IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Bill Clinton makes the green case for Barack Obama at the DNC; PLUS: DOJ excoriates BP for "willful misconduct" and "gross negligence"... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): US taxpayers scammed by cheap coal auctions; Keystone XL Update: new route proposed, TX blockade shuts down worksite, Transcanada seizes US property through eminient domain; Organics vs. chemical farming; Patagonia's glacier melt accelerating; Video: How climate change will change your weather; Australia's carbon tax enriching polluters? ... PLUS: Special Report: "The Worst Environment Money Can Buy" ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Fox News' Charles Krauthammer Jumps the Shark on Weather Forecasting:
- Krauthammer: DNC Knew What Weather Would Be Months Ago (Talking Points Memo):
- DOJ Excoriates BP: "Gross Negligence" In BP Gulf Oil Disaster:
- READ the DOJ Brief [pdf]: "In Re: Oil Spill by the Oil Rig "Deepwater Horizon" in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010 (StuartSmith.com)
- US Lays Out Examples of "Gross Negligence" by BP: (Reuters) [emphasis added]:
Specifically, errors made by BP and Swiss-based Transocean Ltd, owner of the Deepwater Horizon platform, in deciphering a key pressure test of the Macondo well are a clear indication of gross negligence, the Justice Department said.
But the filing does exhibit exasperation on the part of government lawyers. They wrote that they decided to elaborate on BP's alleged gross negligence because they believed BP was trying to escape full responsibility.
The Justice Department said they feared that, "if the United States were to remain silent, BP later may urge that its arguments had assumed the status of agreed facts."
- Justice Dept Hammers BP For Gross Negligence In Gulf Oil Spill (Forbes) [emphasis added]:
Among a litany of condemnations, DOJ’s attorneys assert that the behavior of BP executives in the days leading up to the disaster “would not be tolerated in a middling size company manufacturing dry goods for sale in a suburban mall.”
- Photos: Oil Washing Up On The Gulf Coast After Hurricane Isaac (Climate Progress)
- Clean Energy Love at the DNC in Charlotte:
- Watch the DNC Convention 2012 Live Streaming Online (YouTube)
- VIDEO: Bill Clinton DNC Speech: 'We're In This Together' vs. 'You're On Your Own' (ABC News):,/li>
- TRANSCRIPT: Inside Bill Clinton's Epic Convention Speech,
the original speech in black, with deletions in red and additions in blue.(Buzzfeed)
- Big Dog touches on big issue: Bill Clinton nods to climate change in convention speech (Grist) [emphasis added]:
The agreement the [Obama] administration made with management, labor and environmental groups to double car mileage over the next few years is [a] good deal: it will cut your gas bill in half, make us more energy independent, cut greenhouse gas emissions, and add another 500,000 good jobs.
President Obama’s “all of the above” energy plan is helping too — the boom in oil and gas production combined with greater energy efficiency has driven oil imports to a near-20-year low and natural-gas production to an all-time high. Renewable energy production has also doubled.
People ask me all the time how we delivered four surplus budgets. What new ideas did we bring? I always give a one-word answer: arithmetic. If [Romney and Ryan] stay with a $5 trillion tax cut in a debt-reduction plan, the arithmetic tells us that one of three things will happen:
2) they’ll have to cut so much spending that they’ll obliterate the budget for our national parks, for ensuring clean air, clean water, safe food, safe air travel...
- VIDEO: Interior Secretary Ken Salazar Talks Clean Energy, Economy, Women & Latinos At DNC (CBS)
- VIDEO: Republican Sen. Lincoln Chafee on Economy & Clean Energy (Cafe Sentido) [emphasis added]:
Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan want to return us to the fantasy land of never having to pay for the things we buy, such as education, medical research, good roads, and clean energy. That’s not conservative. That’s not responsible. And it’s not what this country needs.
- VIDEO: Tom Steyer on Clean Energy at DNC 2012 (YouTube)
- Transcript: Tom Steyer, Senior Managing Member of Farallon Capital Management, at the DNC: (Politico):
You see, this election is a choice—a choice about whether to go backward or forward. And that choice is especially stark when it comes to energy.... This is about investing for the long haul, not for a quick-and-dirty buck. This is about taking control of our destiny by doing what Americans do best: out-innovating, out-thinking, out-hustling our competitors. And President Obama has put us on track to do just that—making investments for the long term.
