With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 9/12/2017, 11:12am PT  

IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Recovery efforts continue after Irma grinds a trail of destruction across Florida and into Georgia; Adding pollution to misery, FL sewage systems overflow and EPA waives pollution rules; Hurricanes Irma and Harvey may open a rift in the Republican Party's denial of climate change; PLUS: Miss North Dakota slams Trump's withdrawal from Paris Climate Agreement, wins Miss America pageant... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Damage from Irma, Harvey add to growing costs of climate change; VW to build all models all-electric by 2030; Trump Admin halts pollution controls at FL power plants; Houston's floodwaters tainted with toxins; FL representative aims to let companies hide climate risk; State says new Enbridge pipeline not needed; EPA Toxics nominee helped Koch Brothers in Chicago pet-coke battle; Record wildfire season causing significant air pollution in Pacific Northwest; Senate panel votes to fund UN climate agency... PLUS: Electric cars are about to get their biggest boost ever.... and much, MUCH more! ...

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

'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

  • Damage from Hurricane Irma, H arvey Add to Growing U.S. Costs of Climate Change (Inside Climate News):
    Government watchdogs have been warning about the financial risks of climate change, from extreme storms to wildfires, and their impact on the U.S. budget.
  • Electric cars are about to get their biggest boost ever (Climate Progress):
    China plans to ban new fossil-fuel powered cars.
  • VW to Build Electric Versions of All 300 Models by 2030 (Bloomberg):
    Speaking on the eve of the Frankfurt auto show, Chief Executive Officer Matthias Mueller announced sweeping plans to build electric versions of all 300 models in the 12-brand group’s lineup. The German auto giant laid out the enormity of the task ahead, vowing to spend 20 billion euros ($24 billion) by 2030 to roll out the cars and earmarked another 50 billion euros to buy the batteries needed to power the vehicles.
  • Trump administration halts pollution controls at Utah coal plants (AP):
    An appeals court granted a request Monday from President Donald Trump's administration to halt a plan for new pollution controls at Utah's oldest coal-fired power plants aimed at reducing haze near national parks. The development marks a reversal for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which last year under Barack Obama unveiled the rules and defended itself in a lawsuit brought by Utah and Rocky Mountain Power.
  • Houston’s Floodwaters Are Tainted With Toxins, Testing Shows (NY Times):
    Floodwaters in two Houston neighborhoods have been contaminated with bacteria and toxins that can make people sick, testing organized by The New York Times has found. Residents will need to take precautions to return safely to their homes, public health experts said.
  • Despite Irma, Florida Rep. Aims To Let Companies Hide Climate Risks (International Business Times):
    The Republican congressman from one of Hurricane Irma’s hardest hit counties is leading a legislative effort to let companies conceal how climate change affects their businesses. Only weeks before the storm came ashore, Florida U.S. Rep. Bill Posey reintroduced legislation designed to bar federal regulators from forcing companies to better disclose their climate-related risks to their shareholders.
  • New Enbridge Pipeline Across Northern Minnesota Not Needed, State Says (Minneapolis Star-Tribune):
    Enbridge's proposed new crude oil pipeline across northern Minnesota isn't needed, and moreover the aging line it's supposed to replace should be shut down, the Minnesota Department of Commerce said in an analysis released Monday.
  • EPA Toxics Nominee Provided Koch-Funded Study In Chicago Petcoke Battle (Midwest Energy News):
    Advocates concerned about pollution from petroleum coke are worried an Ohio professor’s study downplaying the risks will gain new prominence now that he has been named to a key EPA post.
  • It Is a Time to Talk About Climate Change (The Atlantic):
    In an interview with CNN on Thursday, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt said that now is not the time to talk about climate change. ... In the interest of minimizing harm to people, it’s always an important time to talk about climate change. We don’t have to choose between helping current victims and working to prevent the next tragedy.
  • ‘The Lungs of Our Region Are on Fire:’ Wildfires Exact a Punishing Toll (NY Times):
    For much of this week and last, devastation wrought by Hurricane Harvey in Houston and Hurricane Irma in the Caribbean has grabbed front-page headlines. But wildfires in the West have been wreaking destruction of their own, though it has attracted less attention. Vast swaths of land have burned, choking the air with ash and smoke.
  • Senate Panel Votes To Fund UN Climate Agency (The Hill):
    A Senate committee voted Thursday to contribute $10 million to the United Nations’ climate change agency.
  • 2017 Wildfire Season In Us West Far Worse Than Expected (AP):
    A wet winter and spring in the Western U.S. brought predictions that the 2017 wildfire season would be mild. It was anything but. It ended up one of the worst in U.S. history in land burned.
  • The Uninhabitable Earth: When will climate change make earth too hot for humans? (New York Magazine):
    Famine, economic collapse, a sun that cooks us: What climate change could wreak - sooner than you think.
  • A beginner's guide to the debate over 100% renewable energy (Vox):
    Clean-energy enthusiasts frequently claim that we can go bigger, that it's possible for the whole world to run on renewables - we merely lack the "political will." So, is it true? Do we know how get to an all-renewables system? Not yet. Not really.
  • No country on Earth is taking the 2 degree climate target seriously (Vox):
    If we mean what we say, no more new fossil fuels, anywhere.


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: