2020 was a difficult year. Amid all the news about the coronavirus, the recession and election, climate sometimes fell by the wayside.
This year, the Trump administration continued its assault on environmental protections. The EPA nixed rules on methane regulation, even as methane levels reached an all-time high, and now the Interior Department is planning to auction off parts of the pristine Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for drilling.
These measures are unlikely to save the oil and gas industry, which is in sharp decline. Oil and gas firms are struggling to gain traction with young Americans, and they are losing market share to renewables. Clean energy has become so cheap that the United States could achieve 90 percent clean power by 2035 at no extra cost to consumers.
Even as clean energy is ascendant, the future of our climate looks increasingly grim. Worsening weather disasters are compounding existing inequalities. And the rapid spread of misinformation on social media is stymying support for climate policy. Experts are having to work harder than ever to set the record straight on climate change.
The good news is that this year the climate movement gained momentum, thanks in part to the work of progressive advocates. Climate leaders brought more attention to injustices like redlining and the exploitation of Indigenous land. These efforts are crucial to bringing about the transformational change needed to stave off the worst of climate change.
Nexus Media is a nonprofit climate change news service.