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#185 - Green Economy and Green Jobs in China: Current Status and Potentials for 2020. Since 2000, and especially during the 11th Five-Year period of 2006–10, China has prioritized green development in almost all of its leading economic sectors. One of the greatest promises of China’s green transition is the potential for expanded employment in industries and economic sectors that can help slow and possibly reduce the country’s environmental impact. This report explores greening activities in three leading sectors of China’s economy: energy, transportation, and forestry. It sheds light on the current scale of investment and employment in these sectors and suggests potentials for 2020.
#184 - Powering the Low-Carbon Economy: The Once and Future Roles of Renewable Energy and Natural Gas. Over the past decade, renewable energy and natural gas have emerged as potential cornerstones of a low-carbon power sector. Wind and solar resources are abundant and can be converted into electricity using technologies that emit no greenhouse gases. Natural gas offers a cleaner alternative to coal that can deliver sharp, immediate reductions in carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector—if new supplies can be produced responsibly.
#183 - Population, Climate Change, and Women's Lives. The growth of population is a major factor behind climate change today. Human-caused climate change is fundamentally an imbalance of scale, as people release heat-trapping gases into Earth’s atmosphere faster than the oceans and living things can remove them. This imbalance stems from both the explosion of technologies made possible through the combustion of fossil fuels since the late 1700s and the more than sevenfold increase in human numbers since that time.
#181 - Global Environmental Change: The Threat to Human Health. Over the past two-to-three hundred years, humanity’s ecological footprint has ballooned to such an extent that we are now fundamentally altering the planet. We have transformed the Earth’s land surface and altered the function of its ecosystems, and we are triggering the rapid loss of both terrestrial and marine life. We are also profoundly changing our planet’s climate. It is increasingly apparent that the breadth and depth of the changes we are wreaking on the environment are imperiling not only many of the other species with which we share the ecological stage, but the health and wellbeing of our own species as well.
#179 - Mitigating Climate Change Through Food and Land Use. Land makes up a quarter of Earth’s surface, and its soil and plants hold three times as much carbon as the atmosphere. More than 30 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions arise from the land use sector. Thus, no strategy for mitigating global climate change can be complete or successful without reducing emissions from agriculture, forestry, and other land uses. Moreover, only land-based or “terrestrial” carbon sequestration offers the possibility today of large-scale removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere, through plant photosynthesis.
#178 - Low-Carbon Energy: A Roadmap. Technologies available today, and those expected to become competitive over the next decade, will permit a rapid decarbonization of the global energy economy. New renewable energy technologies, combined with a broad suite of energy-efficiency advances, will allow global energy needs to be met without fossil fuels and by adding only minimally to the cost of energy services.
#173 - Beyond Disasters: Creating Opportunities for Peace. This report describes the recent experiences of Indonesia’s Aceh province, Sri Lanka, and Kashmir, among others, and suggests ways to better integrate disaster and conflict responses. The authors note that the human toll taken by natural disasters is increasing, adding to the list of deadly challenges faced by poor communities and countries worldwide, and that women, children, and the elderly are among those most vulnerable.