Mephiticity

Posts Tagged ‘smog

Via Associated Press:

BEIJING — China will seek binding pollution targets for developed countries and reject similar requirements for itself at an international climate summit next month, China’s top climate envoy said Wednesday.

Yu Qingtai said it is unfair that all countries be required to play a role combating global warming since most of the environmental damage was caused by developed nations during their industrialization over the last 100 to 200 years.

“Developed countries should not make requirements of developing countries that are unreasonable,” Yu told a news conference.

“Developed countries should also earnestly ask themselves: ‘In solving this problem that I have created, am I keeping my promises and honoring my commitments?'” he said.

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via BBC:

US President Barack Obama will go to the early stages of December’s UN climate summit in Copenhagen, but will not stay for crucial talks at the end.

Mr Obama will be in the Danish capital on 9 December on his way to Oslo to pick up his Nobel Peace Prize, a US administration official said.

The talks will attempt to draw up a new global climate treaty to supplant the 1997 Kyoto Protocol.

So far more than 60 world leaders have said they will attend the summit.

Observers say the attendance of such figures as Mr Obama will raise expectations, although the talks are not expected to result in a new treaty.

via BBC:

Large sums promised to developing countries to help them tackle climate change cannot be accounted for, a BBC investigation has found.

Rich countries pledged $410m (£247m) a year in a 2001 declaration – but it is now unclear whether the money was paid.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has accused industrialised countries of failing to keep their promise.

The EU says the money was paid out in bilateral deals, but admits it cannot provide data to prove it.

The money was pledged in the 2001 Bonn Declaration, signed by 20 industrialised nations – the 15 countries that then made up the European Union, plus Canada, Iceland, New Zealand, Norway and Switzerland.

They said they would pay $410m per year until 2008 – a total of $1.6bn.

But only $260m has ever been paid into two UN funds earmarked for the purpose, the BBC World Service investigation has found.

“There have been promises which have not been fully materialised. There is an issue of trust,” says Ban Ki-moon.

 

via Detroit News:

WashingtonHonda Motor Co. has the most fuel efficient fleet in the United States, followed closely by Hyundai Motor Co., the Environmental Protection Agency said Friday in releasing preliminary figures for 2009.

All vehicles sold in the 2009 model year are expected to average 21.1 miles per gallon in “real world” driving, which is one-tenth of a mile better than in the 2008 model year.

Final 2009 figures will be released next year in October or November. The preliminary numbers are based on sales data and confidential product reports and sales estimates from the companies and usually don’t vary much from the final tallies, which are based on actual sales.

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The EPA also released final numbers for the 2008 model year, reporting the nation’s fleet improved 0.4 miles per gallon from 20.6 mpg in 2007 to 21.0 mpg.

Via WSJ:

WASHINGTON – The Environmental Protection Agency issued a final rule Monday aimed at reducing pollution from construction sites, saying that it will significantly improve the quality of water nationwide.

The rule will be phased in over four years, starting in February, and when it is fully in effect, the EPA estimates there will be four billion fewer pounds of sediment discharged from construction sites each year.

Nearly 82,000 home builders, commercial and industrial building contractors, and civil-engineering companies are expected to be covered by the rule, which the EPA estimates will impose about $953 million of annual costs.

Such costs could raise home prices and cause a small number of builders to go out of business, resulting in some job losses, the EPA said in a draft version of the final rule.  It said job losses may be temporary given the relatively high turnover in the construction industry, and acknowledged that the new rule is being introduced at a time when construction has fallen off sharply.

Via AHN:

New Delhi, India (AHN) – The Ministry of Environment and Forests announced on Wednesday the revised national ambient air quality standards. The revision came after 15 years and will provide a legal framework for the control of air pollution and subsequently improve public health.

According to a ministry statement, “The review of the previous NAAQS and inclusion of new parameters was undertaken by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) in association with the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. The Proposal for revision in NAAQS was deliberated upon extensively and has been notified under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 on 16.11.2009 by the Ministry of Environment and Forests.”

These revised standards are in line with the latest advancement in technology and research and is at par with global best practices, the release informed.