THE BRIEF [Jul 31-Aug 6’23]
Welcome to this week’s edition of The Weekly Climate 🎉
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‼️News you can’t miss
Here’s one important scary/bad (🙀), good (😻), interesting (😼) and fossil (💩) news item.
This week’s highlights
[#deforestationoffsets] — Carbon offsets are not a solution to deforestation of the Amazon rainforest, as businesses buy credits as a shortcut to meet their net zero targets while continuing to emit emissions. The market is plagued with problems, and the most dangerous element of exploiting forests for carbon credits still exists. Guyana's story is a prime example of the risks of forest carbon credits being sold as offsets, with calculated overstatement of the risk of deforestation, dubious accounting, and a cosy relationship between offset schemes and the oil industry. The article argues that now is the time to turn away from the small piece of the funding pie failing carbon markets represent and focus energy on real solutions that really have forests, people, and the climate at their heart.
[#productivity] — As temperatures rise due to climate change, workers across various industries are struggling with productivity loss. Extreme heat is affecting not only agricultural and construction workers, but also those in factories, warehouses, restaurants, airlines, telecommunications, delivery services, and energy companies. The impact of heat on workers is spreading across the economy and lowering productivity. Studies show that heat exposure leads to absenteeism, reduced work hours, and decreased productivity. In 2021, more than 2.5 billion hours of labor in the US agriculture, construction, manufacturing, and service sectors were lost to heat exposure, and the loss of labor due to heat exposure cost the economy about $100 billion in 2020.
[#heatinsurance] — As heat waves become more common with worsening climate change, unconventional heat insurance products have emerged in a range of countries around the world. While experts believe it’s unlikely that heat insurance will ever become a big commercial industry like fire and hurricane insurance, it makes more sense as a financial tool to help protect people in developing countries against climate change. These programs are still niche initiatives, but parametric insurance will be an essential part of adapting to climate change in the developing world, according to the Insurance Development Forum.
[#frackingwater] — The "Halliburton Loophole" exempts fracking operations from regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act, allowing the fracking industry to use chemicals linked to negative health effects without oversight. A study by Northeastern University and other colleges found that the industry used 28 regulated chemicals and disclosed them in up to 73% of its reports to the FracFocus database, but reported 7.2 billion pounds of chemicals that were not identified as proprietary. The report recommended repealing the loophole, creating a federally mandated database of fracking chemicals, and researching the effects of fracking chemicals on human health and the environment.
That’s it for this week folks!
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See you all next week 👋