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Welcome back America! Congratulations to @JoeBiden and @KamalaHarris for their election! While we are about to celebrate the 5th anniversary of the Paris Agreement, this victory symbolizes our need to act together more than ever, in view of climate emergency. 🇺🇸#Election2020
Why This Matters: Currently, the US is one of only a very few countries not committed to the global effort to curb emissions and keep rising temperatures in check. When the US announced it was leaving the Paris Agreement, European leaders expressed regrets and carried on, but a Biden administration means a return to international climate collaboration. Having a president who not only acknowledges the science of climate change but has an ambitious plan of action is “a 180-degree turn,” as the Washington Post wrote. And given where things stand with this crisis, there is no time to waste.
Will A Summit Help? Thunberg Wants More
The Trump administration’s environmental rollbacks have increased American emissions and harmed our public health, making it easier for companies to pollute our air and water. The Biden administration is expected to reverse the environmental rollbacks and reinstate regulations. Biden has also said he’ll host a “climate world summit” to convince leaders of high-emitting countries to take action beyond their current commitments. In a recent interview with the Guardian, Greta Thunberg called out international climate summits as “empty words and greenwash.” She criticized leaders for being comfortable setting targets 30 or 40 years in the future, like the UK, China, and Japan’s recent carbon-neutral pledges, but failing to act immediately. “
So the first thing we need to do is understand we are in an emergency [and] admit the fact that we have failed – humanity collectively has failed – because you can’t solve a crisis that you don’t understand,” Thunberg said. Currently, even the planned emission reductions from “climate progressive” countries like the UK and Sweden fail to meet Paris targets. “The climate crisis is just one symptom of a much larger crisis, [including] the loss of biodiversity, the loss of fertile soil but also including inequality and threats to democracy,” she said. “These are symptoms that we are not living sustainably: we have reached the end of the road.”
After a four-year hiatus under the Trump administration, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Climate Change Indicators website is back in action. The public portal includes data on 54 indicators including sea-level rise, Great Lakes ice cover, heat waves, river flooding, and residential energy use.
Why This Matters: People are experiencing the impacts of climate change in their everyday lives, from hotter temperatures to more intense wildfire seasons.
When reading about climate change, you’ll often come across the unit of measurement called a “metric ton of CO2.” That sounds like a lot, but the unit is a bit abstract for most of us when our reference point for a ton is a VW Beetle, the Liberty Bell, or even a baby humpback whale […]
According to a new report from Christian Aid, Kenya, which produces half of all black tea consumed by the UK, may lose a quarter of its growing capacity by 2050, and the tea that makes it into drinkers’ cups may taste a lot different than before. The decline of tea farming has implications for economies worldwide, including Kenya, India, China, and Sri Lanka.
Why This Matters: Tea is the most popular drink other than water globally and the tea industry employs more than 3 million people in Africa alone.
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