The world’s governments will spend $5.3 trillion (€4.8 trillion) subsidising the cost of oil, gas and coal this year, thereby undermining their attempts to combat global warming and wealth inequality and fund public health.
The European Parliament’s trade committee today decided that Europe’s national courts cannot be trusted with safeguarding the rights of international investors when it called for private arbitration to be retained in the EU-US trade deal. MEPs voted for the controversial Investor-State Dispute Settlement clause (ISDS) – though repackaged under a different name for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). ISDS allows foreign investors to directly sue governments in private arbitration panels, with potential awards paid by taxpayers.
Six of the largest oil and gas companies in Europe have called for the UN to let them help devise a global carbon pricing system. Responding to rising pressure ahead of the Paris climate talks at the end of this year, the chief executives of Royal Dutch Shell, BP and BG Group from the UK, France’s Total, Norway’s Statoil and Italy’s Eni have sought direct talks with governments.
It’s true to say, as Grist.org’s Ben Adler does, that fuel taxes play a critical role in cleaning up road transport but we’re not in agreement that this necessarily makes road pricing a bad idea. From our perspective, we’d rather see it as a complementary measure.
A fuel tax agreement operates in the US and Canada which is known as the International Fuel Tax Agreement, or IFTA. Under the IFTA, truck operators (hauliers) record distance travelled and fuel consumed within each state/province (jurisdiction). Tax paid where fuel is purchased is later reconciled against actual use. Thanks to this reconciliation process, hauliers obtain a rebate from some jurisdictions and pay additional taxes to others.
EU regulators have today agreed new test procedures that will, for the first time, measure the ‘real world’ emissions of diesel cars under the Euro 6 air quality standard. It will require vehicles to be tested on roads rather than in laboratories, overcoming obsolete tests and ‘cycle beating’ techniques used by carmakers to achieve results in tests many times lower than actual air pollution emissions on the road.
Saudi Arabian Airlines has paid a €1.4 million fine levied by a Belgian regional government for not complying with the EU’s aviation emissions trading system (ETS), prompting calls for all member states to disclose non-European airlines in breach of the rules. Countries are required to do so under a 2008 EU law.
European NGOs working on sustainable shipping, European and Greek policy makers and industry representatives will share their views on future challenges and opportunities for Europe’s maritime industry.
Regrettably the IMO decided today that business as usual is more important than agreeing that international shipping must make its fair contribution to combatting climate change.Today's proposals and procedural excuses at the IMO in London are evidently more important than heeding to impassioned pleas by the Foreign Minister of the Marshall Islands and the Climate Change Minister of recently cyclone-ravaged Vanuatu that shipping must first agree whether a reduction target is the overall objective.