IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Seventeen states sue the Trump Administration over rollback of car emissions standards; Still more new ethics problems for EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt; Pakistan sets all-time world heat record for the month of April; Good news for breathers in NYC, China and Hawaii; PLUS: Russia launches world's first floating nuclear power plant... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): The Last-Ditch Climate Strategy of Total Retreat Is Failing in America; Scott Pruitt’s top communications official is leaving the EPA; 9 Of 10 Air Pollution Deaths Occur In Developing Countries: WHO Study; Trump’s Solar Tariffs Cause a Scramble in the Industry; Hawaii Approves Bill Banning Sunscreen Believed To Kill Coral Reefs; New Vulnerability Found In Systems Used In Electric, Gas Industries; Earth’s atmosphere just crossed another troubling climate change threshold; Diseases Spread By Ticks, Mosquitoes And Fleas Tripled In Us Since 2004... PLUS: US-British Project Launches To Study The World’s Most Dangerous Glacier... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- 17 states sue Trump Administration over rollback of car emissions standards:
- VIDEO: Press Conference with Governor Jerry Brown and Attorney General Xavier Becerra Discuss Clean Cars and Combating Air Pollution (California Channel)
- California and States Representing Over 40 Percent of U.S. Car Market Sue to Defend National Clean Car Rules (Office of the Governor of California)
- Brown slams ‘Outlaw Pruitt’ as California sues EPA over clean-car rules (SF Chronicle):
The suit opens yet another front in the ongoing legal battle between Brown and the Trump administration over immigration and environmental policies. The complaint also takes direct aim at EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, whom critics accuse of trying to gut his own department from within.
- Scott Pruitt wants to freeze fuel economy standards. Here’s what that would do. (Vox):
Quantifying the damage to our air and pockets.
- Detroit Should Beware Making Gas-Guzzlers Great Again (Bloomberg):
U.S. automakers risk falling behind in a global market bent on fuel efficiency.
- Concerns over California vehicle waiver issues (Yale Climate Connections)
- E.P.A. Readies Plan to Weaken Rules That Require Cars to Be Cleaner (NY Times) [emphasis added]:
The preferred course of action would freeze fuel-economy standards at 2020 levels for both cars and light trucks, greatly slowing progress in reducing auto emissions. The proposal also challenges California's authority to impose its own vehicle standards...a decision that could effectively split the United States into two auto markets and set up a messy legal battle.
- The EPA is rolling back fuel efficiency standards (Vox):
Weakening greenhouse gas targets for cars and trucks will help the dirtiest manufacturers while hurting the cleanest.
- Why U.S. Carmakers Could End Up Wishing They Never Asked For Weaker Fuel Economy Standards (Jalopnik)
- More new ethics problems for EPA Administrator Pruitt:
- A Lobbyist Helped Scott Pruitt Plan a Morocco Trip. Then Morocco Hired the Lobbyist. (NY Times)
- VIDEO: former federal ethics director Walter Shaub (CNN):
"This is a worst case scenario for government ethics"
- Two Top Pruitt Aides Leave EPA After Scrutiny of Ethics, Spending (Bloomberg)
- Pruitt’s Coziness With Lobbyists Includes Secretly Buying a House With One (NY Times)
- AUDIO: Albert Kelly, An Adviser To EPA Chief Scott Pruitt, Resigns Abruptly (NPR):
"The continued barrage of press wears you down."
- Internal documents question EPA justification for Pruitt's security spending (ABC News)
- Memo: Pruitt landlord’s husband sought EPA work for client (AP)
- D.C. consultant and former lobbyist helped arrange Scott Pruitt’s canceled trip to Australia, records show (Washington Post)
- Former EPA Staffer Says Pruitt Lied To Congress About Retaliating Against Him (Talking Points Memo)
- EPA gives special 'hardship' waiver to billionaire Carl Icahn's refinery:
- VIDEO: U.S. EPA grants biofuels waiver to billionaire Icahn's oil refinery (Reuters):
“Hundreds of millions - and in some cases billions - of dollars in profits isn’t my definition of ‘hardship,’” Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley said in statement condemning the CVR waiver. “President Trump promised to support home-grown biofuels, and Administrator Pruitt is breaking that promise.”
