IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Contrary to denials, lobbyist tied to EPA chief Scott Pruitt condo deal did lobby the agency; Former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg donates $4.5 million to help U.S. keep Paris Climate Agreement promise; Court reinstates fines for automakers that violate fuel economy standards; PLUS: The twentieth anniversary of Dr. Michael E. Mann's famous Hockey Stick Graph... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Trespassing on their own land: 61-year-old tree-sitter fights a gas pipeline on her own land; Scott Pruitt in Oklahoma enjoyed fancy homes through a shell company with wealthy friends; Trillion-dollar coastal property bubble is ready to burst; Electric buses are hurting the oil industry; Pruitt to unveil controversial ‘transparency’ rule limiting what research EPA can use; Internal emails show EPA working to limit agency's use of science; Giant chicken houses overrun Delmarva, neighbors fear it's making them sick; Pruitt declares biomass burning ‘carbon neutral’; Minnesota appeals court allows necessity defense in pipeline protest... PLUS: She tried to report on climate change. Sinclair told her to be more "balanced"... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Contrary to denials, lobbyist tied to EPA Pruitt did lobby the agency:
- VIDEO: Scott Pruitt Battled with Fox News Ed Henry - Exclusive Full interview (4/4/18) (YouTube)
- EPA Chief Pruitt Met With Lobbyist Tied to Condo Rental (Bloomberg):
Revelations that J. Steven Hart was present at a meeting with Pruitt in an official capacity at least once in 2017 --- and had a lobbying contact with the Environmental Protection Agency this year --- coincided with Hart’s departure on Friday as chairman of the law and lobbying firm Williams & Jensen. Hart had previously said he didn’t lobby the EPA this year or last...The form doesn’t specify the type or extent of the contact --- just that it involved “issues relating to support for EPA Chesapeake Bay programs.” Virginia-based Smithfield was fined $12.6 million for dumping hog waste into Chesapeake Bay in 1997, in what was then the largest water pollution fine ever.
- Lobbyist whose wife rented to Pruitt lobbied EPA despite denials (Politico):
An agency official acknowledges the meeting happened but denies it met the definition of lobbying.
- Lobbyist Tied to Pruitt's Condo Had Clients Facing EPA (Bloomberg)
- Scott Pruitt Met With Lobbyist Whose Wife Rented Him a $50-a-Night Condo (NY Times)
- Embattled EPA chief Scott Pruitt faces public grilling this week as GOP support erodes (CNBC)
- Court rejects Trump Admin. attempt to weaken fuel economy fines:
- Trump's First Salvo in Push to Weaken Vehicle Standards Struck Down by Court (Inside Climate News):
A federal appeals court in New York on Monday blocked the Trump administration's efforts to delay penalties against automakers that fail to meet carbon-cutting emissions standards in new cars.
- Court Blocks Trump Effort to Delay Boost in ‘Gas Guzzler’ Fines (Bloomberg):
Since the mid-1970’s, automakers have been fined $55 for each mile per gallon they fall short of annual Corporate Average Fuel Economy targets set by NHTSA. Those fines are multiplied by the number of vehicles sold in a given model year. Congress in 2015 instructed all federal agencies to update their civil penalty formulas to reflect inflation, and NHTSA proposed to increase the fine to $140 per mpg shortfall, per vehicle sold. That higher penalty rate is now in effect due the ruling...
- Victory! Feds Ordered to Reinstate Updated CAFE Penalties (NRDC)
- Former NYC Mayor Bloomberg donates $4.5 million to help US keep Paris Agreement pledge:
- VIDEO: Bloomberg gives $4.5 million to help U.S. keep Paris climate accord commitment (CBS News):
Former New York City Mayor and philanthropist Michael Bloomberg says he has a responsibility to help the environment as the Trump administration has backed down from its role in the Paris climate agreement... "America made a commitment and, as an American, if the government's not going to do it then we all have a responsibility," Mr Bloomberg said on CBS. "I'm able to do it. So, yes, I'm going to send them a cheque for the monies that America had promised to the organisation as though they got it from the federal government."
- Climate change: Michael Bloomberg pledges $4.5m for Paris deal (BBC):
As part of the agreement, the US had pledged $3bn to the Green Climate Fund, set up by the UN to help countries deal with the effects of global warming. The money promised by Mr Bloomberg does not aim to cover this, but the US contribution to the UN's climate change secretariat.
