IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: We're back! Obama wins and talks climate change, but will he --- can he --- deliver?; Grover Norquist vs. the Koch Bros.; Will US become the Saudi Arabia of oil?; PLUS: Superstorm Sandy was very expensive ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): GA utility tries to muscle out solar startup; Forecast: drought and more drought; Chevron Refinery Fire: Chevron won't clean up; Bringing solar to military housing; Water Supply in a Warming World; Researchers Use Rust and Water to Store Solar Energy as Hydrogen; MRSA superbug found in US water treatment plants ... PLUS: CA's Cap-And-Trade System To Launch With First Pollution Permits Auction ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- NAILED IT: Superstorm Sandy Caused By... The Gays!:
- Obama Wins --- Will He Act on Climate Change?:
- POLL: 77% say global warming should be a priority for the president and Congress. (Yale Project on Climate Change Communication)"
A large majority of Americans (88%) say the U.S. should make an effort to reduce global warming, even if it has economic costs.
- Treasury official: Administration open to carbon tax if GOP takes lead (The Hill's E2 Wire)
- Obama and the environment: Media react to the election with speculation, some insights (Columbia Journalism Review)
- Energy alliance official: Keystone approval likely soon (Fuel Fix):
A former Clinton administration official who now works with the Consumer Energy Alliance predicted Tuesday the Obama administration will approve TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline soon, just one of the economic benefits that representatives of the alliance said the oil and gas industry can offer a still recovering national economy.
- Oil industry tax breaks face the ‘fiscal cliff’ (The Hill's E2 Wire)
- Grassley: Senate will wait on wind credit tax extender package due to fiscal cliff talks (The Hill's E2 Wire)
- 3 Climate Change Actions For Obama’s Second Term (World Resources Institute via Climate Progress)
- Voters Approve 81 Percent Of Land Conservation Ballot Initiatives (Climate Progress)
- Tar sands planned growth is 3X climate limit (Price of Oil)
- Obama win should fuel electric car production, says Tesla CEO (Reuters)
- Carbon Tax?: Grover Norquist vs. The Koch Bros (for a minute):
- Carbon Tax Could Reduce Deficit By $1.2 Trillion In 10 Years (Climate Progress):
[A] new report from the Congressional Research Service released today illustrates why it’s such an enticing prospect. According to the CRS analysis, a modest carbon tax of $20 per ton that rises 5.6 percent annually could cut the projected 10-year deficit by 50 percent — from $2.3 trillion down to $1.1 trillion.
- White House says Obama is not planning a carbon tax proposal (The Hill's E2 Wire)
- Grover Norquist Abruptly Changes Position On Carbon Tax After Facing Criticism From Koch-Backed Group (Climate Progress):
But one day later, after being criticized by the American Energy Alliance, the advocacy arm of a Koch-supported energy think tank devoted to promoting fossil fuel development, Norquist has completely reversed his statement, saying there virtually “no conceivable way” he could support a tax on carbon. “Grover, just butch it up and oppose this lousy idea directly. This word-smithing is giving us all headaches,” wrote AEA in its newsletter, while promoting a newly-published study labeling carbon taxes “political cronyism.”
- Is This the Tax to Pass the Grover Norquist Test? (Bloomberg):
Let’s say you believe there is a 20 percent chance that global warming is anything other than a hoax. In that case, you are indifferent to carbon, with only a slight concern that the stuff might be catastrophic. But you are not indifferent to work and income, which everyone wants more of. So given a choice between taxing work and income on one hand, or taxing carbon on the other, the preference is clear: Tax carbon, especially as part of a deal to lower overall tax rates
- IEA: US to Become Saudi Arabia of Oil?:
- U.S. to overtake Saudi as top oil producer: IEA (Reuters) [emphasis added]:
The United States will overtake Saudi Arabia and Russia as the world's top oil producer by 2017, the West's energy agency said on Monday, predicting Washington will come very close to achieving a previously unthinkable energy self-sufficiency.
Analysts ask whether an energy independent United States would still be prepared to safeguard major trade routes around the world, such as the Strait of Hormuz in the Middle East.
- IEA Report: Fossil Fuel Boom Is A Climate Disaster In The Making (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
The IEA made an historic statement in the executive summary. It said, “No more than one-third of proven reserves of fossil fuels can be consumed prior to 2050 if the world is to achieve the 2 °C goal,” the internationally recognized limit to average global warming in order to prevent catastrophic climate change.
Let me rephrase that. Over two-thirds of today’s proven reserves of fossil fuels need to still be in the ground in 2050 in order to prevent catastrophic levels of climate change.
