Much has been made of the domestic political roadblocks between US President Barack Obama and climate action. But by using existing treaties he can get around the hostile Congress and help cut global emissions.
US President Barack Obama's new climate plan aims to cut greenhouse emissions from the nation's coal-dominated power sector by 32% by 2030. Will it get through, and how will it affect this year's climate talks?
The term 'carbon tax' is a political poison in Australia, thanks to the previous carbon tax which was actually an emissions trading scheme. Yet ironically, many economists prefer a tax over an ETS anyway.
A year after the demise of the carbon tax, we might expect both coal and greenhouse emissions to have bounced back, at the expense of renewables like hydroelectricity. Sure enough, that's what happened.
To avoid dangerous climate change there is a finite amount of greenhouse gas emissions, in particular CO<sub>2</sub>, that we can add to the atmosphere - our global carbon budget. If we use our budget wisely, we have until about 2050 to transition to zero net emissions. But how do we get there?
China's formal climate target shows that the world's largest greenhouse emitter is determined to green its economy on an unprecedented scale - and that it can bring the rest of the world along for the ride.