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    Unfortunately, the world is not a very peaceful or safe place for many individuals. From conflict to abuse to exploitation, there is so much cruelty inflicted on both humans and animals. While this can get disheartening and difficult to hear about, petitions are a great way to use your voice for good. Just by signing one, you are a part of helping those who are not treated fairly. You can even share them with your friends and acquaintances to increase your impact. Through petitions, we can reach those in power and demand justice for others. They are valuable tools for making positive changes in the world. If you are looking for a way to help animals and humans, here are 14 petitions you should sign this week, including Urge Large Banks to Divest From Fossil Fuel Companies, Demand Congress Protect Abortion Rights, and Call on Congress to Pass the Pets Belong with Families Act. We want to thank you for being the change you wish to see in the world and giving a voice to the voiceless. 1. Tell...
    When it comes to maintaining energy flows, there is a closing window to avert both climate catastrophe and economic peril. Similar to the two navigational hazards mythologized as sea monsters in ancient Greece—Scylla and Charybdis—which gave rise to sayings such as, “between the devil and the deep blue sea” and “between a rock and a hard place,” modern energy policy has its own Scylla and Charybdis. On the one hand is the requirement to maintain sufficient energy flows to avoid economic peril. On the other hand is the need to avert climate catastrophe resulting from such activities. Policymakers naturally want all the benefits of abundant energy with none of the attendant climate risks. But tough choices can no longer be put off. This article was produced by Earth | Food | Life, a project of the Independent Media Institute. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the West’s response of imposing sanctions on Russia are forcing a reckoning as far as global energy policy is concerned. The International Energy Agency (IEA) forecasts that the ongoing war and the U.S. sanctions may together...
    (CNN)Nine European and US fossil fuel companies have paid a collective $15.8 billion to Russia in various forms of taxes and fees since the country annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, a group of NGOs said Thursday.The groups, Global Witness, Greenpeace USA and Oil Change International, used data from the Oslo-based Rystad Energy, an independent energy research firm, to calculate how much money oil and gas companies based in North America and Europe had sent to the Russian state. They looked only at companies with exploration and production operations in Russia.They looked at royalties, export duties, bonuses, taxes and fees, as well as "government profit oil," which includes the value of any actual oil that the companies may have given to Russia. It came up with a list of nine companies from these regions that had paid the most money to Russia. All those payments were legal, and other multinational companies outside the energy sector have also have made similar kinds of payments to the Russian state.Shell, which is registered in the UK, sent $7.85 billion, the highest amount of...
    Climate change activists of Extinction Rebellion group during a protest at the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, Scotland.Marcos del Mazo | LightRocket | Getty Images LONDON — The public relations industry has a PR problem. The role of PR firms and ad agencies in "greenwashing" fossil fuels has come under intense scrutiny in recent months, with communications firms accused of obstructing climate action by spreading disinformation on behalf of their clients. A peer-reviewed study published late last year in the journal Climatic Change was the first to comprehensively document the role that PR firms have played in helping the world's most profitable oil and gas companies improve their environmental image and block climate action. It shows that energy giants have relied on PR firms and ad agencies to finesse their public messaging for more than three decades. For instance, the authors note how the PR industry has played a key role in downplaying the seriousness of the climate crisis, promoting industry-favored solutions as the preferred course of action and emphasizing the benefits of fossil fuel use. To be sure, the...
    Extinction Rebellion climate activists take part in a Rise and Rebel march organised to coincide with the end of, and anticipated failure of, the COP26 climate summit on 13th November 2021 in London, United Kingdom.Mark Kerrison | In Pictures | Getty Images Climate activists and campaign groups are pursuing an abrupt end to the fossil fuel era, condemning the latest round of net-zero pledges from many governments and corporations as a smokescreen that fails to meet the demands of the climate emergency. Calls to keep fossil fuels in the ground are anathema to leaders in the oil and gas industry, who insist the world will continue "to be thirsty for all energy sources" in the years ahead. To be sure, the burning of fossil fuels, such as coal, oil and gas, is the chief driver of the climate crisis and researchers have repeatedly stressed that the best weapon to tackle rising global temperatures is to cut greenhouse gas emissions as quickly as possible. Yet, even as politicians and business leaders publicly acknowledge the necessity of transitioning to renewable alternatives, current...
