With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 12/23/2014, 12:05pm PT  

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IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: 2014 on track for hottest year on record; Washington state governor proposes a carbon cap and trade system; Plastic trash pollution in the oceans worse than previously known; PLUS: Innovative solar energy breakthrough out of Australia... All that and more in our last Green News Report of the year!

Listen online here, or Download MP3 (6 mins)...


Got comments, tips, love letters, hate mail? Drop us a line at GreenNews@BradBlog.com or right here at the comments link below. All GNRs are always archived at GreenNews.BradBlog.com.

IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): EPA issues new rules for toxic coal ash waste; Measuring the true cost of coal; Insane impacts of factory farming; NDAA giveaways include increasing fracking on public lands; US power grid needs $2.1 trillion investment; Texas weakens chemical exposure guidelines; Most U.S. coastal cities to see 'nuisance flooding'; Autism again linked to air pollution exposure in pregnancy... PLUS: What Might Have Been - Al Gore on climate change in 1983... and much, MUCH more! ...


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

  • Video: What Might Have Been - Al Gore on Climate Change in 1983 (Climate Crocks):
    This is what a visionary looks like. No wonder deniers hate him. If Gore’s been right for 30 years – then what are they?
  • E.P.A. Issues Rules on Disposal of Coal Ash to Protect Water Supply (NY Times):
    The E.P.A. declined to designate coal ash a hazardous material, but said power plants would have to meet certain minimum structural standards for landfills and disposal ponds, and monitor them for leaks. If a breach is discovered, it will be the utility company’s responsibility to reinforce or close the pond. New ponds and landfills will have to be lined to provide a barrier against leaks. Controls must be used to prevent people from breathing in coal ash dust.
  • US Not Fully Prepared for Nuclear Terrorist Attack - Or Any Large-Scale Natural Disaster (AP):
    The federal government isn't fully prepared to handle a nuclear terrorist attack or large-scale natural catastrophe, lacking effective coordination, and in some cases is years away from ensuring adequate emergency shelter and medical treatment, congressional investigators have found.
  • The True Cost of Turning on the Lights (Huffington Post Green):
    Coal ash is toxic as a bad marriage, but here's the irony: there are almost no regulations on its disposal, so power plants, which are generally on rivers, largely dump it in a series of giant pits, in incomprehensible quantities, where the rain leaches the toxics down into the groundwater.
  • The insane impacts of factory farming: (George Monbiot) [emphasis added]:
    Animals selected for obesity cause obesity. Bred to bulge, scarcely able to move, overfed, factory farmed chickens now contain almost three times as much fat as chickens did in 1970, and just two thirds of the protein. Stalled pigs and feedlot cattle have undergone a similar transformation. Meat production? No, this is fat production....Meat is bad news, in almost all circumstances.
  • Not Just Public Lands: NDAA Defense Authorization Bill Also Incentivizes Fracked Gas Vehicles (DeSmog Blog):
    A follow-up probe reveals that the public lands giveaway was not the only sweetheart deal the industry got out of the pork barrel bill. The NDAA also included a provision that opened the floodgates for natural gas vehicles (NGVs) in the U.S.—cars that would largely be fueled by gas obtained via fracking.
  • US Power Sector Needs $2.1 Trillion in Investment by 2035, Says IEA (GreenTech Media):
    The report leans heavily on data collected for IEA’s 2014 World Energy Outlook, released last month, which called for a redistribution of government subsidies from fossil fuels to green energy. In its U.S.-specific analysis, the agency finds the country in a “strong position to deliver a reliable, affordable and environmentally sustainable energy system,” largely due to its boom in “unconventional” natural gas and oil resources.
  • Birds Are Avoiding Offshore Wind Farms, Study Finds (Climate Progress):
    A new report by a leading bird research institute in the U.K. found that over 99 percent of seabirds were likely to alter their flight paths in order to avoid collision with offshore wind farms.
  • Texas Weakens Chemical Exposure Guidelines, Opens Door for Polluters (Center for Public Integrity) [emphasis added]:
    In 2007, Texas regulators quietly relaxed the state’s long-term air pollution guideline for benzene, one of the world’s most toxic and thoroughly studied chemicals. The number they came up with, still in effect, was 40 percent weaker, or less health-protective, than the old one.
  • Most Of Coastal US Will See Flooding Due To Sea Level Rise, NOAA Says (Huffington Post Green):
    Most coastal regions of the United States will see 30 or more days of flooding by 2050 thanks to sea level rise, according to new research the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released Thursday.
  • Air Pollution Exposure in Pregnancy Linked to Autism in Study (BusinessWeek):
    Women who are exposed to high levels of air pollution during their third trimester of pregnancy may be twice as likely to have an autistic child, a study found.
  • Heart Experts Warn of Air Pollution Dangers (Reuters)
    Air pollution should be one of the avoidable heart risk factors - just like smoking and excess fat - that doctors warn patients to steer clear of, according to a new statement from 20 heart experts.
  • The People Have Spoken: This Is The Most Brazen Lie Of 2014 (Climate Progress):
    Earlier this year, readers of the Tampa Bay Times’ fact-checking project PolitiFact were asked to vote on what they believe was the year’s biggest lie. And as of Wednesday, the results are in: “Climate change is a hoax” was the overwhelming choice.

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

  • Skeptical Science: Database with FULL DEBUNKING of ALL Climate Science Denier Myths
  • 4 Scenarios Show What Climate Change Will Do To The Earth, From Pretty Bad To Disaster (Fast CoExist):
    But exactly how bad is still an open question, and a lot depends not only on how we react, but how quickly. The rate at which humans cut down on greenhouse gas emissions--if we do choose to cut them--will have a large bearing on how the world turns out by 2100, the forecasts reveal.
  • How to Solve Global Warming: It's the Energy Supply (Scientific American):
    Restraining global warming to no more than 2 degrees Celsius will require changing how the world produces and uses energy to power its cities and factories, heats and cools buildings, as well as moves people and goods in airplanes, trains, cars, ships and trucks, according to the IPCC. Changes are required not just in technology, but also in people's behavior.
  • Warning: Even in the best-case scenario, climate change will kick our asses (Grist)
  • NASA Video: Warming over the last 130 years, and into the next 100 years:
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