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greenhouse gas emissions

The Global Rundown Negotiators reached a climate deal in Lima, requiring all countries to create plans to reduce their emissions. Meanwhile, major droughts continued to plague California and Sao Paulo, and China documented its shrinking glaciers. Morocco received more money for water infrastructure projects, while Australia cut funding for infrastructure in the Murray-Darling Basin. Access […]

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Residents of Gaza should begin rationing their water, warned local officials after Israeli strikes severely damaged Gaza’s only power plant, Reuters reported. The plant, which supplies two-thirds of Gaza’s energy and powers many water pumps, could take a year to repair. Extreme Weather An ongoing drought in Brazil has drawn down water levels in Sao […]

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Australia New South Wales and the federal government of Australia have reached a new agreement about government water buybacks in the Murray-Darling River Basin, capping the buybacks at 1,500 gigaliters, the Guardian reported. The buybacks transfer water rights from farmers and other water users to the government, and are meant to keep enough water in […]

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China China canceled plans for a pipeline that would have dumped wastewater from a paper mill into the sea near Qidong, Reuters reported. Shrinking glaciers will likely put more pressure on northwestern China’s already stressed Tarim River Basin, which gets suspend its quotas for corn ethanol, warning that such quotas will push food prices even […]

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A massive U.S. government study shows what an electrical grid powered largely by renewable sources looks like, but not the path to get there.

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Maryland is sitting atop an aquifer containing water that is a million years old, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) found, according to USA Today. Water levels in the deep aquifer have been declining as water managers abandon younger, shallower aquifers due to saltwater intrusion. India’s Jindal Power plans to invest $7.7 billion in hydropower […]

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Energy A bill meant to speed up approval of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline passed the United States House of Representatives, Bloomberg News reported. Those opposed to the pipeline, which would carry crude oil from Canada’s tar sands to refineries on the Gulf of Mexico, say it could harm the environment. In this Guardian video, […]

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United States Separating the Great Lakes from the Mississippi River basin in order to stop aquatic invasive species like Asian carp will require reversing the flow of the Chicago River, according to a new study sponsored by the Great Lakes Commission and the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative, Reuters reported. Whether or not […]

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Growing urban populations, poor infrastructure and unenforced environmental regulations are contributing to the pollution of South America’s Lake Titicaca, the Guardian reported. The pollution threatens fishing and agriculture in the region. Australians should expect to pay 15 percent more for home insurance as the country’s biggest insurer raises premiums to offset a 40-50 percent cut […]

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Panama is one of the fastest-growing economies in the Western Hemisphere, largely thanks to a new free-trade agreement with the U.S. and an ongoing $US 5.25 billion expansion of the Panama Canal. Slated for completion in 2014, the expansion will double the canal's capacity, which will reduce emissions, and the new system will recycle 60 percent of the water in each transit, along with an overall decrease of 7 percent less water than is used by the existing locks.

News headlines are often dominated by the big, unexpected events — BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, for example, or Japan’s earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear catastrophes in 2011 — but some events come with advance warning. Here is a preview of the water news to look for in 2012.

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The United States, along with Russia, Canada, Japan, China and India, does not want new negotiations on legally binding climate agreements to start until at least 2015, while other countries — notably the European Union — want immediate action, the Guardian reported. International agencies recently affirmed that the world has only a small window of […]

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The United Kingdom has been secretly lending its support to Canada’s tar sands agenda, the Guardian reported after obtaining documents through freedom of information laws. Canada has been looking for support in Europe ahead of a vote on fuel quality regulations that would label oil from tar sands as dirtier than other types of fuels. […]

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Developing the United Kingdom’s shale gas reserves is incompatible with the country’s climate change goals, according to a new study from the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research in Manchester. The carbon cost of developing just 20 percent of U.K.’s proven shale reserves would offset about 15 percent of the government’s greenhouse gas emissions budget […]

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Oil and Air The Obama administration announced last week that it would postpone a decision on pipeline from Canada’s tar sands to U.S. Gulf Coast refineries until after the 2012 election, according to the New York Times. The administration was expected to finish its evaluation of the 1,700 mile Keystone XL pipeline before the end […]

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The proposed Keystone XL Pipeline Project, designed to carry crude from the oil sands in Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast, will have minimal impact on the environment, according to the final environmental impact assessment report released last Friday by the U.S. State Department, Politico reported. But the State Department insists the fate of the […]

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There are about 6,000 toxins that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has not got around to regulating in municipal drinking water systems, according to Forbes. While EPA has begun to develop regulations to remove these chemicals from tap and bottled water, the industry has made efforts to delay or prevent their implementation. Hydropower Despite calls […]

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Interactive Map: U.S. Cities Acting Now to Reduce Water Risk from Climate Change

A report from the Natural Resources Defense Council describes water threats and adaptations in a dozen American cities.

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The energy target will be the highlight of a document to come later this year, as well as a cornerstone of China’s efforts to curb soaring greenhouse gas emissions, which currently stand at a quarter of the global total. Cutting coal consumption will inevitably also cut water use, as coal is China’s largest industrial user of water.

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Despite getting a go-ahead in the U.K., shale gas faces an uncertain future in Europe.

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IPS interviews Chilean environmentalist Sara Larraín about Patagonia’s controversial HidroAysén hydropower project, Chile’s environmental institutionality and the role of citizen participation. Who wins when pristine rivers clash with hydropower prospects? Read Circle of Blue’s coverage of Patagonia. Business Chinadialogue looks at the China Green Companies Top 100 for 2011. Which are China’s most environmentally friendly […]

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