With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 8/24/2017, 11:18am PT  

IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: National Academy of Sciences study on health impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining halted by Trump Administration; New Orleans still grappling with flood emergency as potential hurricane brews in the Gulf of Mexico; Volkswagen is bringing back the iconic minibus --- and this time it's electric!; PLUS: California again proves Trump wrong --- climate regulations boost economic growth... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Study confirms what Exxon knew about climate change vs. what it told the public; DOE grid reliability study is a Rorschach test; California has a climate problem, and its name is cars; Northeast states propose 30 percent greenhouse gas cut; NIH unit deletes references to climate 'change'; Zinke won't eliminate any national monuments; Bundy Ranch trial ends with zero guilty verdicts; Alaska's permafrost is thawing, with major climate implications; Ocean warming takes toll on undersea kelp forests... PLUS: Trump thinks clean coal is when workers mine coal and then actually 'clean it'... and much, MUCH more! ...

STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...

  • Trump falsely claims credit for surge in U.S. fossil fuel production in Phoenix campaign rally:
  • NOLA's flood pumping system partly offline as new storm Harvey brews:
  • Trump Interior Department halts mountaintop removal mining health study:
    • AUDIO: 'Where Never is Heard a Discouraging Word, and the Coal Dust Isn't Toxic All Day': ('BradCast' 8/23/2017)
    • Coal Mining Health Study Is Halted by Interior Department (NY Times):
      Mountaintop removal, which has occurred on at least 500 Appalachian mountains, has clogged streams and waterways with heavy metals such as selenium and manganese, which can be toxic in high concentrations. The dust kicked up by these explosions is also considered a hazard. One 2010 review published in Science found elevated mortality rates, as well as increased incidence of lung cancer and kidney disease, in counties near mountaintop mining. A 2011 study of central Appalachia found a higher rate of birth defects in the area.
    • Trump's Interior Department moves to stop mountaintop removal study (Charleston Gazette):
      Last year, the OSM committed to providing more than $1 million for the study, in response to growing pressure from citizen groups and requests from the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection and the state Bureau for Public Health in understanding studies by experts at West Virginia University and other institutions that found increased risks of birth defects, cancer, other illnesses and premature death among residents living near mountaintop removal sites in Southern West Virginia and Eastern Kentucky.

  • EPA will revoke Obama rule to limit toxic metals in coal wastewater discharge:
    • EPA moves to rewrite limits for coal power plant wastewater (AP):
      A letter from EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt released Monday as part of a legal appeal said he will seek to revise the 2015 guidelines mandating increased treatment for wastewater from steam electric power-generating plants. Acting at the behest of electric utilities who opposed the stricter standards, Pruitt first moved in April to delay implementation of the new guidelines. The wastewater flushed from the coal-fired plants into rivers and lakes typically contains traces of such highly toxic heavy metals as lead, arsenic, mercury and selenium.
    • Trump And Pruitt Attack EPA Clean Water Standard (Huffington Post)

  • California proves Trump wrong again - climate regulations boosts economy:
    • 2017 California Green Innovation Index (Next 10):
      Ninth annual Green Innovation Index finds California clean economy thriving but emissions-reduction challenges loom; transportation sector emissions spike, pose major challenges to state's 2030 climate goals
    • California defies Trump claim that environmental regulation kills economic growth (Grist):
      The California economy is thriving, according to a new report released Monday - and that's despite the state instituting relatively restrictive environmental rules... In fact, the state is now the most energy-productive economy in the world - meaning it uses the least amount of energy to gain each dollar of GDP.
    • California Proves That Environmental Regulations Don't Kill Profits (Wired):
      To anyone who believes environmental regulation is poison for profits, California must be infuriating....The results this year show a continuing trend: For two and a half decades, California's GDP and population have continued to rise, while per capita carbon dioxide emissions have stayed flat..."California is the most energy efficient economy in the world, and least carbon intensive," says Adam Fowler, a research manager at Beacon Economics, the firm that produced the Green Innovation Index at Next 10's behest. And it pays.

  • VW to bring back iconic minibus - and it's electric:
    • Volkswagen to bring back the Bus-as an EV (Chicago Tribune):
      No pricing or specific launch date has been announced, but the I.D. Buzz is not likely to arrive until at least 2022, says Volkswagen. The company desperately needs some buzz to try to regain momentum after the disastrous diesel emissions scandal upended both its product plans and consumer confidence around the world.

'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...

For a comprehensive roundup of daily environmental news you can trust, see the Society of Environmental Journalists' Daily Headlines page


FOR MORE on Climate Science and Climate Change, go to our Green News Report: Essential Background Page

  • NASA Video: If we don't act, here's what to expect in the next 100 years: