US - Federal Policy

For the U.S. in Cancun: A 3-Step Plan To Success's Amy Harder hosted today (30 November 2010) a panel of experts to discuss the climate summit in Cancun, Mexico.  The director of WWF's climate change program, Lou Leonard, provides "A 3-Step Plan To Success" for the U.S.

Citing Threat of Climate Change, U.S. Designates Nearly 187,000 Square Miles as "Critical Habitat" for Polar Bears

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today (24 November 2010) designated nearly 485,000 sq km (over 187,000 sq mi) as critical habitat for polar bears under the Endangered Species Act.  Noting that "the greatest threat to the polar bear is the melting of its sea ice habitat caused by human-induced climate change," Tom Strickland, Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks, said that "we will continue to work toward comprehensive strategies for the long-term survival of this iconic species."

Pakistan Flood Provides Warning for Growing Climate Disasters

A new report released from Refugee International addresses the rising threat of climate change on vulnerable countries and populations. The report draws from the Pakistan flood as an example of the coming increase in extreme weather events from climate change and as a lesson of inadequate response and preparedness. 

Clean Energy Industry: The One that Got Away?

Will the clean energy industry be considered America’s biggest missed opportunity of the 21st century? According to a new report from Third Way, this new market will grow $2.2 trillion over the next decade. As it currently stands, the U.S. is poorly positioned to lead this up and coming market.

President Obama believes Republicans & Democrats can find common ground on energy policy

During President Obama's post election press conference last week (3 Nov. 2010), several questions and answers during the Q&A session addressed America's energy policy, EPA's regulation of carbon emissions and the possibility of future legislation to reduce carbon pollution.

Federal Task Force says Americans Must Prepare for the "Inevitable Effects" of Climate Change

"People are already feeling the impacts of climate change and future changes are inevitable," says a report released today (14 October 2010) by a Federal Task Force on climate change adaptation coordinated by the White House.  The report says that "it is becoming ever more urgent to understand and prepare" for climate change impacts, and outlines steps the Administration can take to respond to those growing impacts of climate disruption.

Big Ideas in a Little Book on "Preparing for Climate Change"

In a pithy new book, Michael D. Mastrandrea and the late Stephen H. Schneider, argue that policies to slow climate change (mitigation) and to prepare for its impacts (planned adaptation) "must  be complementary and concurrent."

In Rolling Stone Interview, Obama Says "We're Going to Have to Mobilize" on Climate Change

"[C]limate change has the potential to have devastating effects on people around the globe," President Obama says in the latest (15 October 2010) issue of Rolling Stone, "and we've got to do something about it."  The President emphasizes the importance of curbing greenhouse gas emissions, though says nothing about preparing for the impacts of climate change -- even though a group of experts in late September called for increased Presidential engagement on preparedness issues.

2020 emissions set to exceed dangerous levels by one third

Global greenhouse gas emissions under current policy settings could be up to nearly one third more in 2020 than the trend needed to avoid catastrophic climate change, according to the latest “gigatonne gap” analysis conducted by WWF.

Senate Republicans & Democrats Unveil Bill on National Renewable Electricity Standard

On 21 Sept. 20101, Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and several other of his Republican and Democratic colleagues unveiled a bill to establish a national renewable electricity standard (RES).  An RES is an important component of any national energy policy that aims to ramp up renewable energy supply and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. However, because of its weak incremental national targets and aggressive actions some states already have taken, it is unclear how much this legislation's RES targets will spur renewable energy generation

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