IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Massive pipeline explosion melts WV highway; More bad news for wolves, this time courtesy of MI Republicans; Judge lifts Keystone XL pipeline restraining order; PLUS: There they go again: House GOP threatens to hold Hurricane Sandy recovery funds hostage ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): No 'Get-Out-of-Jail-Free' Card on Sea Level; Colorado River water supply to fall short of demand: study; Hundreds rally against PacNW coal trains; Interior Dept. delays fracking rules; UK lifts ban on fracking; Feds open CA lands to fracking development; Is A123 battery sale to China a threat to US security? PLUS: Question posed at AGU: “Is Earth F**ked?”... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED IN TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- VIDEO: Moment of Zen - Time to Start Laying Pipe (Daily Show)
- WV: Massive Nat Gas Pipeline Explosin Melts Highway:
- VIDEO: NTSB: No Control Center Alarms Sounded at Time of Gas Line Explosion (WSAZ Charleston)
- West Virginia gas pipeline explosion – just a drop in the disaster bucket (CS Monitor):
The West Virginia gas pipeline explosion follows several high profile natural gas accidents and a rapid increase nationally in pipeline mileage – even as federal oversight appears to lag.
- No Alarm Sounded When The West Virginia Pipeline Exploded (NPR)
- WV explosion a reminder of widespread risks from gas pipelines; investigation under way (Washington Post)
- Bad News for Wolves, Now Hunted In Michigan:
- Michigan House Designates Gray Wolf As Game Animal (CBS Detroit):
Opponents say wolves are still recovering and it’s too soon for a hunt. Wolf advocates who accepted the idea of farmers protecting livestock, which is already allowed, recoil at talk of hunting and trapping — which they fear will slash wolf numbers drastically.
- ‘Famous’ Wolf Is Killed Outside Yellowstone (NY Times)
- Gray Wolf: Current Population in the United States (US Fish & Wildlife Service)
- TX: Judge Lifts Temporary Restraining Order Against Keystone XL Construction:
- Texas judge dissolves restraining order on Keystone XL (San Antonio Express):
A Texas judge has dissolved a restraining order that would have prevented work on part of TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline, a company spokesman said.
- Texas Judge Asks If Bitumen is Crude Oil (NRDC Switchboard):
Is bitumen, or tar sands oil, the same as crude oil[?] It seems like a silly question, but in fact, the industry has spoken out of both sides of its mouth on the issue.
- Documents Reveal Alberta Colludes With Industry In Tar Sands Pipeline Safety Review (Climate Progress)
- UN COP18: Poor Nations Call for 'Loss & Damage' Funds for Climate Disasters:
- Poor to seek UN climate change compensation scheme in 2013 (Reuters): Compensation scheme would mark fundamental shift. Some climate change effects can't be adapted to.
- Summary: UN climate talks extend Kyoto Protocol, promise compensation (BBC)
- The IPCC Consistently Understates Rate Of Climate Change, Say Scientists (Climate Central) [emphasis added]:
Across two decades and thousands of pages of reports, the world’s most authoritative voice on climate science has consistently understated the rate and intensity of climate change and the danger those impacts represent, say a growing number of studies on the topic.
- House Republicans Threaten to Hold Disaster Funds Hostage --- AGAIN:
- Superstorm Sandy Aid Must Be Addressed By Congress Before Break, Governors Urge (AP)
- GOP Threatens To Hold Disaster Relief Hostage To Spending Cuts — Again (Think Progress)
- VIDEO: New Jersey GOP Congressman: Sandy Disaster Relief Is ‘Wasteful Spending’ (Think Progress)
- GOP Aide Asks: ‘Why Don’t We Wait A Few Months’ To Deliver Sandy Disaster Relief? (Climate Progress)
- Hurricane Sandy: NY Reconstruction Plan to Include Climate Change (UPI)
- NY Planners Prep For A 'New Normal' Of Powerful Storms (NPR)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- Posed at AGU: “Is Earth F**ked?” (Climate Crock of the Week):
Sobering to come away from the world’s largest scientific meeting with a very real and urgent question. One that would have seemed science fiction a generation ago.
