In today’s newsletter we want to draw attention to the climate talks happening in Scotland (referred to as COP26) this week. The summit is a convening of nearly 200 countries to discuss climate action, the AP reported. COP26 follows recent climate negotiations in Italy, where “major polluters including China and Russia had already made clear they had no immediate intention of following U.S. and European pledges to zero out all fossil-fuel pollution by 2050,” the article said. A primary goal of the summit is to increase pressure on nations to commit to stopping global temperatures from rising more than 1.5 degrees Celsius within this century. To read about the top five issues being addressed at the UN climate summit, read this additional article from AP; the key issues are determining what wealthier countries owe poorer countries, carbon trading, transparency & committing to new goals, methane, and the 45% pledge (referring to a pledge to reduce emissions by 45% by 2030).
Several nations at the summit have promised to phase out their use of coal or have moved up their deadlines for doing so, according to the Los Angeles Times. These countries included Poland, Ukraine, Chile and Vietnam, but several “major economies” such as the U.S. have not clarified their deadlines for phasing out the fossil fuel. Some of the major commitments made at the summit so far this week include reversing deforestation and methane emission reductions, the AP reported in another article. For various updates on COP26, check this CNN page. For more on significant pledges made during the summit this week, read this Washington Post article. And for a more local angle, check out this Star Tribune article on Minnesotans who traveled to Scotland as proponents of immediate climate action.
Finally, amid these climate talks in Scotland, we want to direct you once again to the recommendations made in the Environmental Resilience chapter of the Minnesota Equity Blueprint, which you can find beginning on page E-14. In particular, we point you toward our solutions and information on greenhouse gas emissions.
This week’s summary of a story from the Minnesota Equity Map is on the Facilitating Racial Equity Collaborative!
FREC has provided antiracism education for the past 12 years and now aims to collaborate with different organizations to expand their work across Greater MN. They host various trainings + conferences for leaders, an annual Overcoming Racism conference, and started a mini-grant program to fund racial equity work around MN.
You can read the full story on FREC on the map here: https://growthandjustice.org/mnequitymap
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“Nations are far off the mark, and the stakes are enormous. The Earth has already warmed about 1 degree Celsius since the mid-1800s, and a U.N. report last month showed the Earth's temperature will rise a disastrous 2.7 degrees Celsius by the end of the century. Greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are at record levels… Rising winter temperatures have made Minnesota one of the fastest-warming states in the U.S. Climate change is generally making the state warmer and wetter, and it played a role in Minnesota's record-breaking string of air-quality alerts this summer as smoke drifted from wildfires in the western U.S. and Canada. The state has also completely missed its own greenhouse-gas reduction targets…” — “Minnesotans join push for change at U.N. climate summit,” Star Tribune