IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Climate change-denier Sen. Rand Paul is running for President (and Brad is delighted about it!); Climate denial a looming problem for the GOP; Thawing permafrost a looming problem for the planet; PLUS: Greening the City of Angels: Mayor Garcetti's ambitious sustainability plan for L.A.....All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): The Arctic has melted so much that now people want to race yachts through it; Tea Party hires actors to feign indignation over plan to save Everglades; Plummeting sardine numbers could prompt U.S. West coast fishing ban; New York just quietly raided its climate program for cash; Michael Bloomberg puts up $30m to kill coal; Utility sales may drop by half as homes make their own power... PLUS: VIDEO: Is "Game of Thrones" Cli-Fi... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Most Popular Newsweek Cover of All Time?: Deniers Love 1970s 'Global Cooling' Media Hype:
- AUDIO: Sen. Rand Paul cites Newsweek 'global cooling' cover to deny the science of climate change (StandUP! w/Pete Dominick)
- Climate Change Mea Non Culpa: In 1975, I wrote an article for Newsweek about "global cooling." Climate change deniers have been using it ever since. (Slate)
- Debunking: What were climate scientists predicting in the 1970s? (Skeptical Science)
- Sen. Rand Paul Is Running For President:
- Don't Let Rand Paul Fool You On Climate Change (Climate Progress
- VIDEO: Sen. Rand Paul: Science behind climate change 'not conclusive' (The Hill)
- Sorry Rand Paul, Not Only Is The EPA Carbon Rule Legal, It's Mandated By Law (Climate Progress)
- Rand Paul Is No Moderate on Global Warming (Mother Jones):
The latest GOP presidential candidate is "not sure anybody exactly knows why" the climate is changing.
- Rand Paul: Where he stands on immigration, gay marriage, climate change (San Jose Mercury News)
- Looming Climate Change Denial Problem for the GOP:
- As Climate Denial Implodes, The Record Will Haunt Politicians (Climate Crocks)
- Climate Deniers Officially on the Run (Climate Crocks)
- Most Republicans Say They Back Climate Action, Poll Finds (NY Times)
- Voters want next president to favor climate policies, poll finds (The Hill) [emphasis added]:
Most voters want the next president to favor policies to fight climate change, outnumbering those who want a president who opposes such policies by nearly 2-to-1. The Washington Post-ABC News poll released Friday said that 59 percent want a president who "favors government action to address climate change," compared with 31 percent who want someone who opposes government action.
- Stages of Denial: The various ways GOP presidential hopefuls do not believe in climate change. (Slate)
- Planet Ignores Politics: Good News and Bad News on Permafrost Melt:
- Scientists Predict Gradual, Prolonged Permafrost Greenhouse Gas Emissions (US Geological Survey)
- Study: Climate change and the permafrost carbon feedback (Nature)
- Thawing Permafrost Will 'Seep, Not Explode' CO2 (Climate Central):
"The permafrost carbon is not going to explode into the atmosphere catastrophically within just a few years," Ted Schuur, a permafrost expert at Northern Arizona University, said. "It's more like it will seep out slowly in small amounts in a very large number of places."...Those small emissions, however, will add up...
- Scientists confirm that the Arctic could become a major new source of carbon emissions (Washington Post):
The good news is that the permafrost emissions are "unlikely to occur at a speed that could cause abrupt climate change over a period of a few years to a decade," as the study puts it. The bad news, though, is that 160 gigatons, even though it's less than we're expected to emit from fossil fuels in coming decades, is still a large enough amount to really matter for the planet - especially given the relatively tight carbon budget that we have remaining.
- The Arctic climate threat that nobody's even talking about yet (Washington Post):
More global warming could cause more thawing of Arctic permafrost, leading to more emissions of carbon into the atmosphere, leading to more warming and more thawing of Arctic permafrost - this does not end in a good place.
- Why This New Study On Arctic Permafrost Is So Scary (Climate Progress):
[A]ccording to the research, permafrost thaw could be accelerating permafrost thaw to a "potentially critical" level...."These are permanent emissions," he said. "Once you thaw out that material, there's no way to put that organic matter back into the permafrost … you can't re-freeze the permafrost."
- Los Angeles: Ambitious Plans to Green the City of Angels:
- The Sustainable Plan for LA, aka "pLAn" (Office of Mayor Eric Garcetti)
- LA Mayor Envisions Greener, More Walkable City in the Future (AP) [emphasis added]:
Los Angeles, known for its cars, smog and sprawl, wants to reinvent itself as the home of electric vehicles, solar panels and bicycle paths. Mayor Eric Garcetti on Wednesday unveiled an ambitious plan to make LA the most sustainable big city in the nation over the next two decades, a place where people ride bikes, board buses and trains, and even walk to get around.
