Reducing polluting emissions by adopting renewable energy sources improves air quality, it is well known. How much do we value these benefits though? This is the question that researchers from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in the United States wanted to answer. Between 2019 and 2022, a 55% increase in wind turbines and solar panels made it possible to reduce the use of fossil fuels to power electricity production plants by 900 million tonnes. According to researchers, this is the equivalent of removing 71 million cars per year from the American vehicle fleet. According to their calculations, reducing sulfur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide emissions resulted in savings of US$249 billion, including in health costs.

According to researchers from University College London and the International Institute for Sustainable Development, if governments are serious about their pledges to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, there is no longer a need to approve new projects extraction of fossil fuels. According to the scientists, whose work was published in the journal Science, the projects already authorized on a global scale make it possible to meet the needs by 2050. “It is important to note that our research establishes that there is a basis scientifically rigorous basis for the proposed standard by showing that there is no need for new fossil fuel projects,” one of the study’s authors, Professor Steve Pye, told The Guardian.

An old promise has just been fulfilled by the world’s richest nations. In 2009, at COP15 in Copenhagen, Denmark, developed countries committed to providing US$100 billion per year to countries in the Global South, which have been hit hardest by climate change. The original commitment was to reach the US$100 billion target by 2020. By 2022, according to data compiled by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the richest countries had met and exceeded the target, contributing US$116 billion to a fund that was nonetheless considered insufficient by the nations that have contributed the least to global warming. A new funding target is already under negotiation and is expected to come into effect as early as 2025.

Vermont recently became the first American state to implement a law allowing financial compensation to be sought from oil giants after a disaster caused by climate change. The state will produce a report by January 15, 2026, assessing the total cost of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in Vermont between 1995 and 2024. This data will also be used to calculate the amount of emissions attributable to each oil companies. According to the Associated Press, Maryland, Massachusetts and New York are considering establishing a similar measure. The oil lobby has indicated for its part that it intends to challenge the new Vermont law.

The Secretary General of the United Nations, António Guterres, calls for advertisements associated with fossil fuels to be banned from now on, as those for the tobacco industry have been in the past. “I urge all countries to ban advertising from fossil fuel companies,” he said last Wednesday. And I urge media and technology companies to stop accepting fossil fuel advertising,” he added. Mr. Guterres particularly highlighted the role of the fossil fuel industry which has denied climate change for many years. “We must directly confront those in the fossil fuel industry who have demonstrated a relentless zeal to hinder progress for decades. »