pollution

China and the U.S. Announce New Climate Goals

John H. Cushman, Jr.

The United States and China announced new goals for reducing their global warming pollution in the coming decades, with the U.S. ramping up its rate of decarbonization in five to 10 years and China promising that its carbon emissions will peak in the next 15 years. The announcements, which came at a multinational summit in Beijing Tuesday, made clear for the first time the commitments that the two biggest sources of greenhouse gases will make as part of the urgent United Nations negotiations. 

Where Is the Black Political Conversation About Climate Change?

Charles D. Ellison

Even within the context of climate change’s devastating and disproportionate impact on communities of color, black politicos won’t follow the president’s lead on the issue. The Congressional Black Caucus didn’t say if it would, at the very least, take a look at the rules—nor does it list climate change as an issue of focus (leaving it to the multicultural Congressional Progressive Caucus). 

Communities of Color Face Greater Exposure to Pollution

Staff

Communities of color across the United States are exposed to disproportionately high rates of pollution, according to engineering and environmental researchers at the University of Minnesota (UM) released in time for Earth Week. Researchers looked at the variations in pollution exposure across race, income, education attainment and other categories, and found race to be the dominant determining factor.

Russia vs. Greenpeace: The Battle for the Arctic

Zahra Hirji

An environmental organization with a $350 million war chest, a giant protest vessel, 28 activists and a rubber raft have succeeded in drawing Russian President Vladimir V. Putin into a very public global dispute. Attention is now focused on the Greenpeace activists who were arrested last month by Coast Guard agents for trying to hang a protest banner on an Arctic Ocean oil platform and whether they will languish in prison for up to 15 years each on dubious piracy charges.

In Calif., Minorities Pave the Way for Climate Change

Ngoc Nguyen

Their sentiments echoed the findings of a poll released last week that shows that an overwhelming majority of Californians want the state to act now to address global warming instead of waiting for the economy to improve – with the strongest support voiced by Latinos, African Americans and Asians. The Public Policy Institute of California survey found that nearly two-thirds of whites felt that way, while 88 percent of Latinos, 83 percent of blacks, and 78 percent of Asians held that view.

Climate Change, Scarcity of Natural Resources Spell Future Global Unrest

Michael Klare

It is important to note that absolute scarcity doesn’t have to be on the horizon in any given resource category for this scenario to kick in. A lack of adequate supplies to meet the needs of a growing, ever more urbanized and industrialized global population is enough. Given the wave of extinctions that scientists are recording, some resources -- particular species of fish, animals, and trees, for example -- will become less abundant in the decades to come, and may even disappear altogether. 

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