- EPA grants 'financial hardship' waiver to oil refinery owned by billionaire, Trump confidant (Climate Progress)
- Carl Icahn: A Conflict-of-Interest “Icon” for the Trump Era (Project on Government Oversight)
- Pakistan may have hit all-time world heat record for the month of April:
- Pakistani city breaks April record with day of 50C (122F) heat (Guardian UK):
Citizens consider fleeing Nawabshah in fear of what summer might bring.
- Pakistan’s Searing April Temperatures Set New Global Record (Scientific American):
On Monday, the city of Nawabshah reached 122.4 degrees Fahrenheit, causing heatstroke, power outages and general misery.
- New York to electrify bus fleet by 2040; Shenzhen, China did it in 3 years:
- New York City Aims for All-Electric Bus Fleet by 2040 (Inside Climate News):
NYC has more than 5,700 MTA buses. Taking the fleet electric would reduce climate-warming emissions and cut fuel, maintenance and health costs.
- New York to electrify complete bus fleet (Electrive)
- 100 per cent — Chinese City’s Record-Smashing 16,359 Electric Bus Fleet (Clean Technica)
- How Did Shenzhen, China Build World’s Largest Electric Bus Fleet?(World Resources Institute)
- Electric buses are coming, and they're going to help fix 4 big urban problems (Vox)
- Hawaii becomes first U.S. state to commit to net zero emissions:
- Passage of Major Bills Caps Off Productive Legislative Session (Maui Watch):
HB 2182 HD2 SD2 CD1 makes Hawai‘i the first state in the nation to commit to carbon neutrality by 2045 and making us the nation’s first zero emissions clean economy. Greenhouse Gas Sequestration Task Force aligns with state clean energy and climate goals.
- Hawaii Becomes First State in the U.S. to Ban the Toxic Pesticide Chlorpyrifos (EcoWatch)
- Russia launches world's first floating nuclear power plant:
- Russia Launches Floating Nuclear Power Plant; It's Headed To The Arctic (NPR):
It will take more than a year for the power plant to reach its new home port. The original plan had called for fueling the floating plant before it began that journey, at the shipyard in central St. Petersburg – but that was scuttled last summer, after concerns were raised both in Russia and in countries along the power plant's route through the Baltic Sea and north to the Arctic.
- Russia says its sea-based nuclear power plant is safe. Critics call it a ‘Floating Chernobyl.’ (Washington Post)
- This nuclear power plant has been called a ‘floating Chernobyl,’ but is that just hype? (The Verge)
'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
- The Last-Ditch Climate Strategy of Total Retreat Is Failing in America (Bloomberg)
- Scott Pruitt’s top communications official is leaving the EPA (Washington Post)
- 9 Of 10 Air Pollution Deaths Occur In Developing Countries: WHO Study (Huffington Post)
- Trump’s Solar Tariffs Cause a Scramble in the Industry (NY Times)
- Hawaii Approves Bill Banning Sunscreen Believed To Kill Coral Reefs (NPR)
- New Vulnerability Found In Systems Used In Electric, Gas Industries (The Hill)
- Earth’s atmosphere just crossed another troubling climate change threshold (Washington Post)
- Diseases Spread By Ticks, Mosquitoes And Fleas Tripled In Us Since 2004 (Washington Post)
- EPA Designates Areas Non-Compliant With 2015 Ozone Standards (Reuters)
- US-British Project Launches To Study The World’s Most Dangerous Glacier (Washington Post)
- Climate Change May Deeply Wound Long-Term U.S. Growth, Richmond Fed Paper Finds (Wall St. Journal)
- The world's bleak climate situation, in 3 charts: We've got a long way to go and a short time to get there. (Vox)
- 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 (GreenBiz)
- 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.
FOR MORE on Climate Science and Climate Change, go to our Green News Report: Essential Background Page