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The week ahead in climate policy

This week’s most important ongoing climate policy stories.

Pollution on the beach of tropical sea.

Plastic pollution on a beach. Photo: Shutterstock/Take Photo

  • The plastics industry produces 4 times more pollution than the aviation industry, or the equivalent of 600 coal plants, according to a new report from the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. The findings come as governments from around the globe prepare for meeting in Ottawa, Canada, to resume negotiations for a global plastics treaty. The European Union recently called for a global ban on certain types of plastics, including microplastics. Plastics pollution costs more than $2 trillion annually, with the majority of the financial burden landing on small communities.

Offshore wind providers seek to reduce risk

US backs away from corporate accountability for climate damages 

  • The cost of business-as-usual with burning fossil fuels is already six times higher than the total cost to transition to a clean economy, according to a report released in Nature last week. If no course correction takes place, researchers estimate, the global cost of enduring and adapting to climate change will total $38 trillion by 2050. This data was released as U.S. courts and policymakers take steps to reduce corporate liability for climate damages, including a pause on the Securities and Exchange Commission’s rule requiring corporations to disclose the risk associated with their Scope 1 and 2 emissions, a ruling from the Supreme Court stating that companies can’t be sued for failing to disclose information about future risks, including climate-related risks, and the introduction of a GOP-sponsored House bill that would ban the federal government from requiring companies to disclose any ESG information.

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