Newsdesk – May 19, 2019

Greenpeace activists can be seen suspended from the undercarriage of the Sydney Harbour Bridge in Sydney [AAP Image/Dean Lewins/via Reuters]
Climate change was to be decisive issue in Australian election. Non-renewable fossil fuels still account for about 85 percent of Australia’s electricity generation. Energy and global warming debates have dominated Australia’s election campaign, with many voters calling for change as the country prepares to pick its next prime minister and parliament on Saturday. The current prime minister Scott Morrison’s centre-right Liberal-National Coalition is seeking a third-straight term in power, but polls have shown Bill Shorten’s opposition Labor Party clinging to a narrow lead. Nevertheless, “Both parties say they want to protect the environment,” said Deborah Tabart, the Australian Koala Foundation’s chairwoman. “Australia doesn’t solve climate change by itself,” Morrison insisted last week during the final party leaders’ election campaign debate. “Climate change is shaping up to be a number one issue in this federal election,” said Kelly Albion, the head of campaigns at the Australian Youth Climate Coalition, attributing this to “young people as a moral voice for action on the greatest issue facing our generation.” Australia is one of the most vulnerable developed countries to this great issue. According to the Australian Bureau of Meteorology, the 2018-19 summer was the country’s hottest on record, leading to heatwaves, drought and bushfires. “There’s also growing evidence of impacts on ecosystems like the Great Barrier Reef, food and water.” To put an end to these impacts climate change has on Australia, the Greens want a 100-percent-renewable-energy economy and to phase out coal exports by 2030. Adam Bandt, the Greens’ climate change spokesman, though, warns: “Scott Morrison and his government are the most pressing danger because they’re not only not taking no action on climate change, but they’re throwing petrol on the fire” – AlJazeera

  • 12 Ways Big Tech Can Take Big Action on Climate Change – Singularity Hub
  • ‘No other option’: Climate change driving many to flee Guatemala – Aljazeera 
  • Low-income neighborhoods are most vulnerable to climate change, activists say – Brooklyn Daily Eagle
  • Should People Be Allowed to Get Rich on Global Warming? – The New Republic
  • Climate change may make hurricanes and cyclones deadlier, study finds – Mongabay
  • Millennial Politics: Is Climate Change the Most Important Issue? – Earth911
  • Their Islands Are Being Eroded. So Are Their Human Rights, They Say – The New York Times 
Jay Inslee’s climate change plan echoes progressives’ Green New Deal, but with far more details and fewer commitments to social programs. Photograph: Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images

Eight million jobs, $9tn in spending: Jay Inslee’s radical plan to tackle climate change, hopefully decarbonizing the economy while boosting employment. Inslee, the governor of Washington state, is introducing a second portion of his climate change plan as most Democratic contenders for president have yet to officially roll out their own big-picture proposals. This second portion involves a $9tn investment over 10 years, the creation of 8m jobs aimed at decarbonizing the economy, upgrading buildings, replacing water, and transiting infrastructure, cleaning up manufacturing, and quintupling spending on clean energy and climate research. Although the blueprint echoes progressives’ Green New Deal, Inslee told the Guardian: “You think of the Green New Deal as saying, ‘We should go to the moon’ – but in my plan is how to build the rocket ship. They both have their value.” The Green New Deal advocates a “10-year mobilization” to reduce emissions but does not specify an end date to make the country carbon-neutral. “This is not a single issue, it’s all the issues,” he added, that rising temperatures and extreme weather threaten the economy, public health, and national security. Inslee also says his “Evergreen Economy Plan” would ensure “high-paying, high-skilled jobs building a stronger, healthier, more just, inclusive and sustainable future”, featuring more collective bargaining power for unions, jobs for fossil fuel workers and gender pay equity – The Guardian

Fourteen-year-old Ratna, pictured with her parents and grandmother, was born in Bhola slum. Her grandparents migrated from their village in Bhola district 25 years ago. Her father Masud, a small boy at the time, remembers farming cows and rice and growing vegetables – but they lost their land to river erosion and were forced to leave for Dhaka CREDIT: SUSANNAH SAVAGE

How climate change is fueling a migration crisis in Bangladesh.  As the Bangladesh recovers from another cyclone, this crisis is deepening in this very vulnerable country to the effects of climate change. At the start of May, Cyclone Fani hit eastern India, killing 42 people, before moving into Bangladesh. Some 17 people were killed here – a relatively low number compared to previous cyclones. As a result, though, 13,000 houses across the country were destroyed. In Chandpur, central Bangladesh, for example, at least 100 people were left without shelter. Back in time, in 2007, Cyclone Sidr battered the country’s southern coastline, as well as parts of neighbouring countries, leaving up to 15,000 dead and thousands more homeless. Many of the survivors were left with no choice but to leave for the capital, Dhaka, or other cities. Ten years later, however, and the exodus is still not over. In 2017, 25-year old Shahjalal Mia was forced to leave his village in Tatali Upazila, 100 kilometres away from Barisal.He and his family own a small plot of land, on which they used to farm rice. Cyclone Sidr, however, not only destroyed houses and crops, but brought waves of salt water inland, saturating their paddy fields. Unable to to make a living, even when he took up work labouring on wealthier farmers’ lands, Shahjalal and his wife were left with no choice but to leave their village. Their story is all too common, millions of Bangladeshis being forced to migrate from their rural homelands to cities because of climate change related issues annually. These numbers are increasing. More than 10 million Bangladeshis will lose their livelihoods in the next decade, estimates Dr Huq – The Telegraph