- Colorado River Water Supply to Fall Short of Demand:
- Colorado River won’t meet needs of users in 7 Western US states, 50-year report finds (Washington Post)
- Colorado River water supply to fall short of demand, study says (LA Times):
Federal report predicts a drier future for the seven states that rely on the Colorado for water. A range of solutions, some impractical, are proposed.
- No Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Card on Sea Level (NYT Green) [emphasis added]:
“We now know that snowfall in Antarctica will not save us from sea level rise,” one of the study’s authors, Anders Levermann, said in a statement. “Sea level is rising — that is a fact. Now we need to understand how quickly we have to adapt our coastal infrastructure, and that depends on how much CO2 we keep emitting into the atmosphere.”
- COAL: Hearing on Gateway Pacific coal terminal project draws hundreds in Vancouver (Bellingham Herald) [emphasis added]:
"Have you experienced what coal dust can do to property? I have," Montgomery said. "It's a dangerous mess." The Washington State Department of Ecology, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Whatcom County are gathering public comment as they prepare an environmental impact statement on the Gateway Pacific project. They've found huge crowds just about everywhere — at five previous meetings, three drew at least 1,000 people, according to the ecology department.
- Dept of Interior delays ‘fracking’ rules (The Hill's E2 Wire):
The Interior Department no longer plans to finalize rules this year that will impose new controls on the controversial oil-and-gas development method called hydraulic fracturing, a spokesman said.
- UK lifts ban on fracking to exploit shale gas reserves (CNN):
Britain's government lifted its ban on a controversial mining process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, Thursday, allowing companies to continue their exploration of shale gas reserves. Energy Secretary Edward Davey said the decision was subject to new controls to limit the risks of seismic activity.
- CA: Lease sales start for oil, gas development in Monterey County (Santa Cruz Sentinel)
- Los Angeles: EPA finds contamination at former rocket test site (SF Gate):
Lingering radioactive contamination exists at a former rocket test lab outside of Los Angeles that was the site of a partial nuclear meltdown, federal environmental regulators said Wednesday.
- A123 Sale to China: A Threat to US Security? (CS Monitor):
The sale of advanced battery maker A123 to China's Wanxiang Group could recoup US taxpayer funds. But critics warn the threats to US security outweigh any benefits from the pending sale of A123.
- West Coast contemplates the calm before the storm: Infrastructure alterations needed as global warming makes mark on planet (Vancouver Sun)
- How Corruption Is Strangling U.S. Innovation (Harvard Business Review) [emphasis added:
[T]his isn't the overt, "bartering of government favors in return for private kickbacks" corruption. Instead, this type of corruption has actually been legalized. And it is strangling both US competitiveness, and the ability for US firms to innovate. The corruption to which I am referring is the phenomenon of money in politics.
- NOAA sees sea level rise of up to 6.6 feet by 2100 (USA Today):
As recovery continues from Superstorm Sandy, the U.S. government reports Thursday that flooding from future storms will likely worsen as global sea levels rise between 8 inches and 6.6 feet by the end of this century.
- NASA: Climate Models Project Increase In U.S. Wildfires, ‘Causing A Further Rise In The Release Of Carbon Dioxide’ (Climate Progress)
- COVER STORY: 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.
- CO2 Emissions Rises Mean Dangerous Climate Change Now Almost Certain (Guardian)
- Study: Sea Levels Rising 60% Faster Than Projected, Planet Keeps Warming As Expected (Climate Progress)
- Ocean Acidification: Animals are already dissolving in Southern Ocean (New Scientist)
- Global warming targets further out of reach, UN says (Phys.org):
Based on current pledges, global average temperatures could rise by 3 to 5 degrees Celsius (5.4 to 9.0 degrees Fahrenheit) this century --- way above the two degrees Celsius being targeted, said a UN Environment Programme (UNEP) report.
- Thawing of permafrost to be 'major factor' in global warming, warns UN report (UN News Centre)
- 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.
- Skeptical Science: Get the FULL DEBUNKING of ALL Climate Science Denier Arguments
- Report: Humans near tipping point that could dramatically change Earth (CS Monitor) [emphasis added]:
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)
- 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)
- 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... "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)
- The Real Global Warming Signal (Tamino)
- No, global warming hasn't stopped (New Scientist)
- 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?