With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 3/6/2012, 2:14pm PT  

TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
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IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Iran war talk jacks up US gas prices... while Republicans cheer; VA Supreme Court smacks down climate change denier witch hunt; Meet the 'new normal' for tornado season; PLUS: 2 years after disaster: BP settles with Gulf coast plaintiffs...and gets off pretty easy, so far... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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Got comments, tips, love letters, hate mail? Drop us a line at GreenNews@BradBlog.com or right here at the comments link below. All GNRs are always archived at GreenNews.BradBlog.com.

IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Conservative economist slams deniers: Conservative economist Nordhaus slams skeptics: 'Cost of delay is $4 trillion'; MIT: making solar power competitive with coal; This Week gets it wrong on gas prices; Limbaugh attacks help put Chevy Volt workers out of a job; CO uranium mine poisons creek; A big fracking bubble: the scam behind the gas boom; Arctic ice melt changing climate system; Japan leaders feared "devil's chain reaction" ... PLUS: Science: Ocean acidifying so fast it threatens humanity’s food supply ... and much, MUCH more! ...


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

  • Must-Read: Economist William Nordhaus Slams Global Warming Deniers, Explains Cost of Delay is $4 Trillion (Climate Progress):
    Yale economist William Nordhaus has eviscerated the 16 scientists who wrote a disinformation-filled Wall Street Journal piece in late January.

    ...Nordhaus’s blunt piece — “Why the Global Warming Skeptics Are Wrong” – is worth reading because he is no climate hawk.
    "The skeptics’ summary is based on poor analysis and on an incorrect reading of the results."

  • Making Solar Power Competitive with Coal (MIT Technology Review):
    A study identifies early-stage technologies that could be combined to cut the cost of solar panels in half.
  • This Week Gets The Story Wrong On Secretary Chu And Gas Prices (Media Matters):
    On ABC's This Week, host George Stephanopoulos repeated a mischaracterization of recent testimony from Energy Secretary Steven Chu. Stephanopoulos claimed that Chu was "asked whether or not the goal of U.S. policy was lower gas prices." After playing a clip of Chu's testimony, Stephanopoulos asked David Axelrod: "Is the secretary right? Are lower gas prices not the president's goal?"

    In fact, in the testimony Stephanopoulos cited, Chu was not asked whether the goal of U.S. policy was lower gas and did not say that "lower prices [are] not the president's goal."

  • Limbaugh Attacks Help Put Chevy Volt Workers Out Of A Job (Think Progress Green)
  • Stunner: One Quarter of Total U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions Come From Fossil Fuels Mined and Drilled on Public Lands (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
    In 2009, the most recent year for which total U.S. GHG emissions data are available, the ultimate downstream GHG emissions from fossil fuel extraction from federal lands and waters by private leaseholders could have accounted for approximately 23% of total U.S. GHG emissions and 27% of all energy-related GHG emissions.
  • Cotter rerouting tainted creek near leaking uranium mine (Denver Post) [hat tip Kevan]:
    The owners of a leaking uranium mine west of Denver have begun a bold project to reduce contamination of a creek that flows into a metro drinking-water reservoir: physically rerouting the creek so that it no longer flows over toxic waste.
  • Venezuela Emerges As New Source of 'Conflict' Minerals (Int'l Consortium of Investigative Journalists, Center for Public Integrity):
    Coltan ore is valuable as a source of niobium and tantalum, metals key to many kinds of electronics. Coltan mining has helped finance war in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo. Now new illegal coltan mining activity has sprung up in the remote Amazon jungles on the border between Venezuela and Columbia. It is controlled largely by armed militias and drug smugglers.
  • The Big Fracking Bubble: The Scam Behind the Gas Boom:: Is the boom in natural gas a bubble that will go bust as the price of gas itself continues a dizzying fall? (Rolling Stone)
  • Ice Melt a Complex Key to Changing Global Climate System: Part 1 (Knight Science Journalism Tracker)
  • Icemelt News, Part II: Arctic Sea Ice - Less Volume, More Bromine, And Maybe a Mercury Peril (Knight Science Journalism Tracker)
  • Iowa, First State to Criminalize Undercover Investigation: (LA Times):
    On Friday, Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad signed into law a bill designed to thwart activists who go undercover to report animal abuse. This makes Iowa the first state in the country to pass such a law; Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New York and Utah are considering them. Undercover investigations, including videos and photographs, are a principal tool used by activists of all stripes to document abuse cases and have led to legislative reforms, prosecutions and even facility closures around the country.
  • Obama Administration Creates National Water Trails System: (Environment News Service):
    President Obama hosted on March 2, 2012, "a conference hosted by the White House linking conservation with strong local economies through tourism, outdoor recreation, and healthy lands, waters and wildlife.
    In connection with the conference, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced the National Water Trails System, a new network intended to increase access to water-based outdoor recreation, encourage community stewardship of local waterways, and promote tourism that fuels local economies.
  • Obama Warns On 'False Choice' Between Growth, Environment (Reuters)
  • Panel Faults Ft. Detrick Groundwater Study (AP):
    A 2009 federal study that concluded groundwater contamination from Fort Detrick was unlikely to have harmful health effects was flawed, a national scientific panel said Monday, prompting two U.S. senators to demand a faster cleanup of the Superfund site in Frederick [MD].
  • Fukushima: Internal Reports Show Japan leaders feared "devil's chain reaction" (Reuters) [emphasis added]:
    Japan's prime minister ordered workers to remain at the tsunami-crippled Fukushima nuclear plant last March as fears mounted of a "devil's chain reaction" that would force tens of millions of people to flee Tokyo, a new investigative report shows.
    Yukio Edano, then Japan's top government spokesman, told the panel that at the height of tension he feared a "devil's chain reaction" in which the Fukushima Daiichi plant and the nearby Fukushima Daini facility, as well as the Tokai nuclear plant, spiraled out of control, putting the capital at risk.
  • Science: Ocean Acidifying So Fast It Threatens Humanity’s Ability to Feed Itself (Climate Progress) [emphasis in original]:
    The world’s oceans may be turning acidic faster today from human carbon emissions than they did during four major extinctions in the last 300 million years, when natural pulses of carbon sent global temperatures soaring, says a new study in Science. The study is the first of its kind to survey the geologic record for evidence of ocean acidification over this vast time period.

    “What we’re doing today really stands out,” said lead author Bärbel Hönisch, a paleoceanographer at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. “We know that life during past ocean acidification events was not wiped out—new species evolved to replace those that died off. But if industrial carbon emissions continue at the current pace, we may lose organisms we care about—coral reefs, oysters, salmon.”

  • Essential Climate Science Findings: