Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 33 n° 348

Posts Tagged ‘climate change’

Technology to Combat Climate Change

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 21 luglio 2019

Phytonix Corporation (Px) is proud to announce its recent success in developing breakthrough technologies to reduce harmful industrial emissions. Px scientists have engineered new strains of cyanobacteria which use photosynthesis to convert CO2 into carbon negative industrial chemicals and fuels, such as butanol, pentanol and other higher alcohols. Beneficial oxygen is released in the process. Scientists working with Phytonix have recently noted that they have achieved the highest photosynthetic butanol production ever recorded at laboratory scale. “The climate crisis is an epic battle to preserve Earth and its environment. This cries for a global mobilization and response,” says Bruce Dannenberg, CEO. “Our company has created a gigaton magnitude weapon against climate change capable of removing, via photosynthetic conversion to chemicals and fuels, billions of tonnes of carbon dioxide from our atmosphere annually. A massive global funding initiative must be established to develop and deploy the powerful carbon dioxide utilization (CDU) technologies that will mitigate climate change and stabilize and heal our environment.”Phytonix is headquartered in North Carolina, USA, with a corporate office in Vancouver, Canada, plus development laboratories and partners in Sweden, Germany, the United States, Nova Scotia and British Columbia, Canada, and The Netherlands. Phytonix Canada Corporation is a wholly owned subsidiary of Phytonix Corporation.The firm is currently testing and optimizing its full production process at indoor pilot scale and will soon achieve outdoor pilot scale deployment, both in Europe and the USA, with two multinational industrial corporate partners.The Phytonix process directly reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at the rate of one metric tonne of CO2 per 138 gallons of biobutanol produced. This significantly carbon negative process is expected to produce cost leadership industrial chemicals at less than half the cost of the incumbent fossil producers. Full global deployment could significantly reduce annual carbon dioxide emissions, slow climate change to manageable levels, and win the fight to save Earth!

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Humanitarian summit must address resource gap for local and faith organisations

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 21 Maggio 2016

Manila_ChinatownManila. Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle of Manila says the way we help people caught in emergencies can be more efficient and effective by engaging local organisations, including faith-based institutions.The Caritas Internationalis president will speak at the Special Session on the Religious Engagement on the first day of the World Humanitarian Summit, which takes place on 23-24 May in Istanbul.
“We know that growing inequality, climate change, water scarcity, urbanisation, conflict for resources and the spread of extremism will put millions more in peril. We need a humanitarian system fit for purpose to address these growing needs,” said the Cardinal Tagle.“Despite local organisations, including faith-based institutions, offering extensive networks of infrastructure serving as a source of shelter, care and education, the current humanitarian system of donors too often fails to recognise them.“As resources are stretched, if donors want to reach more people with better quality help then they must utilise better the readymade tools that they have at their disposal. The World Humanitarian Summit offers us the chance to transform the current humanitarian system by giving local organisations their rightful seat at the table.”Caritas says the current top-down approach to humanitarian response must be replaced by an investment in local action, strengthening grassroots capacity, and improving partnership and coordination.
Caritas organisations from the USA, Austria, the UK, Ireland, Netherlands, Lebanon, Luxembourg, Sierra Leone and Niger will be attending the meeting in Istanbul.Caritas speakers include Sean Callahan of Catholic Relief Services and president of Caritas North America, Sabine Attama of CADEV-Caritas Niger on natural disasters and climate change, Chris Bain of CAFOD (Caritas England and Wales) on investing in humanity and Fr. Peter Konteh, executive director of Caritas Freetown in Sierra Leone on the Ebola epidemic.
The Caritas confederation is pledging to promote global leadership on conflict prevention, upholding humanitarian principles, strengthening local capacity, improving coordination and partnership and ensuring those affected by the emergencies are agents of their own destiny.

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72 Nobel Laureates Appeal for Climate Protection