- 20th anniversary of Dr. Michael Mann's famous 'Hockey Stick Graph':
- VIDEO: Global Warming Report on CBS News from 1998, with Dr. Michael Mann (Vimeo)
- Earth Day and the Hockey Stick: A Singular Message (Dr. Michael Mann, Scientific American):
On the 20th anniversary of the graph that galvanized climate action, it is time to speak out boldly.
- Besieged by Climate Deniers, A Scientist Decides to Fight Back (Yale e360)
- Disinformation Playbook: How the Fossil Fuel Industry Harassed Climate Scientist Michael Mann (Union of Concerned Scientists)
- Trespassing on their own land: Perched on a platform high in a tree, a 61-year-old woman fights a gas pipeline (Washington Post)
- Scott Pruitt Before the E.P.A.: Fancy Homes, a Shell Company and Friends With Money (NY Times)
- She Tried To Report On Climate Change. Sinclair Told Her To Be More "Balanced." (Buzzfeed)
- The trillion-dollar coastal property bubble is ready to burst, per new study (Climate Progress)
- Electric Buses Are Hurting the Oil Industry (Bloomberg)
- Pruitt to unveil controversial ‘transparency’ rule limiting what research EPA can use (Washington Post)
- Internal Emails Show EPA Working To Limit Agency's Use Of Science (The Hill)
- Giant Chicken Houses Overrun Delmarva, and Neighbors Fear It's Making Them Sick (Inside Climate News)
- Pruitt Wades Into Science Flap, Declares Biomass Burning ‘Carbon Neutral’ (Washington Post)
- Canary in the Coal Pond: New reports provide an unprecedented look at contaminants leaking from coal ash ponds (Pro Publica)
- These Whales Will Be Extinct In 25 Years, Scientists Say — Unless We Act (Washington Post)
- Trump and Macron discuss Paris climate agreement during state visit (Climate Progress)
- Global Warming Has Changed Great Barrier Reef ‘Forever,’ Scientists Say (Washington Post)
- U.S. Coal Bailout Review Slows After Trump Faces Pushback (Bloomberg)
- Minnesota appeals court allows necessity defense in pipeline protest (AP)
- Arrested Chevron workers could face treason charge in Venezuela (Reuters)
- What's Eating Away at the Greenland Ice Sheet? (Inside Climate News)
- Pilgrim Officials Consider Moving Nuclear Waste To Higher Ground (Boston Globe)
- Science Says: Amount of Straws, Plastic Pollution Is Huge (AP)
- Trump NASA Nominee (and Climate Science Denier) Bridenstine Confirmed by Senate on Party-Line Vote (NY Times)
- Here's what happens when you tell people the scientific consensus on climate change: You can turn red states green (Climate Progress)
- Limiting global warming to 1.5C would have 'significant economic benefits' (Carbon Brief)
- Tougher Climate Policies Could Save 150 Million Lives, Researchers Find (Washington Post)
- AUDIO: An Inconvenient 'BradCast' with Al Gore (The BRAD BLOG):
Guest Host Angie Coiro's exclusive interview with the former Vice President on elections, pollution, persuasion, activism, and hope...
- The Climate Risks We Face (NY Times):
To stabilize global temperature, net carbon dioxide emissions must be reduced to zero. The window of time is rapidly closing to reduce emissions and limit warming to no more than 3.6 degrees Fahrenheit or 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels, the goal set in the Paris climate accord. The further we push the climate system beyond historical conditions, the greater the risks of potentially unforeseen and even catastrophic changes to the climate - so every reduction in emissions helps.
- The Uninhabitable Earth: When will climate change make earth too hot for humans? (New York Magazine):
Famine, economic collapse, a sun that cooks us: What climate change could wreak - sooner than you think.
- A beginner's guide to the debate over 100% renewable energy (Vox):
Clean-energy enthusiasts frequently claim that we can go bigger, that it's possible for the whole world to run on renewables - we merely lack the "political will." So, is it true? Do we know how get to an all-renewables system? Not yet. Not really.
- No country on Earth is taking the 2 degree climate target seriously (Vox):
If we mean what we say, no more new fossil fuels, anywhere.
- NASA Video: If we don't act, here's what to expect in the next 100 years:
'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (Stuff we didn't have time for in today's audio report)...
For a comprehensive roundup of daily environmental news you can trust, see the Society of Environmental Journalists' Daily Headlines page
FOR MORE on Climate Science and Climate Change, go to our Green News Report: Essential Background Page