FROM Fiona Harvey
Big Oil and Other Industries Shift Gears on Climate Change Four years ago, the fossil-fuel lobby helped to beat back President Obama's proposed cap-and-trade system to reduce greenhouse emissions. Exxon Mobil, America's most profitable company, led the way in global warming denial. Times have changed and Exxon Mobil is beginning to sound more like Al Gore. The oil giant would even be willing to pay a tax on carbon emissions. Other oil companies would too, along with Walmart, DuPont and General Electric. They're now in direct opposition to former Republican and Tea Party allies, at a time of warnings that climate disasters could be "sudden and unexpected." Would a carbon tax help to slow global warming? What would it mean for company profits and the cost of living?
Durban Deal Breaks New Ground, but May Not Slow Climate Change After working through Saturday night into yesterday morning, the UN Conference on Climate Change in Durban, South Africa finally reached an agreement . It includes India, China and other developing nations, as well as the developed world. But environmental groups call it an "empty shell." The agreement won't go into effect until 2020 and sets no goals for reducing greenhouse emissions in the meantime. Fiona Harvey is environmental correspondent for the Guardian newspaper in the UK.
Future Hazy as Climate Talks Continue The UN's Conference of Parties on Climate Change has been meeting for 17 years. In 1997, it produced the Kyoto Protocol , supposedly to hold industrial nations accountable for the impact of greenhouse emissions. But two years ago in Copenhagen, heads of state, including President Obama, could only produce a two-page, nonbinding agreement to help poor nations cope with climate change, and details are still being debated. The Kyoto pact will expire at the end of next year. This week, 195 countries are attending the latest so-called Earth Summit in Durban, South Africa. Will they save the Kyoto Protocol or allow it to expire even as the impacts of climate change are being felt all over the world?
Climate Change and Low Expectations The UN's Conference of Parties on Climate Change has been meeting for 17 years. In 1997, it produced the Kyoto Protocol , supposedly to hold industrial nations accountable for the impact of greenhouse emissions. But two years ago in Copenhagen, heads of state, including President Obama, could only produce a two-page, nonbinding agreement to help poor nations cope with climate change, and details are still being debated. The Kyoto pact will expire at the end of next year. This week, the latest so-called Earth Summit is underway in Durban, South Africa.
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Ex-FBI Director Comey tells his side of the story Today, former FBI Director James Comey came close to calling the President who fired him a liar. The White House denied the claim and called it insulting, but Republican Senators did not challenge Comey’s truthfulness. Many questions remain: did the President try to obstruct a federal investigation? Later, we’ll go behind the “velvet rope” for a look at 5-Star health care for the richest Americans.
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?