- Mayor unveils 'ambitious' plan to make LA greener (So. California Public Radio):
It includes the long-term goals of obtaining half our water from local sources, increasing enough solar generation to power nearly 400,000 homes, diverting the vast majority of waste from landfills, and reducing the number of rent-burdened households by 20 percent. It also pledges to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80 percent by 2050.
- VIDEO: Mayor Eric Garcetti outlines plan to make Los Angeles more sustainable (ABC7 Los Angeles)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- The Arctic has melted so much that now people want to race yachts through it (Washington Post):
"The more ice that's being melted, the more free water is there for us to be sailing," says Robert Molnar, a lifelong sailor, entrepreneur, and the founder and CEO of the race. "Normally we should not be able to do that, but we can."
- Tea Party hires actors to feign indignation over plan to save Everglades (Grist):
Making a living as an actor in Florida must be hard. The state - best known for sinkholes, alligators, and idiotic criminals - is not exactly a capital of theater, film, or television. So you can't really blame the actors who took $75 from a local Tea Party chapter and sugar conglomerate in West Palm Beach to pretend to be protesters.
- VIDEO: Is "Game of Thrones" Cli-Fi? (Climate Crocks):
Part of the fascination is examining a fictional society so completely involved in struggles for power, wealth, ego, and influence, that it ignores an impending existential threat. Are we Westoros?
- VIDEO: The President Discusses Climate Change and Public Health (Climate Crocks)
- Plummeting sardine numbers could prompt U.S. West coast fishing ban (Reuters):
Decimated by overfishing, sardine numbers in U.S. waters have dropped by about 90 percent in less than a decade, estimates the council, which regulates fishing within 200 miles of the California, Oregon and Washington coasts.
- ALEC Doesn't Want To Be Known As A 'Climate Denier' Organization Anymore, And It's Willing To Sue (Climate Progress):
Common Cause points out that in citing 1998 model legislation acknowledging that "human activity has and will continue to alter the atmosphere of the planet," which "may lead to demonstrable changes in climate," in its letter, ALEC is omitting key sections of the legislation, including that "such activity may lead to deleterious, neutral, or possibly beneficial climatic changes," and "a great deal of scientific uncertainty surrounds the nature of these prospective changes, and the cost of regulation to inhibit such changes may lead to great economic dislocation."
- New York Just Quietly Raided Its Climate Program For Cash. It Might Destroy The Entire Effort. (Climate Progress):
Will New York's budget threaten Obama's climate agenda?
- Michael Bloomberg Throws Another $30 Million at Sierra Club's Anti-Coal Campaign (National Journal):
Billionaire philanthropist Michael Bloomberg is providing the Sierra Club a major cash infusion-$30 million-as the big green group wages war against coal-fired power, the largest industrial source of carbon emissions.
- California board approves emergency drought rules for toilets, faucets sold after Jan. 1 (Sacramento Bee):
Faucets, toilets and urinals sold after Jan. 1 will have to use much less water under emergency drought regulations approved Wednesday by the California Energy Commission.
- Utility Sales May Drop by Half as Homes Make Their Own Power (Bloomberg):
Utilities in the U.S. Northeast stand to lose as much as half of residential sales by 2030 as customers install solar and battery-storage systems and generate their own power, according to a report by the Rocky Mountain Institute.
- Funding for Promising Hurricane Forecast Improvement Program Slashed (Washington Post):
NOAA has slashed by more than two-thirds the budget for a National Weather Service program that has led to groundbreaking improvements in hurricane forecasts and that is on the brink of more. James Franklin, a manager at the National Hurricane Center, made this revelation in a presentation at the National Hurricane Conference in Austin, Texas last week.
- What Are the Most Endangered Rivers in the US? (Live Science):
"For 6 million years, the Colorado River has gathered fresh snowmelt high in the Rocky Mountains and carried that water south for 1,450 miles (2,300 kilometers). It travels over falls and rapids, through deserts and canyons, all the while providing water to 35 million people and thousands of acres of farmland. But today the river is at risk.
- VIDEO: When Cronkite Warned America About Global Warming: The Way It Was, 35 Years Ago Today (The BRAD BLOG)
- California's water footprint is 90% food-related, and most is imported (The Pacific Institute)
- Rate Of Climate Change To Soar By 2020s, With Arctic Warming 1°F Per Decade (Climate Progress):
New research from a major national lab projects that the rate of climate change, which has risen sharply in recent decades, will soar by the 2020s. This worrisome projection - which has implications for extreme weather, sea level rise, and permafrost melt - is consistent with several recent studies.
- 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.
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).