China’s young climate heroes fight apathy and the party line

Zhao Jiaxin and Howey Ou are trying to convince Beijing to take radical carbon-cutting action One is a student engineer who became obsessed after watching an incendiary film about air pollution. The other is a 16-year-old who went on Chinas first climate strike. Zhao Jiaxin and Howey Ou are part of a small but growing minority of young Chinese determined to press their country towards more radical carbon-cutting action. The pair are also Chinas sole winners of carbon neutral green tickets the leading carbon emitter. It generates 60% of its electricity from coal-fired power and coal consumption and carbon emissions have risen for two years in a row after a plateau between 2014 and 2016. Emissions are expected to rise …

The air conditioning trap: how cold air is heating the world

The warmer it gets, the more we use air conditioning. The more we use air conditioning, the warmer it gets. Is there any way out of this trap? On a sweltering Thursday evening in Manhattan last month, people across New York City were preparing for what meteorologists predicted would be the hottest weekend of the year. Over the past two decades, every record for peak electricity use in the city has occurred during a heatwave, as millions of people turn on their air conditioning units at the same time. And so, at the midtown headquarters of Con Edison, the company that supplies more than 10 million people in the New York area with electricity, employees were busy turning a conference …

Icy Waterfalls Are Roaring as a Heat Wave Sizzles Greenland

When Jason Gulley steps off the plane Thursday in Ilulissat, Greenland, he’ll be packing rubber waders along with his down parka and cold-weather sleeping bag. The region is experiencing a massive heat wave right now—the same one that hit Europe last week—with some areas expected to top 73 degrees Fahrenheit. This temporary mass of hot air is also turning the frozen surface of the ice sheet that covers the country into patches of slush (spring skiing, anyone?). The meltwater forms rivers and lakes, and then drains into subterranean channels that dive from the surface thousands of feet down to the base of the ice sheet, where it meets bedrock. As a glaciologist who studies the plumbing system of Greenland’s ice …

Meet generation Greta: young climate activists around the world

Theyre too young to vote, but schoolchildren across the globe are taking matters into their own hands In May, for the second time this year, more than 1.5 million young people in more than 125 countries walked out of schools, colleges and universities in we have only 12 years to limit global warming to a maximum of 1.5C. Still, most governments are not doing enough to stay within these limits as set out by the Climate Outreach, explains: Climate change is the most politically divisive issue in America, more so than gun control and abortion. But young people have the social freedom to say it like it is. a climate denier heading our government that is two steps backwards from …

Cold War Spy Photos Show How Fast Himalayan Glaciers Are Melting

During the height of the Cold War, a telescope-shaped American spy satellite code-named Hexagon circled the globe snapping high-resolution photographs of forests, mountains, and perhaps a few Russian military bases. From time to time, the satellite would eject metal canisters containing the film of the imagery. The canister would deploy its parachute, and high-flying spy planes would pick it up midair. Now a team of scientists has stitched together these once-classified analog images to form a three-dimensional digital model of the Himalayas as they existed more than 40 years ago. By comparing the model with images taken today, researchers found that the mountain’s glaciers are melting at double the rate since 2000 as during the period of 1976 to 2000, …

What to Do About CO2? Try Stuffing It Into the Gulf of Mexico

What if Texas oilmen (oilfolks?) could save the planet from climate change? Hardy-har-har. Given that the Lone Star State ranks sixth in heat-trapping carbon emissions worldwide, just behind Germany and ahead of South Korea, the idea sounds pretty far-fetched. But some recent developments have made the prospect a bit more conceivable. Texas is all about oil and gas. Its petroleum refineries and other energy industries lead the nation in carbon emissions with 653 million metric tons, more than California (number two) and Pennsylvania (number three) combined. Texas’ oil industry continues to find new places to drill offshore, where methane and carbon dioxide that escape during the drilling process also boost greenhouse gases that are wreaking havoc on Earth’s climate. At …

Worlds biggest investor accused of dragging feet on climate crisis

BlackRock, which controls $6.5tn in assets, urged to use its influence on planets biggest polluters When a letter from BlackRocks founder and chief executive, Larry Fink, landed in inboxes in January saying that the worlds biggest investor would no longer invest in companies that are not compliant with the history of embarrassing big companies. But while the message was fake, the concern behind it was not: environmental campaigners see BlackRock as a key obstacle to progress on meeting climate crisis goals. Now they are stepping up the pressure on the worlds biggest asset owner which faces its shareholders at its annual meeting on Thursday to use its influence on some of the worlds biggest polluters, as it has done previously …

A Teen Started a Global Climate Protest. What Are You Doing?

This story was originally published by The Guardian and is reproduced here as part of the Climate Desk collaboration. Greta Thunberg cut a frail and lonely figure when she started a school strike for the climate outside the Swedish parliament building last August. Her parents tried to dissuade her. Classmates declined to join. Passersby expressed pity and bemusement at the sight of the then unknown 15-year-old sitting on the cobblestones with a hand-painted banner. Eight months on, the picture could not be more different. The pigtailed teenager is feted across the world as a model of determination, inspiration, and positive action. National presidents and corporate executives line up to be criticized by her, face to face. Her Skolstrejk för Klimatet …