IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Tap water ban lifted in West Virginia after chemical spill, but serious questions remain; Dim bulbs in U.S. Congress; Solar beats natural gas in Minnesota; Google is moving into your house; PLUS: New Jersey's last wilderness saved from fossil fuels (and maybe even from Chris Christie!) ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA': Vinod Khosla's Open Letter to 60 Minutes and CBS; Breakthrough: Cheap Liquid Battery; Black tide of coal overwhelms climate goals; Industry proposal to block GMO labels; BP's oil spill settlement court battles may backfire; Canada's War on Science ... PLUS: The 'seven deadly sinners' driving global warming ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- GOP Again Tries to Repeal Energy Efficient Lightbulbs:
- GOP takes last shot at repealing light bulb ban (The Hill) [emphasis added]:
The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 phased in a ban on bulbs that don't meet new energy efficient standards.
- Spending Bill Protects Inefficient Light Bulbs And Money For Coal Abroad (Huffington Post)
- Light Bulb Study: Why Republicans Don't Want to Buy Greener, Costlier Light Bulbs (PolicyMic)
- West Virginia Chemical Spill: Ban Lifted, Questions Remain:
- "Watchdog Reporting at its Finest": Follow Ken Ward Jr. on Twitter
- West Virginia Declares State Of Emergency After Coal Chemical Contaminates Drinking Water (Climate Progress)
- Op-ed: Hurrah for feds (Charleston Gazette)
- "Clean coal" is still poisoning people's water and air (Grist)
- West Virginia's Water Catastrophe Reveals Gaping Holes In Government Oversight (Climate Progress)
- Potential 'loophole' in chemical spill reporting law (Charleston Daily Mail)
- DEP inspectors describe early scene at Freedom leak site (Charleston Gazette) [emphasis added]:
Freedom Industries had set up one cinder block and used one 50-pound bag of some sort of safety absorbent powder to try to block the chemical flow, state Department of Environmental Protection inspectors say. "This was a Band-Aid approach," said DEP air quality inspector Mike Kolb. "It was apparent that this was not an event that had just happened."
- WV Chem Spill: Failure of Toxic Chemicals Oversight:
- Chemical storage facility in W.Va spill flew under regulatory radar (AP)
- Failed Toxic Substances Control Act collides with the real world in West Virginia chemical spill this week (Environmental Defense Fund):
What is particularly maddening and outrageous is that no one - not local or state officials, not the company that owns the storage tank, not the federal government - can say anything even close to definitive about what risk the chemical poses to people, even in the short-term, let alone over time. And that's where the failures of TSCA come into sharp focus.
- State ignored plan for tougher chemical oversight (Charleston Gazette)
- Boehner Insists No New Regulations Needed After West Virginia's Major Chemical Spill (Climate Progress)
- Coal-mining regions of WV have a birth defect rate *26%* higher than non-mining regions (USA Today)
- How Solar Beat Natural Gas in Minnesota: (Fresh Energy):
What the judge found is that solar energy’s other benefits constitute a tie-breaker, and on balance, the solar project was the best deal for consumers. Here's how...
- Google Is Moving Into Your House, Buys 'Smart' Thermostat Maker:
- What Google Really Gets Out of Buying Nest for $3.2 Billion (Wired):
[T]he partnership’s potential sets up some seriously great expectations of an entire world populated with Google-powered smart devices....Google knows it can’t miss this next big leap in hardware, which would end up costing the company much more than $3 billion in lost opportunities.
- Google’s deal for Nest turns off fans of ‘smart’ thermostat (Seattle Times): Some consumers fear the search giant will use the Internet-connected home device to gather more information about them.
- Google's plot to take over your digital life (CNN)
- Good News for New Jersey's Pinelands (formerly Pine Barrens):
- New Jersey decides not to run a gas pipeline through one of its last spots of wilderness (Grist)
- Influence Pipeline: Christie Administration Tried To Jam Through Project To Benefit Top Operative, Officials Allege (Climate Progress)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- The seven deadly sinners driving global warming (New Scientist):
It's a chart that no one wants to top, but global warming's worst offenders, in absolute terms, are the US, China, Russia, Brazil, India, Germany and the UK. New calculations suggest that these nations are responsible for more than 60 per cent of the global warming between 1906 and 2005.
- Vinod Khosla's Open Letter to 60 Minutes and CBS (Khosla Ventures):
On January 5, 2014, CBS' 60 Minutes aired a segment titled, "The Cleantech Crash" that grossly misrepresented the state of the sustainable energy industry...
- Breakthrough: Cheap Liquid Battery Provides Large-Scale Energy Storage for a Rainy Day (Scientific American)
- IEA: Black tide of coal overwhelms climate goals (CNN Money)
- Almost toxic, West Virginia (Washinton Post):
Although I hardly had an exhaustive examination of the area in my brief visit, one does note that it is heavily industrialized and the general design of the infrastructure seems optimized for the chemicals and industrial processes more than it is for the human beings who live there.
- Empty bottles targeted for recycling: West Virignia water emergency will leave millions of plastic containers in its wake (Charleston Gazette)
- Congressional Appropriations Bill Would Block New Mountaintop Removal Fill Rules (Huffington Post)
- Industry Proposal Would Bar GE/GMO Food Labels (Environmental Working Group)
- Multibillion-dollar BP private claims settlement is upheld by split U.S. 5th Circuit Court panel (NOLA.com)
- How the Hungarian town flooded by red toxic sludge went green (Guardian UK): Devecser, an environmental disaster zone in 2010, reinvents itself as a hub for sustainable energy
- VIDEO: Canada’s War on Science (Climate Crocks)
- Nature Bombshell: Observations Point To 10°F Warming by 2100 (Climate Progress):
A major new study in Nature finds "our climate is more sensitive to carbon dioxide than most previous estimates." ... [O]n our current emissions path we are headed toward a "most-likely warming of roughly 5°C [9°F] above modern [i.e. current] temperatures or 6°C [11°F] above preindustrial" temperatures this century.
- VIDEO: Colbert Calls Out Fox's Hollow Climate Change Attack: (Media Matters): Colbert: "Well Done. All The Best News Reports End With 'I Don't Know Where We Got This'"
- This looks like a fluorescent tube, but it's actually a 41% more efficient LED lamp (Treehugger)
- Global warming is being caused by humans, not the sun, and is highly sensitive to carbon, new research shows (Guardian UK)
FOR MORE on Climate Science and Climate Change, go to our Green News Report: Essential Background Page
- Skeptical Science: Database with FULL DEBUNKING of ALL Climate Science Denier Myths
- Warning: Even in the best-case scenario, climate change will kick our asses (Grist)
- NASA Video: Warming over the last 130 years, and into the next 100 years:
- Video Proof That Global Warming is a 'Hoax'!: NASA Temperature Data 1888-2011 (The BRAD BLOG):
- NASA climate change video: This is the U.S. in 2100 (NASA).