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iCS Newsletter Number 3: September 2016

Dear Partners, please find below highlights of the activities of iCS and its grantees over this past August, in addition to information about the relationship between climate changes and the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and sports in general.

Suggestions or comments are most welcome and can be sent to luiza@climaesociedade.org.

HIGHLIGHTS

iCS'S AGENDA
iCS welcomes the UNEP executive director to discuss Brazilian initiatives on sustainable development and climate change   |  Low carbon development model is discussed during a dinner with Minister José Serra   |  Oak Foundation representatives visit the iCS headquarters and discuss priorities within the three portfolios of the Institute   |  News section in the iCS website  |  New iCS fiscal committee is elected

OLYMPIC GAMES AND CLIMATE CHANGES
1.5oC: The Record We Must Not Break brought together over 100 athletes from 40 countries  |  Opening ceremony of the Olympic Games brings climate change discussion to 3 billion people   |  Ana Toni was one of the speakers at the Mega Sustainability Conference, organized by Goethe Institute and GIZ  |  Global warming threatens sports in Brazil, according to Observatório do Clima

POWER
Country issues license to new coal thermoelectric plant that will increase carbon emissions from electricity generation by 7%  |  Greenpeace and Folha de S. Paulo debate the renewal of the Brazilian energy matrix   |  Licensing of the Tapajós hydroelectric plant is cancelled

URBAN MOBILITY
Reducing the speed limit reduces mortality and improves traffic   |  iCS partners and grantees discuss mobility ahead of the São Paulo elections  |  One third of Brazilians use active transportation on a daily basis  |  Como Anda Survey maps 120 walking mobility organizations in Brazil

CLIMATE POLICY
Ratification of the Paris Agreement by the Federal Government scheduled for September   |  Conectas promotes seminar about the relationship between human rights and climate change

WHAT’S HAPPENING IN BRAZIL
Dilma Rousseff is impeached and Michel Temer is sworn in as the new president

ICS’S AGENDA

iCS welcomes the UNEP executive director to discuss Brazilian initiatives on sustainable development and climate change
The Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Erik Solheim, took part in an informal meeting held at the iCS headquarters, together with UNEP representatives in Brazil, Uruguay and Panamá. Researchers and leaders of civil society organizations were also in attendance and addressed Brazilian initiatives in the areas of sustainable development and the environment. Solheim shared his plans and goals in the direction of UN Environment and discussed how UNEP can collaborate with the country's initiatives.

Low carbon development model is discussed during a dinner with Minister José Serra
Branca Americano attended a dinner for members of civil society with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, José Serra, in São Paulo. On the agenda were environmental issues relevant to the international scenario. Branca mentioned the opportunities that long-term commitments can provide for internal discussion of a low-carbon development model, and how much Brazil's success can influence other countries.

Oak Foundation representatives visit the iCS headquarters and discuss priorities within the three portfolios of the Institute
Karen Suassuna, Programme Officer, Climate and Energy, Latin America and India; Adriana Crâciun, Senior Adviser Organizational Development and Capacity Building; and Paul Nichols, Programme Associate, of OAK Foundation, visited iCS on August 29. They discussed the priorities within the three portfolios of iCS (Power, Urban Mobility and Climate Policy) for the next few years; how Oak can support the capacity building of the Institute and its grantees; and evaluation strategies.

News section in the iCS website
The iCS website recently underwent changes and now features a news area, showing some of the main articles published on the Internet on climate, society and the environment, as well as content produced by iCS. Find the new section here.

New iCS fiscal committee is elected
The first iCS fiscal committee has been elected, formed by economist Helena Turola de Araujo Penna and by Warley de Oliveira Dias, who holds a Masters’ degree in Accounting and Controllership.

OLYMPIC GAMES AND CLIMATE CHANGES

1.5oC: The Record We Must Not Break brought together over 100 athletes from 40 countries
The campaign 1.5°C: The Record We Must Not Break brought together over 100 Olympic athletes from 40 countries. Organized by Observatório do Clima, iCS, UNEP, GIP and Climate Vulnerable Forum, the campaign continues during the Paralympic Games. See the four videos produced for the campaign here, here, here and here.

Opening ceremony of the Olympic Games brings climate change discussion to 3 billion people
Those responsible for the Opening Ceremony of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games used the opportunity of having an audience of more than 3 billion people in the world - “probably the largest audience in history for the theme” according to Observatório do Clima - to warn about global warming. The ceremony showed the consequences of using fossil fuels, such as polar ice melt and rising sea levels, and the importance of reforestation. The games had the smallest Olympic cauldron in history and all athletes planted tree seeds to be replanted at Deodoro Park, one of the venues of the games. Watch the opening ceremony here (the segment about climate change starts at 44:00).

