“The problem for Australia is it doesn’t have credibility on climate. Australia is an important player for many of the Pacific Island countries, well-respected and well-liked by the populations and the political leaders, but on climate change there is a chasm opening up" - Bill Hare, CEO of Climate Analytics.
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Climate Analytics' researcher Claire Fyson sees scientists' warning of a Hothouse Earth as a "call to arms." Though the threshold temperature that leads to irreversible changes can't be pinpointed, science can tell us how to stay out of the very-high-risk zone, she says in this Deutsche Welle interview.
Energy efficiency can be hugely impactful in reducing the effects of climate change. According to research from Climate Action Tracker, if every country across the globe adopted the highest standards, energy demand would decrease enough that 1,000 coal-fired power plants could close.
"One of the areas to watch is how the most-recent agreement between the EU and China begins to play in relation to coal investments," says Climate Analytics' CEO Bill Hare. "A number of countries are still investing in coal, including China externally, so if China begins to switch its position as it moves forward with the European Union, switching its foreign investments toward cleaner technology would have a big impact on others.
Pakistan is ridden by electricity shortages but some of its most remote villages in the Hindu Kush Himalayas begin to get a steady supply from small hydropower plants. “It burns no fuel, does not produce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, other pollutants, or wastes associated with fossil fuels or nuclear power”, says Climate Analytics Dr Fahad Saeed. Small and micro hydropower facilities have “much smaller negative environmental impacts” than larger facilities.