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By John O'Neill
Posted on: January 26, 2016
Just before Christmas, Congress passed dozens of tax-law changes that affect businesses large and small, and since many apply retroactively, their impact is immediate.Some of the changes will advance a sustainable economy, by supporting the use and production of renewable energy for instance. Others will inhibit it, for example, by enabling U.S. companies to shift income offshore. All will drive up the deficit because few, if any, are paid for.The changes add certainty to the tax code because Congress made permanent more than 20 temporary tax breaks (the so-called tax extenders). These... read more
By Hazel Henderson
Posted on: January 20, 2016
Robert Pollin, author of Greening the Global Economy and Joseph Romm of the Center for American Progress, author of Climate Change: What Everyone Needs to Know, are both influential in the USA but little known to global audiences.  Both argue that climate change generated by the burning of fossil fuels and other unsustainable human activities can best be addressed by more efficient use of all resources and an accelerated shift to renewable energy: solar, wind driven by the Sun, hydro and geothermal from within the Earth.Joseph Romm reaches his conclusion as a physicist with deep scientific... read more
By Tara Ritter
Posted on: January 15, 2016
A group of rural organizations, leaders and experts in the U.S. recently outlined the challenges climate change pose to rural communities and developed a set of policy priorities. The document, entitled “Rural Climate Policy Priorities: Solutions from the Ground,” is endorsed by 23 organizations (including ASBC) and identifies transformative and long-term policy approaches to climate change that encourage resilience, equity, democracy and local ownership and control.Why the specific focus on rural? On average, rural residents are more food and energy insecure and have higher rates of poverty... read more
By Michelle Thatcher
Posted on: December 22, 2015
And the Florida Chapter of the U.S. Green Chamber of Commerce is helping by endorsing and supporting the proposed Floridians for Solar Choice Amendment.For the first time in Florida history, companies would be allowed to install solar panels on homes and businesses and sell the residents or business owners the electricity produced."The Florida Green Chamber of Commerce will continue pushing for sustainable energy policy that will benefit our state economy, our local communities, and the environment which we all depend on every day," said Chris Castro, President of the Florida Chapter, “Solar... read more
By Richard Eidlin
Posted on: December 9, 2015
Tuesday at Le Bourget, the temporary home of 40,000 climate activists, business leaders, local government officials, environmental NGOs and national delegates from across the globe, was a blur of activity. With a draft 46-page ‘agreement’ released last Saturday, a wide range of committees are at work to craft a final declaration that participating countries, here to serve present and future generations, can get behind by the close of COP21 on December 12, or, possibly, one day later.Despite the challenges of a consensus-driven process, the take is that the COP21 process is working. The need... read more
By Michael Green
Posted on: December 8, 2015
[Paris, France] New language currently being discussed at COP 21 would call for cooperation on transferable mitigation outcomes between negotiating states. The text supported by the European Union and Brazil would allow for trading of emissions reductions and leaves the door open to offsets in the market. According to the mechanism drafted, countries would put in place an overall emissions cap and continue to push towards stronger goals over time.Emission trading has long been a preferred model for the EU as well as Brazil. Countries in the European Union have been operating under their own... read more
By Richard Eidlin
Posted on: December 6, 2015
During a late Friday morning briefing for hundreds of observer organizations participating in the UN Climate Summit, Christina Figueres, executive secretary of COP21, summed up one of the key challenges facing delegates: “the importance of finding a path for the wholesale transformation of oil and gas companies.” This is a huge task, of course, and yet for the 30,000+ attendees (20,000 government representatives and 10,000 NGO observers) the overwhelming focus is on scaling up solutions. It is clear what the problems are; now it’s time for action.Moving Towards SolutionsAt the macro level,... read more
By Michael Green
Posted on: December 6, 2015
The COP21 climate talks are underway this week in Paris, France with Friday being focused on the challenges and needs of the private sector. While world leaders are discussing how to mitigate future climate change risks, agriculture remains a key industry in the negotiations. Farmers are the definition of a frontline community for business, meaning it is a group that is currently being most directly affected by climate change. Globally, small farmers make up one of the most important frontline communities who are already facing the challenges of a rapidly changing climate due to our... read more
By Michael Green
Posted on: December 4, 2015
Thursday, December 3rd marked an important day in the two week long agenda here at the global climate negotiations in Paris, France. Future Generations Day pays homage to those who will inherit the world which we have created. While we are already feeling the threats of climate change, from the floods in South Carolina to the droughts and fires of California, according to scientists, the most severe symptoms of our changing planet will not occur till mid to late century. By then, many of the leaders here in Paris will be gone and only their actions will speak for them.By mid-century, many of... read more
By Michael Green
Posted on: December 2, 2015
Paris, France (December 2, 2015)—On Tuesday morning, the President of the United States met with leaders from small island states at the UN Climate negotiations in Paris, France. During his opening speech Obama reconfirmed his international commitments saying, “...tomorrow, we’ll pledge new contributions to risk insurance initiatives that help vulnerable populations rebuild stronger after climate-related disasters.” The meeting further highlights the challenges for countries around the world who are being forced to adapt to rising sea levels. In the past two decades we have seen a sea level... read more