Sustainability Reads: August 17- August 23

Islamic Leaders Issue Sweeping Climate Change Declaration: ‘How Will We Face Our Lord and Creator?’
Climate change is getting religious- the Catholic Pope’s strong statement on climate in June and now Muslim leaders unite on climate. A meeting this week resulted in an 8-page declaration urging the 1.6 billion people of the Islamic faith to act on climate change. The declaration was signed by 60 Islamic leaders, representing 20 different countries. Although Morroco is the only Islamic nation to contribute official climate reduction goals (INDCs), the declaration is an inspiring and notably interesting development ahead of the international climate negotiations in December. By Zoe Schlanger at Newsweek

Emissions trading in China: Early lessons from low-carbon pilots
Initial trading obstacles faced by China’s 7 local pilot cap and trade programs are explored in this article. Information can help guide other systems before they are launched, including a national level cap and trade program expected in China as early as 2017. Obstacles observed:

  • Regulatory barriers, including a ban on carbon futures by the China Securities and Regulatory Commission (CSRC);
  • Financial intermediaries not engaged in the carbon market;
  • Capacity constrains at local pilot exchanges (e.g., spotty in-house trading experience, no clearinghouse capability, weak IT infrastructure);
  • Companies not yet clear on their carbon position (long or short?) and their abatement cost and, as a result, are not likely to trade and;
  • Companies largely unfamiliar with price hedging strategies and traders may not be incentivized to trade carbon. By Lasse Ringius at the World Bank

Are solar panels right for you? Google’s new mapping tool can help you decide.
Google’s Project Sunroof is a new tool that uses your address to determine whether or not solar is worthwhile, based on roof size and how much usable sunlight. Financial savings can also be determined by inputting your monthly electricity bills. Although this data is still only available to certain regions, the idea behind this tool is promising. It also provides a recommended solar installation size based on the information given. By Brad Plumer at Vox

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