IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Koch Brothers claim they are environmental stewards; New legislation to stop all fossil fuel extraction on federal public lands; More bad news for Volkswagen; PLUS: US State Department rejects TransCanada's request to hit 'pause' on the Keystone XL pipeline... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): The harm Exxon Mobil has done; NASA found a way to track ocean currents from space. What they saw is troubling; Scientists confirm their fears about West Antarctica - that it's inherently unstable; 50 Years After Warning, No Debate in Paris on the Science; Fracking: EPA Finding of No 'Widespread, Systemic' Problems Under Fire; Is the USDA Silencing Scientists?... PLUS: Powerful 'Gene Drive' Can Quickly Change An Entire Species... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- State Department Rejects Transcanada Request to 'Suspend' Keystone XL Pipeline:
- VIDEO: U.S. State Department Briefing Nov 4 2015 (State Dept.gov)
- U.S. rejects TransCanada request to suspend Keystone review (Bloomberg):
“We’ve told TransCanada that the review process will continue,” State Department spokesman John Kirby told reporters in Washington Wednesday... He said Secretary of State John Kerry wanted to finish work on the review after “all that has gone into it.”
- TransCanada asks to suspend U.S. permit application for Keystone XL pipeline, putting project in limbo (Omaha World-Herald)
- Response to TransCanada request for suspension of Keystone XL application (Oil Change International):
Bottom line: the Keystone XL pipeline has been defeated by the movement with an assist from the markets - it only remains for the President to reject the permit and call an end to this.
- 'Keep It in the Ground Bill': Stop All Fossil Fuel Extraction On Federal Public Lands:
- VIDEO: Sen. Merkley Press Conference: Keep fossil fuels in the Ground (Sen. Jeff Merkley YouTube Channel)
- New Bill Would Keep Fossil Fuel Reserves On Public Lands In The Ground (Climate Progress) [emphasis added]:
"This bill is about recognizing that the fossil fuel reserves that are on our public lands should be managed in the public interest, and the public interest is for us to help drive a transition from fossil fuels to a clean energy future," Merkley said on a press call Tuesday. "We don't have a lot of time to do this, so there's an urgency to it, and a place that's readily available for us to act is on the fossil fuels that are on our public lands."
- Bernie Sanders and Jeff Merkley have a new bill to leave fossil fuels in the ground (Vox.com) [empahasis added]:
As I wrote last week in a post on supply-side climate policy ... there isn't much of it so far....few have been willing to choke off fossil fuel extraction as an explicit strategy for addressing global warming. These projects tend to have extremely vocal constituencies, making them a bit of a political third rail.
- Meeting two degree climate target means 80 per cent of world's coal is "unburnable", study says (Carbon Brief):
That vast amounts of fossil fuels must go unused if we're to keep warming in check isn't a new idea. What's novel about today's paper is that it pinpoints how much fuel is unburnable in specific regions of the world, from Canadian tar sands to the oil-rich Middle East.
- Bernie Sanders backs new climate plan to curb US fossil fuel extraction (Guardian UK):
Senator co-sponsors Keep it in the Ground Act in bid to ban all new fossil fuel leases on public lands, something activists view as a gap in Obama's climate plan
- More Bad News For Volkswagen:
- EPA, California Notify Volkswagen of Additional Clean Air Act Violations (EPA.gov)
- VW Reveals It Misstated Emissions of Gas Cars (NY Times):
[T]he company said it had understated emissions of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, for about 800,000 of its vehicles sold in Europe, and overstated the cars' fuel economy....The latest problem will force the company to incur an estimated 2 billion euros, or about $2.2 billion, in possible financial penalties, a spokesman said, because of tax breaks granted in Europe on cars with low carbon dioxide emissions.
- Volkswagen’s Emissions-Testing Scandal Widens (Wall St. Journal):
Tuesday’s disclosure is the first to involve the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, which has been a focus of both European and U.S. authorities over the past decade.
