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Today, we look at the cost of this year’s climate catastrophes. We will be watching the passage of NDAA and the four environmental fights closely next year.
Rachel Frazin was the editor of The Hill. Zack Budryk was the vice-president. Send us tips: email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on twitter: @RachelFrazin @BudrykZack.
Lets jump in.
10 weather disasters cost $170B in damage
A new report by an aid group based in the United Kingdom reveals that the world’s 10 most costly weather disasters of 2021 left more than $170 trillion worth of damage.
Christian Aid publishes an annual report that estimates the cost of the worst weather catastrophes. The group’s 10 disasters for 2021 were $20 billion more costly than the 10 disasters that it highlighted in 2020.
According to the group, the estimated costs are also based on insured losses. This means that the actual costs of these events could be higher.
Kat Kramer (Christian Aids climate policy leader) wrote the report.
Climate change has been linked directly to extreme weather events like heat waves and heavy precipitation.
The report comes as policymakers from the U.S., and around the globe, seek to determine how to incorporate the cost of climate-related damage or potential savings from fewer environmental impacts into their decision-making.
Christian Aid’s report revealed that the U.S. and Europe were the three most expensive disasters of 2021. However, it noted that financial costs are generally higher in richer countries due to higher property values and insurance.
The most expensive? Hurricane IdaThe, which made landfall at Louisiana in August, then made its way to Northeast. Christian Aid stated that this event cost $65 Billion.
Learn more about the findings of this report here.
Biden signs defense bill that includes PFAS provisions
President BidenJoe BidenThe 10 races that will decide Senate majority Bidens: Desmond Tutu’s legacy will ‘echo through the ages’ Media love bad information; you don’t need to MOREMonday’s signing of a massive $768billion defense bill was announced by the White House. It established top lines and policy for Pentagon.
After Congress failed to pass the annual bill earlier in the month, Biden signed the fiscal 2022 National Defense Authorization Act.
The House passed this bill by an overwhelming bipartisan 363 to 70 vote in early December. The Senate followed suit with a bipartisan 88-11 vote.
After several failed attempts to pass an earlier version in the Senate, the compromise bill of $768.2 million was passed.
So what kind of energy- and environment provisions are there? Per a Summary for the Senate, it:
- Increased funding for the Army and Navy to clean up toxic chemicals called PFAS.
- Funding for a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States to conduct a PFAS health assessment
- Restricts open-air burning pits for waste
- Prevents the Defense Department to burn PFAS until there’s department guidance and a rule from EPA on PFAS dissolution
- Core processes must consider climate and environmental issues
Learn more about the bill from our defense team.
Despite Democrats’ recent uncertainty about the future of their sprawling climate policy and socialspending bill in the US, there will still be plenty of climate fights to keep an ear on in the new Year.
These are the four environmental battles you should be paying attention to in 2022.
1. Drilling for oil & gas on federal lands or waters
One of the most important environmental issues of 2021 will be whether or not to restrict leasing and permit for oil and gas drilling in federally-owned lands and waters.
Environmental groups are likely to oppose future sales, including a proposal that auctions ocean parcels near Alaska’s coast, and an expected onshore leasing sale in New Mexico. Republicans are expected support them.
2. Which waters are subject to federal protection?
Next year, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is expected to propose a rule governing the regulation of waters in the United States.
Biden administration is expected propose to regulate more waters than Trump administration. However, its exact course of action isn’t completely clear.
3. How much will power plant emissions need to be controlled?
The Supreme Court and regulations will likely be the venues for the battle over power plant emissions.
The EPA will likely propose rules next year to regulate emissions from existing and new power plants. Both rules are expected to be finalized by 2023.
The Supreme Court, however, said in October that it would review the case after receiving requests from Republican-led States and coal companies. It is expected that it will review the tools available to the EPA to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power stations.
4. Are countries willing to increase their climate commitments
The Glasgow Climate Pact was signed at the 2021 COP26 climate summit. It asks countries to review their short-term climate commitments before 2022.
It asked that countries increase their 2030 targets if necessary to align with the Paris Agreement climate goal, taking into consideration different national circumstances.
It is unclear which countries will increase their targets (known as Nationally Determined Contributions or NDC).
Learn more about these upcoming fights.
WHAT WE ARE READING
Finally, something a little offbeat and unorthodox: Deep dive into a new kind of scoop.
This is it for today. Thanks for reading. Check out The Hills Energy & Environment PageFor the most recent news and coverage. We look forward to seeing you Tuesday.