IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Fox 'News' finally finds reason to 'care' about the environment; Hillary Clinton draws a bright green line around Arctic drilling; EPA tells oil and gas industry to cut the methane; Islamic leaders call on Muslims worldwide to act on climate change; PLUS: Water contamination in America's rivers and streams is creating intersex fish... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Three firefighters killed battling Washington State wildfire; 10 years after Katrina, Obama to visit a safer New Orleans; World's largest air purifier aims to create 'Smog Free Parks'; Oil price slump dampens desire for drilling leases on public lands; Groundwater pumping is sinking CA land; Oklahoma breaks record for earthquakes set just last year... PLUS: For Latinos, environment is as big an issue as immigration... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Hillary Breaks With Obama Over Arctic Drilling:
- Untouchable: The Climate Case Against Arctic Drilling (Oil Change International) [emphasis added]:
While the Obama Administration has been clear on its commitment to climate action, they continue to allow companies like Royal Dutch Shell to sink billions of dollars in the hunt for unburnable carbon in the U.S. Arctic Ocean off the coast of Alaska. This report lays bare the case that Arctic oil is wholly irreconcilable with stated national and international objectives to address climate change. Put very simply: Arctic oil fails the climate test.
- Obama To Visit Alaska, But Enviros Cry Foul Over Arctic Drilling (Huffiington Post Green):
Environmentalists say drilling for oil in the Arctic while pledging to save it is "deeply hypocritical."
- EPA Proposes New Standards to Cut Methane Emissions:
- U.S. EPA Proposes Methane Emission Standards for Oil And Gas Industry (Reuters):
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday proposed new standards to cut greenhouse gas emissions and volatile organic compounds from oil and gas facilities, a key part of a broader strategy to cut methane emissions in the sector by 40 to 45 percent below 2012 levels in the next ten years.
- E.P.A. Announces New Rules to Cut Methane Emissions (NY Times_
- EPA Rules Aspire To Slash Oil Industry Methane Emissions (NPR)
- USGS: Bee-Killing Pesticides Found in Half of Nation's Waterways:
- Insecticides Similar to Nicotine Found in about Half of Sampled Streams across the United States (U.S. Geological Survey)
- The U.S. Geological Survey Found This Widely-Used Pesticide In Half Of Their Stream Samples (Climate Progress):
The results from the first national-scale investigation looking at the environmental prevalence of a controversial and widely used pesticide are in, and they’re pretty stunning: a little more than half of the streams sampled by the United States Geological Survey contained neonicotinoids, a class of insecticides that has been closely examined for its potential impact on key pollinators like honeybees.
- Insecticide that may be threat to honeybees found in many streams
- Intersex Fish Found in North Carolina Rivers:
- Male fish in North Carolina rivers found to have female parts (Environmental Health News):
North Carolina State University researchers tested 20 streams and rivers throughout North Carolina during the 2012 spawning season for contaminants known to disrupt endocrine systems, such as industrial chemicals and pesticides....More than 60 percent of the 81 black bass tested intersex, while 10 percent of the 185 sunfish were intersex.
- 'Islamic Climate Declaration' Calls Action On Climate Change 'Religious Duty':
- VIDEO: Islamic Leaders Take on Climate Change, Criticizing "Relentless Pursuit of Economic Growth (Democracy Now!)
- Islamic Declaration on Global Climate Change (Islamic Climate Declaration):
Our species, though selected to be a caretaker or steward (khalifah) on the earth, has been the cause of such corruption and devastation on it that we are in danger ending life as we know it on our planet,” the statement read. “Excessive pollution from fossil fuels threatens to destroy the gifts bestowed on us by God, whom we know as Allah –- gifts such as a functioning climate, healthy air to breathe, regular seasons, and living oceans....What will future generations say of us, who leave them a degraded planet as our legacy? How will we face our Lord and Creator?
- Islamic Leaders Call For Phasing Out Global Fossil Fuels (Climate Progress):
Islamic leaders from 20 countries have unveiled a sweeping new declaration on climate change, calling on their fellow Muslims to care for the planet and asking world leaders to phase out their use of fossil fuels.
- Islamic leaders issue bold call for rapid phase out of fossil fuels (Guardian UK):
Religious scholars, experts and teachers from around the world unite to make emotive declaration on climate change ahead of crucial Paris summit.
