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Climate Change: Six Major Energy Companies Write to United Nations to Request Help in Setting Up Carbon Pricing Scheme

      

A carbon pricing scheme would involve a fee being charged to emit the greenhouse gas and the proceeds would probably go to companies that reduce them

independent.co.uk - by Ian Johnston - May 31, 2015

Six major energy companies have written to the United Nations asking for help in setting up a carbon pricing scheme to help tackle climate change.

BP, Royal Dutch Shell, Total, Statoil, Eni and the BG Group asked Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, to help them hold “direct dialogue with the UN and willing governments” about developing a scheme to charge those who produce carbon emissions. . . .

. . . The companies’ chief executives revealed the move in a letter to the Financial Times, which said: “We owe it to future generations to seek realistic, workable solutions to the challenge of providing more energy while tackling climate change.”

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U.N. Climate Deal in Paris May Be Graveyard for 2C Goal

reuters - by Alister Doyle and Bruce Wallace - June 1, 2015

BONN/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.N.'s Paris climate conference, designed to reach a plan for curbing global warming, may instead become the graveyard for its defining goal: to stop temperatures rising more than 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

Achieving the 2C (3.6 Fahrenheit) target has been the driving force for climate negotiators and scientists, who say it is the limit beyond which the world will suffer ever worsening floods, droughts, storms and rising seas.

But six months before world leaders convene in Paris, prospects are fading for a deal that would keep average temperatures below the ceiling.

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Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) as Communicated by Parties

Leading up to the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference to be held in Paris, France in 2015, countries have been asked to publicly declare what actions they intend to take under a new global agreement, by March 2015. The country commitments, known as Intended Nationally Determined Contributions or INDCs, are expected to indicate through their form and strength what shape any 2015 agreement might take.

CLICK HERE - INDCs as communicated by Parties

The COP, by its decision 1/CP.20, requested the secretariat to publish on the UNFCCC website the INDCs as communicated.

Further detailed information on INDCs and the INDC submission process is available on the INDC website.

CLICK HERE - United Nations - Framework Convention on Climate Change
Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs)

CLICK HERE - Paris 2015 - COP21/CMP11 - UN Climate Change Conference

CLICK HERE - Wikipedia - Intended Nationally Determined Contributions

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DHS Successfully Transitions Search and Rescue Tool That Pinpoints Buried Victims

dhs.gov - May 7, 2015

Washington, D.C.– The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T), in partnership with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Jet Propulsion Laboratory, announced today the transition of the final prototype of the Finding Individuals for Disaster and Emergency Response (FINDER) technology to the commercial market.  FINDER is a radar technology designed to detect heartbeats of victims trapped in wreckage. Two commercial partners have been licensed to manufacture the device: R4 Inc. of Eatontown, N.J. and SpecOps Group Inc. of Sarasota, Fla.

Earlier today, S&T and NASA demonstrated its newest capabilities at the Virginia Task Force One  (VA-TF1) Training Facility in Lorton, Va., finding “survivors” in a simulated disaster. This is thanks to the new locator feature, which can help pinpoint the location of the victim to within about five feet – depending on the type of rubble. This key change saves rescuers time, increasing chances for locating survivors.

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Home > Health Ebola Is Found in Doctor's Eye Months After Virus Left Blood

ASSOCIATED PRESS by MARILYNN MARCHIONE AP Chief Medical Writer                                      May 7. 2015

(Scroll down for full study and American Academy of Ophtalolgy statement.)

For the first time, Ebola has been discovered inside the eyes of a patient months after the virus was gone from his blood.

Ebola has infected more than 26,000 people since December 2013 in West Africa. Some survivors have reported eye problems but how often they occur isn't known. The virus also is thought to be able to persist in semen for several months.

The new report concerns Dr. Ian Crozier, a 43-year-old American physician diagnosed with Ebola in September while working with the World Health Organization in Sierra Leone.

He was treated at Emory University Hospital's special Ebola unit in Atlanta and released in October when Ebola was no longer detected in his blood. Two months later, he developed an inflammation and very high blood pressure in one eye, which causes swelling and potentially serious vision problems.

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The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to Fund Disease Surveillance Network in Africa and Asia to Prevent Childhood Mortality and Help Prepare for the Next Epidemic

PR NEWSWIRE                                                                                                  May 7, 2015

(Scroll down for interview with Bill Gates)

At its Global Partners Forum, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will announce the Child Health and Mortality Prevention Surveillance Network (CHAMPS), a network of disease surveillance sites in developing countries. These sites will help gather better data, faster, about how, where and why children are getting sick and dying. This data will help the global health community get the right interventions to the right children in the right place to save lives. The network will also be invaluable in providing capacity and training in the event of an epidemic, such as Ebola or SARS. The Gates Foundation plans an initial commitment of up to $75 million on the effort.

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Ebola Virus Lives on Hospital Surfaces for Days

LIVESCIENCE  by Rachel Rettner                                                          May 6, 2015

The Ebola virus can live on surfaces in hospitals for nearly two weeks, a new study suggests.

Researchers tested how long the Ebola virus could survive on plastic, stainless steel and Tyvek, a material used in Ebola suits. The researchers also simulated different environmental conditions, including a climate-controlled hospital at 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 degrees Celsius) and 40 percent humidity, and the typical environment of West Africa, at 80 F (27 C) and 80 percent humidity.

In general, the virus survived on surfaces for a longer time when in the climate-controlled conditions than in the West African environment, the study found. Under hospital-like conditions, the virus lived for 11 days on Tyvek, eight days on plastic and four days on stainless steel. The longest the virus was able to survive in the tropical conditions of the West African environment was three days, on Tyvek.

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http://www.livescience.com/50758-ebola-virus-survival-surfaces.html

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Review: ‘Frontline’ Looks at Missteps During the Ebola Outbreak

NEW YORK TIMES  By                      May 3, 2015

(UPDATE: Scroll down for link to the PBS FRONTLINE  program on Ebola originally aired last night on American television.)

Heartbreaking stories from the Ebola outbreak are familiar by now, although that doesn’t make them any easier to hear, and a “Frontline” installment being broadcast on PBS on Tuesday night has its share. But it also has something less familiar: Officials acknowledging that they could have done a better job of responding to the crisis.

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California Gov. Jerry Brown Orders Aggressive Greenhouse Gas Cuts By 2030

Governer Jerry Brown.

Image: Governer Jerry Brown.

huffingtonpost.com - April 29th 2015 - Kate Sheppard

California Gov. Jerry Brown issued an executive order Wednesday directing the state to cut is greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030, the toughest proposed cuts of any state in the nation.

The 2030 target will ensure that California can meet its emissions target for the middle of this century, which calls for an 80 percent cut by 2050, Brown said. The state is already on pace to meet its goal of bringing heat-trapping emissions down to 1990 levels by 2020, a target set under a 2006 state law.

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Three in every four extremely hot days linked to climate change

Three out of four hot days could be due to climate change (Image: Guy Corbishley/Getty)Image: Three out of four hot days could be due to climate change (Image: Guy Corbishley/Getty)

newscientist.com - April 28th 2015 - Aviva Rutkin

If climate change was a game, we'd have racked up quite a score. A fresh study suggests that humans are responsible for a hefty number of today's extreme hot days and rainstorms.

Weather extremes, such as a Russian heatwave in 2010 and a drought in Texas in 2011, have been blamed on climate change before – but the attribution of individual events to it is still hotly debated.

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