IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: House Republicans double-down in their ongoing war against climate scientists; October 2015 was the hottest October on record; Taxpayers subsidize fossil fuels to the tune of $500 billion a year; UK to phase out coal; PLUS: Canada's new prime minister kills another tar sands pipeline... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): GOP Senators Vow To Block Climate Aid, Scrutinize Paris Deal; Statoil to Depart Chukchi Sea; Latest to Drop Alaska Efforts; Wastewater Spills Untracked in Texas, Masking Pollution; Yellowstone Proposes Killing Off 1,000 Bison From Famed Herd; Polar Bear Numbers To Fall as Arctic Ice Shrinks: Study; Congress To Vote on Bill To Ban Microbead Hygiene Products in US... PLUS: French Climate March Ban Draws Criticism ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- October 2015 was the hottest October on record:
- Global Temperatures Continue To Surge In Record-Breaking October (Climate Progress):
How hot was October globally? It was not merely the hottest October — by far — in the 135-year temperature record of NASA (see chart above). Or the hottest October — by far — in the 125-year temperature record of the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA)...It was the highest anomaly — the highest divergence from the mean temperature — ever recorded in the 1,600-month temperature record of NASA.
- October heat record smashed by 'incredible amount' (CBC) [emphasis added]:
'This year is going to be an all-time record-breaker,' researcher predicts...Blunden and other scientists blame a potent and strengthening El Nino on top of accelerating man-made global warming. "This is just a new normal," Blunden said. "I don't know what really else to call it."
- October 2015: Earth's Warmest Month on Record by a Huge Margin (Weather Underground)
- 2015 Most Intense El Nino On Record:
- One Graph Shows El Niño’s New Record (Climate central):
This year’s El Niño officially climbed to the top of the record books (at least by one measure). Weekly data published by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows that the region of the Pacific generally used to gauge El Niño’s strength has officially surpassed the 1997-98 super El Niño in terms of warmth.
- Rep. Lamar Smith: Enemy #1 Against U.S. Scientific Research:
- AUDIO: 'Worse Than Benghazi': New McCarthyism in the U.S. House Science Comm.: 'BradCast' 11/5/2015 (The BRAD BLOG)
- Climate study spat escalates as Smith presses for interviews (E&E News):
The clash between the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) over a global warming study continued this week, with Smith accusing the agency of "publicizing" his demand for the internal emails of agency scientists and officials.
- The House science committee is worse than the Benghazi committee (David Roberts, Vox.com):
The science committee's modus operandi is similar to the Benghazi committee's — sweeping, catchall investigations, with no specific allegations of wrongdoing or clear rationale, searching through private documents for out-of-context bits and pieces to leak to the press, hoping to gain short-term political advantage — but it stands to do more lasting long-term damage...No one knows what Smith and his staffers are looking for, because they won't say.
- NOAA Pushes Back on Chairman Smith’s Claims on Climate Science Paper (Union of Concerned Scientists)
- NOAA climate feud: Pursuit of scientific truth vs. public accountability (Washington Post):
Smith believes this information, showing the researchers deliberative process, will prove that they altered data to fit President Obama’s climate agenda when they refuted claims in a peer-reviewed study in the journal Science that global warming had “paused” or slowed over the last decade.
- Lamar Smith: #1 Enemy of Science (Open Mind) [emphasis added]:
The truth is obvious: Lamar Smith is so deeply in denial of climate science, and so committed to protect the billionaires behind the fossil-fuel industry, that he’ll do anything to attack the science, including attacking the scientists. All the data are already publically available, the research was published in a peer-reviewed journal, all the methods applied and results obtained are plain to see, but that’s not good enough for Lamar Smith — he also wants all the e-mails sent by all the scientists so he can go digging for anything that he can take out of context in order to smear them.
- G20 Goverments Lavish Fossil Fuel Industry with Billions in Public Subsidies:
- Fossil Fuel Subsidies: Overview (Oil Change International)
- Empty Promises: G20 subsidies to oil, gas and coal production [PDF] (Oil Change International)
- Time to act: G20 fails to move on fossil fuel subsidies promise (again) (Oil Change International)
- Here’s How Much The World’s Biggest Economies Spend On Fossil Fuel Subsidies (Climate Progress):
Despite pledging to end fossil fuel subsidies in 2009, G20 countries spent a combined average of $452 billion on fossil fuels in 2013 and 2014, through a mix of direct spending, tax breaks, investments by majority-state owned companies, and public finance from government-owned banks and financial institutions. According to the report, that’s more than four times the amount given to renewables in 2013.
