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IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Record-breaking extreme winter storm breaks Buffalo, NY; It's official: October 2014 hottest October on record; Sorry, Republicans: China will cap coal use by 2020; PLUS: Obama doubles down on climate foreign policy... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): NASA video: a year in C02; Senate climate hawks introduce 'carbon fee & dividend' legislation; Keystone XL PR company plans dirty tricks campaign; Criminal charges for illegal toxic mine dumping in Alaska; World must 'mind the carbon emissions gap' to avoid dangerous climate change; Why are US farmers getting billions in aid amid record crop yields? ... PLUS: San Diego to use recycled wastewater for new drinking water supply ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- 'Freakish' Record Storm Hits Buffalo, NY
- PHOTOS: Extreme Weather? What Extreme Weather? (The BRAD BLOG):
One other problem: temps are expected to rise in Buffalo over the weekend after the next monster volley of snow. They will be pushing 60 degrees by Monday. Got flood insurance?
- Global Warming Is Probably Boosting Lake-Effect Snows (Slate)
- Deadly Western New York Snowstorm To Get Second Wind (Reuters):
Western New York state braced for a fresh wave of heavy snow on Wednesday after a freakish storm swept off the Great Lakes and deposited 5 feet (1.5 meters) of powder in parts of the region, killing at least six people and stranding motorists overnight.
- Buffalo’s Superstorm of Snow Could Drop 100 Inches (Slate)
- Buffalo mega snowstorm tied to climate change? (Minnesota Public Radio):
An oversimplified explanation goes like this:
+ Warmer climate = warmer water in Lake Erie
+ Arctic warming = a wavier jet stream pushing unseasonably cold arctic air mass into the eastern U.S.
+ Unusually cold air masses and unusually warm lake water temps = extreme temperature contrast of 50 degrees between lake surface and air mass
+ Extreme temperature contrast = more intense lake effect snowfall rates of 3 to 5 inches per hour with 60-plus inch snowfall totals
- Buffalo Belted With Five Feet of Snow; Is Jet Stream Weirdness to Blame? (Weather Underground) [emphasis added]:
If Arctic changes are truly to blame for wacky jet stream behavior, losing the remaining 50 percent of the Arctic sea-ice coverage between now and 2030 will bring even greater antics. If the Arctic is not involved, that is worrisome as well—because that means jet stream changes are due to an unknown mechanism, leaving us with no idea how the jet stream will respond as climate change progresses. Thus, my forecast for the next 15 years: expect the unprecedented.
- It's Official: October 2014 Hottest October on Record:
- Global Analysis - October 2014 (NOAA National Climatic Data Center)
- 2014 Boils Toward Warmest Year Ever with Three More Records Broken (NBC News)
- October 2014 ‘warmest on record’ – NOAA (RTCC)
- 2014 Set for Record Hot; Record Cold Thing of the Past (Climate Central)
- VIDEO: From Hottest October to Coldest November, Is Climate Change Behind the Extreme Weather? (Democracy Now!)
- China Announces Absolute Cap on Coal:
- China sets cap on energy use (Shangai Daily)
- China Will Cap Coal, Plays for Leadership in the New Industrial Revolution (Climate Crocks) [emphasis added]:
The new agreement offers China a way out of the technological cul-de-sac of fossil fuel dependence – the hard physical limits of land, water and agricultural needs, as well as the politically ever-more-destabilizing anger about deadly pollution. And, those leaders, many of whom are technically trained, know that the country where energy is free, renewable, and abundant, will dominate the world in the coming century. China has just accelerated sharply in that direction.
- China To Cap Coal Use By 2020 To Meet Game-Changing Climate, Air Pollution Targets (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
[W]hat the deniers and doubters don’t get is that climate change is going to get more and more painfully obvious in the coming years. Jump head to the early 2020s, and all the nations of the world, including China, will be close to desperate to make even deeper reductions. By the end of the 2020s, the entire world will be desperate.
- The Great Coal Cap: China’s energy policies and the financial implications for thermal coal (Carbon Tracker)
- China coal cap to hit Australian miners (Financial Review)
- China to Place Limit on Coal Use in 2020 (NY Times)
- Obama Announces US$3B for UN Green Climate Fund:(Climate Central)
- Obama, in latest climate move, pledges $3 billion for global fund (Reuters)
- At G20, Obama Leapfrogs Australia’s PM With Call To Action (Climate Progress):
In a side speech over the weekend, Obama not only announced the largest national contribution to the Green Climate Fund to date, $3 billion dollars, but he also called on Australians to look past Abbott and take the future into their own hands.