    Protesters in Sheffield, England, push for more action at the UN Climate Conference underway in Glasgow.Tim Dennell/Flickr Fight disinformation. Get a daily recap of the facts that matter. Sign up for the free Mother Jones newsletter.This story was originally published by YaleE360 and is reproduced here as part of Climate Desk.  It was a statistic that shocked many in Glasgow Monday. An examination of delegation lists by the human rights group Global Witness found that fossil fuel companies and their trade associations have more than 500 representatives registered at the climate conference, more than the biggest national delegation, Brazil. Fossil fuel lobbyists have a perfect right to be at the event, of course. And they are almost certainly outnumbered by environmentalists among the 11,000-plus non-governmental delegates. But what are they trying to achieve? Have they bolstered holdouts against banishing coal and ending oil exploration? Are they even now pushing back against putative plans from the British hosts to announce a globally agreed target for cutting aviation emissions? Will their influence pave the way for massive investment in carbon-offset schemes—a path already heavily trodden by oil...
    For more than 30 years, experts, advocates, and citizens have been sounding the alarm about the damage fossil fuel consumption is doing to our planet. And for more than 30 years, fossil fuel companies have cast doubt and sown confusion about these facts at every opportunity. Now wildfires blaze out of control in the America West, In Europe and China massive floods are destroying lives and property. In our own state of Minnesota, our air quality is the worst it’s been in more than 100 years because of Canadian wildfires. This is what climate change looks like. The cost of its impacts are growing larger and larger with each passing year, costs shouldered by taxpayers and consumers. Meanwhile, fossil fuel interests continue to dodge accountability for the damage they’ve caused. In Minnesota alone, climate change related impacts cost Minnesotans over $1 billion annually.  Just over one year ago, Attorney General Keith Ellison filed a lawsuit against ExxonMobil, Koch Industries, the Pine Bend Refinery in Rosemount, and the American Petroleum Institute. The suit seeks damages from the fossil fuel companies...
    In light of the latest IPCC report on climate change, it's crucial we remember these four steps to avoiding a climate catastrophe. First, create green jobs. Investing in renewable energy could create millions of family sustaining, union jobs and build the infrastructure we need for marginalized communities to access clean water and air. Second, stop dirty energy. A massive investment in renewable energy jobs isn't enough to combat the climate crisis. If we are going to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, we must tackle the problem at its source: Stop digging up and burning more oil, gas, and coal. Third, kick fossil fuel companies out of our politics. For decades, companies like Exxon, Chevron, Shell, and BP have been polluting our democracy by pouring billions of dollars into our politics and bankrolling elected officials to enact policies that protect their profits. The oil and gas industry spent over $103 million on the 2016 federal elections alone. Fourth, require the fossil fuel companies that have profited from environmental injustice to compensate the communities they've harmed. As if buying off...
    U.S. history is full of colonizers exploiting, killing, breaking treaties with, and stealing from indigenous peoples. Many people like to believe the white-washed versions of history that were taught when we were children and others like to believe that systemic oppression of native peoples is a thing of the past. However, Native Americans continue to be oppressed and discriminated against to this day. Source: NowThis News/Youtube In October, the Oklahoma state governor who also happens to be “an ally of the state’s oil and gas industry,” J. Kevin Stitt, requested authority over environmental issues on reservation land. This authority previously belonged to the indigenous people who actually lived on that land, but now the EPA wants to take those rights away. At the beginning of October, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler approved Stitt’s request. Now Stitt can allow oil and gas companies to dump poisonous waste and frack on tribal land. It will also protect polluters, like factory farms, from being held accountable for the air and water pollution that they cause on reservations. Furthermore, tribes were not even notified...