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 8 dicembre 2015

Paris-antenne-vue-eiffel-tour72 recipients of the Nobel Prize urgently warn of the consequences of climate change. They support a declaration that was handed over to the President of the Republic of France, François Hollande, at the Élysée Palace in Paris today by the French Nobel Laureates in Physics Serge Haroche and Claude Cohen-Tannoudji, together with Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK), Germany. The “Mainau Declaration 2015 on Climate Change” states “that the nations of the world must take the opportunity at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris to take decisive action to limit future global emissions.” The declaration was first presented on the occasion of the 65th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting on Mainau Island in Lake Constance, Germany, on Friday, 3 July 2015. Back then it was signed by 36 Nobel Laureates. Since, 36 additional laureates joined the group of supporters.“If left unchecked, our ever-increasing demand for food, water, and energy will eventually overwhelm the Earth’s ability to satisfy humanity’s needs, and will lead to wholesale human tragedy,” the declaration reads. It states that although more data needs to be analysed and further research has to be done, the Fifth Assessment Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) still represents the most reliable scientific assessment on man-made climate change, and that it should therefore be used as a foundation upon which policymakers should discuss actions to oppose this global threat.
The initiators emphasised that they were not experts in climate research but rather a diverse group of scientists who had a deep respect for and understanding of the integrity of the scientific process. The signatories of the declaration have all been awarded Nobel Prizes in Physiology or Medicine, Physics, or Chemistry, except Indian children’s rights activist Kailash Satyarthi, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate of 2014.
“Some of the brightest minds of our planet, the Nobel Laureates, are highlighting what they deem to be one of the greatest challenges of our times: climate change,” says Schellnhuber. He initiated a symposia series carrying the titel “A Noble Cause” a few years ago to direct Nobel Laureates’ attention to global sustainability issues. Two of the participants of the most recent symposium in Hong Kong this April brought the idea of a Nobel Laureates’ climate statement to the longer-running and broader Lindau Meeting and have been gathering support for it amongst fellow Nobel Laureates since then.The term Mainau Declaration has become the designation for socio-political appeals by Nobel Laureates who participated in the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings, the annual gathering with young scientists at the German town of Lindau. The name denotes that these declarations were presented on nearby Mainau Island in Lake Constance, Germany, the traditional venue of the last day of the one-week meeting.The first Mainau Declaration was an appeal against the use of nuclear weapons. Initiated and drafted by the Nobel Prize-winning German nuclear scientists Otto Hahn and Max Born, it was circulated at the 5th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting (11-15 July 1955) and presented on Mainau Island on 15 July 1955. The declaration was initially signed by 18 Nobel Laureates. Within a year, the number of supporters rose to 52 Nobel Laureates.The annual Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting fosters the exchange among scientists of different generations, cultures, and disciplines. Every year, Nobel Laureates convene at Lindau to meet the next generation of leading scientists: 400 to 650 undergraduates, PhD students, and post-doc researchers from approximately 90 countries. The meeting focusses alternately on physiology and medicine, on physics, and on chemistry – the three scientific Nobel Prize disciplines. An interdisciplinary meeting revolving around all three natural sciences is held every five years. In addition, the Lindau Meetings on Economic Sciences are held every three years. The Lindau Meetings were founded in 1951 by Count Lennart Bernadotte af Wisborg, member of the Swedish Royal Family, and the Lindau city councillors Franz Karl Hein and Gustav Wilhelm Parade.

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Global Pilgrimage for International Climate Change Action Starts India Tour

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 21 agosto 2015

New-DelhiNEW DELHI, The People’s Pilgrimage – by individuals around the world to urge for a strong climate change treaty to emerge from of the UN climate change negotiations in Paris this November – initiated its India tour here to-day.Led by Yeb Saño, Philippine Climate Change Commissioner and senior negotiator at the UN talks until his resignation in April this year, the Pilgrimage is a project of Our Voices (www.ourvoices.net) the global interfaith campaign for climate action. Yeb’s widely reported emotional statement at the 2013 UN negotiations in Warsaw, describing the destruction of his home city of Tacloban by Super Typhoon Haiyan, has inspired cooperation across faith groups.The arrival in India of this inter–faith global environmental movement is seen as an important milestone in a country that has suffered the extremes of climate through heat waves, droughts, floods and cyclones but also shows leadership with massive investment in clean solar power. Saño is also slated to visit the Solar Park in Gujarat, Varanasi, Visakhapatnam, and the Kumbh Mela in Nasik. Accompanied by a group of climate change advocates and faith community representatives, he walked this afternoon from Raj Ghat to Jantar Mantar. “The Pilgrimage is our way of reminding the whole world about the reality of climate change and reflecting on the state of our planet”, he told a press conference at the Foreign Correspondents´Association of South Asia premises here late this evening. “For this journey, therefore, every step counts. In our common aspiration to confront the climate crisis, we cannot afford to say that we’ll cross the bridge when we get there. We have to get there now,” he said. “The People’s Pilgrimage is a global expression of sincere concern and calls on our world leaders to find the reciprocal sincerity and generosity – on all sides – and determination to reach a strong climate change agreement. Every step counts. Our aim is to show the world why this climate crisis matters to all of us.”Yeb Saño will lead other groups of pilgrims in subsequent visits to countries in Asia, Africa, and North America. On 30 September he will start a 1,500 kilometer walk from the Vatican City, (an independent enclave in Rome, Italy) to Paris arriving there on 30th November, at the same time as various other pilgrimages from different parts of Europe. “The aim of this initiative is to generate the biggest possible, spiritually and religiously diverse number of voices to show political and industry leaders the strength of support for the moral case and desire for strong and meaningful climate action all over the world. Individuals from every nation are invited to make their own pilgrimages, even just a short walk, showing their deep concern about climate change and demand for action and then to share their reports, videos and photos with the website – http://www.peoplespilgrimage.org. This is a special map-based storytelling platform showing the incredible diversity of faith-based climate change concern and action around the world.”Pilgrims from across the world will converge in Paris and state their demands to the world’s governments in time for the opening on 30 November of the 21st Conference of Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 21). They will insist that the agreement the conference is tasked to adopt contain a full range of measures relating to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, adaptation to climate impacts, technology and finance and a long-term goal. your outlet. The agreement must ensure that the increase in the global average temperature above pre-industrial levels remains below 2°C (3.6°F) , a threshold that many scientists would consider as the point of no return leading to disastrous runaway climate change which could not be halted by human action.

