environment correspondent
Alister's Feed
Dec 22, 2014

Top firms’ greenhouse gas emissions rise, despite call for cuts

OSLO, Dec 22 (Reuters) – Greenhouse gas emissions by the
world’s top 500 companies rose 3.1 percent from 2010 to 2013,
far off the cuts urged by the United Nations to limit global
warming, a study showed on Monday.

The top 500 firms by capitalisation accounted for 13.8
percent of world greenhouse gas emissions and 28 percent of
gross domestic product in 2013, according to the report, drawn
up by the information provider Thomson Reuters and BSD
Consulting, a global sustainability consultancy.

Dec 22, 2014

Wheat yields to fall more than expected in warmer world

OSLO, Dec 22 (Reuters) – Global warming will cut average
wheat yields by six percent for every degree Celsius (1.8
Fahrenheit) of temperature rise in a bigger-than-expected brake
on food production in a hotter world, a study said on Monday.

The report, by a U.S.-led team of scientists, said a six
percent drop would be 42 million tonnes of 701 million tonnes of
wheat production worldwide in 2012, highlighting a need to breed
more heat-tolerant crops.

Dec 15, 2014

Paris climate summit faces tougher job after modest Lima deal

LIMA (Reuters) – A Paris summit in 2015 will face a tougher task to agree a U.N. deal to slow climate change after the hopes of many that cooperation between Washington and Beijing would be a magic key to end global gridlock dissolved in chaotic preparatory talks in Lima.

At best, Paris may be a chance to reform a sprawling system of annual U.N. talks – more than 11,000 delegates attended the two-week talks in a tent city in Lima – and find ways to boost long-term action to stem rising greenhouse gas emissions.

Dec 14, 2014

U.N. talks agree building blocks for new-style climate deal in 2015

LIMA (Reuters) – About 190 nations agreed on Sunday the building blocks of a new-style global deal due in 2015 to combat climate change amid warnings that far tougher action will be needed to limit rising world temperatures.

Under the Lima deal, governments will submit national plans for reining in greenhouse gas emissions by an informal deadline of March 31, 2015 to form the basis of a global agreement due at a summit in Paris in a year’s time.

Dec 13, 2014

UN climate talks risk collapse as China clashes with U.S.

LIMA, Dec 13 (Reuters) – U.N. talks on slowing climate
change were threatened with collapse on Saturday after China
clashed with the United States and led emerging nations to
reject a compromise outline of an agreement.

With talks already in overtime because of deadlock after the
Dec. 1-12 meeting, China said a draft text put too much burden
on the poor to limit greenhouse-gas emissions compared with the
rich nations whose citizens have burnt most fossil fuels.

Dec 13, 2014

In overtime, U.N. climate talks head for watered-down deal in Lima

LIMA (Reuters) – United Nations climate talks, which ran on into a an extra day on Saturday, are heading for a watered-down deal on limiting global warming, leaving many of the toughest issues for next year’s Paris summit.

Peruvian Environment Minister Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, hosting the talks, told delegates that a new text on Saturday morning to try to break impasses was not perfect, but reflected common ground.

Dec 12, 2014

Lima climate talks at crossroads on ways to fighting warming

LIMA (Reuters) – About 190 nations were at a crossroads about how boldly to combat global warming on the final day of United Nations talks in Lima on Friday amid fears that low ambition could undermine a U.N. climate summit in Paris next year.

The Dec. 1-12 talks, which opened with hopes for new momentum after a climate deal between China and the United States last month, focused on the scope of pledges that countries are due to make early next year to tackle warming.

Dec 12, 2014

In desert suburb of Lima, poorest pay most for scarce water

NUEVO PACHACUTEC, Peru, Dec 12 (Reuters) – On a desert
hillside north of Lima, a worker with a hose splashes water from
a truck into plastic containers in a dusty neighborhood where
the very poorest people pay most for water.

Water will become scarcer in sprawling settlements such as
Nuevo Pachacutec on the Pacific coast as the population of
Peru’s capital surges and global warming thaws Andean glaciers,
reducing flows in coming decades as the ice disappears.

Dec 12, 2014

Special Report: Flirting with retreat along Britain’s battered shores

HAPPISBURGH, England (Reuters) – Bryony Nierop-Reading has what she calls a million-dollar view from her clifftop property in east England, looking out over North Sea swells beyond a sandy beach where gulls wheel overhead.

The drawback: The place is all but worthless.

Her bungalow was demolished by the local council after a December 2013 storm bit a 33-foot (10 meter) chunk out of the cliff, leaving her home perched over a void. She now lives in a camper parked at the back of her property.

Dec 12, 2014

On the Dutch coast, an experiment in sand

TER HEIJDE, Netherlands (Reuters) – A pile of sand about eight times the volume of the Great Pyramid of Giza is shaping up as a cut-rate model for protecting coasts from rising seas.

The “Sand Engine” is 28 million cubic yards (21.5 million cubic meters) covering an area 1.2 miles (2 km) long and half a mile wide. Dumped along the shore here in 2011, the sand pile marks a shift from the Dutch tradition of armoring the coast with dikes and other hardware.