Scott Pruitt, Donald Trump's nominee to head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, claimed there is still "some debate" over the role of human activity in climate change and defended his ties to the fossil fuel industry during his Senate confirmation hearing on Wednesday, the Guardian reports.
"Science tells us that the climate is changing and that human activity in some manner impacts that change," Pruitt said. "The ability to measure with precision the degree and extent of that impact and what to do about it are subject to continuing debate and dialogue ... so it should be."Read original story
U.S. government scientists announced on Wednesday that 2016 was the hottest year on record, Climate Central reports.Read original story
The Chinese government recently ordered the cancelation of 104 coal projects in development across 13 provinces, Vox reports.Read original story
According to India's energy minister, the country plans to eliminate its coal imports within a few years, Climate Home reports.Read original story
The U.S. Army published on Wednesday a notice of its intent to prepare an environmental impact statement of the Dakota Access oil pipeline's crossing of Lake Oahe, the Associated Press reports.Read original story
On Saturday, thousands of people from across the country will gather for the Women’s March on Washington.
Trump lost the popular vote by almost 3 million votes. Together we can make sure that the majority of us who oppose his vision for the country are visible and strong, and show that we will stand with those most at risk.
On January 21st, the climate movement will link arms with women of color and frontline communities for the Women’s March on Washington. There are hundreds of events happening next weekend, but this is one we don’t want you to miss:
Climate change dramatically magnifies inequalities like race and gender, consistently hitting Indigenous, Black, brown, women, immigrants, low-income, and vulnerable communities first and hardest. Climate justice is inextricably tied to fights for justice of all kinds.
— GGJ (@ggjalliance) January 19, 2017
I’ll be frank: it’s going to hurt like hell to watch Trump take the oath of office. To heal that heartbreak, the reaction from our movements needs to be swift and powerful.
More than ever, solidarity is crucial. If we organize across movements and put forward a vision of a country that works for all of us, we can stop the rollback of progress and achieve real gains on a local level. Inauguration weekend is only the beginning — but the bigger we begin, the more impressive our impact will be in the weeks to come.
If you’re coming to Inauguration, join the It Takes Roots contingent at the Women’s March, and help show that the Trump administration does not have the consent of the people most threatened by their disastrous policies.
Another America is already rising and taking action, and it’s beautiful: from nationwide walkouts for immigrant rights on college campuses to protests at Senate offices against a climate denier cabinet, people are standing together. That resistance will continue to grow.
This moment of upheaval and change calls on us to do more — to break out of our comfort zones, to grapple with complexity, and to show up ready to learn. It won’t be easy, but from day one of Trump’s administration we will step into our power together and show that the people who want justice represent a force too great to ignore.
See you in the streets.
P.S. If you are joining the It Takes Roots delegation at the Women’s March on Washington, share on social media why you’re joining with the hashtag #ItTakesRoots. If you’re joining a sister march, share your reasons for marching on social media using the hashtag #WhyIMarch and #IMarchFor.
Last week Rex Tillerson had a very bad day on Capitol Hill. He faced tough questions on ExxonMobil’s climate record and human rights abuses, then effectively pled the 5th when questioned about Exxon’s climate cover-up.
Tillerson’s nomination is weakening because people are standing up and demanding Senators ask tough questions. This week EPA nominee Scott Pruitt — who has spent his entire career trying to undermine the agency he is supposed to oversee — goes under oath.
Here’s what we’ve done so far, before Trump even takes the oath of office:
In December, we held a climate science teach-in outside of Donald Trump’s transition headquarters in Washington DC:
The very first day that the Senate returned to session, thousands of calls flooded the phone lines, and we announced a national day of action against Trump’s cabinet. The national wave of #DayAgainstDenial actions were the first coordinated grassroots push against Trump’s cabinet:
The very next day, folks in DC held a rally with nearly 200 people, including a dozen people dressed as “T-Rex” dinosaurs outside of Rex Tillerson’s hearing that got tons of great news coverage:
Once inside the Capitol, pressure on Tillerson didn’t let up. Senator Tim Kaine specifically asked about the #ExxonKnew climate coverup scandal, forcing Tillerson into his most awkward moment of the hearing. Several Greenpeace activists who have been directly affected by Exxon’s pollution interrupted his testimony too.
Donald Trump may be taking the oath of office this week, but he has not won the trust, support or consent of the American people. The protests against his racist, sexist fossil fuel agenda will not let up. Opposition will grow, starting from the very first moment he takes office.
If we stay loud, we can make a big difference and limit the damage Trump can do. Thank you for continuing to stand up.
Interior secretary nominee Ryan Zinke said during his confirmation hearing on Tuesday that he does not believe climate change is a hoax and pledged to bring a Teddy Roosevelt-style approach to managing federal public lands, NPR reports.Read original story
The U.S. State Department on Tuesday announced it would contribute an additional $500 million to the Green Climate Fund, bringing total U.S. contributions to $1 billion since 2016. The Obama administration had initially pledged $3 billion to the fund in 2014.Read original story
Three First Nations in British Columbia are planning to bring their fight against the $6.8-billion Trans Mountain pipeline to the courts, The Globe and Mail reports.