Ana Toni was one of the speakers at the Mega Sustainability Conference, organized by Goethe Institute and GIZ
The period of the games was also productive in terms of reflections on the environment. On August 3, Ana Toni was one of the speakers at the Mega Sustainability conference, organized by the Goethe Institute and GIZ. Held in Rio Art Museum (MAR), the event brought together experts from the areas of policy, economy, sports and culture to discuss and make proposals in the various dimensions of sustainability of major sporting events, such as the Olympic Games.
Ana Toni also discussed climate change on August 19, together with the Minister of Environment, Sarney Filho, among others, in an event organized by Rede de Mulheres (Women's Network). The debate took place at Casa Brazil, a site designed to be a showcase of the country during the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Global warming threatens sports in Brazil, according to Observatório do Clima
With the report "A Podium Too Far – how climate change will impact sports in Brazil", iCS grantee Observatório do Clima investigates how excessive heat impairs athletes’ performance and health. At least 12 Brazilian capital cities may have restrictions on sports if temperature rises continue until the end of the century. Calendar and schedule changes to avoid peak temperatures, greater attention and technology focused on health and thermal accommodation, as well as changes in the patterns of training are some of the adjustments necessary to the preservation of athletes and sport in the face of global warming.

POWER

Country issues license to new coal thermoelectric plant that will increase carbon emissions from electricity generation by 7%
IBAMA (Brazilian Institute of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources) issued a license authorizing the construction of the Ouro Negro Thermoelectric Plant in Pedras Altas, Rio Grande do Sul, which goes against the low-carbon development principles recommended in the Paris Agreement. The 600MW mineral coal plant will emit 5.46 million tons of CO², which will increase by 7% the carbon emissions from electricity generation in Brazil. Besides, the thermoelectric plant will increase by 25% the water demand in a region that suffers from chronic shortages in its water supply. The study was made by Iema.

Greenpeace and Folha de S. Paulo debate the renewal of the Brazilian energy matrix
On August 23, Folha de S. Paulo and Greenpeace Brazil held a debate, supported by iCS, on the renewal of the Brazilian energy matrix. At the time, Elbia Gannoum, of the Brazilian Wind Energy Association, Ildo Sauer, of IEE-USP, Tasso Azevedo, of SEEG and Amilcar Guerreiro, of Empresa de Pesquisa Energética (Energy Research Company - EPE), discussed how Brazil could reach 2050 using only energy generated from renewable sources. The event marked the launch of the Energy Revolution report, prepared in partnership with the European Renewable Energy Council. Folha continues to discuss the topic in the special "Energy Revolution" segment, which is also supported by iCS.

Licensing of the Tapajós hydroelectric plant is cancelled
The São Luiz do Tapajós hydroelectric plant, which would be built in Pará, had its licensing process canceled by IBAMA. In 2015, Greenpeace and other partners produced an analysis of the Environmental Impact Study of the plant and demonstrated the infeasibility of the project - in addition to flooding indigenous land and impacting dozens of coastal communities, it would cause irreversible environmental damages. Without the license, the auction for the plant cannot be held.

URBAN MOBILITY

Reducing the speed limit reduces mortality and improves traffic
By driving at a lower speed you get to your destination faster. That is the message of the first vídeo in the City of Dreams project, developed by Here Now with the support of iCS. The explanation is simple: at a lower speed, it is possible to keep a safe distance from the car ahead, which prevents sudden braking and crashes – and, automatically, improves traffic, even if the number of vehicles increases.

iCS partners and grantees discuss mobility ahead of the São Paulo elections
On August 15, Greenpeace brought together iCS partners and grantees (Ciclocidade, Cidade a Pé, ITDP, Here Now and Idec) to watch the first televised debate among candidates for mayor of São Paulo based on the mobility theme. In addition to posts on social networks and a high rate of interaction with users, Internet users also participated in a post-debate streaming in the Cities of Dreams webpage. This was one among several initiatives supported by iCS to promote the debate on urban mobility ahead of the municipal elections.

One third of Brazilians use active transportation on a daily basis
The research Socioeconomic and Regional Differences in Active Transportation in Brazil, published in the Journal of Public Health of USP, pointed out that one third of the population walks on a daily basis to and from work. The incidence is higher among the poorer and rural populations. The choice, however, is not motivated by health or environmental benefits; instead, it is due to budget constraints and the poor quality of public transportation alternatives.

Como Anda Survey maps 120 walking mobility organizations in Brazil
Project Como Anda, a partnership between iCS grantees Corrida Amiga and Cidade Ativa, released the results of the survey made with waking mobility organizations across the country. The survey found 120 organizations, most of them formed in São Paulo (59%), since 2013 (52%). Among the greatest difficulties reported were the lack of investment and formalization. The website includes a timeline of key events relating to walking mobility and an unprecedented compilation of legislation on the subject.

CLIMATE POLICY

Ratification of the Paris Agreement by the Federal Government Scheduled for September
Ratification of the Paris Agreement was
processed rapidly by the Senate, and was approved on August 11. It was, then, submitted for
presidential approval. The approval by President of the Republic Michel Temer was originally scheduled to take place on August 29 but was later postponed to September 12.

Conectas promotes seminar about the relationship between human rights and climate change
iCS provided support to the first Conectas seminar on the use of legal instruments related to human rights in the fight against climate change. The event took place on August 26.

WHAT’S HAPPENING IN BRAZIL

Dilma Rousseff is impeached and Michel Temer is sworn in as the new president
Dilma Rousseff was ousted after the Federal Senate voted 61-20 to impeach her on August 31. With that, Michel Temer, who had been acting as interim president since the beginning of the impeachment trial in May, took over the presidency for a term that runs until December 31, 2018. There were protests in several cities.


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