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#COP21: Major Economies Declare Support for 1.5°C

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The Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) today acknowledged the declaration of support from Germany and France for strengthening of the 2 degrees long-term UNFCCC goal to the safer below 1.5°C goal at the UN Climate Conference at Paris (COP21). Recognizing this change of position, now 108 countries have clearly voiced support for the 1.5°C target, including the first major developed economies.

The move echoes rapidly growing support voiced by states and global civil society for the calls of the CVF’s Manila-Paris Declaration on long-term temperature and mitigation goals. On 1 December, the momentum was highlighted when the Forum was given the rare “Ray of the Day” international award, followed by expressions of support for 1.5°C by celebrity activist, Mark Ruffalo.

Philippine delegation chief to COP21, Secretary Emmanuel de Guzman said: “This is historic. The call of the vulnerable has been answered by the presidency of the COP and the largest economy of the EU host region. The momentum for raising the level of ambition in Paris now opens the exciting possibility for a truly historic and transformational summit. We salute France and Germany and call for more countries to join in the call for 1.5°C to protect human rights globally.”

French President Francois Hollande declared in his speech to COP21 needed to set a credible path “to sketch out a credible path allowing us to limit global warming to below… 1.5C if possible.”

Germany’s official spokesperson declared today that “the 2-degree goal is too little. 1.5 degrees must be mentioned in the climate treaty. That is the position of the Federal Government [of Germany].” [unofficial translation]

“The dangers we face at less than 1 degree of warming remind us of the inadequacies of the current 2 degree target and the need for a long-term mitigation goal to guide strengthened party contributions consistent with the most ambitious but feasible target of 1.5°C. We invite countries and civil society groups alike to declare support for limiting warming to a maximum and strongly encourage engagement with our #1o5C campaign [www.1o5C.org]. Join us in fighting for the right to survive and thrive,” said Secretary de Guzman.

On 30 April 2015 the CVF conveyed a submission under the UNFCCC mandated 2013-2015 Review of the Convention’s long-term goal of 2 degrees, including a report by the Special Procedures of the United Nations Human Rights Council that remains under the active consideration of the Paris conference this week. The lead author of the report, endorsed by 23 independent UN human rights experts, Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment, Prof. John Knox, commented on the conclusions of the report dealing with human rights and the impact of 2 degrees of climate change:

“Warming of 2 degrees will have a major impact on the full enjoyment of a wide range of human rights. Incremental increases in impacts and risks, even those associated with shifting from warming of 1 to 2 degrees, adversely affect the enjoyment of human rights to life, health and food, among others. Even at current warming levels, many vulnerable communities around the world are already seeing adverse effects on their human rights, from melting permafrost to more destructive storms. To fulfill their obligations to protect human rights, States should do everything they can to keep warming to a minimum.”

The Special Procedures report on human rights and climate change is under active consideration by the formal 2 degrees goal review process since June this year. The UNFCCC 2013-2015 Review of the existing temperature goal of 2 degrees is scheduled to hold a final session today at the Paris talks and refer its 3-years of work for consideration by the Conference of Parties. The call to strengthen the current temperature goal was central to the Manila-Paris Declaration the Forum released on 30 November 2015 at the Forum’s third ever High-Level Meeting in Paris.

The Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) was accorded the accolade of the “Ray of the Day” bestowed by international civil society community on 01 December following the Forum’s adoption of the Manila-Paris Declaration at the Paris climate conference this week. Secretary Emmanuel de Gauzman of the Philippine presidency of the Forum said: “We are overwhelmed by the honour of ’the Ray of the Day’ awarded to the CVF by the international NGO community.

It demonstrates that large numbers of countries can share a single vision with wide-ranging stakeholders and the broader public. We wish to thank the Climate Action Network (CAN) International for their recognition of the efforts of this Forum to act as a driving force in the international community for a resolution to a crisis that has already put billions of people at danger. You have earned the gratitude of the world’s vulnerable for elevating our call to action.”

Economy

A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon

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energy efficient homes

Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.

There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.

1. The Rise Of Smart Windows

When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.

If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.

2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs

If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.

Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.

3. Low-E Windows Taking Over

It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.

They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.

4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges

Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.

The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.

5. Improving Our Current LEDs

Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.

That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.

Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too

Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.

ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244

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Economy

IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”

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IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.

Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.

Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.

Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:

“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.

We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.

There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.

We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”

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