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UNDP calls for governments, businesses and communities to boost collaboration for a new climate and development era

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 10 dicembre 2014

GP01XT2Lima, Peru, Tackling climate change requires serious collaboration between the public and private sectors, engagement with civil society, and having strong and transparent institutions, UN Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator Helen Clark said, wrapping up three-days at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of the Parties (COP) in Lima today.
“We are on the cusp of creating a new era of action on climate change—here in Lima and with the vital adoption of a new climate agreement in Paris next year. Moreover, a Post 2015 sustainable development agenda is imminent,” Helen Clark said. “We can achieve our goals by nurturing partnerships which promote a low-emission and climate-resilient future.”To enable an historic level of indigenous peoples’ participation at the COP20 in Lima, UNDP and the Governments of Norway and Peru invited more than 300 indigenous women and men from Africa, Asia and Pacific, and Latin America and the Caribbean to attend. They gathered in Lima in an official Indigenous Peoples’ Pavilion for the first time at a climate change COP.Five indigenous men and women from the three regions presented proposals to address climate change, at an official event today.Candido Mezua of the Mesoamerican Alliance of Indigenous Peoples proposed that state delegations include indigenous peoples in their climate change negotiations. He also asked UNDP and the Governments of Peru and Norway to support this proposition.“Indigenous peoples are the real custodians of forests and it is important to strengthen their positioning in the climate negotiations,” said Tine Sundtoft, Minister of Climate and Environment of Norway. She also thanked UNDP and Peru for facilitating an historic indigenous participation at the COP in Lima.“Our commitment for indigenous peoples’ participation in this COP is an important step towards addressing crucial pending indigenous issues, including land tenure, “said Peru’s Vice Minister for Environment Gabriel Quijandria at the event today.Helen Clark stressed that indigenous leaders and organizations must be empowered to play a greater role in leading, collaborating and participating in the global effort to address climate change, particularly given their vital historical role in protecting forests and their deep cultural relationship with and dependence on the natural environment.She also visited a UNDP-managed Global Environment Facility/Small Grants Programme fair with over 40 people – mostly women— from the highlands, from the Amazon forest and coastal areas who sold eco-friendly products such as alpaca wool garments, quinoa, beans and honey.The UNDP Administrator stressed the importance of empowering women while conserving biodiversity, boosting climate resilience and encouraging entrepreneurship.Wrapping up her third day at the COP the UNDP Administrator spoke on how large-scale public-private collaboration can enhance climate progress and sustainable development.
“One of the most exciting and dynamic advances in the forests space over the past year has been the substantial commitments made by major companies on eliminating deforestation from commodity supply chains.” In the palm oil sector, for example, businesses representing over 75 per cent of the global trade in the commodity have adopted zero-deforestation policies in the past year.At the UN Climate Summit, hosted by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in September 2014, UNDP also facilitated the endorsement by more than 170 governments, companies, civil society organizations and indigenous peoples’ representatives of the New York Declaration on Forests aiming to cut the loss of natural forests in half by 2020, and to end it a decade later. Agribusiness giants such as Cargill and Wilmar adopted zero deforestation policies, and the consumer goods industry pledged to eliminate deforestation by 2020.
Helen Clark highlighted the importance of countries’ nationally determined mitigation contributions including ambitious goals and policies to reduce forest loss and increase reforestation. She urged advanced economies to deliver large scale economic incentives for forest protection and restoration in the context of the new climate agreement, particularly through REDD+ – a mechanism which supports the reduction of emissions from deforestation and forest degradation.She thanked the Government of Switzerland for its pledge to support UNDP’s National Commodity Platforms, which have been facilitating country-wide public-private sector collaboration on greater sustainability in major agricultural commodity sectors.For example, the National Pineapple Platform in Costa Rica has led to better governmental regulation, and has encouraged large companies to support small producers to shift to sustainable practices.UNDP launched a Palm Oil Platform for Indonesia in September, and another platform will be established in Peru to reduce encroachment into the Amazon.With the largest climate change portfolio in the United Nations – US$1.3 billion covering adaptation and mitigation – UNDP has been supporting over 140 countries, including more than 40 Least Developed Countries, to access climate finance and mechanisms and implement climate change initiatives.This includes access to nearly all UNFCCC mechanisms such as Intended Nationally Determined Contributions, National Adaptation Plans, Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions, Low Emission Development Strategies and National Communications.UNDP also provides assistance to countries in their climate change negotiations and has supported the Government of Peru in hosting the COP20.During meetings with Helen Clark, President Ollanta Humala of Peru and the Minister of Environment and COP President Manuel Pulgar-Vidal praised UNDP’s support to set up the country’s biggest international event.

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Greenpeace at the IPCC Fifth Assessment Report approval meeting in Copenhagen

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 21 ottobre 2014

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Copenhagen. Greenpeace will host a press briefing on FRIDAY 31st, OCTOBER at 11.15 a.m. at the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS) (Øster Voldgade 10, 1350 Copenhagen K) as a ‘side event’ to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) meeting taking place in the city. At the briefing, climate and energy experts from the Danish Energy Agency, Climate Analytics, Ecofys and Greenpeace will elaborate on some key IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5) themes: zero emissions, renewable energy and coal.
As official observers to the IPCC a team of experts from Greenpeace will be available for comment on the AR5 findings and their implications for action throughout the meeting in Copenhagen (27th October – 2nd of November, 2014). Media briefings on the IPCC key findings and Denmark’s 100% renewable energy commitment are available at http://www.greenpeace.org/ipcc. The IPCC is convening to approve and adopt the final volume of its AR5 Report. The report itself is scheduled to be launched on Sunday the 2nd of November. The Synthesis Report will integrate and condense the wealth of information contained in the three Working Group reports released over the past year into a concise document – explicitly targeted at policymakers. This is the core factual document drawing together the assessment of past changes in climate as well as projections for the future and looking at adaptation, mitigation and an overview of possible risks and solutions. “The Synthesis Report will bring together the latest understanding of climate change and what we must do to prevent catastrophic consequences. It will be critical in guiding governments as they decide their climate policies in the near future”, said Kaisa Kosonen of Greenpeace. “The takeaway message from the IPCC is that climate change is happening and we are causing it. Its effects are already evident across all continents and oceans – despite there being less than 1C° of warming so far – and some impacts are showing alarming signs of acceleration. Meanwhile, global emissions, especially from coal, continued to grow rapidly in the past decade.” “We still have time to avoid the worst impacts of climate change by phasing out fossil fuels and bringing emissions down to zero, but we need to get started now”.

