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The Don Quixote Edition - Tilting at Windmills

As part of the Paris Accords (COP21), the U.S. joined 195 countries in a landmark agreement—taking many years and 1,000s of people to complete--to roll back climate warming. Thanks to executive orders that continue to roll out of the White House, our promise to the world community may fall short. In our first article, Nadja Popovich (NY Times) addresses the Trump Administration’s reversal this week of the US commitment to COP21. But Trump’s order doesn’t withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate deal, the key international treaty on global warming. And it leaves other climate protections intact, according to our second article by Brad Plumer of Vox. And, there is overpowering momentum towar

Trump’s Executive Order Pushes the U.S. Climate Pledge Further Out of Reach

During his first two months in office, President Donald J. Trump has rolled back key Obama-era greenhouse gas regulations. Without these rules in place, the United States is set to fall far short of its 2015 Paris Agreement pledge to lower emissions by at least 26 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. Here is how some of President Barack Obama’s signature policies have fared so far under the Trump administration: In an executive order released Tuesday, Mr. Trump instructed the Environmental Protection Agency to reverse course on the Obama administration’s biggest climate change policy, the Clean Power Plan, which aimed to cut emissions from existing coal- and gas-fired power plants. If implemen

Trump’s big new executive order to tear up Obama’s climate policies, explained

This is it. The battle over the future of US climate policy is officially underway. In a sweeping new executive order, President Trump ordered his Cabinet today to start demolishing a wide array of Obama-era policies on global warming — including emissions rules for power plants, limits on methane leaks, a moratorium on federal coal leasing, and the use of the social cost of carbon to guide government actions. Everyone knew this was coming: Trump has said repeatedly that he wants to repeal US climate regulations and unshackle the fossil fuel industry. But Tuesday’s order is only a first step. Trump’s administration will now spend years trying to rewrite rules and fend off legal challenges fr

Solar power growth leaps by 50% worldwide thanks to US and China

UK leads Europe for solar growth despite drop in installations after government cut subsidies The amount of solar power added worldwide soared by some 50% last year because of a sun rush in the US and China, new figures show. New solar photovoltaic capacity installed in 2016 reached more than 76 gigawatts, a dramatic increase on the 50GW installed the year before. China and the US led the surge, with both countries almost doubling the amount of solar they added in 2015, according to data compiled by Europe’s solar power trade body. Globally there is now 305GW of solar power capacity, up from around 50GW in 2010 and virtually nothing at the turn of the millennium. The industry called the grow

The State of Green Business 2017

This article introduces the latest annual assessment of corporate sustainability produced in our partnership with GreenBiz. 2016 was undoubtedly a year of change. Aside from major political shifts (in the US and the UK), there were also significant shifts in climate action. The implications of the Paris Agreement at COP21 filtered through to both businesses and investors, leading to a number of breakthroughs in policy and behavior. However, the fundamental fact is that we are still consuming natural capital — the limited stock of natural resources on which business and society depend for well-being, security and prosperity — at an alarming and unsustainable rate. Nearly half of the world’s 1

Revitalizing Manufacturing

The Heartland Network-affiliated manufacturing funds have saved or created tens of thousands of good paying jobs over the past 15 years. Some of their most successful investments will be featured in a two Century Foundation-commissioned White Papers, Revitalizing Manufacturing Communities: Building a High Road Commons for Manufacturing and Economic Recovery. Heartland Managing Director Tom Croft will be contributing to the papers, which will be presented at a national conference organized by the Foundation (TCF) and its Bernard L. Schwartz Rediscovering Government Initiative. Jeff Madrick, an acclaimed author, directs the Schwartz Initaitive. A partnership of the Steel Valley Authority (H

Reinvest in America

Tom Croft, co-author of The Responsible Investor Handbook, provides an insightful piece on how our government needs to put money back into o

Now is the time for (re)building bridges, not walls

President Trump, in his address this week to Congress, promised to invest $1 trillion in rebuilding our nation's infrastructure. After bemoaning our crumbling infrastructure, which includes falling bridges and dangerous tunnels, Trump said: "To launch our national rebuilding, I will be asking the Congress to approve legislation that produces a $1 trillion investment in the infrastructure of the United States -- financed through both public and private capital -- creating millions of new jobs. This effort will be guided by two core principles: Buy American, and Hire American." As a recent Gallup Poll announced, "Two-third of American (69%) say it is "very important" for President-elect Dona

Transformative Infrastructure Investment and American Competitiveness

America needs genuine infrastructure investment now more than ever—and that means more than just filling potholes. It means building the foundation for 21st century commerce, which is a long-term strategic necessity. It includes public investments in high-speed rail, universal broadband, and a carbon-reducing power grid, all of which will drive growth and help usher in shared prosperity for millions of Americans. The 2016 election results show that this is the will of the American people: According to a recent poll by the Roosevelt Institute and Democracy Corps, 70 percent of voters support commitments to transformational infrastructure investments that will grow our economy, create jobs, an

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