IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Elizabeth Warren's U.S. Senate race could decide the environmental future; Fox 'News' Alert!!!: Fox misleads on climate! - Also: Sun rises in East!; Polls show voters vote on climate; PLUS: Marking major milestones: Silent Spring and saving the planet by saving the ozone layer ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Chevy Volt outsells half of US cars; West should expect bigger wildfires, more often; Coal fight looms over Pacific NW; Study ignites furor over GMO corn; MI chemical plant still poisoning town; Tree sitters stop Keystone XL; Romney's energy advisor will profit more from Romney energy policies; Oil poisoning Africa; Nate Silver missteps on climate ... PLUS: What Will Ice-Free Arctic Summers Bring? ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Coal CEO Blames Obama for 'Free Market' Forces Killing Coal:
- VIDEO: Fair & Balanced: Fox Hosts Two Coal CEOs To Attack Obama (MediaMatters.org):
[I]n fact, the Obama administration has put in place regulations that have large environmental and public health benefits; at the same time, U.S. coal mining jobs have remained steady at about 85,000. Furthermore, studies show pollution from coal causes tens of billions of dollars of damage, including death and disease for many coal miners, more than offsetting its "low cost."
- New Romney ad features miners forced to attend pro-Romney rally — without pay (Grist)
- The GOP’s ‘War On Coal’ Myth, Brought To You By Millions In Coal Cash (Climate Progress):
Coal has backed the GOP’s political campaign with heavy spending on TV ads, lobbying and political contributions.... [House Republicans received] nearly 5 times the amount Democratic members received, according to a ThinkProgress analysis of Center for Responsive Politics data.
- Elizabeth Warren's MA Senate Campaign About Control of the Senate:
- Elizabeth Warren Warns GOP-Controlled Senate Would Make Climate Denier Jim Inhofe Head Of Environment Committee (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
What that would mean is if the Republicans take over control of the Senate, Jim Inhofe would become the person who would be in charge of the committee that oversees the Environmental Protection Agency. He’s a man that has called global warming ‘a hoax.’ In fact, that’s the title of his book.
- VIDEO: Scott Brown and Elizabeth Warren debate climate change (Grist):
[T]he question on climate change begins at 48:19. (An editorial aside: Watching this will bring back memories of high school class president elections in which the smart honor roll student takes on the popular quarterback.)
- Scott Brown, Elizabeth Warren, Cherokee Heritage and Me... (BradBlog.com)
- Poll Shows Undecided Voters Consider Climate Positions:
- Yale Poll: Swing Voters Want Action on Climate (Climate Crock of the Week):
Only about 7% of likely voters have not yet decided whether they will support Barack Obama or Mitt Romney in the 2012 election, a new national survey finds. ... 61% of the undecided voters said they see global warming as an “important issue” they’ll consider when making their choice..
- The Potential Impact of Global Warming on the 2012 Presidential Election (Yale Project on Climate Communication):
Global warming is an important issue for undecided voters and likely Obama voters when voting for President
Though few likely voters say global warming is the “single-most important” issue to them in this election, majorities of likely Obama voters (75%) and Undecideds (61%) say it will be one of several important issues determining their vote for President. Only 32% of likely Romney voters say it will be one of the “important issues” determining their vote....
- Study: Fox News & WSJ "Mislead" On Climate:
- Read the report: Got Science? Not at News Corporation (Union of Concerned Scientists):
It is entirely appropriate to disagree with specific actions or policies aimed at addressing climate change while accepting the clearly established findings of climate science. And while it is appropriate to question new science as it emerges, it is misleading to reject or sow doubt about established science—in this case, the overwhelming body of evidence that human-caused climate change is occurring.
- Study Finds News Corp. Climate Coverage Is "Overwhelmingly Misleading" (MediaMatters.org):
A new report by the Union of Concerned Scientists finds that coverage of climate science by Fox News and the Wall Street Journal --- both owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation --- has been "overwhelmingly misleading," despite Murdoch's 2007 pledge that his media outlets will treat manmade climate change as "a fact."
- Fox News Climate Coverage 93% Wrong, Report Finds (Live Science) [emphasis added]:
Primetime coverage of global warming at Fox News is overwhelmingly misleading, according to a new report that finds the same is true of climate change information in the Wall Street Journal op-ed pages.
Both outlets are owned by Rupert Murdoch's media company News Corporation. The analysis by the science-policy nonprofit Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) finds that 93% of primetime program discussions of global warming on Fox News are inaccurate, as are 81% of Wall Street Journal editorials on the subject.
"It's like they were writing and talking about some sort of bizarre world where climate change isn't happening," study author Aaron Huertas, a press secretary at UCS, told LiveScience.
- 25th Anniv. of Montreal Protocol: Saving Life on the Planet By Saving the Ozone Layer:
- VIDEO: We Saved The Ozone Layer. We Can Save The Climate. (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
This Sunday marks the 25th anniversary of the signing of the world’s most successful environmental treaty, the Montreal Protocol. That’s the treaty that saved the ozone layer, saved millions of lives, and avoided a global catastrophe.
It is not easy to convey the scale of the catastrophe that was avoided, the disaster that did not happen. This is what NASA scientist Dr. Paul A. Newman has accomplished in his extraordinary analysis, “The World Avoided.”[quick summary at 14:05]:
- How It Happened: Science, diplomacy, and the Montreal Protocol, by Richard Benedick, US Ambassador (Encyclopedia of Earth):
In June 1987, with the final negotiating session at Montreal less than three months away, I was at the Reichstag in Berlin to deliver an address on the fortieth anniversary of the Marshall Plan when a breathless U.S. Embassy attaché brought me an “Eyes Only” personal cable from the White House. President Reagan thus became the world’s first head of state to personally approve a national negotiating policy on ozone protection.
