The Stream, February 9: Frankfurt Tops Sustainable Cities Index

The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

Europe swept seven of the top 10 spots in the 2015 Sustainable Cities Index, with Frankfurt, Germany, leading in first place. The first round of negotiations on a global climate deal have started. Scientists believe air pollution could be contributing to drought in Central America, the United States government is spending millions to help western states deal with drought, and U.S. cattle ranchers are cautiously rebuilding their herds after a severe drought. Water pollution is severe in parts of Pakistan, researchers found.

“Without sounding too grandiose, the survival of the planet itself is at stake. You have rising sea levels, acidification of the oceans, immigration sparked by climate change, droughts that are much more severe. And then there’s an aspect that we don’t talk about much: the impact on security.”–French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, speaking to reporters at the first meeting of global negotiators tasked with developing an international climate deal in Paris later this year. (Reuters)

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

#1 city Frankfurt, Germany was ranked at the top of the 2015 Arcadis Sustainable Cities Index, which measures cities’ performance in social, environmental, and economic categories. Seven of the top 10 cities are in Europe. Arcadis\

$50 million Amount the U.S. federal government has pledged in assistance to help western states deal with a severe, ongoing drought. Bloomberg


Science, Studies, And Reports

Air pollution from aerosols released by industries in the northern hemisphere could be behind droughts in Central America, according to a study published in Nature Geoscience. Researchers believe the air pollution is blocking sunlight and reducing bands of rain in the tropics. Reuters

Eighty percent of water resources in Pakistan’s Tharkparkar district are unfit for human consumption, according to a new study by researchers in Pakistan.

On the Radar

On The Radar

Cattle ranchers in the United States are trying to rebuild their herds after several severe droughts cut back beef production and helped drive high prices. The farmers worry, however, that drought could return at any time. Reuters

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