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This New Interactive Tool Can Help Inform Climate Policy

On Copernicus’ Climate Atlas, tourist fees, and the culture wars

This New Interactive Tool Can Help Inform Climate Policy
Heatmap Illustration/Getty Images

Current conditions: A tropical storm has formed in the South Atlantic for the first time in three years • Ongoing wildfires in Chile forced residents to evacuate • It’s 51 degrees Fahrenheit and cloudy in London where a pod of dolphins was spotted in the River Thames.


1. Hawaii considers charging tourists to enter

Hawaii may introduce a $25 tourist fee this spring to help protect the state from wildfires. Hawaii’s Democratic governor, Josh Green, told The Wall Street Journal the fee would bring in close to $70 million annually, and that the money would pay for things like fire breaks, disaster prevention and insurance, and establishing a state fire marshal. “It’s a very small price to pay to preserve paradise,” Green said. Hawaii is still recovering from the deadly Lahaina wildfires that struck Maui last year. The tourist fee would follow a larger trend of visitors being asked to help contribute to climate resilience efforts in high-risk destinations across the world.

2. Copernicus launches new interactive climate tool

Here’s one for the climate data nerds: The European Union’s Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S) – a key resource for global climate data – today unveiled a cool new interactive tool. The Interactive Climate Atlas lets users explore very detailed changes in climate on a regional level, and peer into the future with climate projections based on different warming scenarios. The tool is a “gamechanger” for policymakers, the group said. It’s also just really fascinating (and/or terrifying) to play around with. It takes a little bit of getting used to, though, so good idea to read the user guide before you dive in.

Spatial precipitation changesC3S Interactive Climate Atlas

3. EU industry CEOs fret over energy shift

A bunch of European industrial business leaders are worried their firms are losing their competitive edge in the energy transition, and they want the EU to do something about it. About 70 CEOs from major European companies are petitioning the EU to introduce a “European Industrial Deal” that would reduce energy costs, boost funding for clean tech, cut red tape, and limit companies’ reporting obligations. “The group says Europe risks losing out to China and the U.S. in the race to supply the technologies needed to roll out renewables and slash industrial emissions,” reportedBloomberg. Ursula von der Leyen will join the group in Antwerp today in a bid to garner support as she launches her bid for a second term as European Commission president.

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  • 4. Major car part manufacturer slashing jobs

    A French company that manufactures parts for about half the world’s cars is cutting 10,000 jobs as the global shift to electric vehicles changes the automotive landscape, reportedThe Wall Street Journal. Forvia provides exhaust systems as well as interiors for carmakers including Ford, Tesla, Stellantis, and Volkswagen. The cuts, which will happen over the next five years, come as the company strives to stay competitive as new policies in the EU favor electric vehicles, and Chinese carmakers like BYD look to expand. Automotive suppliers “have made hefty investments in the shift to electric, and now they are seeing their markets being hit due to slower uptake than expected,” wrote Jennifer Mossalgue at Electrek.

    5. Culture wars target lab-grown meat

    Florida is one of a handful of states trying to ban lab-grown meat, seen by some as a potential way to help cut the greenhouse gas emissions of the meat and dairy industries. A new bill in the state legislature would make it a misdemeanor to sell or manufacture lab-grown meat (which is made from animal cells), and anyone caught doing so would be fined $1,000. “The development of lab-grown meat has been drawn into America’s culture wars, like other ventures aimed at disrupting traditional food production,” explained The New York Times. The irony is that “it likely will be years before lab-grown meat is a staple on dinner plates in America, if it happens at all.”


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    Jessica Hullinger

    Jessica Hullinger is a freelance writer and editor who likes to think deeply about climate science and sustainability. She previously served as Global Deputy Editor for The Week, and her writing has been featured in publications including Fast Company, Popular Science, and Fortune. Jessica is originally from Indiana but lives in London. Read More

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    Current conditions: Torrential rains forced Mauritius to shut down its stock exchange • “Once in a century” flooding hit southern China • In the Northern Hemisphere, the Lyrid meteor shower peaks tonight.


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    Heatmap Illustration/Getty Images

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