- UK becomes only G7 country to increase fossil fuel subsidies (Guardian UK) [emphasis added]:
Tory government is giving billions in ever increasing handouts to oil and gas majors at the same time as cutting support for clean energy, report reveals...The US provided more than $20bn a year in national subsidies alone and, in Alaska, a key production subsidy is set to pay out $442m more of taxpayers’ money than it will raise in 2015 and 2016.
- UK to Phase-Out Coal by 2025:
- VIDEO: UK's coal plants to be phased out within 10 years (BBC) [emphasis added]:
The UK's remaining coal-fired power stations will be shut by 2025 with their use restricted by 2023, Energy Secretary Amber Rudd has proposed. Ms Rudd wants more gas-fired stations to be built since relying on "polluting" coal is "perverse"....If coal power plants are able to install carbon capture and storage (CCS) before 2025, they would not be closed....The government was criticised earlier this year for cutting renewable energy subsidies.
- UK coal plants must close by 2025, Amber Rudd announces (Telegraph UK):
Energy secretary says it is imperative that Britain builds new gas-fired power plants to replace polluting coal plants.
- UK will shut down all coal power plants by 2025 (Ars Technica) [emphasis added]:
Government also putting more taxpayer money into fossil fuel subsidies.
- Canada's Trudeau Shuts Out Northern Gateway Pipeline:
- Northern Gateway pipeline believed dead as Canada moves to ban oil tankers off B.C. coast (Vancouver Sun)
- Canada’s Trudeau Orders Tanker Ban on B.C. North Coast (Environment News Service):
Canada’s new Prime Minister Justin Trudeau today instructed his incoming cabinet members to work together to 'formalize a moratorium on crude oil tanker traffic on British Columbia’s north coast.'
- Crude oil tanker ban for B.C.'s North Coast ordered by Trudeau (CBC):
Environmental group suggests moratorium would kill pipeline proposed from Alberta to Kitimat B.C.
- Forget tankers and pipelines, David Black has a plan for a ‘West Coast exit’ for Canada’s oil (Financial Post)
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
- GOP Senators Vow To Block Climate Aid, Scrutinize Paris Deal (Reuters):
U.S. Senate Republicans on Wednesday said Congress would not approve the Obama administration's $500 million request for its first payment into a United Nations climate fund, a move they said would undermine the upcoming climate change summit in Paris.
- Statoil to Depart Chukchi Sea; Latest to Drop Alaska Efforts (NY Times):
The Norwegian oil company Statoil said on Tuesday that it would pull out of the Chukchi Sea off Alaska, just weeks after Royal Dutch Shell abandoned the treacherous waters there after spending billions of dollars on oil exploration work.
- French Climate March Ban Draws Criticism (NY Times):
Climate activists have reacted with dismay to the French government's decision to ban two scheduled mass marches across Paris and other French cities during crucial global climate change talks later this month.
- Wastewater Spills Untracked in Texas, Masking Pollution (E&E Wire):
It took decades for the stand of hardwood trees near Lake Texoma to grow tall. It took less than a day for 3,000 gallons of drilling wastewater to destroy them.
- Yellowstone Proposes Killing Off 1,000 Bison From Famed Herd (Reuters):
Yellowstone National Park is proposing to reduce its celebrated bison herd by 1,000 animals this winter by rounding up those wandering into adjacent Montana and delivering them to Native American tribes for slaughter, officials said on Wednesday.
- Polar Bear Numbers To Fall as Arctic Ice Shrinks: Study (Reuters):
Polar bear populations are likely to fall by more than 30 percent by around mid-century as global warming thaws Arctic sea ice, experts said on Thursday in the most detailed review of the predators to date.
- Congress To Vote on Bill To Ban Microbead Hygiene Products in US (Guardian UK):
House committee unanimously approves proposed legislation to phase out such personal care products, whose exfoliants can end up in rivers and lakes.
- Ethiopia To Buy More Wheat To Avert Drought Crisis (Thomson Reuters Foundation):
Ethiopia expects to open a tender to buy additional wheat after purchasing one million tonnes to tackle extreme food shortages due to drought, a senior official said on Wednesday.
- Feds Propose 17-Year Delay in Start of Hanford Nuclear Cleanup (LA Times):
The Energy Department has proposed a 17-year delay in building a complex waste treatment plant at its radioactively contaminated Hanford site in Washington state, pushing back the full start-up for processing nuclear bomb waste to 2039.
- In a major step on the road to Paris, rich countries agree to slash export subsidies for coal plants (Washinton Post):
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:
- 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).