WASHINGTON (MAY 12, 2016)— The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency finalized the first-ever federal standards for methane emissions from new and modified sources in the oil and natural gas sectors. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas pollutant, with up to 34 times more global warming potential than carbon dioxide, and it accounts for roughly one-quarter of human-made global warming. Methane valued at more than $1 billion escapes from oil and natural gas extraction processes in the U.S.
While a carbon tax has attracted little attention in the U.S. media before the primary debate last week, WRI research shows it's a policy that can reduce emissions in cost-effective, pro-growth and equitable ways. In fact, some 40 countries and more than 20 cities, states and regions have or are planning on putting carbon prices in place.
Since 195 countries adopted the Paris Agreement in December 2015, many countries are starting to implement their climate commitments or “nationally determined contribution” (NDC). But many developing countries lack the tools to measure, report and verify progress on their climate commitments and actions. The Initiative for Climate Action Transparency (ICAT) was launched today in response to calls for support from countries for improved transparency and capacity building related to the Paris Agreement.
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The Paris Agreement on climate change is anchored in plans – known as Intended National Determined Contributions, or INDCs -- to cut greenhouse gas emissions submitted by individual countries. As countries put policies in place to fulfill their INDCs, the Agreement also lays out requirements to regularly monitor implementation and progress. Performance...
In his final State of the Union address, President Barack Obama ranked the importance of a climate change strategy on a par with national security, economic equality and a more effective political process. Here are six steps his administration can take this year to cement its climate legacy.
Because the Paris Agreement is a universal, legally binding agreement to tackle climate change under international law, it joins other such agreements as the highest expression of political intent and will. That sends a strong signal to corporations, planners, investors and others that governments will enforce climate policies.
What led to the successful adoption of the Paris Agreement at COP21? WRI's Michael Oko sees persistence, determination and the increasing clarity of climate science as key factors.