Pathway to Paris #12: Two key new entries to the climate discourse

A biweekly climate briefing for municipalities

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In this Issue #12

  • Papal Encyclical

  • China announces climate targets in the lead up to Paris

  • A remarkable court ruling in Holland

  • An unusual statement from the global health community

  • Cities gather in Paris in December

  • Cities as global changemakers

  • Featured network: Divest Invest


Papal Encyclical

The most notable event of 2015 so far with respect to climate action, the Papal Encyclical commanded responses from current and potential political figures, the UN, economists and everyone in between. At seventy-five pages long, the Encyclical states that climate change is one of the principal challenges facing humanity, and that it is a moral issue requiring respectful dialogue with all parts of society. There are many notable quotes, but of these one that caught our attention:

“In some places, cooperatives are being developed to exploit renewable sources of energy which ensure local self-sufficiency and even the sale of surplus energy. This simple example shows that, while the existing world order proves powerless to assume its responsibilities, local individuals and groups can make a real difference.” Read more

Pathway to Paris #11: Where are we after the Bonn talks?

A biweekly climate briefing for municipalities

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In this Issue #11

  • The last two weeks

  • UN preparatory meeting in the lead up to Paris

  • Countries issue their national targets

  • How can towns and cities contribute to a fair and ambitious climate deal in Paris?

  • New GHGProof pilot

  • Climate vulnerability monitor

  • Climate Publishers Network

  • Featured network: The Climate Vulnerability Network


A very eventful two weeks

It has been two weeks since the last newsletter and it seems like a generation, as everything is shifting very quickly. The G7 outlined a plan to phase out fossil fuels by 2100. While this plan is likely insufficient to prevent dangerous climate change, it is the first time that many key leaders have used the word decarbonisation, a shift in the discourse and a signal to investors, as the Guardian describes. Other unanticipated pronouncements: the CEOs of Europe’s largest oil companies including Shell, BP, BG Group, Eni, Statoil and Total wrote to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change requesting an international price on carbon. Chevron and ExxonMobil did not sign the letter. For those of you with kids (or otherwise), check out the Climate Hope City built in Minecraft. The Pope is about to issue an encyclical on climate change. Newspapers launched a pioneering effort to share stories on climate change. A study found that Canada’s GHG emissions cost the world 8,800 lives and $15.4 Billion every year. An IMF analysis found that fossil fuel subsidies totalled $4.9 trillion (6.5 percent of global GDP) in 2013. Eliminating these subsidies in 2015 could raise government revenue by $2.9 trillion (3.6 percent of global GDP), cut global CO2 emissions by more than 20 percent, and cut premature air pollution deaths by more than half.

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Pathway to Paris #10: financing and developing the low carbon economy

A biweekly climate briefing for municipalities

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In this Issue #10

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  • Governments subsidise fossil fuels massively

  • The growing job market in renewables

  • Under2MOU: Regions unite for a low carbon future

  • Public commitments to climate action

  • Featured network: Global Parliament of Mayors

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Green bonds: A ballooning new mechanism to finance climate action

The transition to a low carbon society requires a major injection of capital to fund renewable energy, new transportation systems, retrofits of buildings and so on. At the same time, trillions of dollars from pension funds and insurance companies sits in the bond market. Match the need with green investments with capital and the result is green bonds or climates.
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The SSG Story so far: Yuill Herbert presents to the All – Party Co-operative Caucus

The All-Party Caucus on Co-operatives held its eight meeting on Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015, under the theme “Innovative co-ops in green technologies and climate change adaptation.” Yuill was invited to provide the story of SSG, and why we do what we do. Here is his presentation:

“Thank you for inviting me here to present- it is an honour. Climate change is literally in the DNA of Sustainability Solutions Group or Groupe de solution durables, the cooperative of which I am a member. To illustrate, I will tell the story of SSG, how from humble beginnings we have become a leading sustainability consulting practice. I believe this story will help demonstrate why Canada needs to invest in more cooperatives as social innovators that confront critical issues facing society.

The genesis of SSG reaches back to my university days. A number of friends and I became concerned about the disconnect between the curriculum and operations and the scientific imperative to act on climate change- our premise being that if universities were not going to act, then who would. Read more

Pathway to Paris #9: The gap in local and federal climate action commitments

In this Issue #9

  • Canada fails to match GHG emission target
  • Deconstructing Paris COP21 text
  • Canadian premiers sign declaration for a low carbon economy
  • John Kerry invites civil society to commit to climate action
  • HSBC advises investors divest from fossil fuel companies
  • Extreme weather events on the rise

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Join the Climate Tracker Programme with our friends at Global Call for Climate Action

Post from Global Call for Climate Action – please respond to Joshua if you have any questions

Join the world’s biggest climate change writing movement for a chance to be part of the Adopt a Negotiator COP21 team in Paris this year!

 This is a huge year for climate action. Almost every country on earth is in the midst of preparing its national climate action plans before a new global climate treaty is revealed in Paris this December.

  • Throughout this year, we want to work with you to shape your government’s climate action plans.
  • We want to connect you with our partners and peers, working on these issues around the world.
  • And we want to help ensure your voice is heard in national debates about why and how we respond to climate change.

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Pathway to Paris #7: The rise in renewables as climate change negotiations continue

In this issue: 

  • An update from the climate change negotiations 
  • Competitive cities and climate change
  • The rise of renewables 
  • Featured network: 100 Resilient Cities  

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SSG publishes paper on the role of cooperatives in addressing climate change

The world’s nations will convene in December 2014 in Lima, Peru and then in December 2015 in Paris, France to negotiate an agreement to collectively address climate change. In the course of these negotiations, we urge countries to recognize and employ the value that co-operatives bring to this challenge. Read more