IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Drought expands in the US, and it's gonna cost ya; Obama Admin expands solar lands --- while Fox 'News' whines about it; US Navy's Great Green Fleet sails to success; Heat records shattered in St. Louis; PLUS: Shocking ice melt across Greenland ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): David Letterman On Fracking: 'We're Screwed; Rise in Weather Extremes Threatens Infrastructure; 70% of Arctic ice loss is due to climate change; Could Africa hold the answers to America's drought woes?; U.S. cities unprepared for future heat waves; Winning the carbon tax debate; Geo-engineering, storms may speed up ozone loss ... PLUS: The environment is trying to ruin the Olympics again ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- New Heat Records in US:
- Major severe thunderstorm outbreak expected; U.S. drought intensifies (Dr. Jeff Master's Weather Underground) [emphasis added]:
Extreme heat continues in the Heartland:
St. Louis, Missouri's summer of extreme heat reached record levels on Wednesday, when the city hit 108°F. This marked the 11th day this summer in St. Louis with temperatures of at least 105°F, beating the old record of ten such days in 1934. The minimum temperature in the city fell to just 86°F, tying with July 24, 1901, as the warmest minimum temperature ever recorded in the city. St. Louis has seen just 0.53" inches of rain this month, far below the normal 3.35" it usually records by this point in July.
- Lake Superior is so hot right now! (Grist):
At no point in 2012 has the surface temperature been below average, and it’s now spiking well above.
- USDA Expands Drought Area in US:
- VIDEO: Agriculture Sec. Tom Vilsack on US Drought (C-SPAN White House Press Briefing)
- Areas in worst drought categories rise by 50 percent, US says (NBCNews.com)
- Ag sec. announces Obama administration efforts for drought (Pryor Creek, OK Daily Times)
- MAP: US Drought Monitor (US Drought Monitor)
- Report shows record U.S. drought intensifying (CBS News)
- House Speaker pledges action on drought aid (Reuters)
- USDA Sec. Vilsack’s Climate Self-Censorship Draws Outrage From American Farmers (Climate Progress)
- Drought Impacts Food Prices, Rivers, Potential for Unrest:
- Severe Drought Seen as Driving Cost of Food Up (NY Times)
- Crop-Damaging Drought Will Raise Food Prices: USDA (Environment News Service)
- REPORT: USDA Economic Research Service Food Price Index (USDA.gov)
- The world is closer to a food crisis than most people realise (Guardian UK):
Unless we move quickly to adopt new population, energy, and water policies, the goal of eradicating hunger will remain just that
- VIDEO: Markey: Increased Food Prices from Drought is a Climate Change-fueled “Extreme Weather Food Tax” (Rep. Ed Markey, D-MA):
- Severe drought adds 76 counties to list of U.S. disaster areas (Washington Post)
- What to expect when you’re expecting more drought (black widows!) (Grist)
- Drought forces lighter barges as Mississippi River drops (Reuters):
The severe drought in the U.S. Midwest wreaked more havoc across the country on Thursday, forcing barges on the Mississippi River to lighten loads for fear of getting stuck and raising more concerns about higher prices for food and gasoline.
- Q&A: World food and fuel prices (BBC)
- ANALYSIS: What we know about climate change and drought (Washington Post)
- "Shocking" Greenland Ice Melt:
- NASA: Strange and sudden ice melt in Greenland (AP):
Nearly all of Greenland's massive ice sheet suddenly started melting a bit this month, a freak event that surprised scientists.
Even Greenland's coldest and highest place, Summit station, showed melting. Ice core records show that last happened in 1889 and occurs about once every 150 years.
- Greenland ice sheet melted at unprecedented rate during July (Guardian UK):
Scientists at Nasa admitted they thought satellite readings were a mistake after images showed 97% surface melt over four days
- ABC News On Stunning Greenland Ice Melt: ‘Scientists Say They’ve Never Seen Anything Like This Before’ (Climate Progress):
Nghiem said, “This was so extraordinary that at first I questioned the result: was this real or was it due to a data error?”
- The Story Behind Record Ice Loss in Greenland (Climate Central):
Such a widespread melt event has not occurred there since at least 1889, and may be yet another sign of the consequences of manmade climate change.
But what does this event mean in the bigger picture of ice melt and sea level rise, and what led to it in the first place?
- VIDEO: Meltwater from Greenland glacier wipes out key crossing: Scientists in Kangerlussuaq on western edge of ice sheet film runoff from glacier washing out roads and taking out a tractor (Guardian UK)
- Massive Icebergs Calve from Greenland’s Petermann Glacier (Audobon Magazine)
- Obama Admin Expands Solar Zones, While Fox News Whines:
- VIDEO: Fox Begrudges Solar Power A Tiny Slice Of Public Land (Media Matters.org):
Fox News is criticizing the Obama administration for setting aside 285,000 acres in six southwestern states for solar development, suggesting the land should be used for oil and gas extraction instead. But the government already leases 74 million acres of federal land to oil and gas companies, and the Interior Department chose sites where fossil fuel drilling is unlikely anyway.
