*[Enwl-eng] 🌏CAN EECCA Newsletter: Dependence on NPPs, Restoration of Kakhovskaya HPP and dangerous COP28

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Nov 29, 2023, 8:00:12 AM11/29/23
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Regional Climate News 

When Russia wants to create dependency in another country, it builds nuclear power plants there

The French company Framatome is planning to send a shipment of enriched uranium dioxide to Russia, to the “Mashinostroitelny Zavod” enterprise near Moscow, owned by the state corporation Rosatom, which has environmentalists worried. Experts believe that these supplies not only pose risks to the environment, but also violate the sanctions regime. According to co-chairman of "Ecodefense!" Vladimir Slivyak, nuclear power has become Russia's main geopolitical tool, increasing its influence by building nuclear reactors in different countries.

A number of international organizations presented recommendations to address smog in Bishkek

International organizations, including the Asian Development Bank, have made recommendations to combat air pollution in Bishkek. The report emphasizes that changing coal to cleaner and more efficient heat sources, such as geothermal heat pumps, is a necessary measure, while investments in clean coal or gas heating are insufficient. The importance of developing clean public transportation and supporting green mobility is also noted.

Risky agriculture in the Belarusian way

Belarus, despite global efforts to reduce the negative impact of agriculture on the environment, continues to develop intensive and extensive farming projects without giving importance to climate change issues. There is a decrease in the area of agricultural land in the country, although the state program for 2021-2025 includes initiatives to develop environmentally friendly agriculture. Agriculture continues to be a key sector of the Belarusian economy, but its extensive nature has significant negative consequences for the environment, including water pollution by mineral and organic fertilizers and toxic chemicals, and soil contamination.

"Nature does not wait for our decisions". Is it necessary to restore the Kakhovka reservoir and HPP?

Velikiy Meadow, a key natural and historical landscape of Ukraine, was flooded in 1955-1958 due to the construction of the Kakhovka reservoir. The area preserved the monuments of the Zaporizhian Sich and unique species of flora and fauna. In 2023, the explosion of the Kakhovka hydroelectric dam destroyed the reservoir, giving Ukraine a choice between restoring nature or building a new hydroelectric plant. An energy policy specialist advises choosing the restoration of the Great Meadow and the development of alternative energy sources such as solar and wind power.    

Aset Nauryzbaev: Renewable energy in Kazakhstan is cheaper, faster and safer than nuclear power plants

Currently, Kazakhstan Nuclear Power Plants has not completed a feasibility study (FS) for the construction of nuclear power plants. Unlike world practice, where feasibility studies are conducted to determine the cost per kilowatt hour and make investment decisions, in Kazakhstan it is proposed to hold a referendum and then consider the feasibility study. The author points to high prices for nuclear electricity, citing data on the cost per kilowatt-hour from various sources, where nuclear energy is presented as one of the most expensive.

Green Alternative's position on Georgia's Climate Change Action Plan

Green Alternative shared comments and position on the updated Climate Change Action Plan 2024-2025 (energy sector).

The Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture of Georgia presented the working version of the updated Climate Change Action Plan for 2024-2025. The focus of the strategy until 2030 highlights priority sectors aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, including the energy sector. Division of the energy sector into sub-sectors (energy production and transmission, transportation, construction), which was discussed in various working groups.

World Climate News

COP28: Activists fear surveillance and arrests at Dubai climate summit

Activists preparing for the COP28 climate talks in the UAE express concern over potential surveillance and arrests by the strict authorities, despite the country's assurance of allowing "peaceful assembly" in designated areas. The UAE's history of limiting protests and suppressing civil society, including the imprisonment of human rights defenders, raises fears among activists, who also worry about extensive surveillance capabilities. While the COP28 gatherings are restricted to the UN-managed "blue zone" for security reasons, activists remain determined to address human rights issues within the confines of the conference.

Lobbying undermines climate pledges of more than half the world's top companies

A recent analysis by the non-profit think tank InfluenceMap reveals that many major companies, such as Glencore, ExxonMobil, and Stellantis, are engaging in lobbying activities that contradict their net-zero emissions commitments. The study, examining 293 companies from the Forbes 2000 list, suggests that nearly 60% of those with net-zero or similar climate targets risk "net zero greenwash" due to conflicting lobbying efforts. The findings underscore the need for companies to align their policy-influencing actions with their climate commitments, as emphasized by the United Nations ahead of the COP28 climate summit later this month.

Power Up for Climate Justice: a landmark report on financing a global renewable energy target

The upcoming COP28 climate conference is set to focus on a landmark report, "Power Up for Climate Justice: Financing and Implementing a Global Renewables Target," advocating for a tripling of renewable energy capacity to over 11,000 gigawatts by 2030. The report emphasizes the necessity of accompanying this target with a robust energy package, including financial support for the Global South and reforms in the financial system. To ensure climate justice, the report calls for a binding commitment in the COP28 final text to phase out fossil fuels by 2050, supported by concrete processes and resources for implementation, including debt cancellation, $100 billion in concessional finance, and $200 billion in grants yearly.   

Deep sea mining will not start on our watch

Greenpeace activists aboard the Arctic Sunrise have been monitoring and protesting against The Metals Company, a leading entity in the deep-sea mining industry, during one of its last expeditions in the Pacific before seeking approval for commercial operations. With kayaks and banners, Greenpeace activists disrupted the industry's exploration tests, emphasizing the environmental risks and rallying against the destruction of the seabed. Over a million people, supported by hundreds of scientists and 24 governments, are opposing deep-sea mining, asserting its unsustainability and potential for irreparable harm to the ocean ecosystem. 

World on track for nearly 3C of warming under current climate plans, UN report warns

A new report from the UN Environment Programme warns that the world is on track for 2.5 to 2.9 degrees Celsius of heating this century under current Paris Agreement climate plans. Urgent action is required to prevent this outcome, with the report highlighting the need for a 28% reduction in global greenhouse gas emissions to stay within the 2-degree limit and a 42% reduction to preserve the 1.5-degree target. Despite progress since the 2015 Paris Agreement, the report notes missed opportunities to cut emissions and emphasizes the critical need for strengthened mitigation efforts in the coming decade. 

World stands on frontline of disaster at COP28, says UN climate chief

UN's top climate official, Simon Stiell, has urged world leaders to take urgent and drastic action on carbon emission cuts as global temperatures hit record highs, making this year the hottest on record. Stiell, overseeing the upcoming COP28 climate summit, emphasized that everyone is now on the frontline of the climate crisis, and further delays in addressing emissions would be dangerous. With temperatures heading towards a potentially disastrous 3C increase, Stiell called for significant leaps in climate action to stay within the crucial limit of 1.5C above pre-industrial levels. 

Reducing pollution accelerates global warming. How do we solve this catch-22?

Efforts to reduce air pollution, particularly sulphur dioxide (SO2) emissions from sources like coal plants, have led to an unmasking effect, where the removal of pollutants has allowed more solar radiation to reach the Earth, leading to an increase in temperatures. This phenomenon has been observed in China, where a successful "war on pollution" led to significant reductions in SO2 emissions but also a 0.7-degree Celsius rise in average temperatures since 2014. The unmasking effect could have a greater impact on warming than greenhouse gases in some industrial Chinese cities, and experts warn that similar jumps in warming may occur in other highly polluted regions if they clean the skies of SO2 and related aerosols.

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