Exxon Mobil Corp. on Tuesday announced a deal to buy Bass-owned companies working in the Permian Basin for $5.6 billion in stock and up to $1 billion in additional payments, the Wall Street Journal reports.Read original story
Great news earlier this week when the Berlin Doctor’s Pension Fund, Berliner Ärzteversorgung (BÄV), announced it was divesting from all companies generating more than 25% of their turnover from coal mining or basing more than 25% of their energy production on coal. This will affect 40 companies of the €7bn fund.
A group of BÄV member doctors have been campaigning towards this goal for the past two years and will take their divestment campaign forward to include oil and gas companies as well as other enterprises connected to coal-production.
We’re excited to see what funds will follow in these steps next.
We are very excited that the students in Liège have achieved the first Belgian university divestment win!
On 17 January, the University of Liège announced it would divest all direct holdings from fossil fuels within 5 years and immediately freeze any new investment in fossil fuels.
Fossil Free ULg – Aide l’ULg à avoir les mains propres#FossilFreeULg demande à l’Université plus de transparence sur ses investissements financiers dans le secteur des énergies fossiles. Et si le recteur passait à la cafet pour répondre à vos questions? Signez la pétition sur www.fossilfreeulg.be
Posted by Fossil Free ULg on Tuesday, December 13, 2016
The Fossil Free ULg campaign started less than a year ago and has used different organising tools including banner drops, short videos and a petition to raise awareness, increase their numbers and ultimately pressure the university into a positive first decision.
Celebrating this first win, Fossil Free ULg are already planning their next steps: making sure that the University of Liège keeps its promise and divests the funds within a quicker timeframe that 5 years, and pressuring them to go all the way and divest from their indirect holdings in fossil fuel companies. The university still invests through mixed funds that contain fossil fuels and have so far refused to change those investments.
Congratulations to the Fossil Free ULg campaigners and supporters for their amazing win and to the University of Liège for making the right decision!
On the 17th of January the citizens of Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, woke up to find the city covered with smog. This is not the first time over the last half year when the situation occurs. Exactly the same thing happened earlier in July and October 2016.
Local government representatives insist that the smog has been caused by the weather conditions, which resulted in the emissions being accumulated in the lower atmosphere. At the same time, the experts from the National Ecological Centre made an official statement, explaining that the causes of smog in Kyiv are the air pollutants emitted by the city transportation and energy sector, as well as the particular weather situation, combined. To be more specific, the concentration of CO2 in the city centre on the 17th of January was about 6 mg/m3 (with the average maximum allowable 3 to 5 mg/m3).
It’s worth mentioning, that over the past few years Kyiv turned into the city with some of the worst air quality in Europe. In the future, the greatest threat to the people in Kyiv is the potential failure of the local government to implement the policies of sustainable urban development, where one of the main priorities should be to reduce air pollution. At the moment, there isn’t even a system to constantly monitor the air quality neither in the capital nor across the rest of the country.
The environmental well-being of the Kyiv city in the upcoming 2017-2019 years is now actively discussed by the local authorities. The project (the environmental strategy) is being developed with the participation of the regional coordinator from 350.org. Our regional team hopes our participation will help to convince the government to include relevant sections about adaptation to climate change, prepared with the participation of NGO representatives in Kyiv into the document. At the moment there is an issue with the national budget, which is needed to develop the missing parts of the strategy. The City Council is claiming there are no funds for mitigation and adaptation to climate change, forgetting how urgent the issue is and how devastating the long-term consequences for the local citizens can be.
Unlike the authorities in Paris, who almost immediately cancelled the public transportation fee and restricted the usage of private vehicles in a similar situation back in December 2016, the executives in Kyiv are slow to provide a proper (or any) solution.
As the organisation, we are interested what the city administration office members had in mind this morning when they woke up to see the capital covered with smog. We are also curious whether it was comfortable enough for our mayor to ride a bicycle to work or around the city in such conditions? Now, leaving the irony behind, we believe it is time to accept the climate crisis in the country, as well as its causes and the potential consequences. “Climate” is no longer a geographical definition, it has long ago became a painful problem that requires an immediate action, until the devastating consequences turn from the forecasted situation into the real issue.
More photoes from different areas of the city on January, 17th:
On January 23rd, students across the country will walk out of class to stand against the Trump administration’s climate denial agenda that so profoundly threatens the next generation.
This is our moment to make sure that from the very first hours of Trump’s presidency, the majority of us who oppose his vision for the country are seen, and strong. We’re calling on universities to resist and reject Trump’s climate denial by divesting from the fossil fuel industry and reinvesting in solutions to the climate crisis.
— Fossil Fuel D.S.N. (@StudentsDivest) January 17, 2017
In moments of crisis, youth movements have stepped up to bend the arc of history: organizing mass actions to divest universities from fossil fuels, to stop police brutality and state violence, to protect immigrant communities, and beyond.
And during the election, young people led the way confronting Trump’s racism, sexism, and climate denial — people under 30 opposed Trump by the widest margins of any age group in the country.
Right now we need the leadership of young people most of all. That’s why on January 23rd, campus groups from Boston University to UC Berkeley will be walking out together to call for divestment from fossil fuels.
Sign up to join the nationwide demonstrations on January 23rd here, and help show that we will not stand by while Trump assembles an administration that ignores the reality of climate change and works solely for the interests for the 1% and fossil fuel tycoons.
If we — young people — lead the way with mass mobilization, we can set the tone of powerful resistance from the very beginning of Trump’s Presidency.
This is our moment — let’s seize it.
— Lindsay Meiman (@lindsaymeim14) January 14, 2017