IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: The 2nd Presidential Debate: Debunking and fact-checking on energy --- clean and, mostly, otherwise; PLUS: Again, a no-show at the debate: Climate Change ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Extreme hurricanes hitting U.S. more frequently: study; Climate change research gets petascale supercomputer; Heat-trapping CO2 also makes ice more brittle; German winter shows Achilles heel of renewables; Germany’s Merkel defends switching from nuclear to renewable power; Coal lobbyists force removal of coal sculpture; Civil disobedience: TX landowners oppose Keystone XL pipeline ... PLUS: Drink Up: Happy 40th birthday, Clean Water Act! ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- FACT CHECK: Energy in the 2nd Presidential Debate:
- Fact checking the second presidential debate (Washington Post)
- Obama vs. Romney: A Stark Contrast on the Environment: (Yale 360):
As the U.S. presidential campaign enters its final phase, Yale Environment 360 compares the sharply divergent views of President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney on the environment and energy.
- FACT CHECK: Obama and Romney spar over energy in second debate, ignore climate yet again (Grist):
- Mitt Romney's winners and losers (Grist):
Romney is right about one thing: The government does pick winners and losers in the energy sector... the big winners of federal support are the already immensely profitable fossil fuel and nuclear industries, not sustainable energy.
- Romney’s Latest Clean Energy Attack: ‘You Can’t Drive A Car With A Windmill On It’ (Climate Progress)
- AP Analysis: More U.S. drilling didn't drop gas prices (AP):
Political rhetoric about the blame over gas prices and the power to change them - whether Republican claims now or Democrats' charges four years ago - is not supported by cold, hard figures. And that's especially true about oil drilling in the U.S. More oil production in the United States does not mean consistently lower prices at the pump.
- Romney And Obama Spar Over Who Wants To Drill For More Fossil Fuels During Debate (Climate Progress)
- Fact Check: Romney Is Wrong About Energy Development On Public Lands (Climate Progress):
They conveniently leave out the fact that it is not geologically possible for that to happen. The Energy Information Agency released a map that shows the vast majority of the current oil and gas shale plays in the lower 48 states are not on public lands. As EIA administrator Adam Sieminski noted in Congressional testimony in August, “The geology is working in favor of non-federal landowners.”
- Obama Slams Romney For Letting ‘Oil Companies Write The Energy Policies’ (Climate Progress)
- Clean Energy Has Highest Documented Rate of Return of Any Federal Program — When Will That Get Reported? (Climate Progress)
- VIDEO: Flashback: In 2003, Romney attacked coal jobs that ‘kill people’ (Grist)
- FACT CHECK: Stephen Chu didn't say that on gas prices: (Media Matters)
- FACT CHECK: Oil & Gas:
- Mitt Romney says 'oil production is down 14 percent this year on federal land' (Politifact)
- FACT CHECK: Myths And Facts About Oil And Gasoline (Media Matters.org):
+What would "drill baby drill" mean for gasoline prices?
+ Would the Keystone XL pipeline affect gasoline prices?
+Is monetary policy to blame for the recent price spike?
+How do U.S. fuel taxes compare to other nations?
+Could we shift to a single national gasoline blend?
+Why did oil and gasoline prices fall sharply in late 2008?
+If we end tax breaks for oil companies, would gasoline prices change?
+Do oil companies receive the same tax breaks as other companies?
+How does current U.S. oil production compare to previous years?
+How much oil is coming from federal lands relative to previous years?
+How have U.S. petroleum imports changed in recent years?
+Is the U.S. sitting on over a trillion barrels of oil?
+What would "energy independence" mean for gasoline prices
- Shut Out & Arrested: Green Party Pres. Candidate Jill Stein:
- VIDEO: ARRESTED: The Green-Party Candidate Arrested (Democracy Now via Esquire):
- VIDEO: Gary Johnson, Jill Stein, Virgil Goode, Rocky Anderson set for internet-only debate (AP)
- Jill Stein For President (Green Party)
- VIDEO: Green Party Presidential Candidate Jill Stein Presents a "New Green Deal" (The Real News)
- Debate NO SHOW: Climate Change:
- Candy Crowley’s weird dismissal of climate change (Grist):
I had that question for all of you climate change people. We just, you know, again, we knew that the economy was still the main thing so you knew you kind of wanted to go with the economy.
