IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Big Oil worried about global warming! And still fighting to keep their billion-dollar taxpayer subsidies; OPEC fights to raise oil prices; Koch-funded Americans For Prosperity fights environmental extremist kite-flying schoolchildren; PLUS: Hey Fox 'News', whaddaya say now that gas prices have fallen? ... [cue: crickets] ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Poll: Independents (even Republicans) concerned about global warming, support clean energy; NY fracking proposal creates "sacrifice zones" in poor counties; NOAA: Hottest May on record; US solar installations jump 85%; SunEdison brings solar to India villages; Battery maker A123 unveils "breakthrough"; Diesel exhaust causes lung cancer; Deep divisions at UN's Rio+20 conference next week; Forest floors add moregreenhouse gases in a warming climate ... PLUS: Mayor Bloomberg Offering $9 Million for Good Ideas ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Big Oil Admits Climate Change Is Bad For Business:
- Oil Companies That Caused Climate Change Now Fear Its Financial Impacts (Climate Progress):
When it comes to protecting their profits, oil companies explicitly acknowledge that climate change poses a threat to their bottom line.
One example is Louisiana’s Highway 1, which “connects critical oil and gas resources in booming Port Fourchon to the rest of the nation” and may influence the distribution of up to 18% of U.S. oil and gas supply. It’s crucial to the future success of the fossil fuel industry. The only problem is that it’s sinking.
- Report: Storm Surge Could Cost U.S. Hundreds of Billions (Climate Central)
- How Climate Change Could Reshape Geopolitics Around The Arctic (Climate Progress)
- Climate change in Arctic Alaska threatens fish stocks, drinking water (Alaska Dispatch)
- AFP to Protest Environmental Extremist Kite-Flying Kids:
- Global Wind Day
- Koch-Fueled Americans For Prosperity Plans Protest Against ‘Extremist’ Kids Flying Kites In Support Of Wind (Climate Progress):
Americans for Prosperity now sees children flying kites as a major threat to society.
"AFP will be going toe to toe with the environmental extremists to combat their radical agenda and tell the truth about the costs of offshore wind."
- Tracking Koch Money and Americans for Prosperity (Forbes)
- Kite Rally for Global Wind Day in New Jersey (Siera Club)
- Fox News FAIL: Fox Silent As Gas Prices Fail To Gouge US Consumers:
- VIDEO: Fox's Gas Price Predictions Fall Flat (Media Matters.org)
- STUDY: Media Missing The Mark On Gas Prices (Media Matters.org)
- What Reporters Are Getting Wrong About Gas Prices (Media Matters.org)
- OPEC Fights Over Raising Production, Oil Profits:
- VIDEO: Divided OPEC grapples with whether to cut production, prop up oil prices (Washington Post):
With the global economy at a tipping point, a deeply divided Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries meeting in Vienna wrangled over whether to cut production and prop up crude oil prices.
- Big Oil Fights to Keep Billion-Dollar Taxpayer Subsidies:
- VIDEO: Oil Man Harold Hamm Testifies Against Ending Oil Industry Subsidies at Senate Finance Committee Hearing on Tax and Energy Policy (C-SPAN.org)
- 4 Questions for Harold Hamm, Romney's Big Oil Buddy (Sierra Club Compass) [emphasis added]:
Harold Hamm --- the billionaire oil executive currently serving as Mitt Romney's top energy advisor --- will testify before the Senate Finance Committee. Hamm, the 78th richest person in the world according to Forbes, has continually defended the billions in tax subsidies currently doled out to big oil companies while attacking President Obama's energy policy. While serving on the Romney campaign and as CEO of Continental Resources, Hamm has also contributed millions to a pro-Romney Super PAC and to the Koch Brothers anti-Obama smear campaign.
- Oklahoma oil billionaire Harold Hamm also a big pro-Romney super PAC donor (Tulsa World)
- FACT SHEET: Fossil Fuel Subsidies (Oil Change.org)
- Romney Energy Plan Includes Drilling ‘Virtually Every Part’ Of U.S., No Protections For National Parks (Climate Progress):
[The] Washington Post sheds more light on Romney’s energy plan, including the fact that he would open up “virtually every part of U.S. lands and waters” to drilling regardless of whether they are national parks, national monuments, or protected in some other way.