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Australia makes a big step in the right direction

Posted by fidest press agency su mercoledì, 30 novembre 2011

Global mean surface temperature difference fro...

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Durban. Australia’s new climate legislation is a historic breakthrough and a substantial step in the right direction, but is still not stringent enough to help the world keep global warming to below 2 degrees C, according to a major analysis of the country’s climate actions, released here today by the Climate Action Tracker, a joint project by Climate Analytics and Ecofys. The 150-page analysis is part of an ongoing investigation by the Climate Action Tracker (CAT) team as to whether current or pledged climate action will be enough to limit the negative effects of climate change by holding long term global temperature increase below 2°C. It examines all sectors: electricity, industry, transport, agriculture, forestry and buildings and compares action against the CAT’s own long term low-carbon vision. “After so many years of lagging behind the rest of the world, Australia has fundamentally changed the way it will tackle climate change. It has now set in place a legislative system that, if applied well and increased in stringency over time, can get it on the right track to a low carbon future,” said Bill Hare, Director of Climate Analytics. He noted that it was a difficult starting point for Australia, which has world’s sixth highest per capita emissions. “It’s a classic example of the longer you wait to take action, the more difficult it gets.” Ecofys Director of Energy and Climate Policy, Dr. Niklas Höhne, said that Australia still had a lot of work to do on setting the right policies. “The new climate legislation provides a positive long term signal, but Australia still needs to enhance policies in all sectors to be on track for a 2°C pathway, especially the transport sector and supporting renewable energy in industry and buildings, where it has huge resources,” said Höhne.

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Greenpeace statement on IPCC report on extreme weather events

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 19 novembre 2011

ZOMG thunder & lighting

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Amsterdam. Responding to today’s release of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Summary Report, Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation, Greenpeace International Climate Policy Coordinator Tove Maria Ryding said: “Today’s IPCC report brings home the inescapable fact: that climate change is not only fuelling extreme weather, it is causing an escalation in impacts both on humans and economies, most of which are increasingly being borne by the developing world.” “After two decades of international climate negotiations aimed at reducing emissions, we now have more, not less, greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. We no longer need reports or studies to confirm the need for action; our addiction to fossil fuels is leading us blindly towards a cliff edge. Governments urgently need to both implement adaptation strategies to deal with the unavoidable impacts of climate change, and to rapidly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.” “It is of crucial importance that the world´s poorest nations receive the support they need to adapt to climate change impacts. But there are limits to how high you can build a sea wall, or how strong you can build a structure. Trying to adapt to climate change without dealing global emissions is like mopping the bathroom floor whilst leaving the tap running – dealing with the consequences whilst ignoring the root of the problem.”
“Ministers gathering for climate negotiations in Durban later this month must respond to the international climate crisis by adopting a clear roadmap towards a science-based, global agreement that will ensure all countries take action to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and that financial and technical support is delivered to developing countries to help them confront the climate challenge.”

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Climate change

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 20 ottobre 2011

United Nations Framework Convention on Climate...

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Climate change threatens to ‘undermine global prosperity and inflict significant social, economic and environmental costs on the world’, according to a global coalition of companies who today issued an urgent call to action to governments around the world. Shell, Unilever, Acciona, Cemex, Skanska, Philips, Barilla, KLM, Nestlé, Air France, and EDF Energy are among over 175 companies from 29 countries endorsing the 2°C Challenge Communiqué, which calls on governments to agree a ‘robust, equitable and effective agreement’ on climate change at the United Nations’ meeting in Durban, South Africa, in December.
Without such a deal ‘business will have insufficient clarity or certainty of action to invest to its full potential’, the statement says. Time is running out to keep global warming under 2°C and, if they fail to act, governments ‘risk permanent damage to their credibility’; however, the right action would ‘secure a low carbon-emission economy that is more resilient, more efficient and less vulnerable to global shock.’The Communiqué will be launched in a number of cities around the world including London, Brussels, Sao Paulo, Ankara and Johannesburg, by members of the Corporate Leaders’ Network for Climate Action. The aim is to influence governments ahead of the 17th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which will take place in Durban in December.Speaking ahead of the launch, the Chair of the UNFCCC negotiations Christiana Figueres said: “Governments have already established a clear, collective path to a low-carbon future but the world will need to cut emissions faster in the coming years to meet the full challenge of climate change. The companies endorsing the 2°C Challenge Communiqué set a great example. Corporate leadership that provides powerful vocal support for action gives governments the greater confidence they need to move forward a global climate change agreement that will ultimately cover the current ambition gap.”As well as a reiterating strong support for a global deal, the companies endorsing the Communiqué challenge governments to take immediate action at the national level. They say ‘we cannot, and should not, wait for a new international treaty to be in place’ but must adopt ‘national policies and measures that ultimately drive action now’.Among the specific policy actions that companies are calling on all countries to adopt are:A carbon price sufficient to drive necessary emissions reductions Effective adaptation programmes
Increased funding for innovation, investment and low-carbon development Help for businesses and consumers to cut emissions by using energy more efficiently Targeted regulation and procurement, together with new thinking on intellectual property rights to encourage low-carbon innovation Action to conserve and increase forests and other land-based carbon sinks
International agreement to establish and maintain strong institutions including a reformed Clean Development Mechanism and an operationalised Green Climate Fund An end to fossil fuel subsidies The 2°C Challenge Communiqué was produced by business leaders from a range of sectors including energy, finance, retail, and manufacturing, via the newly established Corporate Leaders’ Network for Climate Action (CLN). The CLN includes groups from Brazil, Chile, the EU, US, Hong Kong, Mexico, Southeast Asia, and South Africa. The Communiqué is the fifth in a series of statements initiated by The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders’ Group on Climate Change (CLG) and managed and developed by the University of Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership (CPSL). Sandrine Dixson-Declève, Director of The Prince of Wales’s EU Corporate Leaders’ Group on Climate Change said: “The expansion of the network to include business groups from other countries shows that, far from losing interest in climate change as an issue, there is an emerging and increasingly international consensus amongst enlightened corporate leaders of the need for urgent action. We will be taking signatures up to June next year and look forward to being joined by other businesses.”