- First Ever National Solar Energy Plan for Public Lands Unveiled by Obama Administration (Treehugger)
- Interior Plan Expedites Solar Development In West (AP)
- Interior Names Solar ‘Hot Spots’ Out West (NYT Green):
After more than two years of study and public comment, the Interior Department on Tuesday identified 17 sites on 285,000 acres of public land across six Southwestern states as prime spots for development of solar energy.
- Obama administration announces solar energy projects (The Hill's E2 Wire) [emphasis added]:
[Interior Sec. Ken Salazar] noted public lands hosted no solar projects when Obama took office. The administration has since approved 17 major solar projects on public lands producing about 6,000 megawatts of power, Salazar said.
- Obama Administration Releases Roadmap for Solar Energy Development on Public Lands (Dept. of Interior)
- U.S. lays out the welcome mat for solar on public lands (Grist)
- Senate Republicans introduce same-old energy legislation, give it funny name (Grist)
- Americans Support Investing in Renewables Over Fossil Fuels:
- Energy Update: 55% See Renewable Energy Better Investment Than Fossil Fuels (Rasmussen Reports):
[M]ost voters believe the nation should look to renewable energy sources rather than fossil fuels for the future.
55% say investing in renewable energy sources like solar and wind is a better long-term investment for the United States than investing in fossil fuels such as coal, gas and oil.
- Damn the (GOP) Torpedoes, Full Speed Ahead: Navy's Great Green Fleet Sails to Success:
- US Navy's Great Green Fleet: Changing the Way We Think About Energy (US Navy)
- VIDEO: The Great Green fleet set sails (KITV Honolulu)
- The Navy's Great Green Fleet Strikes Back (Forbes)
- Former top brass, veterans defend DOD green energy initiatives (Stars & Stripes)
- GOP Aims to Sink Navy's "Great Green Fleet" (Mother Jones)
- Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe wants U.S. Navy to detail costs of Green Fleet exercise (News OK)
- US Navy defends 'great green fleet' from Republican attacks (Guardian UK):
Navy secretary and Obama administration move to head off spending bill that would effectively shut down biofuels project
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- VIDEO: David Letterman On Fracking: 'We're Screwed' (Huffington Post Green)
- Rise in Weather Extremes Threatens Infrastructure: (NYT Green):
From highways in Texas to nuclear power plants in Illinois, the concrete, steel and sophisticated engineering that undergird the nation’s infrastructure are being taxed to worrisome degrees by heat, drought and vicious storms.
- At least 70 percent of Arctic ice loss is due to climate change (Guardian UK):
The radical decline in sea ice around the Arctic is at least 70% due to human-induced climate change, according to a new study, and may even be up to 95% down to humans – rather higher than scientists had previously thought.
- Could Africa hold the answers to America's drought woes? (Energy & Environment News):
The world's poorest continent could offer clues to how America's farmers might cope with a hotter, drier climate, leading agriculture experts say.
- Study: Many U.S. cities unprepared for future heat waves (Washington Post)
- COAL: Mining May Have Harmed 22% Of Streams In Southern West Virginia (Chemical & Engineering News):
Water Pollution: As mined land has grown, sensitive insect species have disappeared, researchers find
- Carl Pope: Winning The Carbon Tax Debate (Climate Progress):
Carbon taxes fit conservative tax theory: They hit consumption, not savings or investments; are market-perfecting, instead of distorting; and are easy to collect.
- Storms may speed ozone loss above the United States (Nature.org):
Injection of water vapour makes ozone layer sensitive to global warming and geoengineering.
- Bill McKibben: Global Warming's Terrifying New Math (Rolling Stone):
The numbers aren't exact, of course, but that carbon bubble makes the housing bubble look small by comparison. It won't necessarily burst – we might well burn all that carbon, in which case investors will do fine. But if we do, the planet will crater. You can have a healthy fossil-fuel balance sheet, or a relatively healthy planet – but now that we know the numbers, it looks like you can't have both. Do the math: 2,795 is five times 565. That's how the story ends.
The fight, in the end, is about whether the industry will succeed in its fight to keep its special pollution break alive past the point of climate catastrophe, or whether, in the economists' parlance, we'll make them internalize those externalities.
- Must-See Videos: ABC Interviews Climatologist Michael Mann (Climate Progress)
- Victims think drilling triggered shaking, and that's OK (Energy & Environment):
In rare cases, that wastewater can lubricate faults and unleash earthquakes. Loveland didn't know before the earthquake that her house sits nearly on top of the Wilzetta Fault, the one that ruptured in November.
- The environment is trying to ruin the Olympics again (Grist):
Unfortunately for England, the environment has taken up a new strategy for ruining the Olympics: rain.
- Essential Climate Science Findings:
- 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."
READER COMMENTS ON
"'Green News Report' - July 26, 2012"
(One Response so far...)
Sigmund Freud advocated the establishment within psychiatry of a system of group psychoanalysis.
The fossil fuel industry is properly diagnosed as psychotic within that framework.
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