Scrolling news:

Palestine: Israel’s raid of Palestinian NGOs draws condemnation from UN, EU

Afghanistan: Bombing of mosque in Kabul kills 21, injures 33

India: Rights groups decry release of 11 convicts in gang rape of Muslim woman, murder case

Pakistan: 20 killed in bus-tanker collision in northeast

Egypt: 41 dead in fire at Coptic church west of Cairo

Tunisia: Tunisian preacher stirs controversy over verses regarding ‘coup’

‘News is not good’: Rushdie’s agent says after author attacked on stage in New York

Greece: Dep Speaker of Parliament advocates ‘necessity’ of spying on country’s Turkish Muslim MPs

Jammu & Kashmir: 3 Indian soldiers, 2 Kashmiri militants killed in shoot-out

Palestine: Four Palestinians killed by Israeli forces in West Bank

Afghanistan: 8 killed, 18 injured in ISIS bombing at Muharram gathering

Palestine: 44 Palestinians killed incl 15 children by Israeli bombing of Gaza civilian areas

Palestine: 29 Palestinians killed, incl 6 children by Israeli indiscriminate bombing in Gaza

Palestine: Israel bombs Gaza in unprovoked attack killing 15 incl 5-year-old child

Morocco, Israel agree to enhance security cooperation

UN blames Israel’s ‘coercive measures’ for Palestinian displacements

French gov’t takes flak over deportation decision against well-known imam

Palestine: Palestinian shot dead by Israeli forces in West Bank

Lebanon: Hezbollah warns Israeli gas drilling vessels within range of its missiles

Bangladeshi nationals easy targets of human trafficking gangs

Notable moments and lessons on climate and environment in 2021

31st Dec 2021
Notable moments and lessons on climate  and environment in 2021

(Image credit: Gerd Altmann/Pixbay)

2021 was a year of climate-related contradictions. From floods taking place in areas plagued by drought and wildfires, to leaders spouting rhetoric about the need for swift, robust climate action just before cutting consequential language out of their carbon reduction commitments. The Muslim News looks at notable moments from 2021, what they mean, and what lessons can be drawn from them to make 2022 better.

 

Texas’ power grid is not ready to handle extreme weather

Texans did not start the year on a positive note, as a massive cold front left thousands of residents freezing and without power. Texas is the only state in the continental United States that has its power grid. The Lone Star state’s privatized grid offers consumers more options for where to get their power. However, it has fewer safety and backup measures to counter against a potentially major event, such as the unprecedented temperatures that blew through the state in early 2021. As a result, state leadership is looking to reform the state’s power grid to reduce demand and bolster safety and backup features.

 

NFTs have a terrible carbon footprint

Just as soon as NFTs or non-fungible tokens hit the market, blowing away onlookers with Beeple’s $69 million JPEG sale, experts crunched the numbers on how much energy it takes to track a piece of art through the internet, as it turns out, a lot. NFTs run on blockchain technology. Ethereum, for example, which handles Bitcoin, consumes an estimated 44.94 terawatt-hours of energy per year. Mining Bitcoin and tracking NFTs uses more power annually than some countries, causing some artists to rethink whether they want to sell their art as NFTs.

 

Haiti had compounded bad luck

Haitians had a trying year. After President Jovenel Moïse was assassinated in his home in July, the country suffered an earthquake that leftover 2,000 people dead. During the following months, residents trying to flee to the US were swiftly rounded up and deported back to Port-au-Prince. The Biden Administration was criticized for its callous approach to the asylum seekers, who were attempting to flee violence and lack of services following the devastation. Haiti still had not fully recovered from its 2010 magnitude 7.0 earthquake when this year’s magnitude 3.0 hit.

 

Tornadoes maybe worsened by climate change

In December, record-breaking tornadoes tore through five states in the American Midwest, leaving hundreds of people dead and thousands displaced. The tragedy gave rise to the question of whether the severity of tornadoes can be linked to climate change. President Joe Biden said in an address in the aftermath of the disaster, “All that I know is that the intensity of the weather across the board has some impacts as a consequence of the warming of the planet” It is difficult to connect specific events to climate change, but a trend shows that tornadoes are moving eastward. Tornadoes are formed when warm, moist air rises to meet cool, dry air, and wind conditions allow for the updraft to spin.

 

COP26

Despite major flood events in India and China this year, at COP26, the Indian and Chinese delegations sought to weaken the language around coal, changing the wording from “phase out” to “phase down” just before the gavel struck to end the conference. Despite this last-minute setback, world leaders did find common ground on other issues, particularly deforestation and methane. Over 100 world leaders signed a pledge to end deforestation by 2030. The Global Methane Pledge committed leaders to slash methane emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.

 

Typhoon Rai is battering the Philippines

At the time of writing this, the Philippines is facing Super Typhoon Rai, which marks the country’s 15th typhoon of the year. The death toll has reached 75, with the most extensive destruction in Bohol and Cebu Provinces. So far, the estimated damage is at $4.2 million, according to the state news agency, PMA.

 

Fossil fuel companies faced unprecedented pushback

Two of the world’s biggest oil and gas companies got pushback from board members and the courts. In the Netherlands, Friends of the Earth along with partner organizations and thousands of Dutch citizens won a lawsuit that called for Royal Dutch Shell to reduce carbon emissions by 45 per cent compared to 2019 levels. In the US, ExxonMobil was forced to allow 3 climate activists to join its Board of Directors. Oil companies have been blamed for misleading the public regarding the science behind climate change to continue extracting greenhouse gas-emitting fossil fuels, and are now facing public pushback over changing course to invest in renewables.

 

South America took the lead on marine protection

Panama, Ecuador, Costa Rica, and Colombia have linked their marine reserves to create the Eastern Tropical Pacific Marine Corridor (CMAR) to protect marine biodiversity. As an area with a variety of endangered species, the nations seek to keep the area pristine and free from fishing.
2021 was filled with hopeful and devastating news. Coronavirus vaccinations ramped up, but variants emerged. World leaders sought cohesion on climate pledges while also trying to bolster businesses after the economic devastation of 2020. In 2022, governments should work cooperatively to reach their climate pledges, invest in science and renewable technology, and help each other rebuild sustainably in the aftermath of natural disasters.

 

End-of-the-Year Quick Tips:

 

When recycling gift wrap, remember to remove tape first

If you are using a disposable face mask, cut the ear loops so that animals cannot get ensnared in them

Consider New Year’s festivities without fireworks, as many release greenhouse gases and can be detrimental to local air quality

 

Sarah Sakeena Marshall.
Grit Daily Contributor,
The Muslim News Environmental Columnist

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Over 120 people attended a landmark conference on the media reporting of Islam and Muslims. It was held jointly by The Muslim News and Society of Editors in London on September 15.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence event is to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to society. Over 850 people from diverse background, Muslim and non-Muslim, attended the gala dinner.

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