IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Limbaugh continues to hoax America; Vets get Senate help for chemical exposure; Cholera spreads in Haiti; Halliburton in the fracking hot seat (again); Mother Jones wins for BP Oil Spill reporting... PLUS: Sexy, sexy energy efficiency with Joe Biden ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Arctic oil spill clean-up plans are 'thoroughly inadequate'; EPA to push efficiency on big carbon emitters; House Republican: "God will save us from climate change"; Election poll shows voters still want clean economy; Recognizing and rejecting junk climate science; Testimony: Poor cementing at BP well symptom of wider problem; Scientists see alarming rise in beak deformities; Fast-food wrappers leach chemicals into food; IEA: last year's inaction on climate goals cost us $1 trillion; ...PLUS: Europe's military leaders differ with U.S. Republicans over urgency of global warming security threats ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Limbaugh Hoaxes America --- Again: "We know beyond a shadow of a doubt that the whole idea of man-made global warming is a hoax" (MediaMatters.org)
- Congratulations to Mother Jones on the SPJ Award for Excellence in Reporting on the BP Oil Disaster in the Gulf!:
- 2010 Excellence in Journalism Award Winners Announced (SPJ Northern California)
- Judge Rules Against Navy on Camp Lejeune, While Veterans Get Senate Help For Chemical Exposure:
- IT ISN'T, BUT IT SHOULD BE: Is Veterans Day the New Earth Day? (Carl Pope, Sierra Club)
- Judge refuses to dismiss Camp Lejeune water exposure lawsuit (McClatchy News):
[A] federal judge has denied the Navy's request to dismiss a civil case regarding an Iowa woman's exposure to contaminated water at Marines Base Camp Lejeune, N.C.
In his decision, U.S. District Judge Terrence Boyle pointed out that her non-Hodgkin's lymphoma hadn't even been diagnosed by then, and he quotes congressional testimony in pointing out that cancer related to toxic exposure might not appear for 10 to 15 years.
"To summarily bar such claims from entering the courthouse would be a profound miscarriage of justice," wrote Boyle, who represents the U.S. Eastern District of North Carolina.
- Warnings about Lejeune's tainted water unheeded for years (MClatchy News) [emphasis added]:
For 30 years, thousands of Marines and their family members at Camp Lejeune, N.C., drank, cooked with and bathed in water that was laced with dangerous chemicals, but when outside contractors began raising questions about the toxic water, documents show, base officials rebuffed them and ignored the warnings or ordered more tests.
The worst-offending wells finally were shut down in November 1984, more than four years after the first warnings. In that time, more than 2,500 babies may have been carried in utero on the base or born at Camp Lejeune hospital, according to estimates by federal scientists.
Strung together, thousands of pages of documents tell the story of how the contamination was allowed to continue. They show that Camp Lejeune officials had been told consistently that something very foul flowed through the base's pipes.
- WATCH: Veterans Disability Compensation Hearing, Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs (C-SPAN, 9/23/2010)
- Agency: Lejeune water 'undoubtedly a hazard' (Jacksonville, NC Daily News)
- Camp Lejeune Water Contamination Worse Than Previously Reported (WFAE, North Carolina Public Radio)
- DDT, battery acid and fuel found in Lejeune water (Raliegh, NC News-Observer)
- Documents: Tanks leaked fuel near Camp Lejeune well: The well was closed in December 1984 after benzene was found in the water. (McClatchy, June 2010)
- VA quietly giving benefits to Marines exposed to toxic water (McClatchy, June 2010)
- Congress pushes military to release data on Camp Lejeune water (McClatchy, May 2010)
- Lejeune water probe: Did Marine Corps hide benzene data? (McClatchy, March 2010)
- Marine base's ex-residents, many ill, only now learning of toxic water (McClatchy, February 2010)
- GET MORE INFO:
- Camp Lejeune Toxic Water Clearing House: The Few, The Proud, The Forgotten
- Camp Lejeune Info Page, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR.gov)
- UPCOMING MEETINGS Scheduled for Camp Lejeune Water Contamination (Veterans Today)
- Official Marine Corps Site for Camp Lejeune Historic Drinking Water (US Marine Corps)
- Cholera Spreads in Haiti
- Haiti death toll rises as cholera spreads to Port-au-Prince: At least 10,000 people suffering from cholera in hospitals in Haiti as disease reaches country's capital (Guardian UK)
- 724 dead in Haiti's cholera outbreak: Epidemiologists predict the outbreak could last for months and say the entire nation of almost 10 million people is at risk because they have no immunity to cholera. (CNN)
- Halliburton in the 'Fracking' Hot Seat --- AGAIN
- Fracking Halliburton (Kate Sheppard, Mother Jones):
The EPA asked nicely in its letter to nine companies, but said they were prepared to be less polite: "EPA expects the companies to cooperate," the letter said. If they don't, "EPA is prepared to use its authorities to require the information needed to carry out its study."
Well, eight of the companies have complied, leaving just one—Halliburton, the oil field services giant that everyone loves to hate—that has not turned over its fracking data. Yesterday, the EPA followed through on its threat to subpoena the companies data. Halliburton, the EPA said Tuesday, "has failed to provide EPA the information necessary to move forward with this important study."
- "Recovery Through Retrofit": VP Biden Talks Sexy, Sexy Energy Efficiency:
- Biden Rolls Out Home Energy Efficiency Program (Miami Herald) [emphasis added]:
Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday unveiled a new federal program to make it easier for Americans to make their homes more energy efficient, saying it will help people save money and create new jobs for contractors.
