24 March 2022 - NPWJ News Digest on Environmental Justice & Human Rights

Articles

Indigenous Australians ask S.Korea court to block loans to $3.6 bln gas project
Reuters, 24 Mar 2022

A group of Indigenous Australians has gone to court in South Korea seeking to block the country's export credit agencies from funding a deep-sea gas pipeline for the $3.6 billion Barossa gas project off northern Australia. People from the Tiwi Islands and Larrakia Traditional Owners are seeking an injunction from the Seoul Central District Court to block the Export-Import Bank of Korea (KEXIM) and the Korea Trade Insurance Corp (K-Sure) from providing loans. 

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The world’s forests do more than just store carbon, new research finds
The Guardian, 24 Mar 2022

The world’s forests play a far greater and more complex role in tackling climate crisis than previously thought, due to their physical effects on global and local temperatures, according to new research. The role of forests as carbon sponges is well established. But comprehensive new data suggests that forests deliver climate benefits well beyond just storing carbon, helping to keep air near and far cool and moist due to the way they physically transform energy and water.
The study, which is the first to pinpoint the non-carbon dioxide benefits of different forests, found that the band of tropical rainforests spanning Latin America, central Africa and south-east Asia generate the most local and global benefits. 

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Calls to ditch 'ecocide treaty' after failed reform efforts
EU Observer, 23 Mar 2022

Environmentalists and energy experts have been warning for years over an obscure trade deal that could lock Europe into decades of fossil fuel use. One called it an "ecocide treaty" while others described it as "the world's most dangerous investment agreement." This little-known international agreement, officially known as the Energy Charter Treaty, deals with cross-border investments in the energy industry — and it was signed by 50 countries, including all EU member states, back in 1994. 

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As sanctions bite Russia, fertilizer shortage imperils world food supply
Reuters, 23 Mar 2022

Sky-high fertilizer prices have farmers worldwide scaling back its use and reducing the amount of land they're planting, fallout from the Ukraine-Russia conflict that has some agricultural industry veterans warning of food shortages.
Western sanctions on Russia, a major exporter of potash, ammonia, urea and other soil nutrients, have disrupted shipments of those key inputs around the globe. Fertilizer is key to keeping corn, soy, rice and wheat yields high. Growers are scrambling to adjust. 

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UN chief calls for extreme weather warning systems for everyone on Earth
The Guardian, 23 Mar 2022

Everyone on the planet should be covered by an early warning system against extreme weather and climate-related disasters within five years, the UN secretary general has said.
About a third of people around the world are not now covered by early warning systems, but in Africa the problem is greater, with about six in 10 people lacking such warnings. 

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New report a ‘stark indictment’ of rich nations’ climate failure
Aljazeera, 22 Mar 2022

Rich countries must end their oil and gas production by 2034 to cap global warming at 1.5 degrees Celsius and give poorer nations time to replace fossil fuel income, according to a report released on Tuesday.
The 76-page analysis from the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research at Manchester University comes as nearly 200 nations kick off a two-week negotiation to validate a landmark assessment of options for reducing carbon pollution and extracting CO2 from the air. 

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Climate change: IPCC scientists to examine carbon removal in key report
BBC, 21 Mar 2022

UN scientists are likely to weigh up technology to remove CO2 from the atmosphere, as they gather to finalise a key report. This idea will be one of many solutions considered over the next two weeks by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Also in attendance will be government officials from all over the world, who will need to approve every line in the summary report. It is due to be published on 4 April. 

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How Long Until the Planet’s Destruction Is an International Crime?
Bloomberg Law, 18 Mar 2022

The latest IPCC report provides a chilling read on the health of the planet, says Kate Mackintosh, executive director of the Promise Institute for Human Rights at UCLA School of Law. She explains why the crime of “ecocide” should become the fifth crime to be prosecuted at the International Criminal Court, alongside genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and aggression.

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