With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
By Desi Doyen on 2/17/2015, 3:25pm PT  

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IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Another day, another oil train explosion - make that two; Schizophrenic extreme weather pounds the U.S.; U.S. Southwest about to get a lot drier; PLUS: Ohio bans local fracking bans.... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

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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): Shell CEO calls for 'balanced' discussion on climate change; Proliferation of chemicals linked to rise in neurological disorders; Water taps start to run dry in Brazil's largest city; BC First Nations reject another pipeline across their lands; How the White House walked away from 'clean coal'; EPA targeted after preliminary 'veto' of Pebble Mine; Uncertain future for damaged nuclear waste repository; Judge dismisses levee lawsuit against oil and gas industry... PLUS: "More research" into geo-engineering is not such a hot idea... and much, MUCH more! ...


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

  • "More research" into geoengineering is not such a hot idea (Grist):
    Regarding albedo modification, I cannot improve on the piquant words of environmental scientist Raymond T. Pierrehumbert: "the idea of 'fixing' the climate by hacking the Earth's reflection of sunlight is wildly, utterly, howlingly barking mad."
    If it's crazy today, it would be crazy tomorrow, so why not just abandon it?
  • Shell Shocked: Now That Shell's Losing, Big Oil Boss Calls for 'Balanced' Discussion on Climate (The BRAD BLOG):
    Ben van Beurden, the head of Royal Dutch Shell, is apparently a little perturbed by those of us who have marched, called, written and worked for strong action to reduce the carbon pollution that is cooking our planet. Now he's asking for a time-out in the discussion over human-caused climate change, and wants (his version of) sane and reasoned voices --- i.e., the voices of his Big Oil brethren --- to weigh in.
  • What Are We Doing To Our Children’s Brains? (Ensia):
    [S]cientists are also now discovering that chemical compounds common in outdoor air — including components of vehicle exhaust and fine particulate matter — as well as in indoor air and consumer products can also adversely affect brain development, including prenatally.
  • Taps Start to Run Dry in Brazil’s Largest City (NY Times):
    Endowed with the Amazon and other mighty rivers, an array of huge dams and one-eighth of the world’s fresh water, Brazil is sometimes called the “Saudi Arabia of water,” so rich in the coveted resource that some liken it to living above a sea of oil. But in Brazil’s largest and wealthiest city, a more dystopian situation is unfolding: The taps are starting to run dry.
  • Coastal First Nations Call Out 'Eagle Spirit' Pipeline (The Tyee):
    Energy project seen as Northern Gateway alternative rejected by two vital aboriginal alliances.
  • As N.J. Pipeline Network Grows, Safety Is Concern (Bergen Co. Record):
    With more than 1,500 miles of aging natural gas pipelines already crisscrossing New Jersey, and five new projects to expand the network’s capacity being proposed or recently completed, federal authorities are raising concerns about the safety of such pipelines nationwide, especially in densely populated areas.
  • How the White House Walked Away From 'Clean Coal' (Bloomberb):
    A $1 billion Illinois project, meant to be the poster child for coal’s climate-friendly future, gets scuttled.
  • Pebble Mine in Alaska: EPA Becomes Target By Planning for Rare ‘Veto’ (Washington Post):
    Just north of Iliamna Lake in southwestern Alaska is an empty expanse of marsh and shrub that conceals one of the world’s great buried fortunes: A mile-thick layer of virgin ore said to contain at least 6.7 million pounds — or $120 billion worth — of gold.
  • Nuclear Waste Repository’s Future Uncertain, But New Mexico Town Still Believes (Santa Fe New Mexican):
    On Feb. 5, 2014, a truck hauling salt caught fire deep in the maze of tunnels of the federal government’s only underground nuclear waste dump. Thick, black smoke forced an evacuation of workers as it billowed to the surface through exit shafts.
  • Draft Treaty Aims for Fossil-Free Future With Many Pages, Few Answers (InsideClimate News):
    During a week of United Nations climate negotiations in Geneva, the draft of a new treaty got longer and more complex, rather than shorter and simpler as leaders had planned. That may nonetheless represent progress, according to participants and environmentalists.
  • Judge Dismissses Wetlands Damage Suit Against Oil, Gas Companies (New Orleans Times-Picayune):
    "A federal judge dismissed a controversial wetlands damage lawsuit filed by the east bank levee authority against more than 80 oil, gas and pipeline companies, ruling that the authority failed to make a valid claim against the energy firms.
  • State Department Hunkers in Secrecy Bunker over Keystone XL (Society of Environmental Journalists):
    Is the State Department review of whether to permit the Keystone XL pipeline transparent? Not at all. State spokesperson Jen Psaki stiff-armed the Associated Press' Matt Lee February 3, 2015, when he asked whether all eight agencies invited to comment had done so. This from the administration President Obama had pledged on his first day in office would be "the most open and transparent in history."
  • Now's Your Chance to Help Save the Imperiled Monarch Butterfly-and Get Paid to Do So (Take Part) [emphasis added]:
    Another threat, according to Grant, has been well-intentioned individuals who have planted a tropical form of milkweed, which competes with native varieties and is not beneficial to monarchs or other pollinators.
  • Anti-'Geoengineering' National Academy Report Opposes 'Climate-Altering Deployment' (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
    The U.S. National Academy of Sciences has released two very pessimistic reports on geoengineering. Well, actually the reports are on "climate intervention," because the Academy panel rejects the widely used term "geoengineering." Why? Because "we felt 'engineering' implied a level of control that is illusory," explained Dr. Marcia McNutt who led the report committee. The word "intervention" makes it clearer that the "precise outcome" could not be known in advance.
  • It's Not Too Late To Stop Climate Change, And It'll Be Super-Cheap (Climate Progress):
    I rarely disagree with Dave Roberts. But he has a column on Grist, "We can solve climate change, but it won't be cheap or easy," that is wrong, pure and simple....The most important climate issue is the cost and consequences of inaction.

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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