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Category Archives: Environmental Law

Eurasia Group: Top Risks 2022

Top Risks is Eurasia Group’s annual forecast of the political risks that are most likely to play out over the course of the year. This year’s report was published on 3 January 2022. As we enter 2022, the lack of global leadership that characterizes our G-Zero World is clearer than ever. That’s not a good thing. The United States is the world’s most powerful country, the only one able to project military, economic, diplomatic, and cultural power into every part of the globe. It is also the most politically divided and dysfunctional, the most economically unequal, and the least vaccinated of the G7 industrialized democracies. The first anniversary of the 6 January insurrection—just three days away—will show the world a radically different face from the one put forward by Americans after 9/11. The biggest domestic political tragedy in the country in modern times will be commemorated as a political battlefield, creating two entirely different political histories experienced by citizens who increasingly view their domestic opponents as their principal enemies. China is the second most powerful country, but after 40 years of extraordinary growth it faces steep hurdles to keep the momentum going while enhancing social harmony and maintaining political stability. The world’s fastest economic reopening and most expansive international aid campaign during the first months of the pandemic has given way to the longest lockdown and most intense inward focus, with “zero Covid” policies keeping China’s leader Xi Jinping—and most of its citizens—in China. Continuing to use aggressive lockdowns to halt transmission will lead to greater public backlash and economic disruption. Indeed, the government has grown more authoritarian and state capitalist, rather than less. And especially in the run-up to Xi securing a historic third term at this fall’s 20th Party Congress, Beijing’s energies will be focused firmly on tests at home. While the inward turn of the two most powerful nations lowers the odds of war, it also means less global leadership and coordination to respond to the world’s challenges.  That’s bad news for a year that will be dominated by two crises in desperate need of a coordinated response: the Covid-19 pandemic and climate change. In both cases, the US and China will underperform, both at home and on the global stage. The good news is that other actors—less powerful countries, corporations, subnational governments, and civil society—are stepping in to fill the leadership void left by the superpowers’ retreat. Something similar is happening in the wild west that is digital space, whose governance is increasingly under the control of quasi-sovereign technology firms.  But not every vacuum is being filled. The geopolitical recession is turning many corners of the world—geographic and thematic—into no man’s lands. Global neglect will allow looming crises in Iran and Ukraine to become more combustible. It will also allow humanitarian tragedies in countries ranging from Myanmar and Afghanistan to Haiti, Venezuela, and Ethiopia to continue to fester. In all these ways, 2022 will deepen the G-Zero…”

UK Climate Risk Assessment 2022

UK Climate Change Risk Assessment 2022 Ref: ISBN 978-1-5286-3136-5 PDF, 346 KB, 49 pages. “As required by the Climate Change Act 2008, the UK government has undertaken the third five-year assessment of the risks of climate change on the UK. This is based on the Independent Assessment of UK Climate Risk, the statutory advice provided… Continue Reading

All the Biggest Environmental Risks Facing the World’s Biggest Cities

Bloomberg BusinessWeek – All the Biggest Environmental Risks Facing the World’s Biggest Cities – From landslides and extreme heat to insect infestations and airborne diseases, these are the most worrying hazards in urban areas with more than 1 million people…” Climate hazards include: extreme heat; forest fire; water scarcity and salt water intrusions; biological hazards; … Continue Reading

Congress Is Trying To Figure Out What To Do About Crypto’s Colossal Carbon Footprint

BuzzFeedNews: “For years, cryptocurrency has rivaled entire nations in terms of energy use, and US lawmakers are just now starting to investigate how crypto mining operations could be undermining global efforts to combat climate change. This question was the subject of a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee hearing on Thursday that broadly examined the carbon… Continue Reading

Report – Solar on Superstores

“A report by Environment America Research & Policy Center and Frontier Group – Solar on Superstores Big roofs, big potential for renewable energy – Bryn Huxley-Reicher, Frontier Group; Wade Wilson and Ben Sonnega, Environment America Research & Policy Center. Solar energy is the fastest-growing form of electricity generation in the United States. America has 40 times… Continue Reading

A Project to Count Climate Crisis Deaths Has Surprising Results

Wired – “CLIMATE CHANGE CAN kill people in all kinds of ways. There are the obvious ones—wildfires, storms, and floods—yet rising temperatures may also lead to the increased spread of deadly diseases, make food harder to come by, and increase the risk of conflict. Although we know about these wide-ranging but equally terrifying risks, attempts… Continue Reading

Need help recycling? Search for a recycling solution

“WELCOME TO THE EARTH911 RECYCLING SEARCH! With over 350 materials and 100,000+ listings, we maintain one of North America’s most extensive recycling databases. Simply dial 1(800)CLEANUP, or simply enter in the material you are trying to recycle along with your zip code and click search.” Quick Search Terms: Automotive; Batteries; Construction; Electronics; Garden; Glass; Hazardous;… Continue Reading

This Wonder Bird Flies Thousands of Miles, Non-Stop, as Part of an Epic Migration

Smithsonian Magazine: “Long-distance migration is the most extreme and life-threatening thing that any animal does. And migratory shorebirds make the most miraculous journeys of all, given the distances they cover and their tiny size. There are some 70 species of shorebirds in the world that make the journey from the top of the globe to… Continue Reading

Open Rivers Programme aims to free rivers in Europe by removing obsolete and unused dams

The Open Rivers Programme, launched in Oct. 2021, aims to free rivers in Europe by removing obsolete and unused dams. €42.5M have been allocated as grants to support the removal of dams. The European Commission encourages member states to remove barriers to help 25,000 km of rivers flow freely by 2030. A guide for identifying… Continue Reading

Climate-Washing Litigation: Legal Liability for Misleading Climate Communications

Climate Social Science Network Research Report 2022:1: Climate-Washing Litigation Legal Liability for Misleading Climate Communications. January 13, 2022: “This research report aims to enhance the legal community’s understanding of climate-related ‘greenwashing’ litigation. The report analyses this type of litigation, which can also be described as ‘climate-washing’ litigation, by examining key cases and developments, particularly cases… Continue Reading