Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

Nations Commit to International Climate Action: How Will They Get There?

Climate
Nations Commit to International Climate Action: How Will They Get There?

In the run-up to the COP20 climate negotiations happening right now here in Lima, the world has seen some major developments for international climate agreements. While countries do not have to make public their national greenhouse gas reductions commitments until March of next year, major players including the U.S., China, the United Kingdom and Japan are already making bold agreements about what they will do.

In the last few weeks alone, the U.S. and China announced a landmark climate deal outlining new commitments by each of the countries, while several countries—including the U.S., the United Kingdom and Japan—made large financial commitments to the Green Climate Fund, which will help less affluent countries fight climate change.

This is an exciting time for the climate, and especially exciting to watch the conversations on the ground here in Lima.

With all of these commitments and goals, the natural question arises: how will countries meet these ambitious goals?

The good news is that the decades of international inaction did not forestall climate action on a local scale, and success stories abound even in countries that have yet to make international commitments. Earlier this year, we featured some of these success stories during our 24 Hours of Reality: 24 Reasons for Hope broadcast, but I want to share them again here.

Australia

Though Australia has remained cool on climate commitments, an organization called Cool Australia is challenging young Australians across the nation to take positive climate action.

Field Report - Cool Australia:

China

In order to achieve its recently-announced goal of peaking CO2 emissions by 2030, China must expand its share of non-fossil fuel energy to around 20 percent. The good news, is that China is already embarking on an ambitious plan to expand its wind power.

Field Report – China’s Wind Quest: 

India

While the world waits for a commitment from India, the world’s second most populous nation, the Barefoot College program is already harnessing human potential along with the sun to improve millions of impoverished lives.

Field Report - Barefoot College:

Also in India, the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves is working to improve the lives of the nearly three billion people who rely on wood- or coal-powered open cookstoves, while reducing carbon pollution along the way.

Field Report – Cleaning up the Cookstove:

Mexico

As a nation, Mexico has made financial commitments to the Green Climate Fund. At the same time, though, people in the country are battling recurrent drought and heat trying to protect chocolate, which is threatened by climate change.

Field Report – Mexican Cocoa:

Philippines

The Philippines has begun accounting for climate change in its national budget. But on a local scale, the island of Sibuyan has recently converted its energy mix to 90 percent renewable, and they’re eager to share their success.

Field Report – At River Camp in the Philippines:

South Africa

In just 10 years, South Africa became a leading wind power producer in Africa, creating one of the fastest and most high-tech energy revolutions in the world. Yet the country still struggles to utilize renewable energy in the face of an abundant coal supply.

Field Report – A Clean Wind Blows in South Africa:

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

John Kerry: Ignoring Climate Would Be ‘Massive Moral Failure of Historic Consequence’

Anti-Nuke Activists Fight to Close Diablo Canyon

Thousands March in Lima Demanding Climate Action

A portion of roadway is flooded in Corpus Christi, Texas on Sept. 20, 2020 due to storm surge from Tropical Storm Beta in the Gulf of Mexico. Matt Pierce / iStock Editorial / Getty Images Plus

The National Hurricane Center has run out of names for tropical storms this year and has now moved on to the Greek alphabet during an extremely active hurricane season. Late Monday night, Tropical Storm Beta became the ninth named storm to make landfall. That's the first time so many named storms have made landfall since 1916, when Woodrow Wilson was president, according to NBC News.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Colette Pichon Battle, attorney, founder, and executive director of the Gulf Coast Center for Law & Policy. Colette Pichon Battle

By Karen L. Smith-Janssen

Colette Pichon Battle gave a December 2019 TEDWomen Talk on the stark realities of climate change displacement, and people took notice. The video racked up a million views in about two weeks. The attorney, founder, and executive director of the Gulf Coast Center for Law & Policy (GCCLP) advocates for climate justice in communities of color. Confronted with evidence showing how her own South Louisiana coastal home of Bayou Liberty will be lost to flooding in coming years, the 2019 Obama Fellow dedicates herself to helping others still reeling from the impacts of Katrina face the heavy toll that climate change has taken—and will take—on their lives and homelands. Her work focuses on strengthening multiracial coalitions, advocating for federal, state, and local disaster mitigation measures, and redirecting resources toward Black communities across the Gulf South.

Read More Show Less

Trending

A palm tree plantation in Malaysia. Yann Arthus-Bertrand / Getty Images Plus

Between 2000 and 2013, Earth lost an area of undisturbed ecosystems roughly the size of Mexico.

Read More Show Less
A home burns during the Bobcat Fire in Juniper Hills, California on September 18, 2020. Kyle Grillot / AFP/ Getty Images

By Stuart Braun

"These are not just wildfires, they are climate fires," Jay Inslee, Governor of Washington State, said as he stood amid the charred remains of the town of Malden west of Seattle earlier this month. "This is not an act of God," he added. "This has happened because we have changed the climate of the state of Washington in dramatic ways."

Read More Show Less
A new report from Oxfam found that the wealthiest one percent of the world produced a carbon footprint that was more than double that of the bottom 50 percent of the world. PickPik

A new report from Oxfam found that the wealthiest one percent of the world produced a carbon footprint that was more than double that of the bottom 50 percent of the world, The Guardian reported. The study examined 25 years of carbon dioxide emissions and wealth inequality from 1990 to 2015.

Read More Show Less

Support Ecowatch