- IEA report exposes frailty and limits of North American oil boom (Price Of Oil)
- Renewable Energy to Rival Coal for Power Generation in 2035 (Renewable Energy World)
- US can become world's biggest oil producer in a decade, says IEA: The US could become self-sufficient, while 90% of Middle Eastern oil could go to China, according to new estimates (Guardian UK)
- NY Gov. Cuomo: Disasters Are Very Expensive:
- Cuomo to Seek $30 Billion in Aid for Storm Relief (NY Times):
In all, Hurricane Sandy caused more than $50 billion in damage in the New York region, according to Cuomo administration officials, making it the country’s costliest storm other than Hurricane Katrina, which devastated the Gulf Coast region in 2005. That hurricane caused about $145 billion in damages, with the federal government providing about $110 billion in disaster aid, according to Cuomo officials.
- 2012 May Rank As 2nd Most Disastrous Year Since 1980: The current record-holder is 2011, when there were 14 billion-dollar disasters. (Climate Central)
- Real Adaptation Is As Politically Tough As Mitigation, But Much More Expensive And Less Effective At Reducing Future Misery (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
We basically have three choices: mitigation, adaptation and suffering. We’re going to do some of each. The question is what the mix is going to be. The more mitigation we do, the less adaptation will be required and the less suffering there will be.
- VIDEO: Gov. Cuomo news conference on storm recovery (News12 Long Island):
Cuomo said he plans to request $30 billion in federal aid to rebuild areas heavily damaged by Hurricane Sandy. The governor also said he will seek additional funds to cover infrastructure, repair and emergency costs.
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- Georgia Power challenges solar company's plan (Atlanta Journal-Constitution):
President Robert Green, in an email to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, said Georgia Power’s comments, which included the words “anti-competitive,” only reinforce why his company got started in the first place. Georgia Power “clearly does not want any competition” from a company that would lower customer bills, Green said.
By law, Georgia Power doesn’t have any competition.
- Chevron Refinery Fire: Chevron sidesteps call for cleaner tech (SF Gate):
Chevron will make only small-scale pollution control improvements as it rebuilds the fire-damaged crude oil unit at its Richmond refinery - telling regulators it will not increase production, a decision that allows the company to avoid requirements for new emissions technology.
- Superbug MRSA Found in US Wastewater Treatment Plants: (SPX):
A team led by researchers at the University of Maryland School of Public Health has found that the 'superbug' methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is prevalent at several U.S. wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs).
- Forecast: Drought And More Drought (Climate Progress):
No doubt this persistent high-pressure system and the prolonged drought are just more coincidental weather events in this year of record low Arctic sea ice and coincidental uber-extreme events.... [/sarcasm]
- SolarCity to bring solar power to military housing (San Jose Mercury News):
Thousands of military homes in southern New Mexico and West Texas will be fitted with solar panels as part of a $1 billion plan by a California company to bring solar to military installations across the country.
- Water Supply in a Warming World (NYT Green):
More than anything else, climate change is a water problem. Scientists expect more coastal flooding and possibly more inland flooding. They expect higher temperatures and greater evaporation to deplete water resources, creating risks for the food supply. They believe sea-level rise will eventually render some regions uninhabitable.
- Researchers Use Rust and Water to Store Solar Energy as Hydrogen (Treehugger)
- CA's Cap-And-Trade System To Launch With First Pollution Permits Auction (AP):
California's largest greenhouse gas emitters will begin buying permits in a landmark "cap-and-trade" system designed to control emissions of heat-trapping gases and to spur investment in clean technologies.
- CA Chamber of Commerce sues to stop state's auction of carbon credits (Sacramento Business Journal)
- The Onion: Nation Suddenly Realizes This Just Going To Be A Thing That Happens From Now On (The Onion)
- It's Global Warming, Stupid (Businessweek):
Yes, yes, it's unsophisticated to blame any given storm on climate change. Men and women in white lab coats tell us-and they're right-that many factors contribute to each severe weather episode. Climate deniers exploit scientific complexity to avoid any discussion at all.
If all that doesn't impress, forget the scientists ostensibly devoted to advancing knowledge and saving lives. Listen instead to corporate insurers committed to compiling statistics for profit.
- A Convenient Excuse (The Phoenix):
On October 2, I led a climate protest inside the offices of the Boston Globe. OK, it was really a meeting in a small conference room with editorial page editor Peter Canellos and members of his staff. But it was, in essence, a protest.
