Newsdesk – July 7

Redwood trees in Guerneville, California. Photograph: Gabrielle Lurie/The Guardian

Tree planting ‘has mind-blowing potential’ to tackle climate crisis. Research is showing that a trillion trees could be planted to capture huge amount of carbon dioxide. New research estimates that a worldwide planting programme could remove two-thirds of all the emissions that have been pumped into the atmosphere by human activities, a figure the scientists describe as “mind-blowing:” there are 1.7bn hectares of treeless land on which 1.2tn native tree saplings would naturally grow. That area is about 11% of all land and equivalent to the size of the US and China combined. The man who led this research, Prof Tom Crowther at the Swiss university ETH Zürich, said: “This new quantitative evaluation shows [forest] restoration isn’t just one of our climate change.” Crowther also emphasized that it remains vital to reverse the current trends of rising greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel burning and forest destruction, and bring them down to zero. He said this is needed to stop the climate crisis becoming even worse and because the forest restoration envisaged would take 50-100 years to have its full effect of removing 200bn tonnes of carbon. René Castro, assistant-director general at the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation, said: “We now have definitive evidence of the potential land area for re-growing forests, where they could exist and how much carbon they could store.” Effective tree-planting could take place across the world, said Prof Tom Crowther at the Swiss university ETH Zürich. “The potential is literally everywhere – the entire globe. In terms of carbon capture, you get by far your biggest bang for your buck in the tropics (where canopy cover is 100%), but every one of us can get involved.” The world’s six biggest nations, Russia, Canada, China, the US, Brazil and Australia, contain half the potential restoration sites – The Guardian

  • Can methane burps be bred out of cows? – National Geographic
  • ‘Last chance tourism’ draws visitors as glaciers melt due to climate change – The Star
  • African ministers lobby UK for control of climate aid – Climate Home News
  • Saudi row over 1.5C science raises frustration with UN consensus model – Climate Home News
  • China scrubs its coal projects from ‘world heritage in danger’ decision – Climate Change News
  • ‘The system was broken’: How The Nature Conservancy prospered but ran aground – Politico
  • ‘Our biggest compliment yet’: Greta Thunberg thanks OPEC for criticism – CNBC
Crowds beat the heat at a public swimming pool in Hannover. Image Credit: Hauke-Christian Dittrich/ DPA

‘Hell Is Coming’ – What Lies Ahead for Europe’s Climate. Half of Europe has been slammed by a massive heat wave in recent days, with many regions experiencing temperatures never before seen in June. After the once-in-a-century summer of 2018, with its heat waves, droughts and forest fires, another once-in-a-century summer has arrived in Germany and many parts of Europe, this time with air from the Sahara and even higher temperatures. Last Wednesday, the thermometer near Guben reached the recording the northern German state of Brandenburg reached 38.6 degrees Celsius (100 degrees Fahrenheit). On Sunday, thermometers in Bernburg, just northwest of Leipzig, hit 39.6 degrees. The average temperature for June is 20 degrees Celsius. Madrid recorded temperatures of 40 degrees Celsius on Friday and Saturday, with one Spanish TV meteorologist tweeting “Hell is coming” just before the heat wave arrived, and the Swiss town of Sion recorded 37 degrees on Sunday, the highest ever recorded in June in the country. Also, in the Czech Republic, temperatures reached 38.9 degrees on Wednesday, also a June record. The year 2019 will again be one of the hottest since the beginning of temperature records. We have now seen the 20 warmest years on record, this accumulation alone being enough to show that climate crises is already here. A climate that had been quite stable for 11,000 years, is a thing of the past. The era of hot temperatures has begun – Spiegel

Perhaps we could start with the effect that flying has on climate catastrophe,’ says Ann Bliss. Photograph: Steve Parsons/PA

As climate change gathers pace, dangerous weather is expected to rise in frequency. For instance, just recently, The UK baked in another record-breaking heatwave last weekend, which was made at least five times more likely because of climate change. For events like these, Weather bulletins are naturally the first point of information, providing us with the information we need to act, whether that’s keeping our children indoors on extremely hot days or taking our umbrella to work when it’s expected to rain. We not only choose how to respond to the weather. Now, humans face profound choices that will define how the weather responds to us. Therefore, it is vital for the regular weather bulletins to start including climate science communication. To do so, broadcasters must use the tools, expertise, and trust they enjoy to provide the information we need to protect ourselves from harm. It surely makes sense that broadcasters communicate the best understanding of how climate change is disrupting our weather – and is expected to disrupt it further still if left unchecked. With that understanding, we can make the collective choices needed to preserve the fragile ecological balance that sustains us. Claudio Milano from Ostelea School of Tourism saying “we need new indicators and a new set of measures of tourism”. Perhaps we could start with the effect that flying has on climate catastrophe. The CO2 is emitted above the trophosphere and stays in the atmosphere longer than CO2 emitted at ground level. Perhaps we could tax the airlines for the oil consumed, which at present is untaxed. it is the rich minority world that goes touring the poorer majority world where the ecological damage is done – The Guardian