Oilsands giants lobbied to weaken emissions cap

Through the Pathways Alliance, an organization of some of Canada’s largest oil producers, high-level bureaucrats were asked for long lead times and a ‘flexible, non-regulatory approach’ to usher in a limit on the sector’s air pollution. Carl Meyer writes for The Narwhal.


In a nutshell:

In a strategy that we've seen play out all too often, yet another unholy alliance has arisen to carry the banner of fossil fuels forever. The Pathways Alliance, a consortium of Canadian oil giants, employed multiple proxies and personas to spin a net-zero fantasy to the public, while angling for favors and muscling aside opposition on the political front. Six major oil companies joined forces, seeking to stall, obfuscate or outright eliminate meaningful climate action.

Key quote:

“They’re clearly pursuing slower, weaker emissions caps as part of what I see as a more general trend towards climate delay in the sector, and even globally,” said Chris Russill, an associate professor and academic director at Re.Climate, an environmental communications center at Carleton University.

Big picture:

Formed in 2021, The Pathways Alliance moved quickly to put their stamp on Canadian climate policy. The organization has advanced an energy agenda recommending a flexible approach to emissions caps defined by loose regulations and a long, slow walk into a carbon-free future built on promises so fanciful that they triggered a deceptive marketing investigation. The centerpiece of the Pathways plan to decarbonize is of carbon capture and storage, which the group admits must rely on considerable government support to fund the unproven technology and clear the regulatory runway. Critics are quick to point out that eliminating emissions from oil and gas production won't address the 80% of greenhouse gas emissions associated with burning oil and gas.

Read the full story in The Narwhal.

environmental justice

LISTEN: Robbie Parks on why hurricanes are getting deadlier

"In places where there are high minority populations they bear, by far, the most burden of deaths from tropical cyclones."

Dr. Robbie Parks joins the Agents of Change in Environmental Justice podcast for a bonus episode to discuss how hurricanes have become deadlier in recent years and how we can better protect vulnerable communities.

Keep reading...Show less
Senator Whitehouse & climate change

Senator Whitehouse puts climate change on budget committee’s agenda

For more than a decade, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse gave daily warnings about the mounting threat of climate change. Now he has a powerful new perch.
energy efficiency buildings white house
Image by 652234 from Pixabay

White House to announce new definition of zero-emission buildings

The Biden administration will announce a new definition of buildings that produce zero planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions.

food prices climate impacts el nino russia
Photo by mayu ken on Unsplash

Food prices are rising as countries limit exports. Blame climate change, El Nino and Russia's war

Restrictions on food exports are spilling over from rice and wheat to other essentials. This ranges from Tanzania's limits on shipping onions to its neighbors and Morocco's restrictions on tomatoes to ongoing bans of some kinds of rice in Asia.

Listen: Mississippi River infrastructure needs and climate change

Lock and dam infrastructure on the Mississippi River is in desperate need of improvements. But some say before that investment is made, studies should be done to determine the effect it has on climate change.

swiss mountains
Image by Jonathan Reichel from Pixabay

Swiss glaciers lose 10% of their volume in two years

Scientists have said climate breakdown caused by the burning of fossil fuels is the cause of unusually hot summers and winters with very low snow volume, which have caused the accelerating melts.

jackson wyoming energy
Big Stock Photo

Want to spur green energy in Wyoming? Aim for the billionaires

One man’s quest to lure climate investment from the wealthy enclave of Jackson underscores how the climate law works: It runs on rich people.

The US power grid quietly survived record summer heat waves without outages

With little acknowledgment and no applause, the power grid across the continental United States this summer quietly pulled off what may have been its most impressive feat ever.

From our Newsroom
Heat, air pollution and climate change … oh my! Was summer 2023 the new normal?

Heat, air pollution and climate change … oh my! Was summer 2023 the new normal?

Intense heat waves induced by climate change create favorable conditions for air pollution to worsen. Scientists say this isn’t likely to change unless action is taken.

children nature

Opinion: When kids feel the magic of nature, they will want to protect it

Improving our quality of life starts with the simple of act of getting kids outdoors.

birds climate change

In the Gulf of Maine, scientists race to save seabirds threatened by climate change

“I could see that, if successful, the methods developed could likely help these species."

fracking economics

Appalachia’s fracking counties are shedding jobs and residents: Study

The 22 counties that produce 90% of Appalachian natural gas lost a combined 10,339 jobs between 2008 and 2021.

Marathon Petroleum y una ciudad de Texas muestran una  potencial crisis de comunicaciones sobre sustancias químicas

Marathon Petroleum y una ciudad de Texas muestran una potencial crisis de comunicaciones sobre sustancias químicas

En los últimos tres años, Marathon ha violado repetidamente la ley de Aire Limpio y tuvo tres emergencias en el semestre de febrero a julio de 2023.

WATCH: How Marathon Petroleum and one Texas city show the potential for a chemical communication crisis

WATCH: How Marathon Petroleum and one Texas city show the potential for a chemical communication crisis

Marathon in Texas City has repeatedly violated the Clean Air Act and had three emergencies in the span of a six month period.

Stay informed: sign up for The Daily Climate newsletter
Top news on climate impacts, solutions, politics, drivers. Delivered to your inbox week days.