But we should ask a few searching questions about why produce that we have taken for granted is suddenly unavailable, and what this might tell us about the resilience of our globalised …

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Trump’s energy policy may not be as bad as you think

Solar power

Donald Trump’s election has been viewed with horror by environmentalists.  Not only does the next US President believe that climate change is a hoax (something his naval advisors will be setting him straight about in the near future) but he seems determined to expand America’s most polluting energy sources. In …

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Economic woes have an environmental bright side

Carbon

A faltering global economy may have been at least partially responsible for Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, but it has had environmental benefits.  According to an analysis by the Global Carbon Project, world carbon dioxide emissions from energy and industry have remained flat for the third year in …

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Our best efforts on climate change will not be enough

Climate Change

In the course of two weeks, we have seen more international agreement and action on climate change than ever before.  On 4 October Canada introduced a carbon tax, setting a standard for other nations to follow.  On the same day the Paris climate agreement came into effect.  Two days later, …

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