Jenny Uechi
Stock photo of solar power installation from Unsplash

The first time I read about  “Carbon Buster,” the solar farm Peter Nix built in 2016, I was delighted. Nix, a retired environmental consultant, in the sunny southern region of B.C.'s Cowichan Valley, spoke with pride about the potential of solar power. And it was just the beginning of the National Observer's efforts to feature ordinary people becoming climate heroes.

John Woodside
With costs at Muskrat Falls soaring from $7.4 billion to $13.1 billion, Ottawa is offering the province a major cash injection as it struggles to pay for the dam. Photo via Nalcor Energy

July 29th 2021

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau dropped into Newfoundland and Labrador on Wednesday with a multibillion-dollar bailout package designed to beat down the soaring costs of the contentious Muskrat Falls hydroelectric project and avert a feared bankruptcy.

Oliver Milman
The Tesoro oil refinery in Washington state. Photograph: Kevin Schafer/Getty Images

July 28, 2021

Whatcom county’s council passed measure that bans new refineries, coal-fired power plants and other related infrastructure

A county in Washington state has become the first such jurisdiction in the US to ban new fossil fuel infrastructure, following a lengthy battle over the impact of oil refineries on the local community.

Sharon J. Riley

A new report finds Canadian governments have provided billions to support pipelines — none of which have been completed to date — even as experts worry pipelines themselves undermine progress on climate goals

Governments in Canada have provided at least $23 billion in support for pipeline projects in Canada since 2018, according to a new report from the International Institute for Sustainable Development.

Eric Reguly

Whether or not you want one, can afford one or think they will do essentially nothing to stop global warming, electric vehicles are coming to Canada en masse. This week, the Canadian government set 2035 as the “mandatory target” for the sale of zero-emission SUVs and light-duty trucks.

That means the sale of gasoline and diesel cars has to stop by then. Transport Minister Omar Alghabra called the target “a must.” The previous target was 2040.

Brian K Sullivan and Elizabeth Elkin
Grounds marked with previous water lines at Oroville Lake in California on June 22.  Photographer: Kyle Grillot/Bloomberg

June 24, 2021

Summer in the U.S. begins with widespread drought already at historic levels across 11 states. Experts warn of worsening conditions once wildfires start.

Sarah Brunner opened the irrigation spigots on her farm in March, three months early. The rain should have still been falling in California. Now that summer is taking hold, she and her husband are considering shifting their meager water supplies into pastures so their animals will have enough to eat.

Johanna Bozuwa Co-Manager, Climate & Energy Program

June 3, 2021

Our dominant system for providing electricity to homes and businesses in the United States—through investor-owned energy utilities—is deeply problematic. By prioritizing shareholder profits over people’s needs, these utilities repeatedly exacerbate climate disasters through their insistence on fossil-fuel use and force millions of families to choose between keeping their homes from either freezing or overheating and feeding their children or seeing a doctor. Increasingly, the consequences can be deadly.


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