IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Corporate media finally covers climate change and extreme weather; Global warming making intense heat waves more likely; Dude, we are seriously stressing out the world's coral reefs; Climate change denial industry going after science journalists; PLUS: Mad scientists in Canada are revolting ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): US Navy's ‘Great Green Fleet’ Sails; NTSB blames Enbridge, ‘weak’ regulations in Kalamazoo oil spill; Studies Tie Human Bladder Infections To Antibiotics In Chicken; Texas judge rules atmosphere, air to be protected like water; GOP Doubles Down On ‘Pants On Fire’ Claims About Clean Energy; BP halts offshore Alaska project; MA Power Companies To Bill Customers For Lost Service ... PLUS: Climate change skepticism could wipe out rural towns in Australia ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Global Warming Makes Heat Waves More Likely: NOAA:
- NOAA: State of the Climate in 2011: Highlights (NOAA.gov)
- READ the full report: State of the Climate in 2011 (NOAA.gov)
- New Reports Show Impact of Manmade Global Warming (Climate Central)
- Scientists attribute extreme weather to man-made climate change: Researchers have for the first time attributed recent floods, droughts and heatwaves, to human-induced climate change (Guardian UK) [emphasis added]:
Attributing individual weather events, such as floods, droughts and heatwaves, to human-induced climate change – rather than natural variation in the planet's complex weather systems – has long been a goal of climate change scientists. But the difficulty of separating the causation of events from the background "noise" of the variability in the earth's climate systems has until now made such attribution an elusive goal.
But the researchers also said that not every extreme weather event could be attributed to climate change.
- Global Warming Makes Heat Waves More Likely: NOAA (NY Times):
Some of the weather extremes bedeviling people around the world have become far more likely because of human-induced global warming, researchers reported on Tuesday. Yet they ruled it out as a cause of last year's devastating floods in Thailand, one of the most striking weather events of recent years. A new study found that global warming made the severe heat wave that afflicted Texas last year 20 times as likely as it would have been in the 1960s. The extremely warm temperatures in Britain last November were 62 times as likely because of global warming, it said.
- Global warming tied to risk of weather extremes (AP):
Kevin Trenberth, of the National Center for Atmospheric Research's climate analysis section, said that he found the Britain study to be reasonable, given what he called a flawed climate model. As for the Texas result, he said that given how the study was done, the calculated increase in likelihood "could well be an underestimate."
- UK: Freak storms, flash floods, record rain – and there's more to come (Guardian UK):
Britain's miserable summer likely to continue for at least 10 days as forecasters put blame on the jet stream.
- We’re Already Topping Dust Bowl Temperatures — Imagine What’ll Happen If We Fail To Stop 10°F Warming (Climate Progress):
Why is this bad news? Because the Earth has warmed only a bit more than 1°F since the catastrophic Dust Bowl — and we are poised to warm an astounding 9-11°F this century if we stay anywhere near our current greenhouse gas emissions path.
- Must-See Video Compilation Of Extreme Weather: ‘Welcome To The Rest Of Our Lives’ (Peter Sinclair, Climate Crock of the Week):
- Corporate Media Commits Journalism: Connecting the Dots Between Climate Change and Extreme Weather:
- VIDEO: Every Network Gets Extreme Weather Story Right, ‘Now’s The Time We Start Limiting Manmade Greenhouse Gases’ (Climate Progress):
The report says last year’s record drought in Texas was made “roughly 20 times more likely” because of man made climate change, specifically meaning warming that comes from greenhouse gasses like carbon dioxide. The study, requested by NOAA, looked at 50 years of weather data in Texas and concluded that man-made warming had to be a factor in the drought.
The head of NOAA’s climate office, Tom Karl, said: “What we’re seeing, not only in Texas but in other phenomena in other parts of the world, where we can’t explain these events by natural variability alone. They’re just too rare, too uncommon.”
- Must-See Videos: ABC Interviews Climatologist Michael Mann (Climate Progress)
- Climate Change Denial Industry Targets Science Journalists:
- Rightwing US thinktank uses FoI laws to pursue climate scientists: American Tradition Institute seeks the release of emails with journalists to find details that could be used to discredit science (Guardian UK) [emphasis added]:
The strategy – used to seek records from prominent scientists such as Michael Mann – is seen by scientists as an excuse to try to dig up embarrassing or damaging communications that could be used to discredit climate science.
At the very least, such open records requests are a distraction, said [US atmospheric scientist Katharine] Hayhoe. "These types of requests are disruptive. They require a lot of attention to respond carefully and they take away time spent doing teaching, mentoring, or doing research. For a scientist who is happiest working in a lab or on a computer it is frightening to be accused of things that are completely without basis."
- Dude, We Are Seriously Stressing Out the World's Coral Reefs:
- World's coral reefs at risk (UPI):
Most of the world's coral reefs face devastation without global action to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, scientists warn.
