Five Stories: China Sharply Lifts Clean Energy Targets; India’s Solar Ambitions “reachable”

Here are five recommended reads for today (12/09/15).

  1. The New York Times reports: “As China steps up its efforts to tackle climate change, the government is sharply lifting its targets for renewable energy. China now wants to generate 150 to 200 gigawatts of electricity using solar power by 2020, possibly quadrupling the previous target. China also wants to sharply lift its wind power targets to 250 gigawatts by the same year.”
  2. A fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations “released a report arguing that India’s solar ambitions are both reachable and central to the climate commitments that India volunteered ahead of the ongoing Paris Climate Change Conference. You can read the Wall Street Journal’s coverage of our report here, and you can read the full report here.”
  3. Climate Progress reports: “A series of emails published in conjunction with a Greenpeace UK Energy Desk undercover investigation reveal a willingness by prominent academics to accept funding from fossil fuel companies in exchange for producing scientific studies that sow doubt about mainstream climate science. The academics also revealed a willingness not to disclose the source of funding for the studies.”
  4. According to Brad Plumer of Vox: “A new study in Nature Climate Change reports that worldwide carbon dioxide emissions likely dropped in 2015, the first time that’s ever happened without the help of a global economic crisis….The trouble is that a number of media outlets, including the New York Times, have gone even further, suggesting that global carbon emissions might finally be peaking for good in 2015. That seems unlikely. And don’t take my word for it: One of the study’s authors, Corinne Le Quéré of the University of East Anglia, has flat-out said it’s very unlikely.”
  5. InsideClimate News reports: “A sobering critique of America’s pipeline spill response efforts was delivered in a new study released Tuesday, concluding they aren’t adequate when it comes to spills involving sludgy crude oil pumped from the Canadian tar sands. The 144-page report‘s main message is that the thick type of oil called diluted bitumen, or “dilbit,” initially behaves like conventional oil in the first few days following a spill but then quickly degrades, or weathers, into a substance so chemically and physically different that it defies standard spill responses.”