- Will Climate Get Some Respect Now? (Nic Kristof, op-ed, NY Times)
- 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."
- IEA Report: Fossil Fuel Boom Is A Climate Disaster In The Making (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
READER COMMENTS ON
"'Green News Report' - November 13, 2012"
(7 Responses so far...)
COMMENT #1 [Permalink]
... molly said on 11/14/2012 @ 6:22 am PT...
Amazing how many progressives think a carbon tax will actually improve the environment. Cap and Trade allows corporations to continue to pollute. The Renewable Energy Credit money they pay to operate ends up on Wall Street, according to Matt Taiibi.
Mountain tops are bull dozed and filled with concrete. The wind farms on average perform at 18 to 25% of capacity. There is no storage for the energy so when it is hot and the wind isn't blowing , no power.
http://www.cohoctonwindwatch.blogspot.com/ this link explains how miserable the people who live around wind farms are. The animals leave.(no house payments) Many of the birds are killed. esp. birds of prey.
The propaganda aimed at progressives to sell them can only be likened to shock and awe. The Iraq war seemed like a great video game. Maine electricity bills have gone up 19% to pay for transmission lines just for wind farms' small spits and spurts of power. No transmission lines have been built. The small amt. of power from the wind farms is going to Canada.
This is known as a trade secret with First Wind, the primary builder in Maine. Locals in Mars Hill, where the first wind farm was built, had to find out that information for themselves.
We're back! Obama wins and talks climate change, but will he --- can he --- deliver?
The catastrophe producers have lost some ground in their incessant drive to destroy our civilization.
We must move into that ground they lost, we must wholeheartedly support Obama for the next two years, concerning climate change legislation, so the Oil-Qaeda nutjobs in the House will be outed and ultimately outed in the 2014 elections.
Then Obama and the other dems have full power to put us in the lead once again in the marathon race toward sanity.
The deniers simply do not know who their lords are, where "heaven on Earth" is, or even where "hell on Earth" is.
Molly, thanks for providing perspective on the local impacts of wind farms that are not properly regulated or sited. It is most helpful when you provide links to back up your claims.
That said, the window to avoid dangerous climate destabilization is closing.
Climate scientist Michael Mann, and the consensus of the global scientific community, is that humanity has about 5-10 years to launch a serious effort to shift to a low carbon economy to avoid potentially catastrophic outcomes.
Please keep that in mind as you advocate against wind energy without offering any low-carbon alternatives.
Is the U.S.eh? the only nation that has gone backwards regarding global warming induced climate change?
Every presidential debate since 1988 had a debate about the issue until this year.
Did President Obama today reveal that he does not really get it?
He repeated the false meme "... no single weather event can be linked directly to ... global warming" when responding to a question about Hurricane-Superstorm Sandy. He repeated the meme that was formerly applied to Hurricane Katrina.
The false meme exposed above is replaced with correct meme.
COMMENT #6 [Permalink]
... SmokeyTheBear said on 11/15/2012 @ 2:33 pm PT...
It's "man made" alright.
I can't help but wonder why you ask for my vote and call me a "denier", is because it's a very evil word game being played and your caught on the wrong side?
Man made meaning the people caused climate change vs
Man made by men in bunkers and airports, and aircraft, and bouys, all manner of insanity with secrecy and deadly force at the console of the WX OP's
this stuff is on the books now, while you still argue about science vs a UN agenda 21.
Throw one of your journalistic reporters over the fence and see what happens.
Smokey, who are you addressing in your comment? I haven't asked for your vote. I only call people who deny basic physics and basic chemistry 'deniers' --- as in the unconscionable denial of overwhelming scientific evidence --- as opposed to those who can be legitimately called 'skeptics' because of the areas of uncertainty in the impacts of global warming, and the larger impacts of climate change on earth's planetary geophysical systems. Scientists understand quite well the forces at work in the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy and other extreme events.
Not sure what else you're claiming. "Agenda 21" is a simple planning document that was never adopted by the US --- it's for developing countries to help with planning for roads, bridges, transportation, water and energy infrastructure. It's not the bullshit propaganda pushed by rightwing opportunists.
The "evidence" that I've seen so far that Sandy was caused by HAARP or weather modification experiments is unconvincing. Such theories also do not account for the other indicators of human-caused climate change, like accelerating ocean acidification. The global scientific community has concluded that humans are doing more than enough to alter our climate --- the accumulation of long-term weather trends --- thank you very much, by digging up stored CO2, burning it, and dumping the waste into our atmosphere and oceans. Please see SkepticalScience.com for more.
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