The Stream, November 30: Paris Climate Talks Begin

The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

International climate negotiations that could lead to a binding global emissions deal kicked off today in Paris. Major countries pledged billions to fund research into renewable energy, much of which is being stored with pumped storage hydroelectricity. Governments in Brazil announced a lawsuit against the owners of the Samarco iron mine, which released a deadly mudslide after failures at the facility’s tailings dams. A lawsuit in Iowa over nitrate pollution is urging state lawmakers to address water quality.

“The stage is set for the possibility of getting this right, but on the other hand there are all these wrinkles and hurdles at the last minute.”–U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, ahead of the international climate negotiations that begin today in Paris. Protesters around the world on Sunday called for a binding, global agreement to cut carbon emissions. (The New York Times)

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

$20 billion Amount pledged by 19 countries over the next five years to fund clean energy research. Guardian

$5.24 billion Amount state and federal governments in Brazil are asking for in a lawsuit against the owners of the Samarco iron mine in Minas Gerais, where tailings dam failures caused a deadly, polluting mudslide. Reuters


Science, Studies, And Reports

Countries are pursuing pumped storage hydroelectricity projects to store electricity generated by renewable energy sources like wind. The technology, while not new, is growing quickly in places like China. Yale Environment 360

On the Radar

On The Radar

Amid a lawsuit over nitrate pollution in its capital city, Iowa is searching for ways to address growing water quality problems at the state level before decisions from federal courts force it to act. The state has set goals to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus pollution by 45 percent, but is still determining how to design and fund the actions necessary to meet them. The Des Moines Register

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