The group of countries, known as the Climate Vulnerability Forum, argues current efforts to limit global temperature rise to two degrees Celsius is insufficient to protect many nations from the dangers of climate change. The leaders say lives, rights and the prosperity of billions are at stake in the globally agreed temperature limit.
90 per cent of all new wells drilled in B.C. that would supply the province's proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry will be fracked. Fracking demands massive amounts of freshwater, industrializes large areas of northeast B.C. and has major impacts on the climate. So, how is the B.C. government getting away with touting this industry as a "clean" energy resource?
Investors are realizing that divestment doesn't mean financial losses. Thanks in part to plummeting global oil prices and the booming clean energy economy, divested portfolios have been outperforming those with investments in fossil fuels. Divestment doesn't just mean pulling your investments from fossil fuel holdings -- it also means redirecting investment dollars to alternatives like clean energy, green tech and climate solutions.
In line with the hippocratic oath, we physicians-in-training make a formal request to our colleagues and mentors, we call upon the Canadian Medical Association, MD Financial, the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada to divest from fossil fuels.
From November 30 to December 11, 2015, world leaders will gather in Paris in an attempt once more to negotiate an international treaty to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and hence global warming. Whether or not society chooses to take the necessary steps to mitigate climate change ultimately depends on the extent to which we value the importance of intergenerational equity.
While the majority of Canadians see climate change as a serious threat to the planet, Canada has no climate legislation and, according to Environment Canada, growing emissions from the Alberta oilsands will prevent the country from meeting its emission reduction targets under the Copenhagen Accord.
Environment Canada has been telling us for years that Canada is running off the climate track and -- because of growing emissions largely from the oil and gas sector -- we are getting farther and farther away from meeting our government's self-imposed climate targets. Because of that climate failure, Canada is holding all of us back from prosperity, jobs and better health. That's according to a new study of benefits from international emission pledges made in the lead up to December's UN climate summit. Developed countries around the world -- with the exception of Canada and Japan -- are unveiling their individual climate plans, which were due yesterday.
Canada's negotiators are working hard to sidestep the issue of the country's growing greenhouse gas emissions from the oil and gas sector while simultaneously keeping quiet about the oilsands as nations come up with their "intended nationally determined contributions" in the global climate agreement.
The situation in Canada is not different from the rest of the world. The country is already feeling the consequences of climate change: diminishing quality and quantity of water, increasing pollens and other allergens, coastal erosion, road and infrastructure degradation and floods. The health consequences of those climate change impacts are already being strongly felt.
With coal often as the elephant in the room at the international climate talks, the Canadian province of Ontario has a good news story that shows important leadership in tackling climate change. Ontario is about to become the first jurisdiction in North America to move to zero coal.