With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 9/13/2011, 2:41pm PT  


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IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Record U.S. heat --- again; Pakistan floods and pipelines explode --- again; Arctic sea ice hits record low --- again; Cargill ground turkey recalled --- again; PLUS: Fake 'reporter' Matthew Boyle at fake 'news' site Daily Caller offers fake 'news' story on EPA, as Republicans and their fossil fuel friends open full court press against Richard Nixon's clean air and water agency --- again and again and again ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Coral reefs 'will be gone by end of the century'; Sorry, breathers: Obama's cave on EPA ozone regs strictly political; Australia PM introduces controversial carbon laws; Prince Charles warns of human extinction due to climate change; Drought leaves over 12 mln people short of drinking water in SW China; Bush Admin advanced Solyndra loan guarantee; China’s new plan for solar power supremacy; What If solar received the same subsidies as fossil fuel?; The coming German energy turnaround; Explosion at French nuclear plant kills one; Tons of US-supplied nuclear weapons material missing; 5 interesting facts on our energy-hog economy; The Onion on Climate Change: an issue this critical demands at least 45 seconds of real, concentrated panic; Al Gore's 24-Hour global broadcast on climate change science ... PLUS: Switching from coal to natural gas could accelerate climate change, say scientists ...

STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...

'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...

  • Coral reefs 'will be gone by end of the century' (Independent UK):
    Coral reefs will be the first entire ecosystem to be destroyed by human activity, says top UN scientist

    Coral reefs are on course to become the first ecosystem that human activity will eliminate entirely from the Earth, a leading United Nations scientist claims. He says this event will occur before the end of the present century, which means that there are children already born who will live to see a world without coral.

  • Obama's Cave on EPA Ozone Regs Strictly Political (Matt Yglesias, Think Progress):
    What seems to have happened is that White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley met with industry groups who showed him a map of which counties would be forced by the new rules into non-compliance. There were a bunch of counties on the map, many of which were in states such as Florida, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Ohio that are crucial to Obama’s re-election effort.
  • Australia PM introduces controversial carbon laws (Reuters):
    Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard introduced her government's controversial carbon tax plans into parliament on Tuesday, a third attempt to legislate a price on pollution.

    Gillard has staked her minority government's future on passing the laws, which would force around 500 big polluting companies to pay for carbon emissions through a A$23 ($23.75) per tonne carbon tax from July 2012, ahead of emissions trading from mid 2015. Earlier plans to levy a tax were rejected in 2009.

  • Prince Charles Warns of Human Extinction Due to Climate Change (Treehugger) [emphasis added]:
    "History will not judge us by how much economic growth we achieve in the immediate years ahead, nor by how much we expand material consumption, but by the legacy for our grandchildren and their grandchildren," he said. "We are consuming what is rightfully theirs by sacrificing long-term progress on the altar of immediate satisfaction. That is hardly responsible behaviour. There is an urgent need for all of us to concentrate our efforts on sustaining, nurturing and protecting the Earth's natural capital and, moreover, reshaping our economic system so that Nature sits at the very heart of our thinking."
  • Drought leaves over 12 mln people short of drinking water in SW China (Xinhua News Agency):
    China allocates 1.3 bln yuan for southwest drought relief

    A lingering drought has left more than 12.6 million people short of drinking water and huge tracts of farmland parched in China's southwestern regions, the nation's top drought-relief authority said Thursday.

  • Exclusive: Bush Administration Advanced Solyndra Loan Guarantee for Two Years, Media Blow the Story (Climate Progress):
    It’s often claimed that the Solyndra loan guarantee was “rushed through” by the Obama Administration for political reasons. In fact, the Solyndra loan guarantee was a multi-year process that the Bush Administration launched in 2007.
  • China’s New Plan for Solar Power Supremacy (Climate Progress):
    The U.S. media is abuzz over last week’s bankruptcy of thin-film solar manufacturer Solyndra LLC, with some conservative politicians trying to use the demise of the start-up to argue against federal financing for green energy. But the Chinese media is focusing on a far more important solar power development: two major energy plans that will lay the policy roadmap for China’s clean energy development over the next decade.
  • CHART: What If Solar Energy Received the Same Subsidies As Fossil Fuel? (Chicago Sun-Times):
    Hint: U.S. receives 3,900% more sun than Germany, yet Germany has 6000% more solar than U.S.
  • The coming German energy turnaround (Bulletin of Atomic Scientists):
    But does such a turnaround make economic sense, or is Germany isolating itself economically? Is there danger of a deindustrialisation --- that is, will businesses relocate because of exploding electricity prices --- and will Germans have to live with blackouts? Some with political or financial interests in the status quo like to predict horrific economic effects from an energy turnaround, but a close look at German energy prospects suggests the opposite is true...
  • Explosion at French Nuclear Plant Leaves One Person Dead (NY Times):
    One person was killed and four were injured Monday afternoon in an explosion at a nuclear waste treatment site in southern France, according to the French Nuclear Safety Authority.
  • Missing: Tons of US-Supplied Nuclear Weapons Material (Mother Jones)
  • Reinventing Fire: Five Interesting Facts About Our Energy-Hogging Economy (Think Progress Green)
  • The Onion on Climate Change: An Issue This Critical Demands at Least 45 Seconds of Real, Concentrated Panic Each Week (The Onion):
    Indeed, if there was ever a time when a desperate call to take action against global warming should race through our heads as we lie in bed and stare at the ceiling, that time is now.

    Many well-intentioned people will take 20 seconds out of their week to consider the consequences of the lifestyle they’ve chosen, perhaps contemplating how their reliance on fossil fuels has contributed to the rapid melting of the Arctic ice cap. But if progress is what we truly want, 20 seconds is simply not enough. Not by a long shot. An issue this critical demands at least 45 seconds to a solid minute of real, concentrated panic.

  • Al Gore is Back With 24-Hour Broadcast on Climate Change Science (Daily Climate):
    Exxon Makes Billion-Dollar Bet Climate Change is Real, Here Now and Going to Get Worse But Keeps Funding Deniers (Climate Progress):
    Exxon would like you to believe that climate change is neither real nor urgent. That is why they have spent millions of dollars over the last several years funding climate skeptics and fighting legislation that would regulate the emissions of greenhouse gases.
    ...
    Actions, however, speak louder than words. And Exxon’s most recent action was a thunderclap. According to reports, Exxon has just signed an extensive deal with Rosneft, the Russian state oil company, to develop promising offshore oil and gas deposits in the Arctic Ocean.
    ...
    One key thing has changed: the arctic ice is melting rapidly.
  • Switching from coal to natural gas would accelerate climate change, say scientists (Grist) [emphasis added]:
    Here is a terrifying, crazy-making truth: Getting off coal will accelerate climate change, at least in the short term.

    This isn't an argument for maintaining our coal addiction --- because if we stick with coal, we are, frankly, dead as a species, plus more immediately dead or at least very wheezy as individuals.
    ...
    But according to a new analysis from the National Center for Atmospheric Research, through 2050 a switch from coal to natural gas would actually accelerate climate change. Even though natural gas leads to fewer greenhouse gas emissions than coal, the "problem" is that natural gas is cleaner in another sense, too: Burning it leads to fewer aerosols in the air.