According to an article in the SMH this week, the IPCC are preparing to release a report which will show that time is rapidly running out to limit global warming to less than 2 degrees. The report will discuss mechanisms of cutting carbon emissions including renewable energy sources and “clean” fossil fuels.
The draft report apparently acknowledges that the reduction of emissions now required to stay on target for a less than 2 degree rise would reduce economic output by 2-6 per cent by 2050. Missing the 2 degree target would mean finding technologies to cool the planet by extracting greenhouse gasses from the atmosphere according to the draft. Read the article here.
This follows on from the previous IPCC report on impacts, adaptation and vulnerability. To assist in disseminating the key messages from this report, the Global Climate and Health Alliance has released a series of resources to explain the implications of the reports findings. These resources are aimed at health professionals, media and policy makers and can be found here.
Renew Economy this week examined the impact of the recent WA vote re-run on climate friendly policies. The result of the election (2 seats Liberal, 1 seat Labor, 1 seat Green, 1 seat PUP and 1 undecided) are not happy news for those who want to see strong action on climate change.
It would appear that the PUP senate block will vote to repeal the carbon tax and do not support a compulsory emissions target. The future of the Clean Energy Fund remains less clear. Read the article here.
Closer to home, the Northern Territory Branch of the Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA NT) launched its submission to the Social Impact Assessment process for the proposed ‘Ranger 3 Deeps’ (R3D) underground expansion at the Ranger uranium mine. The submission looks at health and safety impacts for the community, workers and the environment. Read the full submission here.
Finally, this week the Guardian ran an article by Alice Bell on the launch of a new Fossil Free campaign, Fossil Free Health. Fossil Free campaigns are aimed at shifting institutional (originally university) and individual (think superannuation, banks etc) investments out of fossil fuels preferably into more renewable energy sources.
Fossil Free Health is calling on major medical institutions in the UK such as the BMA, the Royal Colleges and the Wellcome Trust to divest from the fossil fuel industry. The article notes the diverse stakeholders that differentiate this campaign from previous successful campaigns and ponders whether it will have an impact.
Given the increasing movement within health to recognize and raise the issue of the significant threat that climate change poses to health, this would seem a relatively simple way for the health industry internationally to demonstrate the level of concern. Read the full article “Will the medical establishment stop investing in fossil fuels?”