- January 24, 2019
Brazil’s environment minister cancels NGOs’ funding for 90 days
President Jair Bolsorano’s new environment minister Ricardo Salles has suspended all agreements with NGOs and their funding for 90 days, to “re-evaluate partnerships”. Civil society organizations described the move as illegal (contracts with the government can only be cancelled through a formal process after irregularities have been found). Salles, hand-picked by the agro-business caucus, has called global warming a “secondary issue”, and dismissed fines for environmental crimes as “ideological”.
Several green projects in Brazil are financially backed by foreign entities . Salles suspended one such project, the Amazon Fund, which is administered by Brazil’s national development bank, BNDES, and is funded through donations mostly from the Norwegian and German governments. In the Amazon, deforestation has increased by 13% , the largest clearance in a decade.
Davos Risk Report 2019: Risk of global climate action failure has risen in 2019
The latest survey by the World Economic Forum says the risk of global efforts failing to fight climate change has risen despite growing concerns about powerful storms, floods, and droughts. The annual Global Risks Report highlighted several top risks for 2019. Extreme weather was deemed the riskiest of all in the survey, which interviewed 1,000 experts from government, business, academia and non-governmental organizations. The risk of governments failing to limit the magnitude of climate change and adapt to it rose to second place in terms of both likelihood and impact.
Central banks to include climate change while designing monetary policy
Experts have said central banks will have to take into account climate change while designing their monetary policy, which cannot be just based on inflation targets of two to three years. In recent years, extreme weather has forced the banks to take into account sudden changes in the economy. In 2018, the Bank of England stalled plans to raise interest rates because it realised the blip was “due to the weather, not the economic climate”. The US Federal Reserve attributed a weak first-quarter growth to freak snowstorms. Climate uncertainty is making it difficult for banks to get the monetary policy right. The Financial Times report says, “The consensus is that climate change will, over time, mean lower economic growth and higher inflationary pressure — the kind of supply side shock that monetary policy finds hardest to deal with.”
Study: Indian corporations commit to bold climate action, push India to top 5
Twenty-five Indian companies, including Wipro, Hindustan Zinc and Mahindra Sanyo, have committed to bold targets to reduce emissions and adopt renewable energy pushing India to fifth position after the US, Japan, Britain and France in corporate climate action. That’s the annual report by NGO Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP). In 2018, 52 Indian companies responded to CDP’s climate change questionnaire, of which eight companies came forward on their own volition to disclose their climate impact to the CDP.