- Ka-Ching: Big Oil’s Mighty First-Quarter Profits: Keeping Tax Breaks for Biggest Oil Companies Is Ludicrous (Center for American Progress)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- Poll: Independents — and Even Republicans — are Still Concerned About Global Warming and Overwhelmingly Support Clean Energy Development (Climate Progress):
Yale and George Mason University have released their latest polling analysis, “Public Support for Climate & Energy Policies in May 2011.”
Their polling “shows that despite political polarization in Washington D.C., public support for a variety of climate change and energy policies remains high, across party lines“.
- New York Fracking Proposal Creates "Sacrifice Zones" in Poor Counties (Treehugger):
Under the proposal as it now stands, fracking would be permitted only in counties in the southwest portion of the state, bordering Pennsylvania—Broome, Chenango, Steuben, and Tioga counties—and only then in towns which agree to allow fracking. Fracking would be banned in Catskill Park, in aquifer areas, and in national designated historic districts.
- NOAA: Hottest May on Record For Northern Hemisphere (Climate Progress):
This warmth is particularly impressive because, as NASA noted earlier in the year, “The cool La Niña phase of the cyclically variable Southern Oscillation of tropical temperatures has been dominant in the past three years” – and that is normally associated with cooler global temperatures.
- U.S. solar installations jump 85% in first quarter (Reuters):
Solar installations in the United States jumped 85 percent in the first quarter of 2012 from the previous year, according to an industry report that prompted a research firm and a lobbying group to raise their capacity forecasts for the year.
- SunEdison Turns to Big New Markets for Solar Power:
The solar-panel installer is replacing diesel engines in villages in India and other Asian countries. (MIT Technology Review):The first village is a pilot project that’s not expected to be profitable, says Pashupathy Gopalan, SunEdison’s managing director for South Asian and sub-Saharan operations. But he expects that economies of scale and refinements to the design and installation process will bring costs down, and the company could be making money within the next couple of years. “By 2014, we want to be able to scale up to thousands of villages,” he says.
- Battery Maker A123 Unveils ‘Breakthrough’ New Lithium Ion Technology (Climate Progress):
The company is calling the lithium ion battery, named the Nanophosphate EXT, a “game-changing breakthrough” for energy storage. “By delivering high power, energy and cycle life capabilities over a wider temperature range, we believe Nanophosphate EXT can reduce or even eliminate the need for costly thermal management systems,” said David Vieau, CEO of A123 Systems, in a statement today.
- Diesel engine exhaust linked to increased risk of lung cancer (LA Times):
The [International Agency for Research on Cancer — part of the World Health Organization] on Tuesday classified diesel engine exhaust as carcinogenic to humans and concluded that exposure is associated with increased risk of lung cancer.
- Rio+20 conference's search for green solutions hampered by deep divisions: Expectations for action are low despite UN assessment that the world's environment is declining rapidly (Guardian UK)
- As the Earth warms, forest floors add greenhouse gases to the air (Washington Post):
Huge amounts of carbon trapped in the soils of U.S. forests will be released into the air as the planet heats up, contributing to a “vicious cycle” that could accelerate climate change, a new study concluded.
- IEA Report: Natural Gas Is Not The Answer To Climate Problem, Existing Cleantech Is — And It Could Save $100 Trillion By 2050 (Climate Progress):
The once staid International Energy Agency continues its string of blunt, must-read reports laying bare the reality of our climate and energy system.
- PA Taxpayers To Pay Price for Shell Cleanup (Philadelphia Inquirer):
Under the deal, taxpayers would foot the bill for hazardous materials clean up at the western Pennsylvania site, a cost that could easily soar into the tens of millions, according to a report by CapitolWire news service.
The Horsehead Corp. plant, which is still operating at its Beaver County facility, is a repeat violator of federal clean air and water laws, CapitolWire reports.
- Dr. Jeff Masters: "A stunning and unparalleled event in U.S. meteorological history" (Weather Underground) [emphasis added]:
U.S. heat over the past 12 months: a one in half-a-million event
The U.S. record for hottest 12-month period fell for the second straight month in May.
- Cleanup of latest Alberta oil spill could take all summer (Globe & Mail):
“My place is destroyed,” Mr. Johnston said, as he prepared to abandon his home and later head for a hospital to be treated for exposure to the fumes. “My whole life’s work is gone. I’ve pretty well lost it all here.”
