Thursday, March 17, 2016

Victoria's Green Matters - 17th March 2016

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

US President Barack Obama has steadily worked throughout his presidency to bring in measures to limit greenhouse gas emissions regardless of the conflicting arrangements made by his predecessors. He has now joined forces with new Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to wage war on emissions of methane – the most dangerous of all the greenhouse gases. The two countries have committed to cut emissions from the oil and gas sector by up to 45% below 2012 levels by 2025 through promoting carbon markets, capping emissions from hundreds of thousands of oil and gas wells and protecting indigenous communities where warming is beyond the point of no return.

They have also agreed to rally the G20 nations behind the Paris climate change accord in time for the ratification ceremony due to take place on 22 April 2016. This agreement must be ratified by at least 55 countries, representing 55% of global emissions.

Regarding the Arctic, the US and Canada have pledged to convene a high level summit in August to act with regard to highest recorded temperatures, sea ice loss, permafrost thaws and wildfires that are creating a dangerous and irreversible impact on the polar regions leading to sea level rise and changing patterns of weather. This is all well and good but environmentalists have been quick to demand an immediate end to Arctic drilling for oil and have put pressure on Prime Minister Trudeau to call a halt to pipeline projects from the Alberta tar sands.

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