- Islamic climate declaration converts religious principles into greener practice (The Conversation)
- Pope Francis Declares Sept. 1 'Day of Prayer for Creation':
- Pope Francis Declares A World Day Of Prayer For The Environment (Guardian UKt):
“The celebration of this day, on the same date as the Orthodox Church, will be a valuable opportunity to bear witness to our growing communion with our Orthodox brothers and sisters,” the Pope said. “We live at a time when all Christians are faced with the same decisive challenges, to which we must respond together, in order to be more credible and effective.”
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- Three Firefighters Killed Battling Washington State Wildfire (Reuters):
Three firefighters in Washington state were killed and four injured while battling a wildfire threatening the town of Twisp, officials said on Wednesday, as more than a dozen major blazes burned in parched Western U.S. states.
- 10 Years After Katrina, Obama Will Visit a Much Safer New Orleans (Washington Post):
Ten years ago next week, a terrifying hurricane stood perched atop the Gulf of Mexico. Katrina. It had rapidly intensified from a Category 3 into a deadly Category 5 monster and began its northward turn towards the Gulf coast—weakening, fortunately, but still driving a tremendous wall of water.
- World's largest air purifier aims to create 'Smog Free Parks' in cities around the world (Treehugger):
The Smog Free Tower is said to be able to remove carbon particles from the air, which can then be compressed and turned into jewelry. Fancy a smog ring, anyone?
- Oil Companies Sit on Hands at Auction for Leases (NY Times):
With oil prices collapsing and companies in retrenchment, a federal auction in the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday attracted the lowest interest from producers since 1986.
- Report: Groundwater Pumping in California Has Land Sinking (AP):
Vast areas of California's Central Valley are sinking faster than in the past as massive amounts of groundwater are pumped during the historic drought, state officials said, citing new research by NASA scientists.
- For Latinos, Environment Seems Just As Important As Immigration (NPR):
The poll shows that Latinos place a high priority on the personal effects of climate change, particularly air and water pollution. Eighty-five percent of those surveyed said "reducing smog and air pollution is extremely or very important"; compared with 80 percent for comprehensive immigration reform.
- What's at 'the peak of inflated expectations' now? (MNN):
New technologies run through a cycle of hype, disappointment and then actual usefulness.
- As Oil Prices Keep Tumbling, Frackers Feel the Pain (CS Monitor):
The impact of low oil prices could have long-term consequences for drilling companies. But hydraulic fracturing technology could allow the industry bounce back more quickly, experts say.
- Cyanide in Waters Near China Blast Site 277 Times Acceptable Level (Reuters):
Chinese authorities warned that cyanide levels in the waters around the Tianjin Port explosion site had risen to as much as 277 times acceptable levels although they declared that the city's drinking water was safe.
- Oft-Shaken Oklahoma Tops Last Year's Quake Record (E&E News):
The 585 earthquakes that Oklahoma had in 2014 was a lot. But this year, Oklahoma has had more than that in less than nine months.
- As Seas Rise, Saltwater Plants Offer Hope Farms Will Survive (AP):
On a sun-scorched wasteland near India's southern tip, an unlikely garden filled with spiky shrubs and spindly greens is growing, seemingly against all odds.
- Ex Machina: No Techno-Fix For Irreversible Ocean Collapse From Carbon Pollution (Climate Progress):
The Nature Climate Change study examined what would happen if we continue current CO2 emissions trends through 2050 and then try to remove huge volumes of CO2 from the air after the fact with some techno-fix. The result, as co-author John Schellnhuber, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, put it, is "we will not be able to preserve ocean life as we know it."
- Every country is now pledging to tackle CO2 emissions. It's still not enough. (Vox.com):
In other words, if the world wants to stay below 2°C of global warming - which has long been considered the danger zone for climate change - these pledges are only a first step. Countries will have to do a whole lot more than they're currently promising. And the IEA has a few ideas for what "do a whole lot more" might entail.
1. Increase energy efficiency in the industry, buildings, and transport sectors.
2. Progressively reduce the use of the least efficient coal-fired power plants and banning their construction.
3. Increase investment in renewable energy technologies in the power sector from $270 billion in 2014 to $400 billion in 2030.
4. Gradually phase out fossil fuel subsidies to end-users by 2030.
5. Reduce methane emissions in oil and gas production.
- 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).