- Silent Summer: Team Obama Defends Gag Order On Climate (Climate Progress):
Adam Fetcher, a spokesman for the Obama campaign, "defended the president's silence on climate change during Tuesday's debate" in an email to The Hill Wednesday.
- Climate Change, The Debate's Great Unmentionable (The New Yorker) [emphasis added]:
The problem with the sort of energy debate we saw on Tuesday is not just that it's fatuous, though it certainly is that. The problem is that you can't solve a problem if you don't even acknowledge it exists. The true challenge facing the next President is not how to bring down gas prices, which may or may not come down as a result of global trends. It's how to move beyond the tired arguments of the past and act as if the future matters.
- VIDEO: Is David Axelrod to Blame for Climate Change's Absence From the Election? [5 mins] (Climate Desk.org, via The Atlantic)
- VIDEO: Chris Hayes: Climate Silence In The Debate Is 'Like Talking About Smoking And Not Talking About Cancer' (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
And the thing that's so frustrating is the future farmers of america who will see livelihoods destroyed are not voting in the election. The people who live in inland coasts who will see their habitats destroyed are not voting in the election. The people working in coal companies now are voting in the election. I understand what their livelihood means to them. there's an asymmetry between the people voting and the future people who aren't. We talk about it all the time in terms of deficit be we don't talk about it in terms of climate.
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- The Clean Water Act at 40: What's Your Wish? (Huffington Post Green):
We have many successes to celebrate for the Clean Water Act's 40th, but our industry-controlled Congress is making it awfully hard to feel good about blowing out the candles.... Unfortunately, some members of Congress are dead serious on threatening your right to clean air and water. The bill included attacks on the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, the Surface Mining Control Act and EPA, among other things, including rejecting the science on climate change.
- Extreme hurricanes hitting U.S. more frequently, study says (LA Times) [emphasis added]:
On Monday, a paper published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of the Sciences, or PNAS, concluded that large Katrina-sized hurricanes were twice as likely to form off the United States' southeast coast in hotter years than they were in colder years.
- World's biggest geoengineering experiment 'violates' UN rules: (Guardian UK) [emphasis added]:
Satellite images appear to confirm the claim by Californian Russ George that the iron has spawned an artificial plankton bloom as large as 10,000 square kilometres. The intention is for the plankton to absorb carbon dioxide and then sink to the ocean bed - a geoengineering technique known as ocean fertilisation that he hopes will net lucrative carbon credits.
- Climate change research gets petascale supercomputer (Computer World):
Scientists studying Earth system processes, including climate change, are now working with one of the largest supercomputers on the planet. The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) has begun using a 1.5 petaflop IBM system, called Yellowstone, that is among the top 20 supercomputers in the world, at least until the global rankings are updated next month.
- Heat-trapping CO2 also makes ice more brittle (Summit Co. Voice):
New MIT research suggests carbon dioxide has direct impact on glaciers and ice caps.
- German winter shows Achilles heel of renewables: Wynn (Reuters):
The extreme variability of wind and solar power in Germany is laid bare by 2012 data that also illustrates a particular vulnerability when power demand surges on cold winter days - they are often both weak at the same time.
- Germany’s Merkel defends switching from nuclear to renewable power despite rising costs (Washington Post)::
The country’s grid operators this week said a surcharge on households’ electricity prices financing the expansion of renewable energies will increase by 47 percent on the year in January. A typical family of four will have to pay about €250 ($324) per year on top of their bill, but many large companies are exempt from the surcharge to safeguard their competitiveness.
- WY: Coal lobbyists get coal sculpture removed (Star-Tribune)
- Consolidation to edge out 180 solar panel makers by 2015: report (Reuters)
- Keystone XL Construction Draws Opposition From Texas Landowners (AP):
As the company pursues construction of a 1,179-mile-long cross-country pipeline meant to bring Canadian tar sands oil to South Texas refineries, it's finding opposition in the unlikeliest of places: oil-friendly Texas, a state that has more pipelines snaking through the ground than any other.
- 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."