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Another Zambia Is Possible

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 20 agosto 2011

Also on August 26-27 2011, the Zambia Social Forum (ZAMSOF) is organizing the local 6th Edition of the Zambia National Social Forum to take place in the Mtendere playing Grounds with high population density (Mtendere Community), in Lusaka, Zambia, where about two thousands people are expected. The Forum’s theme is Another Zambia is Possible. The main presentations of the first day will be on Governance and Climate Change, issues of concern for developing countries. Among plenary sessions and other activities, day one and two of the Forum will hold the following thematic tents:
Tent 1 – Global Financial / Crisis on SADC
Tent 2 – Universal Education
Tent 3 – Debt & Trade-Regional Integration
Tent 4 – Food Security & Land
Tent 5 – Gender & Women rights
Tent 6 – Youth
Tent 7 – HIV/AIDS & Health
Tent 8 – Governance & Human rights (Sexual Minorities)
Tent 9 – Social Services
Tent 10 – Indigenous peoples & Ethnic Minorities Rights
Tent 11 – Region & peacemaking
Tent 12 – Labour
Tent 13 – Media Arts and Culture
Tent 14 – Cross Borders
Tent 15 – Environment & Climate change
All the best,Gershom Kabaso Zambia Social Forum /Regional Cordinator for Southern Africa Regional.

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Climate change

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 19 gennaio 2010

Prague In what could be a landmark decision based on climate change arguments, the Czech Ministry of the Environment is expected to announce this week its final statement on an environmental impact assessment (EIA) for the proposed replacement and lifetime extension of the Prunerov II coal-fired power station. Coal-fired power plants are the largest point sources of carbon dioxide emissions and significant contributors to global warming and climate change. The Federated States of Micronesia, a nation of widely scattered islands located in the western Pacific some 12,000 km from the Czech Republic, has called for a negative statement on the assessment.The Pacific nation is among those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, especially from sea level rise, changing weather patterns, and increased storms. In its submission to the Czech Ministry, the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) argued that the effect on climate change had not been assessed in the EIA for the proposed renewal of Prunerov II. Transboundary EIAs are common between neighbouring states but, as far as Greenpeace and the Czech Environmental Law Service are aware, this is the first time that a state significantly threatened by climate change and far removed from the source of emissions has used the transboundary process in an attempt to ensure its concerns are taken into consideration. Coming less than a month after the Copenhagen climate summit failed to agree a fair, ambitious and legally binding treaty to combat climate change, this unique request from FSM underlines that vulnerable developing nations are exploring new avenues to challenge decisions on projects that contribute to climate change. Greenpeace Czech Republic and the Czech Environmental Law Service are calling for Prunerov to be decommissioned by 2015.

