A federal appeals court on Monday agreed to keep on hold President Barack Obama’s executive order on immigration — nearly a year after he announced it as a backstop measure to Congress’ failure to enact comprehensive immigration reform.
The divided, 124-page ruling deals a blow to the administration’s Deferred Action for Parental Accountability program, known as DAPA, and there may be just enough time for a formal appeal to the Supreme Court to be resolved ahead of the 2016 election.
In ruling against the government, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit largely agreed with a lower court judge, who in February issued a “nationwide injunction” that effectively stopped DAPA from taking effect, and concurred that Texas and other states that sued the president over the program had legal “standing” to challenge its constitutionality in federal court. Continue reading Appeals Court Upholds Delay Of Obama’s Executive Action On Immigration→
The ongoing conflict in Syria is likely to have a disastrous impact on the environment and public health, according to a new study published by PAX.
Four years of fighting has left cities in rubble and caused widespread damage to industrial sites, critical infrastructure and the oil industry. Pollution from these forms of damage is likely to result in acute and chronic risks to civilians and will have a long-term impact on the environment that they depend on.
“With the additional attacks by Russia in or near Aleppo, which has numerous industrial complexes processing hazardous chemicals, existing environmental and public health risks from the ongoing conflict will only be compounded,” cautioned report author Wim Zwijnenburg, researcher for PAX. Continue reading Amidst the debris: Environmental impact of conflict in Syria could be disastrous→
After having published the encyclical Laudato si’, Pope Francis is showing that his concerns for the “common home” are not isolated thoughts, but a main stream in his pontificate, placing the environment at the same level as that of poverty in the “moral agenda” of the Catholic Church.
An international group of Catholic leaders has appealed to the United Nations to forge a strong climate agreement that is fair to poorer nations.
By Henry Gass, Staff writer
Following in the footsteps laid by Pope Francis in June, Roman Catholic leaders from around the world have issued an unprecedented joint appeal to an upcoming United Nations conference on climate change to produce “a truly transformation” agreement to stem global warming.
For the past three years, Greenpeace Brazil has been collecting signatures in support of a bill to establish a zero deforestation law in the country. As a result, the group were able to present draft legislation to the Brazilian congress last week
On 7 October, accompanied by senators, religious leaders, celebrities and other supporters of a ban on the felling of Brazil’s forests, Greenpeace Brazil formally presented the draft legislation to the Brazilian congress – signed by 1.4 million Brazilians.
The Paris climate talks are looming. What – if anything – can we hope for? Jess Worth and Danny Chivers investigate.
At the end of September, something Earth-shaking happened. After 10 years and $7 billion, Shell abandoned its plans to drill in the Alaskan Arctic.
Shell’s U-turn wasn’t driven by government action or international climate agreements. It was years of public protest, direct action, online organizing and legal challenges – particularly by Indigenous communities – that delayed the project and ratcheted up the costs.
Add the global oil price slump and the technical difficulties of Arctic operations, and suddenly the entire project hinged on the success of a few months’ drilling. When that failed, Shell was done. In one swoop, the campaign to save the Arctic has succeeded in keeping more fossil fuel in the ground than 23 years of international climate negotiations.
Listening to the mainstream media, you might be tempted to believe that this is all about to change at the Paris climate talks, and that a ‘good deal’ on climate is finally within grasp. Continue reading Forget Paris?→
South Africa is facing its worst drought since 1982, with more than 2.7-million households facing water shortages across the country.
Lennox Mabaso, spokesperson for the Department of local government in KwaZulu-Natal, told Al Jazeera that the drought, concentrated in provinces of Free State and KwaZulu-Natal, was beginning to impact on livelihoods and draining the economy.
“The dams are at an all-time low. This is an epic drought and government is doing the best it can do. As you can imagine, it requires a lot of resources and its impacting everyone, rich and poor,” Mabaso said.
ANKARA, Turkey, Nov 5 2015 (IPS) – Some 135 million people could be displaced by 2045 as a result of land desertification, according to a recent UK ministry of defense report. This figure could rise to 200 million who are displaced by other climate change impacts like natural disasters by 2050, said British environment refugee specialist Norman Myers.
These could have been little more than debatable numbers until Syria’s civil war refugees rose exponentially to over 4 million, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, in a span of a little over 24 months, with more than 7.6 million internally displaced, together accounting for half of Syria’s population. As much distress and unrest that these figures have caused, they pale in comparison to the number of displaced that will likely occur due to desertification and climate change. Continue reading Urgently Needed: Studies Linking Land Degradation, Migration, Conflict and Political Instability→
“The Clean Energy Future represents a pathway away from climate destruction…. Should we let greed and inertia prevent us from taking it?’
The U.S. can reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050, while creating half a million jobs a year and lowering energy costs for consumers, simply by limiting use of fossil fuels and allowing the renewable sector continue to grow at its current pace, according to a new report published this week.
By Mario Osava
RIO DE JANEIRO, Oct 2 2015 (IPS) – Brazil’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction program, hailed as bold, has nevertheless left environmentalists frustrated at its lack of ambition in key aspects.
“The decision to present absolute reduction targets is praiseworthy, but they could be better and more ambitious, to the benefit of the country itself and of the global climate change talks,” said André Ferretti, general coordinator of the Climate Observatory, a Brazilian network of 37 environmental groups.
On Sep. 27, President Dilma Rousseff announced at the Sep. 25-27 U.N. Sustainable Development Summit in New York that Brazil’s goal is to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 37 percent by 2025 and 43 percent by 2030, with a base year of 2005. “The weakest point in Brazil’s commitment is with respect to the forest question. It is demeaning to promise to end illegal deforestation by 2030, admitting that illegal practices will be tolerated for a decade and a half.” — André Ferretti