The three-step program, called Recovery Through Retrofit, will offer new software for contractors to easily show people how much they can save, offer low-cost financing to help people pay for home improvements and set new guidelines for contractors to assure the public the work is done right.
Biden, who announced the plan at the White House, said that it will give families "the tools they need to invest in home energy upgrades. Together, these programs will grow the home retrofit industry and help middle-class families save money and energy."
- WATCH: Biden Announces "Recovery Through Retrofit" Program (White House.gov)
- Super-Duper Energy Efficient Homes: Getting More Agressive About Passivhaus: These houses actually are built to do a lot of work; keeping the inside warm or cool, and keeping the elements at bay. Some of them only require the equivalent of a hair dryer for heating, even in cold Northwest climates. (Sustainable Industries)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- Arctic oil spill clean-up plans are 'thoroughly inadequate', industry warned: Report from US environment group warns that ice, freezing temperatures and high seas would overwhelm any clean-up attempts (Guardian UK)
- EPA to Push Efficiency on Big Carbon Emitters (Reuters):
U.S. environmental regulators said on Wed. they will not force coal plants to adopt technologies to cut GHGs output, but will push them to become more energy efficient.
- God will save us from climate change: U.S. Representative (Toronto Star):
U.S. Representative John Shimkus, possible future chairman of the Congressional committee that deals with energy and its attendant environmental concerns, believes that climate change should not concern us since God has already promised not to destroy the Earth.
Shimkus, an evangelical Christian and a Republican member of the House from Illinois, on Tuesday signalled his desire to become chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
- Election Poll Shows Voters Still Want Clean Economy (Solve Climate)
- China Still Bans Rare Earth to Japan (NY Times):
The Chinese government is continuing to block shipments of crucial strategic minerals to Japan, according to industry executives, analysts and a Japanese official.
Rare earths are essential for a wide variety of products, including wind turbines and smartphones, gasoline-electric hybrid cars, oil refining and the tiny electric motors that control the guidance fins on missiles and smart bombs.
- Six public guidelines for recognizing and rejecting junk climate science and disinformation (Climate Science Watch):
"Unfortunately, the world needs to take firm action about the threat of manmade climate change within the next decade," says climate scientist Richard C. J. Somerville. "Realistically, there may be no chance to educate the general public in depth about the science so quickly. Meanwhile, a well-funded and effective professional disinformation campaign has been successful in sowing confusion…Thus, the more urgent task for us scientists may well be to give the public guidelines for recognizing and rejecting junk science and disinformation."
- Testimony: Poor cementing at BP well symptom of wider problem (McClatchy News):
Drilling engineers and government officials are almost lackadaisical in their approach to the critical steps of closing down an offshore oil drilling rig and sealing it, two days of testimony before a presidential commission investigating last spring's explosion of BP's Deepwater Horizon drilling rig indicate.
- Scientists: Bird Beak deformities increase in Northwest (AP) [emphasis added]:
Scientists have observed the highest rate of beak abnormalities ever recorded in wild bird populations in Alaska and the Northwest, a study by two federal scientists said. The U.S. Geological Survey study on beak deformities in northwestern crows in Alaska, Washington and British Columbia follows a trend found earlier in Alaska's black-capped chickadees.
"The prevalence of these strange deformities is more than 10 times what is normally expected in a wild bird population," said research biologist Colleen Handel.
- Fast Food Wrappers and Popcorn Bags Leach Fire-Fighting Chemical into Food (Treehugger):
[T]he packaging also leaches its own worrisome problems directly into the food wrapped inside them.
A new study has found that perfluoroalkyls, synthetic chemicals that repel oil and are used on paper packaging like food wrappers and popcorn bags to prevent grease from leaking through them, can migrate directly into food-and then into human blood, where these chemicals have already been found.
- IEA: last year's inaction on climate goals cost us $1 trillion (Ars Technica):
Each year, the International Energy Agency produces a report in which it considers trends in energy use and makes projections for the future. Usually, these reports simply take recent trends and project them forward, but this year's is somewhat different: its author uses a mixture of current trends and the projected impact of countries' pledges for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and subsidies for fossil fuels. This results in some eye-popping figures. Globally, we're subsidizing fossil fuel use to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars, at a rate of over five times the subsidies going to renewable energy. And our inaction on climate goals has tacked $1 trillion onto the cost of reaching them-in 2009 alone.
- Europe's Military Leaders Differ With U.S. Republicans Over Urgency of Global Warming Problems (Climatewire):
"Climate change will happen, and that will affect all of us," Bech said. Already, she said, "climate change is having a big effect on the Arctic region."
Beyond the challenges for countries like Denmark, Canada and others in the Arctic, she noted that increasingly governments need to think strategically about how they help already-fragile countries facing environmental catastrophes like Pakistan. More than 20 million people were displaced by floods there in July.
[C]limate change is widely recognized as a threat multiplier. That is, the changes in the hydrologic cycle that will lead to droughts, floods and more severe storms will hit especially hard in areas already suffering from food insecurity, poor infrastructure and unstable regimes.
- Testimony: Poor cementing at BP well symptom of wider problem (McClatchy News):
READER COMMENTS ON
"'Green News Report' - November 11, 2010"
(One Response so far...)
Speaking of green news . . . is it just my imagination, or does renowned scholar & gentlesomething Ann Coulter really not know the difference between incandescent and compact fluorescent light bulbs?