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Hope for a Climate Change

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 25 dicembre 2009

By David Gershon (abstract) The political leaders of the world that gathered in Copenhagen had the unenviable responsibility of forging a strategy to pull humankind back from the brink of a dire future. What ultimately will come from this meeting is uncertain, but whatever occurs, the challenge ahead is immense. According to conservative climate change science, we need to stabilize concentrations of carbon dioxide at 400 ppm and then begin reducing it to 350 ppm to avoid triggering a cascading set of irreversible tipping points. To be successful in this task requires us to develop a solution to achieve by 2020 what the current treaty being negotiated hopes to achieve by 2050—an 80 percent reduction in CO2 emissions. The scale and speed of change required goes well beyond anything political leaders have ever had to contemplate, much less achieve. And even if the political will were there to achieve this level and speed of carbon reduction, the social change 1.0 tools at their disposal—command and control, and financial incentives—are not designed for this type of rapid, transformative change. They were purposely designed over two centuries ago for gradual, incremental change.  My three decades of empowerment research has taught me that we human beings are willing to change when we have a compelling vision and the necessary tools to help us bring it to fruition. The vision must touch our core to engender the necessary passion and commitment needed to overcome the inevitable obstacles on the path of realization. To stay motivated, we need others of like mind going on the journey with us. And, with a well-designed change platform that is replicable and scalable, these behavior changes can be widely disseminated throughout a community, country and organization, and across the planet. I call this approach “social change 2.0.” Here’s what a social change 2.0 strategy looks like as applied to climate change. America represents 20 percent of the planet’s carbon footprint, with half of these emissions coming from the fossil fuels we use to power our homes and cars. And at the community level our collective carbon emissions are between 50 and 90 percent. If, as U.S. households, we were able to reduce our carbon footprint by 25 percent and take this to scale community- and nationwide, we could significantly lower America’s carbon emissions in the short run and buy us the critically needed time for the longer-term solutions to scale up.  In 2006 I began testing a solution by creating a community-based environmental behavior-change program called Low Carbon Diet. The program consisted of twenty-four steps to reduce one’s carbon footprint by at least 5,000 pounds in thirty days and to help others do the same. It was based on my experience working with 20,000 people organized into neighborhood-based peer-support groups—EcoTeams—who reduced their environmental footprint 25 percent in several cities, ranging from the environmentally progressive Portland, Oregon, and Madison, Wisconsin, to the more middle-of-the-road Columbus, Ohio, Kansas City, Missouri, and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  The Cool Community movement is building Mount Everest base camps in communities across the nation for the long climb we must make to address climate change. It is also providing fire for the soul to inspire community leaders to reach for new visions of what is possible, with some committing to reduce their carbon footprint 80 percent by 2020. Nelson Mandela, an exemplar of taking on large, epic challenges, describes the journey this way, “It always seems impossible until it is done.” But the journey must begin somewhere with someone. That somewhere is our homes, neighborhoods, towns and cities. And that someone is us.

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Climate Change Conference

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 13 dicembre 2009

Copenhagen, At a press conference today in Copenhagen to coincide with the United Nations COP15 meetings, IDC announced the results from a special report on the role Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) can play to curb almost 5.8 billion tons (GT) of CO2 emissions by 2020. In addition to the results of the study, IDC released its first ICT Sustainability Index, in which the G20 nations have been ranked on their ability to reduce their CO2 emissions through the focused use of ICT. Japan received the highest ranking in the Index and was identified as the only top-tier country. The landmark research was conducted by IDC and jointly sponsored by Fujitsu, Hitachi, HP, Intel, and Schneider Electric. The study examined the potential of seventeen technologies to reduce CO2 emissions in four major economic sectors (Energy Generation and Distribution, Transport, Industry and Building) across the G20 nations. Within the Energy Generation and Distribution sector, which has the biggest potential savings, Renewable Energy Management Systems (part of “Smart Grids”) offer the best opportunity to reduce CO2 emissions. The research also concluded that China has the biggest opportunity in this sector, with the potential to save almost 200 million tons of CO2 using these technologies. Within the Transport sector, the leading investments in ICT would be within the supply chain logistics and private transport optimization. IDC has identified that the United States has the largest opportunity within this sector and could reduce its 2020 CO2 emissions target by over 500 million tons.  ICT-based solutions for Buildings have as much CO2 savings as the Energy and Transport sectors do. Energy Management Systems and Intelligent Building Designs offer up the most opportunity of all technologies or nearly 12% of all G20 energy savings. Finally, for the Industry sector, savings might be made using Intelligent Motor Controllers, with China having the largest opportunity to reduce the CO2 emissions. “As expected, China and the United States have some great opportunities ahead of them,” said Roberta Bigliani, research director at IDC Energy Insights. “The use of software solutions offering energy management systems should be a key focus for them and all of the G20 nations.” In announcing the results of the first ICT Sustainability Index, IDC Associate Vice President Chris Ingle noted that, “The Sustainability Index was created to allow nations to be fairly compared to each other on their ability to reduce CO2 emissions and to sustain their economies and environments through the investment in and application of ICT solutions.” The ICT Sustainability Index is part of IDC’s holistic Green initiative, designed to help decision makers understand the role of technology in addressing the challenges and opportunities amidst today’s energy, environment, and sustainability requirements. Since being launched in 2008, the initiative has produced important research on data center power management and automation, the promotion of green procurement in Asia/Pacific, and document management policies in the enterprise. IDC’s Industry Insights companies have also done ground-breaking research on how vertical industries from manufacturing and healthcare to retail and government can use the latest IT tools and services to support a company’s overall green initiative. Finally, IDC’s Green Recycling and Asset Disposal for the Enterprise (G.R.A.D.E.) certification process assesses the functions and tasks IT Asset Disposal (ITAD) vendors to ensure that they meet the strictest regulatory, security, and environmental standards.

