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Developing countries scupper fuel-efficient ship plans

The first global agreement to cut carbon emissions from ships has been blocked by several developing countries. The International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) had been set to approve an Energy Efficient Design Index (EEDI) for ships at its meeting last week in London, following four years of work. The standard, which would only apply to newly built ships, would have been the first globally agreed measure to reduce carbon emissions from international maritime transport.

Obama administration attacks EU aviation emissions trading plan

Sketch of some documents (default image for news

America is making a new attempt to stop the EU introducing aviation into its Emissions Trading Scheme in 2012. The USA, backed by Canada and Mexico, is submitting a resolution to the International Civil Aviation Organisation’s triennial general assembly later this month, saying emissions trading should only apply to nations who have specifically agreed to it. The EU’s climate commissioner said the USA was seeking to put up barriers for others when it had not done anything to tackle the problem itself.

Biofuel production is causing ‘land grab’ says World Bank

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The World Bank has admitted that the European and American biofuel targets are encouraging a rush for land in Africa and other developing regions that is reducing the amount of land available for growing food. The finding adds to growing concerns about indirect land-use change caused by biofuel production, and comes as the Commission has launched a consultation about such biofuel impacts.

European Union sued for lack of transparency

Leading environmental law organisation, ClientEarth, is suing both the Council of the European Union and the European Commission over their failure to uphold EU transparency rules. The legal actions come as the European Union threatens to weaken its commitment to openness during a review of its own transparency regulations. The lawsuits indicate that a lack of transparency is becoming endemic among EU institutions.