"This combined change in temperature and ocean chemistry has not occurred since the last reef crisis 55 million years ago," the scientists' statement said.They estimate reefs provide $170 billion to $375 billion annually in goods and services.
- Scientist: Ocean acidity major threat to coral reefs (USA Today) [emphasis added]:
The speed by which the oceans' acid levels has risen caught scientists off-guard, with the problem now considered to be climate change's "equally evil twin," National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration chief Jane Lubchenco told the Associated Press.
- VIDEO: The 12th International Coral Reef Symposium (ICRS)
- Consensus Statement of the 12th International Coral Reef Symposium (ICRS) [emphasis added]:
By the end of this century: CO2 emissions at the current rate will warm sea surface temperatures by at least 2-3°C, raise sea-level by as much as 1.7 meters, reduce ocean pH from 8.1 to less than 7.9, and increase storm frequency and/or intensity. This combined change in temperature and ocean chemistry has not occurred since the last reef crisis 55 million years ago.
- Dead Reefs Can Come Back To Life, Study Says (NPR)
- Rising Ocean Acid Levels Threatening World’s Coral Reefs (RedOrbit)
- CANADA: Mad Scientists Are Revolting:
- VIDEO: Scientists protest 'death of evidence' (Toronto Globe & Mail)
- Canadian scientists protest government spending cuts: Hundreds hold an unprecedented march against closing of major facilities, staff layoffs (Reuters)
- Canada's PM Stephen Harper faces revolt by scientists: Scientists to march through Ottawa in white lab coats in protest at cuts to research and environmental damage (Guardian UK)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- US Navy's ‘Great Green Fleet’ Sails Toward Pentagon’s Reduction in Oil Use (Climate Progress):
U.S. Navy servicemen and women recently debuted the “Great Green Fleet,” the first aircraft carrier strike group to be powered largely by alternative, nonpetroleum-based fuels. Despite this latest success, however, some congressional conservatives on the Senate and House Armed Services committees want to slash funding for this and other Defense Department clean energy programs.
- NTSB blames Enbridge, ‘weak’ regulations in Kalamazoo oil spill (Washington Post):
The National Transportation Safety Board blamed multiple corrosion cracks and “pervasive organizational failures” at the Calgary-based Enbridge pipeline company for a more-than-20,000-barrel oil spill two years ago near Michigan’s Kalamazoo River.
- Studies Tie Human Bladder Infections To Antibiotics In Chicken (NPR):
What do some persistent human bladder infections and some innocent-looking chicken cutlets have in common? Drug-resistant E. coli, scientists say.
- Texas judge rules atmosphere, air to be protected like water, may aid climate change lawsuits (Washington Post):
The written ruling, issued in a letter Monday by Texas District Court Judge Gisela Triana, shot down arguments by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality that only water is a “public trust,” a doctrine that dates to the Roman Empire stating a government must protect certain resources — usually water, sometimes wildlife — for the common good.
- GOP Doubles Down On ‘Pants On Fire’ Claims About Clean Energy That Fact Checkers Call ‘Ridiculous’ (Climate Progress)
- Natural-gas boom could isolate US on climate change (The Hill's E2 Wire)
- BP halts offshore Alaska project (Guardian UK):
The British oil company, which is still smarting from the Gulf of Mexico disaster two years ago, said it was pulling out of the Liberty field project because it would be too expensive to drill safely.
- Maryland Power Companies To Bill Customers For Lost Service (Huffington Post Green):
Maryland is the only state where regulators allow utilities to recoup their losses directly from customers, the news station reports.
- Trigger for Past Rapid Sea Level Rise Discovered (Science Daily)
- Forest fires, wood-burning stoves may have stronger climate impacts than previously thought (E & E News):
Wildfires, such as the recent blazes in the western United States, along with millions of stoves across the developing world, dirty engines and aging generators, can kick up soot in vast quantities. These black carbon clouds rising from burning organic matter have long been understood to influence the climate by absorbing sunlight and heat. When suspended in the atmosphere, these particles also shield the ground from sunlight, preventing water from evaporating and stalling the hydrological cycle.
- Must-See Videos: ABC Interviews Climatologist Michael Mann (Climate Progress)
- Sen. Scott Brown (R-MA): ‘Oil Companies Don’t Get Subsidies’ (Climate Progress)
- Climate change scepticism could wipe out rural towns (Australian Broadcasting Corporation):
A new report is warning hundreds of inland Australian towns could cease to exist by 2050 if locals do not adapt to climate change. The report studied 1,600 bush towns and found the ones with low education rates are least likely to make the decisions needed to adapt to a hotter future. But in many regional areas there is resistance to change because of lingering scepticism about climate change.
The same scepticism means the research may not have much impact on the areas it targets.
- 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)
- Thinking Big: NREL Study Shows 80 Percent Renewables Possible By 2050 (Climate Progress)
- 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."