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Climate change

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 8 novembre 2009

The Conference of European Churches (CEC) and the Council of European Bishops’ Conferences (CCEE) have sent today a joint letter to the Churches of Europe on “Churches responding to climate change”, in view of the United Nations’ Climate Conference to be held in Copenhagen from 7-18 December 2009.  “Climate change is an issue for each one of us. It affects the life of the whole planet. The earth and all its ecosystems are a precious gift which we have received from God”, the letter states. It goes on encouraging “Churches and Christians in Europe to take appropriate action to address the challenge of climate change in the weeks to come” and suggesting some concrete steps, such as approaching their respective governments, taking part in initiatives for saving energy, sharing of initiatives and good practices “leading to the care of creation, as emphasised and recommended in the outcomes of the 3rd European Ecumenical Assembly in 2007 in Sibiu (Romania)”.
La Conferenza europea delle Chiese (CEC) e il Consiglio delle Conferenze episcopali d’Europa (CCEE) hanno spedito oggi una lettera congiunta alle Chiese in Europa su “Le Chiese rispondono al cambiamento climatico”, in vista della Conferenza sul Clima delle Nazioni Unite che si svolgerà a Copenhagen dal 7 al 18 dicembre 2009.
“Il cambiamento climatico rappresenta un problema per ognuno di noi. Investe la vita dell’intero pianeta. La terra e tutti i suoi ecosistemi costituiscono un dono prezioso che abbiamo ricevuto da Dio”, la lettera afferma. E prosegue nell’incoraggiare “le Chiese e i cristiani in Europa ad intraprendere azioni appropriate per affrontare la sfida del cambiamento climatico nelle prossime settimane” e suggerendo alcuni passi concreti, quali: entrare in dialogo con i propri rispettivi governi, prendendo parte ad iniziative per il risparmio energia, e condividendo iniziative e buone pratiche “per la salvaguardia della creazione, così come sottolineato e raccomandato negli esiti della III Assemblea Ecumenica Europea di Sibiu (Romania) nel 2007”. Il testo completo della lettera congiunta è allegata in quattro lingue (Francese, Inglese, Italiano e Tedesco). E’ possibile scaricare i testi sul site: http://www.ccee.ch

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A path for financing smart economic development

Posted by fidest press agency su giovedì, 14 Maggio 2009

The Commission on Climate Change and Development reported on its progress at the United Nations in New York and will also present its findings at the Swedish Embassy in Washington D.C. The Commission is addressing climate change adaptation and its links with disaster risk reduction. Since its launch by the Swedish government in late 2007, the group has met with governments and citizens struggling with the effects of climate change in Cambodia, Mali, and Bolivia. It will issue policy recommendations on how to strengthen resilience of vulnerable communities and countries, establish appropriate institutional and financial architecture for adaptation, and mobilize new financial resources.Developing countries are particularly exposed to the impacts of droughts, floods and wind storms as well as longer term changes in ecosystems. International negotiations have focused on reducing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere – with little success. Although all efforts must continue to reach agreement on implementing GHG limits, this work cannot blind governments to the need to begin to adapt to changing climate systems right now.One of the many recommendations within the Commission’s Progress Report is that funding for adaptation must go far beyond current official development assistance and that all donors honor their commitments of 0.7 percent of gross domestic product. The recent Bangladesh Adaptation Strategy for responding to natural disasters sets an interesting example.The Commission determined that knowledge of local impacts is still largely in the form of hypotheses and scenarios. While greenhouse gas reductions are measurable, it is more difficult to determine the success of adaptation and requires much more cooperation between institutions in different fields. These institutions can no longer be reactionary, as was the case after the food and financial crises of 2008. Also, existing institutions must be made as effective as possible rather than adding to the already proliferating array of institutions.The members of the Commission represent international and regional organizations as well as research, civil society and the private sector. Members participate in their personal capacities and include: Carlsson (Sweden); Angela Cropper (Trinidad and Tobago), deputy executive director for the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP); Mohamed El-Ashry (Egypt), senior fellow, UN Foundation; Sun Honglie (China), professor and head of the China Climate Change Expert Committee at the Chinese Academy of Sciences; Nanna Hvidt (Denmark), director of the Danish Institute for International Studies; Ian Johnson (UK), chairman of IDEAcarbon; Lash (USA); Wangari Maathai (Kenya), professor and founder of the Green Belt Movement; Ivo Menzinger (Switzerland), Managing Director at Swiss Re; Sunita Narain (India), director of the Centre for Science and Environment; Youba Sokona (Mali), executive secretary of the Sahara and Sahel Observatory (OSS); Bernard Petit (France), deputy director-general, Directorate-General for Development, European Commission; Margareta Wahlström (Sweden); UN assistant secretary-general for Disaster Risk Reduction and the secretary general’s special representative.

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Climate change and public health

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 12 aprile 2009

Said Dr Margaret Chan, WHO’s Director-General. “Our 193 Member States asked WHO to help them strengthen the evidence base for policy action. This plan provides the framework for doing just that. It sets out guidance to governments, research institutions and donors looking to fill crucial knowledge gaps.” In the last decade, even though climate change has been increasingly acknowledged as an important risk to human well-being, its effects on health have received little research attention. Scientific papers describing the links between climate change and health are outnumbered by those on air pollution by almost 8 times, and by those on smoking by almost 40 times. The plan aims to speed-up, focus and intensify climate change and health research to strengthen the evidence base for discussion at the 15th United Nations Conference of the Parties (COP15), to be held in Copenhagen in December 2009, where world leaders will forge a new global climate agreement to succeed the Kyoto Protocol.  The research plan identifies five priority research areas; including, Interactions with other health determinants and trends – Climate change does not act in a vacuum. There is an urgent need for a better understanding of how climate change does and will interact with other important health determinants and trends, such as economic development, globalization, urbanization, and inequities both in exposure to health risks and access to care. Direct and indirect effects – Much is known of short-term health impacts of climate change. There is a need for better characterization of the effects of long-term changes such as increasing drought, decline in freshwater resources, and population displacement, ranging from mental health impacts to risks of conflict, with a particular focus on children and other vulnerable groups. Comparing effectiveness of short-term interventions- Different countries have taken a variety of approaches to deal with climate change-related health threats such as heatwaves and floods. Comparative outcome assessments can help rank effectiveness of interventions.Assessing health impact of policies of non-health sectors – There is an urgent need for rapid assessment of the health implications of specific climate change prevention (mitigation) and adaptation policies in other sectors, such as the potentially negative effect of promotion of biofuels on food security and malnutrition; and the potentially positive health effects of sustainable energy and transport policies.  Strengthening public health systems to address health effects of climate change. Most health systems interventions to deal with climate change build on basic public health competencies. More knowledge is needed to identify the most effective means of implementing integrated preventive public health strategies that reduce not just climate change related threats but all environmental health risks.“This meeting has made clear that there is a need to enhance our evidence base on ways to protect health from climate change”, said Dr. Bernat Soria, Spain’s Minister of Health and Consumption,: ” We welcome this plan which sets out a clear research agenda and addresses all countries needs for evidence-based policy making” he added.

