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Energy and climate change are large factors in U.S. defense, experts tell Senate panel

From Iraq to Ukraine, fast-shifting energy needs are changing the face of international security, experts told Congress yesterday.

Testifying before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee panel, current and former defense leaders put climate change squarely at the center of security operations, arguing that rising seas and fiercer storms must be taken into account when planning for America's military future.


U.N. gives climate change policy a major role in dealing with poverty

The United Nations has made tackling climate change a central part of fighting poverty in a sweeping new blueprint that could form the core of the world's development priorities for the coming decades.

Approved over the weekend after nearly 29 hours of debate, the proposed Sustainable Development Goals still must get the green light from the General Assembly in September before undergoing still further negotiations. But the stand-alone goal calling for "urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts" was described as a significant early win by vulnerable nations.


Indonesia's heated presidential election may be 'watershed moment' for deforestation and global climate

Indonesia will announce tomorrow the results of one of its most important presidential elections in recent history, measured in terms of global climate change.

While it's safe to say few Americans are aware of it, Indonesians have already cast votes for one of two starkly different candidates. One is a former furniture salesman, beloved by the middle class, who has pushed through significant reforms during his tenure as Jakarta's governor. The other is a multimillionaire ex-general with a questionable record on human rights, although some view him as the leader more able to unify the archipelago nation of more than 17,000 islands. Domestically, the winner will guide the continuing evolution of the nation's fledgling democracy.


Australia repeals its carbon tax and triggers an international debate

Australia's government has voted to repeal a carbon tax on that country's biggest greenhouse gas polluters, ending one bitter domestic battle but opening up new fronts in the climate war both at home and internationally.

Diplomats negotiating a new global treaty denounced the repeal, saying Australia's move slows down their momentum. In the United States, Senate Democrats insisted Australia's actions will have no implications for President Obama's climate change regulations, while Republicans cheered its demise, saying the tax's repeal highlights the global unpopularity of carbon-curbing policies.


Can the U.N. set Sustainable Development Goals without dealing with climate change?

A U.N. blueprint for eradicating poverty in the 21st century is shaping up to include climate change in a big way.

The long-awaited set of Sustainable Development Goals goes into effect after 2015 and includes things like providing universal access to health care and promoting gender equality. A final list of 17 goals slated for adoption Friday asks the world to "tackle climate change and its impacts" as one of the high-level objectives.

About this report

E&E tracks work on a post-Kyoto agreement for curbing emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases.


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