    A Marathon Petroleum refinery in Carson, California. Robyn Beck/Getty Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.This story was originally published by The Guardian and is reproduced here as part of the Climate Desk collaboration. Fossil-fuel companies have received billions of dollars in tax benefits from the US government as part of coronavirus relief measures, only to lay off tens of thousands of their workers during the pandemic, new figures reveal. A group of 77 firms involved in the extraction of oil, gas and coal received $8.2 billion under tax-code changes that formed part of a major pandemic stimulus bill passed by Congress last year. Five of these companies also got benefits from the paycheck protection program, totaling more than $30 million. Despite this, almost every one of the fossil-fuel companies laid off workers, with a more than 58,000 people losing their jobs since the onset of the pandemic, or around 16% of the combined workforces. The largest beneficiary of government assistance has been Marathon Petroleum, which...
    The world’s remaining forests are essential in tackling the climate crisis. They can absorb CO2 from the atmosphere, which has build-up from excessive fossil fuel use and is a major driver of global warming. Forests also support a huge amount of the planet’s biodiversity, the loss of which is another key issue in the current environmental emergency. According to a recent report, however, forests face a direct and growing threat from the fossil fuel industry and other extractive businesses. Because there are numerous mining and infrastructure projects underway, or in the pipeline, in forest-rich regions that imperil these essential ecosystems. One of the report’s co-authors, Erin Matson, said that with forests already at “a dangerous tipping point”, these projects “could push us over the edge”. Broken Pledges The New York Declaration on Forests (NYDF) is a voluntary global pledge for action to stop deforestation. Since its creation in 2014, more than 200 governments, companies, NGOs and indigenous community groups have endorsed it. The NYDF’s progress is analyzed annually by a 28-organization-strong coalition called the NYDF Assessment Partners and it...
    U.S. history is full of colonizers exploiting, killing, breaking treaties with, and stealing from indigenous peoples. Many people like to believe the white-washed versions of history that were taught when we were children and others like to believe that systemic oppression of native peoples is a thing of the past. However, Native Americans continue to be oppressed and discriminated against to this day. Source: NowThis News/Youtube Recently, the Oklahoma state governor who also happens to be “an ally of the state’s oil and gas industry,” J. Kevin Stitt, requested authority over environmental issues on reservation land. This authority previously belonged to the indigenous people who actually lived on that land, but now the EPA wants to take those rights away. At the beginning of October, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler approved Stitt’s request. Now Stitt can allow oil and gas companies to dump poisonous waste and frack on tribal land. It will also protect polluters, like factory farms, from being held accountable for the air and water pollution that they cause on reservations. Furthermore, tribes were not even notified about this...
    Sen. jeff Merkley Earth Matters is a Daily Kos compendium of wonderful, disturbing, and hideous news briefs about the environment. • Sen. Jeff Merkley introduces aggressive proposals to ban fossil fuel investing: The Oregon Democrat on Wednesday introduced the "Protecting America's Economy From the Carbon Bubble Act,” which would prohibit financial institutions from making new loans for or investments in fossil fuel companies or financing new fossil fuel projects. Part of the idea behind the bill, Merkley said, is to help prevent huge losses if fossil fuel prices collapse during the transition to clean energy. That goes far beyond bills other congressional Democrats have introduced to increase transparency about fossil-fuel investing and climate impacts. Merkley also introduced the "Sustainable International Financial Institutions Act,” which would mandate that the U.S. use its clout in international financial institutions to promote fossil fuel divestment. The bills follow on recent release of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s 196-page report, Managing Climate Risk in the U.S. Financial System. It concludes that the climate crisis “poses a major risk to the stability of the U.S. financial system and to its ability...
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