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VW shares drop as emissions fixing scandal spreads

Shares in Volkswagen plunged 10% this morning on the news that the emissions fixing scandal is not limited to the company’s diesel cars.

VW admitted that it has found problems with carbon dioxide emissions technology on around 800,000 petrol-using cars, sparking a nervous reaction in global stock markets.

This is in addition to the 11 million diesel cars the German company is already recalling for irregular nitrogen oxide emissions.

The news comes as Paris announced plans to introduce emergency traffic bans when pollution in the city spikes.

The mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, won the battle to introduce the limits on traffic in the city during times of high air pollution after years of trying.

Pollution has been a major problem in the French capital for years. The city, which will host the UN climate conference later this year, was more polluted than Shanghai earlier this year as a cloud of noxious smog engulfed it.

UN climate chief calls on US to follow China’s lead

China is leading the world when it comes to fighting climate change, according to the UN’s leading climate official Christiana Figueres.

In a swipe at the climate leadership of President Barack Obama and the United States, Figueres said China was leading the world in moving its energy system away from fossil fuels to renewables.

“The United States is actually playing catch-up to China,” Figueres told an audience at a Q&A hosted by a newspaper.

China and the US together account for 40% of the world’s carbon emissions.

President Obama has made battling climate change a major part of the last few years of his presidency, but has found his efforts hampered by Republican politicians in Congress.

Just last week Republicans moved to block the President’s plan to lower carbon emissions from American power plants, a central part of his climate policy.

China burning more coal than previously thought

Figueres may be a big fan of China’s climate policy, but the UN climate chief will likely not welcome the news in today’s New York Times that Chinese government data showing a dramatic decrease in coal burning in the country is misleading.

Newly disclosed data shows the world’s leading emitter of carbon dioxide from coal use has been burning as much 17% more coal than was previously thought.

This means that the country could have produced up to a billion tonnes more carbon than was previously estimated in the last 12 months; the equivalent to all of the fossil fuel emissions from Germany in a year.

Officials are now concerned about the impact the figures will have on the progress of the UN climate talks in Paris this year.

China has promised to halt the growth of its CO2 emissions by 2030, but the new data suggests that process could be harder than previously thought.

In other news

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Canada: TransCanada pushes for new terminal as Keystone struggles

Oil: Shell puts everything on BG deal as oil price remains low