Rich urged to bear climate change costs: The rich caused the problem and must therefore pay the price of fixing the global climate change crisis, a new report said on Monday. Christian Aid, an agency of British and Irish churches, said industrialised nations were historically responsible and therefore morally liable to foot the multi-billion dollar cost of tackling the problem of man-made emissions of carbon gases. “Nations that have grown rich in part by polluting without facing the costs of doing so must now repay their carbon debt to the developing world,” said Andrew Pendleton, author of “Truly Inconvenient – tackling poverty and climate change at once”. Reuters

Biological mechanism for enhanced carbon consumption in the ocean discovered: Microscopically tiny marine organisms known as plankton increase their carbon uptake in response to increased concentrations of dissolved CO2 and thereby contribute to a dampening of the greenhouse effect on a global scale. An international group of scientists led by the Leibniz Institute of Marine Sciences in Kiel, Germany documented this biological mechanism in a natural plankton community for the first time. In simulations of the future ocean, they measured an increased CO2 uptake of up to 39%. Science Centric

Japanese whalers won’t say if they’ll spare Migaloo: Japanese whalers have refused to say if they will target white humpback whales such as Migaloo, which annually travels along the east coast of Australia, in their research slaughter this summer. As the Japanese whaling fleet prepares to leave port and head for the Antarctic, the Japan Fisheries Agency has given a firm “no comment” to questions about white whales. Japan, which uses a loophole in International Whaling Commission (IWC) laws to hunt almost 1,000 whales each year in the southern hemisphere, allegedly for scientific research, will target humpbacks for the first time this summer. The Age

Ditching bicycles was a bad idea: In Beijing recently, I was struck by the number of sidewalk bike-rental shops I saw. It was not their prevalence that I thought interesting, but the fact they were clearly not being patronized. You could almost see the cobwebs in the unused wheel spokes. I suppose they are really there for tourists, but the image seems symbolic to me. China, once the capital of the bike, is now becoming one of the world’s largest car countries. At a time of rising oil prices and climate change, you have to wonder about that. The Standard

Climate change to threaten a third of wildlife: Almost a third of the world’s species will face extinction if greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise, a United Nations report will say this week. A draft copy of the report by the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) also warns that if temperatures rise by more than 2C now expected before 2050 20 per cent of the world’s population will face a great risk of drought. With that level of temperature rise, other parts of the world will face increased flood risk from rainfall and there will be a decrease in cereal harvest in some regions. Telegraph

Peter Fray

Fetch your first 12 weeks for $12

Here at Crikey, we saw a mighty surge in subscribers throughout 2020. Your support has been nothing short of amazing — we couldn’t have got through this year like no other without you, our readers.

If you haven’t joined us yet, fetch your first 12 weeks for $12 and start 2021 with the journalism you need to navigate whatever lies ahead.

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

JOIN NOW