- History of the Montreal Protocol: (Wikipedia)
- Reagan helped save the ozone layer but ruined America’s leadership in clean energy (Grist)
- 1988: President Ronald Reagan's Statement on Signing the Montreal Protocol on Ozone-Depleting Substances, April 5, 1988 (American Presidency Project):
I am pleased to sign the instrument of ratification for the Montreal protocol on substances that deplete the ozone layer. The protocol marks an important milestone for the future quality of the global environment and for the health and well-being of all peoples of the world. Unanimous approval of the protocol by the Senate on March 14th demonstrated to the world community this country's willingness to act promptly and decisively in carrying out its commitments to protect the stratospheric ozone layer from the damaging effects of chlorofluorcarbons and halons, but our action alone is not enough.
- 1989: PM Margaret Thatcher's Speech concluding Saving the Ozone Layer Conference (Margaret Thatcher Foundation):
We rightly set out to improve the standard of life of the world's peoples but we have now realised that we could be undermining the very systems needed to maintain life on our planet. Major changes in the chemistry of the earth's atmosphere are taking place with potentially calamitous effects for all mankind. The destruction of stratospheric ozone is such a problem. The ozone layer which protects life is also at its mercy.
- 50th Anniversary of Rachel Carson's Silent Spring:
- VIDEO: The Legacy Of "Silent Spring" 9 mins., (CBS News) [emphasis added]:
[I]n "Silent Spring," Carson warned that progress had a price.
"These sprays, dusts and aerosols are now applied almost universally to farms, gardens, forests and homes — non-selective chemicals that have the power to kill every insect, the good and the bad, to still the song of birds and the leaping of fish in streams, to coat the leaves with a deadly film and to linger on in soil," she said in a 1962 documentary for CBS News. "All this, though the intended target may be only a few weeds or insects."
- The 50th Anniversary Of ‘Silent Spring’ Reminds Us Of The Importance Of Environmental Regulations (Climate Progress)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- Rat Study Sparks Furor over Genetically Modified Foods (Scientific American):
Cancer claims put herbicide-resistant transgenic maize in the spotlight
Europe has never been particularly fond of genetically modified (GM) foods, but a startling research paper published last week looks set to harden public and political opposition even further, despite a torrent of skepticism from scientists about the work.
- Living with PBB: Michigan Chemical plant dumped poisons, impacting town for years (Detroit Free Press):
Michigan Chemical closed as a result of the catastrophe in 1977, but only after dumping tons of PBB, as well as the now-banned pesticide DDT and other toxins, at the site and at the nearby Gratiot County Landfill.Today, the plant's environmental footprint remains: DDT in dead birds; PBB in the Pine River; pCBSA, a by-product of DDT, in the drinking water.
- Keystone XL: 8 Blockaders Start Indefinite Tree Sit to Stop Keystone XL Pipeline Construction (EcoWatch):
This morning eight people climbed 80 feet into trees in the path of Keystone XL construction, and pledged not to come down until the pipeline is stopped for good. Construction cannot proceed until tree-sitters descend as TransCanada clear-cuts through hundreds of trees to make way for the toxic tar sands pipeline.
- Report: How Romney energy czar fuels business with politics (Reuters)
- Trafigura lessons have not been learned, report warns (Guardian UK):
Amnesty International and Greenpeace say too little has been done to strengthen regulations on toxic waste dumping [in Africa].
- Shell Sues Greenpeace to Stop Oil Drilling Protests (AP)
- Analysis: Coal fight looms, Keystone-like, over U.S. Northwest (Reuters):
Call it the Keystone of coal: a regulatory and public relations battle between environmentalists and U.S. coal miners akin to the one that has defined the Canada-to-Texas oil pipeline.
Instead of blocking an import, however, this fight is over whether to allow a growing surplus of coal to be exported to Asia, a decision that would throw miners a lifeline by effectively offshoring carbon emissions and potentially give China access to cheaper coal.
- Solar (BrightSource Energy) Versus LA Times: (Greentech Media):
The Times raises questions; BrightSource has answers.
- 538: The Number of Things Nate Silver Gets Wrong About Climate Change (Climate Progress):
Nate cherry-picks a single sound bite (“our statements [should not be] so laden in uncertainty that no one even listens.”) to once again reinforce the false narrative that scientists are understating uncertainty. The point I was actually making was that we cannot spend so much time talking about what we don’t know, that we don’t end up telling the public what we do know.
- What Will Ice-Free Arctic Summers Bring? (Scientific American):
This summer's record melt suggests the Arctic may lose its ice cap seasonally sooner than expected. What impacts can we expect?
- Failure? Hardly. Chevy Volt outsells half of all US cars. (CS Monitor):
Chevy Volt sales figures this year are higher than roughly half of the 260 or so car models sold in the US.
- U.S. West should expect bigger wildfires more often: report (Reuters):
Richard Wiles, director of research for Climate Central - a nonprofit scientific research organization that reports on climate change - said the data showed massive wildfires greater than 100,000 acres do not appear in records before the late 1980s.
- Freaked-out climate scientists urge other freaked-out climate scientists to speak up, fight Man (Grist) [emphasis added]:
Can we make the radical changes necessary to meet that challenge? No, say climate scientists Kevin Anderson and Alice Bows in a recent commentary in Nature Climate Change, not “within orthodox political and economic constraints.”
In other words: We either give up economic growth voluntarily for a little while or suffer a climate that will reverse economic growth long-term.
- Republican Meteorologist to Mitt Romney: My Top Ten Reasons for Republicans to Accept Reality on the Climate (Huffington Post Green)
- 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."