Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

International Update Volume 42, Issue 22

UN INCENTIVE CREATES OVERSUPPLY OF HARMFUL COOLANT

United Nations incentives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are causing an increase in production of a harmful gas, according to the New York Times. An incentive scheme that gives one carbon credit per ton of carbon eliminated but gives 11,000 credits for destroying one ton of byproduct from a coolant used in manufacturing has caused plants in the developing world to increase production of coolant. The waste byproduct of the coolant gas has a huge impact on climate change, and the credits for eliminating byproduct sell for tens of millions of dollars a year.

CHINA'S BUREAUCRACY HINDERS WATER SAFETY

China

China's system of bureaucracy may be fueling its problems with access to clean, safe water, according to researchers writing in the journal Science. What the researchers call "stovepipe bureaucracy," in which agencies communicate with their own teams but not each other, limits China's ability to ensure sustainable access to water. The report described a web of agencies with contradictory missions and actions that promote one policy while going against another. Many problems arise when agencies fail to coordinate, according to a researcher.

AQUIFER DEPLETION THREATENS GLOBAL WATER SUPPLY

Some nations are depleting their groundwater reserves faster than they can be renewed, according to Canadian researchers writing in the journal Nature. Globally, the groundwater "footprint"--the above ground area that relies on underground water--is about 3.5 times larger than the aquifers themselves. The research shows that as many as 1.7 billion people, mostly in Asia, live in areas with groundwater reserves that are under threat after overuse.