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Current International Update

International developments reported in the current issue of ELR's Weekly Update appear below. For previously reported international news, please use the filter function on the left. For older material reported between 2000 and 2010, visit the Weekly Update Archives.

Volume 45, Issue 18

PROTESTERS CLAIM OPPRESSION AS TURKEY’S BLACK SEA REGION FACES HYDRO DEVELOPMENT

Country: Turkey

Citizens and nongovernmental organizations in Turkey's Black Sea region are growing increasingly concerned about the environmental impacts of hydroelectric development projects in the region and the lack of civil society participation in the process. The region is mostly rural and contains some of Turkey's most biologically diverse landscapes, but in recent decades it has faced rapid industrial encroachment. Dozens of small hydroelectric projects are planned for multiple valleys in the region, as well as mines and factories.

DUTCH COURT ORDERS THE NATION TO ACT FASTER TO REDUCE GHG EMISSIONS

Country: Netherlands

A Dutch district court in The Hague ruled that the national government must reduce greenhouse gas emissions faster than planned, a decision following a suit filed by the Urgenda Foundation, an environmental organization, on behalf of 900 Dutch citizens. The opinion declared that the state must cut emissions to 25% below 1990 levels by 2020. The country is currently on pace to be at 17% of 1990 levels by that year. To some observers the decision is a landmark ruling, especially if it withstands appeal.

ALBERTA STRENGTHENS CLIMATE REGIME

Country: Canada

The Canadian province of Alberta announced new regulations designed to meet increased emissions reduction targets and extend its climate change program over the next two years. The Ministry of Environment and Parks intends to increase the province's excess carbon price by 50% and to raise emissions reduction targets to 20% of normal emissions by 2017. The rules, due to expire at the end of June, also extend the climate program through 2017.