Looking at the world’s biggest crisis through a decolonial lens.
I’m Amanda Magnani, a Brazilian (photo)journalist and OptOut News’ climate editor. Every other week, I bring you the most important climate news from our network—with an extra serving of decolonial perspectives. ✨🌿
So let’s get started!
U.S.–China Climate Talks 🌿 Outdoor workers’ vulnerability to air pollution 🌿 Rising fees for oil drilling
As the world temperature hits record-breaking levels, it looks like ice caps are not the only things melting: last week, U.S. and Chinese representatives met in Beijing to discuss climate cooperation, resuming a dialogue that had been frozen since Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan last year.
The two countries are the world’s biggest polluters, but the meeting has been received with ✨very✨cautious optimism. With two more meetings planned before COP 28 in November, we’ll have to wait and see where this goes. You can read more about it on Climate Change News.
Meanwhile, as the smoke from Canada’s wildfires reaches the U.S., outdoor workers are increasingly vulnerable to dangerous air conditions. As Daily Montanan reports, experts are calling on federal regulators to protect them, with rules including requiring employers to monitor air pollution and providing workers with protective equipment on particularly polluted days.
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Some good news, though, is that oil drilling on public federal lands is about to get a lot more expensive. Minimum royalty fees will go up to 16.7 percent from the current 12.5 percent and the minimum bond per lease will go from $10,000 to $150,000. It’s the first time fees have risen in a century. According to Grist, the Interior Department announced a set of reforms meant to protect these lands, save taxpayers’ money, and hold oil and gas companies accountable for environmental cleanup.
🛢️ “Intel facility would avoid ‘redundant’ environmental review under U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown bill”, by Ohio Capital Journal.
🛢️ “Environmental group applauds proposed rule updates for flaring, idle wells”, by Louisiana Illuminator.
🛢️ “Wildfires Are Exposing Canada’s Willed Ignorance of the Realities of Climate Change”, by Jacobin.
Decolonizing Climate Change
🌱 If you want to understand how Norway wind farms violate Indigenous rights, check out this story by Grist.
🌱 If you want to learn about how a socialist model of society could help prevent climate change and future pandemics, check out this talk hosted by The Majority Report.
🌱 If you want to understand how colonizers weaponized the environment to kill Indigenous people and conquer new land, check out this story by Heated.
To Lighten Your Heart
💚 “Sensing the Color of Soil for Climate Modeling”, by Eos.
💚 “In Batismo, A Celebration of Water and Life”, by Atmos.
Global South Corner
This week, I talked to Luis Ovidio Carvajal Nuñez, who has been an environmentalist in the Dominican Republic for the past 43 years, about how the country is affected by climate change. He is part of the Socio-environmental Network of the Dominican Republic and the coordinator of the Environmental Commission of the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo, where he is a physiology professor.
Luis explained to me that the Dominican Republic is one of the most biodiverse places in the world. As an insular country with a small area, the landscape is made up of a complex mosaic of different vegetation – and that makes the country more vulnerable to predatory action.
According to Luis, water availability is the country’s main vulnerability when it comes to climate change: “We have a structural water deficit, with extreme events of both droughts and floods,” he told me.
He added that, with sprawling urban growth, poor communities are pushed to areas that are more vulnerable to environmental disasters. “The main problem is that our environmental policies are not consistent with the necessary response, and that leads to an extreme social vulnerability associated with this issue,” he said.
That’s all for now, folks! If you’re a climate journalist and want to keep the conversation going, join us in our Discord group. Over there, I will share new opportunities and resources every week, and you can let me know who—or what—you want to see next on the Global South Corner.
If you have any questions or suggestions, hit me up at email@example.com.
Obrigada and have a great week!
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