In the final days of the Paris climate conference, the idea of greenhouse gas emissions neutrality has emerged as a way to frame the long-term goal to limit the rise in world temperatures. Here are five key questions and answers about this critical concept.
Governance & Access
"The shift to a clean energy economy is inevitable -- it's no longer a matter of if, but when," WRI President and CEO Andrew Steer writes. "Elected officials can make America a leader in this new clean energy future and ensure that Americans enjoy better health and a more vigorous economy."
Satellite data reveals that concessions cover more than half the Malaysian state of Sarawak, often overlapping with sensitive intact forests that are being degraded at one of the highest rates in the world.
Conflict in the Middle East and Africa is driving a human tsunami that has sent 500,000 people into Europe this year in the worst migration crisis since World War II. Beyond the conflict, however, there is another contributing factor: water scarcity.
After key negotiations in Bonn, we're in the homestretch to COP21, the pivotal global meeting in Paris in December where countries will agree on a new international climate agreement. Negotiators made significant progress at Bonn, but a strong COP21 outcome requires a much more vigorous pace.
While members of the Open Government Partnership have made notable progress toward government accountability over the past four years, there has been little attention given to making land holdings and land transactions more transparent.
At a UN Summit in September, the largest-ever gathering of world leaders adopted the Sustainable Development Goals, a bold new roadmap to tackle climate change and extreme poverty by 2030. The global community now faces the real work of translating vision into action. Fortunately, early actions by some countries already align with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and help point the way forward.
Africa is home to some of the fastest-growing economies on the planet, but the lack of affordable, reliable energy could challenge continued economic and social development. Distributed power generation could be part of the solution.
While dealing with sooty clouds from massive forest fires in recent weeks, Indonesia submitted its post-2020 climate action plan, committing to an unconditional target of a 29 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, compared to a business-as-usual scenario.
The death of Zimbabwe's iconic Cecil the lion has sparked widespread calls for punishment for the animal's killers. The U.S. Lacey Act, which aims to protect wildlife around the world, may apply.