- VW emission scandal threatens Porsche (CNN Money)
- Porsche will stop selling certain models of its best-selling SUV because of Volkswagen's emissions scandal (Business Insider)
- Big Polluter and Billionaire Charles Koch Claims "Environmental Protector" Mantle:
- VIDEO: Most "Environmentally Protective": MSNBC Hosts Also Don't Ask Koch About His Climate Denial Despite His Professed Devotion To "Scientific Method" (Media Matters) [emphasis added]:
"[A] good profit is profit that becomes[sic] from contributing to society, from helping other people improve their lives. And for a business, this means producing products and services that your customers value more than the alternatives while more efficiently using resources and being among the safest and environmentally protective producer."
- Bombshell Report on “The Koch Method”: How to Steal, Cheat and Lie Your Way to the Top (Climate Progress, 10/4/2011) [emphasis added]:
As we’ve detailed numerous times on this site, the company has been a leading backer of sham studies, fake front-groups and television attack ads against environmental regulations, renewable energy promotion and carbon-reduction policies.
- Koch Brothers Flout Law Getting Richer With Iran Sales (Bloomberg, 10/3/2011) [emphasis added]:
For six decades around the world, Koch Industries has blazed a path to riches — in part, by making illicit payments to win contracts, trading with a terrorist state, fixing prices, neglecting safety and ignoring environmental regulations....Koch Industries units have also rigged prices with competitors, lied to regulators and repeatedly run afoul of environmental regulations, resulting in five criminal convictions since 1999 in the U.S. and Canada.
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- The harm Exxon Mobil has done (Op-ed, The Hill):
It may be hard to accept, but a single company may have set back all of humanity.
- NASA found a way to track ocean currents from space. What they saw is troubling (Washington Post):
There has been growing concern, of late, that one predicted consequence of a changing climate — the slowing of the great “overturning” circulation in the Atlantic Ocean — is already starting to happen.
- Scientists confirm their fears about West Antarctica - that it's inherently unstable (Washington Post) [emphasis added]:
The urgency may now increase further in light of just published research suggesting that destabilization of the Amundsen sea's glaciers would indeed undermine the entirety of West Antarctica, as has long been feared...."The result of this study is an if-then statement, saying that if the Amundsen Sea Sector is destabilized, then the entire marine part of West Antarctica will be discharged into the ocean."
- 50 Years After Warning, No Debate in Paris on the Science (Climate Central):
Diplomats steeling themselves for a historic round of United Nations climate negotiations remain divided by a handful of stubborn disputes. Discord persists over financial and procedural issues, for example, and over how pollution from farming and deforestation should be addressed alongside energy generation. The fundamentals of climate science, however, are not among the issues being debated.
- Fracking: EPA Finding of No 'Widespread, Systemic' Problems Under Fire (E&E Wire):
U.S. EPA's science advisers are criticizing the agency's June announcement dismissing the dangers to drinking water from hydraulic fracturing.
- Powerful 'Gene Drive' Can Quickly Change An Entire Species (NPR):
A new discovery in genetic engineering seems to have profound potential for good or bad consequences. Changes can be made to an organism which will propagate through an entire species.
- Is the USDA Silencing Scientists? (The Atlantic):
“There's a message: If you want to prosper, don't make waves.”
- Risks of Fire, Nuclear Waste, Stoke Fears of St. Louis Co. Landfills (NPR):
Imagine you are a parent, and that out of the blue, you get a letter from your child's school telling you not to worry — that they're ready to evacuate or shelter in place if an underground fire at a nearby landfill reaches radioactive waste on the same property.
- U.S. States, Cities Seek To Defend Obama's Carbon Rule in Court (Reuters):
More than two dozen U.S. states and cities asked a federal court Tuesday to let them help defend the Obama administration's carbon emissions reduction plan from legal challenges being brought by other states.
- Federal Judge Tosses Out BLM Approval of Nev.'s Largest Project (Greenwire):
A federal judge in Nevada has thrown out the Obama administration's approval of what was projected to be the Silver State's largest wind power project, ruling that the Interior Department did not properly evaluate potential impacts to golden eagles and Mojave Desert tortoises.
- Trans Pacific Partnership Trade Agreement Text Released (Fairfax Media):
The text of the controversial Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal has been released by the New Zealand Government, setting the scene for revived protests and political debate.
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).