- Democrats vs. Republicans on Clean Energy, Climate
- Science Debate 2012: Candidates' Answers, a Side by Side Comparison (ScienceDebate.org)
- The Romney-Ryan Ticket: Ceding The Clean Energy Future (Climate Progress)
- Obama and Romney on climate change science (Washington Post)
- VIDEO: Team Obama Labels Romney's Mockery Of Climate Action 'Terrifying' (Climate Progress)
- GOP platform highlights the party's abrupt shift on energy, climate (Washington Post)
- The Romney Plan: Drill, Baby, Drill --- Again: (Time Eco-Centric blog)
- Dems back global climate deal in platform (The Hill's E2 Wire)
- READ the Democratic Party's National Platform [PDF]:
We know that global climate change is one of the biggest threats of this generation - an economic, environmental, and national security catastrophe in the making. We affirm the science of climate change, commit to significantly reducing the pollution that causes climate change, and know we have to meet this challenge by driving smart policies that lead to greater growth in clean energy generation and result in a range of economic and social benefits.
- READ The Republican Party's National Platform [PDF] (Republican National Committee)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- Special Report: 'The Worst Environment Money Can Buy': A Special Report on the Environmental Pollutant Called Money in Politics (Earth Island Journal, Autumn 2012):
America is under assault from a deadly, insidious, and persistent pollutant. This pernicious contaminant threatens our health, safety, and way of life. Its noxious emissions are rising fast, fouling every corner of our nation. It attacks our brains, distorting rational thinking and decision-making. It poisons the air of civilized discourse. It has made it all but impossible to achieve meaningful progress on climate change, chemical policy, and a long list of other environmental issues confronting our country and our planet.
I’m talking, of course, about the influence of money on American democracy.
- Coal-Gate: From India To America, Taxpayers Are Getting Scammed By Fake ‘Auctions’ (Climate Progress)
- Keystone XL: Nebraska Route Revised By TransCanada (Huffington Post Green):
"The route still crosses the aquifer and it still crosses sandy soil, so all of the same concerns remain," [Bold Nebraska's Jane] Kleeb said.
- Keystone XL Blockade Stops Work at KXL Pipeline Construction Site (TarSandsBlockade.org)
- Driven By Fuel-Efficient Vehicles, U.S. Auto Sales Are ‘Incredibly Resilient’ In Spite Of High Gas Prices (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
“Although trucks had a solid month, the small-car performance is what’s most impressive about G.M.’s numbers today,” said Jessica Caldwell, an analyst with the automotive research site Edmunds.com.
- Analysis says big emitters have made big bucks from carbon tax (ABC Australia)
- 5 Ways the Stanford Study Sells Organics Short (Mother Jones):
In short, the authors' findings confirm what the Environmental Working Group, crunching USDA data, has been telling us for years: that organic fruits and vegetables harbor significantly fewer pesticide residues than their chemically grown peers.
- VIDEO: Climate Change: How The Wet Will Get Wetter And The Dry Will Get Drier (Climate Progress):
With all that extra energy, more water is pulled out of the subtropic regions and moved toward higher-precipitation areas in the subpolar regions, resulting in stronger droughts and stronger storms. Or, as the video shows, how the wet gets wetter and the dry gets drier.
- Patagonia Glaciers Melting In A Hurry: Study: (Daily Climate):
Ice fields in southern South America are rapidly losing volume and in most cases thinning at even the highest elevations, contributing to sea-level rise at 'substantially higher' rates than observed from the 1970s through the 1990s, according to a study published Wednesday.
- Canada Softens Coal-fired Power Rules: Critics: (Reuters):
Canada's government finalized much-anticipated regulations on Wednesday for phasing out the country's old coal-fired power plants in a move critics condemned as a watering down of earlier proposals to cut carbon emissions.
- TX Sees Rising Tide of Property-Rights Cases (Texas Tribune):
The case of Julia Trigg Crawford versus the Keystone XL oil pipeline will soon return to the headlines. Crawford, a northeast Texas farmer, is fighting to keep TransCananda, the pipeline's owner, from invoking the right of eminent domain to cross her property.
- 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."