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Russia raises stakes in Greenpeace row with ‘hard drugs’ claim

A summary of today’s top climate and clean energy stories.
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Source: Denis Sinyakov/Greenpeace

Russia: Russian investigators have raised the stakes in their battle with Greenpeace, claiming drugs have been found aboard the organisation’s ship, the Arctic Sunrise. They also said a number of Greenpeace activists had put the lives of Russian coastguards at risk with their actions, and announced that new charges are in preparation against some of the 30 people currently in detention. (Guardian)

EU: The EU will meet its 2020 targets to reduce carbon emissions and increase use of renewable energy, according to a report by the bloc’s environment agency. The report by the European Environment Agency (EEA), published on Wednesday, states that carbon emissions across the EU’s 28 countries will be 21 percent lower than 1990 levels by 2020. (EU Observer)

UK: A new environment minister who advised David Cameron on energy has suggested subsidies for wind and solar power are “still too high”, amid growing speculation the Tories are planning an assault against green costs on energy bills. (Guardian)

World: The OECD is to start scoring countries on how well they are tackling climate change as it steps up a push to wean governments off the fossil fuels it says have put humans on a “collision course with nature”. (Financial Times)

Research: Today’s climate extremes will be the “new normal” for the tropics within a decade, say scientists from the University of Hawaii. Diverse tropical regions will face unprecedented damage to its climate system ten years earlier than anywhere else on Earth, say the scientists, since they are unaccustomed to climate variability, and are therefore vulnerable to relatively small changes. (RTCC)

EU: Environment ministers meeting in Luxembourg on Monday are gearing up for a heated debate on car carbon-dioxide emissions in the face of last-minute objections by Germany that could delay the introduction of revised limits for years. (European Voice)

Research: Focusing on keeping world temperatures beneath 2°C is no longer an effective policy strategy, warn scientists from the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change. They say the UN needs to consider adapting climate policy to an amended goal of ‘Mitigate for 2 but adapt for 4’ as the 2°C limit – the point beyond which the effects of climate climate are likely to become catastrophic – starts to slip out of sight. (RTCC)

US: Spanish technology and engineering company Abengoa SA said on Wednesday the 280-megawatt Solana solar thermal power plant in Arizona entered service earlier this week.The plant, which cost about $2 billion to build, has a thermal energy storage system that is able to generate electricity for six hours after the sun goes down. (Reuters)

Finance: Carbon markets are about 94 percent cheaper at cutting greenhouse gases than renewable subsidies paid to power producers, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. (Bloomberg)

 

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