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Obama’s meeting with President Klaus

Posted by fidest press agency su domenica, 5 aprile 2009

President Obama met with Czech President Vaclav Klaus and Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek.  This was President Obama’s first bilateral meeting with his Czech counterparts.  They discussed cooperation on a wide range of issues, including the results of the NATO Summit, climate change, our shared commitment to success in Afghanistan, and our cooperation on missile defense.

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Remarks by Obama at Strasbourg town hall

Posted by fidest press agency su venerdì, 3 aprile 2009

“I want to thank the Charge d’Affaires, Mark Pekala, and his wife, Maria, who were helping to organize us; Vincent Carver, who’s the Counsel General in Strasbourg. And I want to thank the Mayor of Strasbourg, Roland Ries, for his hospitality. The economic crisis has proven the fact of our interdependence in the most visible way yet. Not more than a generation ago, it would have been difficult to imagine that the inability of somebody to pay for a house in Florida could contribute to the failure of the banking system in Iceland. Today what’s difficult to imagine is that we did not act sooner to shape our future. Now, there’s plenty of blame to go around for what has happened, and the United States certainly shares its — shares blame for what has happened. But every nation bears responsibility for what lies ahead, especially now, for whether it’s the recession or climate change, or terrorism, or drug trafficking, poverty, or the proliferation of nuclear weapons, we have learned that without a doubt there’s no quarter of the globe that can wall itself off from the threats of the 21st century. I know it can be tempting to turn inward, and I understand how many people and nations have been left behind by the global economy. And that’s why the United States is leading an effort to reach out to people around the world who are suffering, to provide them immediate assistance and to extend support for food security that will help them lift themselves out of poverty. And as we restore our common prosperity, we must stand up for our common security. As we meet here today, NATO has still embarked on its first mission overseas in Afghanistan, and my administration has just completed a review of our policy in that region. Now, I understand that this war has been long. Our allies have already contributed greatly to this endeavor. You’ve sent your sons and daughters to fight alongside ours, and we honor and respect their service and sacrifice. So I understand that there is doubt about this war in Europe. There’s doubt at times even in the United States. But know this: The United States of America did not choose to fight a war in Afghanistan. We were attacked by an al Qaeda network that killed thousands on American soil, including French and Germans. Along the border of Afghanistan and Pakistan, those terrorists are still plotting today. And they’re — if there is another al Qaeda attack, it is just as likely, if not more, that it will be here in Europe in a European city. But we all know that time is running out. And that means that America must do more. Europe must do more. China and India must do more. Rolling back the tide of a warming planet is a responsibility that we have to ourselves, to our children, and all of those who will inherit God’s creation long after we are gone. So let us meet that responsibility together. I am confident that we can meet it. But we have to begin today”.

(abstract)

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Launch of the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 28 marzo 2009

The White House. The President is pleased to announce the launch of the Major Economies Forum on Energy and Climate.The Major Economies Forum will facilitate a candid dialogue among key developed and developing countries, help generate the political leadership necessary to achieve a successful outcome at the UN climate change negotiations that will convene this December in Copenhagen, and advance the exploration of concrete initiatives and joint ventures that increase the supply of clean energy while cutting greenhouse gas emissions. President Obama has invited the leaders of 16 major economies and the Secretary General of the United Nations to designate representatives to participate in a preparatory session at the Department of State on April 27-28 in Washington, D.C.  The preparatory sessions will culminate in a Major Economies Forum Leaders’ meeting, which Prime Minister Berlusconi has agreed to host in La Maddalena, Italy, in July 2009.   The 17 major economies are: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, the European Union, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Russia, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States.  Denmark, in its capacity as the President of the December 2009 Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the United Nations have also been invited to participate in this dialogue.

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President Arroyo of the Philippines

Posted by fidest press agency su sabato, 14 marzo 2009

The White House. The President called President Arroyo of the Philippines this morning.  They reaffirmed their commitment to the long-standing U.S.-Philippines alliance, including the Visiting Forces Agreement, which remains critical to the bilateral relationship and our strategic interests.  The President commended President Arroyo on her country’s efforts in countering terrorism and modernizing the armed forces.  The two leaders discussed the need to work closely together on the global economic crisis as well as on other areas of common concern, including climate change, education, and interfaith dialogue.

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