- Mayor Bloomberg Offering $9 Million for Good Ideas (Forbes)
- Skeptical Science: Get the FULL DEBUNKING of ALL Climate Science Denier Arguments
- Report: Humans near tipping point that could dramatically change Earth (CS Monitor):
Human activity is affecting Earth in many ways, but a new study suggests that continued population growth and its impact on climate and ecology could trigger a more profound chain reaction of effects within little more than a decade.
- VIDEO: James Hansen: Why I must speak out about climate change (TED Talks):
Top climate scientist James Hansen tells the story of his involvement in the science of and debate over global climate change. In doing so he outlines the overwhelming evidence that change is happening and why that makes him deeply worried about the future.
- VIDEO ANIMATION: Time history of atmospheric CO2 (NOAA Carbon Tracker YouTube channel):
- VIDEO: Animation Charts Modern Global Warming (NYT Green)
- Must-Read: Economist William Nordhaus Slams Global Warming Deniers, Explains Cost of Delay is $4 Trillion (Climate Progress):
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."
- Part 1: The brutal logic of climate change (David Roberts, Grist) [emphasis added]:
It's simple: If there is to be any hope of avoiding civilization-threatening climate disruption, the U.S. and other nations must act immediately and aggressively on an unprecedented scale. That means moving to emergency footing. War footing. "Hitler is on the march and our survival is at stake" footing. That simply won't be possible unless a critical mass of people are on board. It's not the kind of thing you can sneak in incrementally.
It is unpleasant to talk like this. People don't want to hear it.
- Part 2: The brutal logic of climate change mitigation (David Roberts, Grist)
- How to Buy Time in the Fight against Climate Change: Mobilize to Stop Soot and Methane: A short list of relatively simple actions taken to reduce greenhouse gases other than CO2 could help put the brakes on global warming--if implemented globally (Scientific American)
- Climate Scientists Rebuke Rupert Murdoch: WSJ Denier Op-Ed Like 'Dentists Practicing Cardiology' (Think Progress Green)
- Saudi Oil Minister Calls Global Warming "Humanity's Most Pressing Concern" (Climate Progress):
"We know that pumping oil out of the ground does not create many jobs. It does not foster an entrepreneurial spirit, nor does it sharpen critical faculties."
- VIDEO: Behold: The World's First 24/7 Solar Plant is Up and Running (Treehugger)
- World headed for irreversible climate change in five years, IEA warns: If fossil fuel infrastructure is not rapidly changed, the world will 'lose for ever' the chance to avoid dangerous climate change (Guardian UK) [emphasis added]:
The world is likely to build so many fossil-fuelled power stations, energy-guzzling factories and inefficient buildings in the next five years that it will become impossible to hold global warming to safe levels, and the last chance of combating dangerous climate change will be "lost for ever", according to the most thorough analysis yet of world energy infrastructure.
"The door is closing," Fatih Birol, chief economist at the International Energy Agency, said. "I am very worried - if we don't change direction now on how we use energy, we will end up beyond what scientists tell us is the minimum [for safety]. The door will be closed forever."
- Concise Overview: The IPCC report on extreme climate and weather events (Real Climate)
- READ the IPCC Report: Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change)
- The Real Global Warming Signal (Tamino)
- No, global warming hasn't stopped (New Scientist)
- Top UN Climate Official Blasts U.S. Climate Policy: Americans Must Realize "This Is Their Future They're Compromising" (Think Progress Green)
- VIDEO: Climate Scientists Michael Mann on "A Look Into Our Climate: Past To Present To Future" (TEDx, YouTube)
- Earth's Plant Growth Fell Because of Climate Change, Study Finds (NYT Green)
- Heads in the Sand: Warning: "Climate change is occurring … and poses significant risks to humans and the environment," reports the National Academy of Sciences. As climate-change science moves in one direction, Republicans in Congress are moving in another. Why?
(National Journal) [emphasis added]:Tim Phillips, president of Americans for Prosperity, says there's no question that the influence of his group and others like it has been instrumental in the rise of Republican candidates who question or deny climate science. "If you look at where the situation was three years ago and where it is today, there's been a dramatic turnaround. Most of these candidates have figured out that the science has become political," he said.
Groups like Americans for Prosperity have done it."