- UK pledges £720m to climate change fund for poor countries (Guardian UK:
Britain will face a disaster if it adopts an “isolationist approach” to the environment, the energy secretary, Ed Davey, has warned as he announced the UK is to give £720m to an international fund to help poor countries cope with climate change.
- VIDEO: Obama Up Over Climate Denial Down Under (Climate Crocks)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- VIDEO: NASA CO2 Animation Recalls 1859 Account of the Global Flow of this Gas (NYT Dot Earth)
- A New Carbon Tax Bill In The Senate Comes With Both Promise And Problems (Climate Progress):
In a sense, the problem of climate change is incredibly simple: certain people are dumping carbon into the atmosphere, and in the coming decades we will all suffer from the effects of that pollution. That, in turn, suggests a simple fix: make the emitters pay for that damage in the here and now. If they don’t want to pay, they won’t emit.
- Revealed: Keystone company's PR blitz to safeguard ]its backup plan (Guardian UK) [emphasis added]:
Energy East strategy drawn up by public relations firm Edelman calls for thousands of activists, major online campaign and digging into background of opposition groups as methods TransCanada Corporation should use to ‘play offence’ against its detractors.
- Feds charge mining company and executives with criminal pollution in Southwest Alaska (Alaska Dispatch News):
An Australian-led mining company owned by an offshore corporation and five of its top officials and employees conspired to dump waste from a platinum mine into a Southwest Alaska salmon river, a federal indictment handed up Tuesday alleges. Four of the officials with XS Platinum Inc. also falsified records to hide what they did, and all five knowingly allowed polluted water to be discharged, the charges say. None of those charged lived in Alaska.
- World Needs to Mind the Carbon Emissions Gap (Climate Central):
“This is not a policy conclusion, this is just doing the math,” Joseph Alcamo, chief scientist of the report, said. “By 2030 we will have to turn the corner on global emissions so that we should have global emissions roughly 20-30 percent lower than they are (projected) now. That’s a telling message from the science community that business-as-usual is not an option.”
- VIDEO: San Diego Approves $3.5B Recycled Water Project (NBC San Diego):
With drought relief in California a long way off, San Diegans are now getting a giant step closer to a more reliable, long-term water supply. By a 9-0 vote Tuesday, the City Council approved a long-envisioned sewage purification system that'll crank out water you can drink.
- World Not Close To Avoiding Dangerous Warming, UN Report Finds (Huiffington Post Green):
The world still isn't close to preventing what leaders call a dangerous level of man-made warming, a new United Nations report says. That's despite some nations' recent pledges to cut back on carbon dioxide emissions.
- US Farmers Set To Get Huge Government Payouts Despite Bumper Harvest (Reuters):
U.S. farmers are about to reap a bumper harvest not just in corn and soybeans but also in new subsidies that could soar to $10 billion, blowing a hole in the government's promise that its new five-year farm bill would save taxpayers money.
- Washington State To Sue Federal Government Over Nuclear Site Vapors (Reuters):
Washington state's attorney general said on Wednesday he intends to sue the U.S. government for not adequately protecting workers involved in the decades-long cleanup of a decommissioned nuclear site, saying dozens have been sickened by toxic vapors.
- NPR investigation: Injuries and violations continue at coal mines that owe millions in fines (Coal Tattoo, Charleston Gazette)
- Edelman's TransCanada Astroturf Docs Expose Oil Industry PR Attack (DeSmogBlog):
Documents obtained by Greenpeace detail a desperate astroturf PR strategy designed by Edelman for TransCanada to win public support for its Energy East tar sands export pipeline. TransCanada has failed for years to win approval of the controversial border-crossing Keystone XL pipeline, so apparently the company has decided to 'win ugly or lose pretty' with an aggressive public relations attack on its opponents.
- Pope Francis: "Unbridled consumerism" will have destructive consequences for the planet (Salon) [emphasis added]:
Free market fundamentalism poses a grave threat to both economic security and the health of the planet, Pope Francis warns in a letter to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, the host of this weekend's Group of 20 leaders' summit in Brisbane.
- How to stop global warming, in 7 steps (Vox.com) [emphasis added]:
5) Cutting emissions will cost us - but so will global warming... Economic modeling suggests that this would shave 0.06 percentage points off global economic growth each year....The world would still get richer over time, but at a somewhat slower rate.
FOR MORE on Climate Science and Climate Change, go to our Green News Report: Essential Background Page
- Video Proof That Global Warming is a 'Hoax'!: NASA Temperature Data 1888-2011 (The BRAD BLOG):
- NASA climate change video: This is the U.S. in 2100 (NASA).