As of the end of 2011, China was burning nearly as much coal as the rest of the world combined. [WaPo]
China’s coal use grew 9 percent in 2011, rising to 3.8 billion tons. At this point, the country is burning nearly as much coal as the rest of the world combined.
Coal, of course, is the world’s premier fossil fuel, a low-cost source of electricity that kicks a lot of carbon-dioxide up into the atmosphere. And China’s growing appetite is a big reason why global greenhouse-gas emissions have soared in recent years, even as the United States and Europe have managed to curtail their coal use and cut their carbon pollution.
Millions of people worldwide are fleeing their homes because of environmental disasters. But the conditions in which the refugees have to take up residence in neighboring countries isn’t regulated by international law. [DW]
A new study by the National Wildlife Federation has concluded that climate change in the United States is happening much faster than many of its animal species are able to respond and adapt. [USA Today]
With its carbon cap-and-trade system now up and running, California — the most populous state in the U.S. and the ninth biggest economy in the world — is ahead of the rest of the country in taking action on climate change. [Time]
While air travel only accounts for an estimated 5 percent of global carbon emissions, that share is expected to grow as air travel becomes cheaper and more accessible. [The Economist]
According to a study by researchers at the Zoological Society of London and others, a mangrove forest shared by India and Bangladesh that’s home to possibly 500 Bengal tigers is being rapidly destroyed by erosion, rising sea levels and storm surges. [The Guardian]