IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Death toll continues to rise as California wildfires rage on, and state officials grapple with preparing for tomorrow's disasters; Climate change may impact male fertility; Regional EPA official indicted on corruption charges; PLUS: New Democrats push old guard to take bold action on climate change... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Part of the answer to climate change may be America’s trees and dirt; Solving microplastic pollution means reducing, recycling—and fundamental rethinking; The wheels on these buses go round and round with zero emissions; Spraying poisons, chasing ghosts; Hail Mary plan to restart a hacked US electric grid; The good and bad of the steep drop in oil prices; In Yellowstone National Park, warming has brought rapid changes; Scientists acknowledge key errors in study of how fast the oceans are warming; Natural gas industry keeps pushing to whittle away payments to residents... PLUS: 12 years after mocking Al Gore’s fight against climate change, South Park reconsiders... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- California's deadly wildfires rage on:
- California wildfires: How to help victims of Camp, Woolsey, Hill fires (San Diego Union-Tribune)
- California wildfires death toll rises to 59 with dozens still unaccounted for (CBS News):
In the "Camp Fire," 130 other people are still unaccounted for. The blaze has destroyed nearly 9,000 homes and forced at least 52,000 people to evacuate...Now there's another threat: Rain in the forecast, which could bring mudslides.
- Refugee camps for fire survivors? Butte County on ‘edge’ of humanitarian crisis after Camp Fire (Sacramento Bee)
- What Started the California Fires? Experts Track the Blazes’ Origins (NY Times):
A changing climate is potentially part of the Camp Fire’s story, in deepening patterns of drought in California. Some researchers said that logging in the burned area after a fire in 2008, which was intended to clear out fuels and make this part of Northern California safer, may have had the opposite result. The logging may have left fast-burning weeds and young trees in the fire’s path.
- When will it rain, clearing out smoke, cutting California fire risk? (San Jose Mercury News)
- First liability lawsuit filed against PG&E over Camp Fire:
- Pacific Gas & Electric stock price tumbles ahead of lawsuit by California fire victims (NBC News):
"If the Utility's equipment is determined to be the cause, the Utility could be subject to significant liability in excess of insurance coverage," the company said in document filed with the SEC, which was obtained by CNBC.
- PG&E stock slammed afresh on concern over California utility’s wildfire liability (MarketWatch)
- Report: CPUC launches PG&E, SCE probes after 3 deadly fires (Utility Dive)
- California Utility Customers May Be on Hook for Billions in Wildfire Damage (NY Times)
- CA officials begin process of adapting to man-made global warming:
- Wildfire Resilience in California (California Adaptation Forum)
- VIDEO: Kurt Henke: How infrastructure and development worsen California wildfire damage (CBS News)
- VIDEO: Jerry Brown on CA Fires (Gov. Jerry Brown Press Office Twitter)
- VIDEO Full press conference: Emergency Officials Provide Wildfire Update at State Operations Center (CA Office of Emergency Services)
- California’s Wildfire Epidemic Is Blamed on Bad Building Decisions (Bloomberg)
- Fires put pressure on California utilities despite new law (AP)
- Wildfires Are Getting More Frequent and More Destructive. There Are No Easy Ways to Prevent Them (Time):
The procedure — called de-energizing power lines — is a new feature across the state...Brown, who has made halting global warming a top focus of his final term at the helm of the Golden State, called for “hundreds of billions” to be spent on adaptation efforts in the coming years. The state has studied a slew of plans along those lines from how to move electric utility infrastructure to avoid rising sea levels to how to manage the effects of drought on water supply.
- >To Avoid Future Catastrophes Like The California Fires, We Must Learn To Build Smarter (Huffington Post)
- Global warming may reduce male (insect) fertility:
- Experimental heatwaves compromise sperm function and cause transgenerational damage in a model insect (Nature Communications)
- Climate change: Heatwaves 'halve' male insect fertility (BBC)
- Male Insect Fertility Plummets After Heat Waves (NY Times):
Researchers say that temperature’s effects on sperm production could be one factor behind the decline in the world’s insect populations.
- Sperm don't like heat, so climate change could damage male fertility, study says (USA Today)
- Germany’s insects are disappearing (Science Magazine)
- Sperm counts of Western men plummeting, analysis finds (CNN)
- Trump EPA Region 4 official indicted on corruption charges in Alabama:
- Trump’s southeast regional EPA administrator indicted on Alabama ethics charges (AL.com):
Before being appointed by President Donald Trump to serve as the Region 4 administrator of the EPA, Trey Glenn worked closely with the Birmingham-based law firm Balch & Bingham and one of its clients, Drummond Co., to fight EPA efforts to test and clean up neighborhoods in north Birmingham and Tarrant.
- Trump EPA official indicted in Alabama (The Hill):
Trey Glenn, the regional director for EPA’s southeast region, helped Birmingham, Ala., law firm Balch & Bingham between 2014 and 2017 to fight potential EPA actions to clean up contaminated sites in north Birmingham and Tarrant on behalf of Drummond Co., which could be responsible for the cleanups.
- Charges against EPA chief, state regulator are shocking (op-ed, AL.com):
Can this be happening? Really? Charges against powerful Alabamians who admittedly worked to protect the interests of powerful friends while demeaning low-income residents who must live and die with their choices?
- Rep.-elect Ocasio-Cortez joins Pelosi protest to promote Green New Deal:
- VIDEO: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is already pressuring Nancy Pelosi on climate change (David Roberts, Vox):
The struggle is on for control of the long-term Democratic climate agenda... I felt a twinge of dread. Why target Pelosi, who has always been a climate champion? And how is she supposed to have a comprehensive climate plan already when she hasn’t even taken the gavel? Aren’t there worse enemies of the climate to protest?...And it turns out to be quite a bit richer and more significant than what you might get from the headlines.
- What were Ocasio-Cortez and 150 young activists doing in Nancy Pelosi’s office? (Grist)
- VIDEO: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Protests Nancy Pelosi (YouTube)
- Tweet thread: Something happened at the Capitol Tuesday to reaffirm my long-held view that liberals should stop believing what conservatives say liberals believe. (John Stoehr, Washington Monthly)
- Resoluton: Select Committee on a Green New Deal - Draft text for proposed Addendum to House Rules for 116th Congress of the United States (Ocasio 2018)
'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
- 12 years after mocking Al Gore’s fight against climate change, South Park reconsiders (Vox)
- Part of the Answer to Climate Change May Be America’s Trees and Dirt, Scientists Say (NY Times)
- Solving Microplastic Pollution Means Reducing, Recycling—and Fundamental Rethinking (Scientific American)
- The Wheels on These Buses Go Round and Round With Zero Emissions (NY Times)
- Spraying Poisons, Chasing Ghosts (CounterPUnch)
- 'Gentrified out of existence' as Gowanus, toxic sites get cleaner (Bloomberg)
- The Hail Mary Plan to Restart a Hacked US Electric Grid (Wired)
- The good and bad of the steep drop in oil prices (Washington Post)
- In Yellowstone National Park, warming has brought rapid changes. In a few decades, this iconic American landscape will not be the same (NY Times)
- Scientists acknowledge key errors in study of how fast the oceans are warming (Washington Post)
- West Virginia’s Natural Gas Industry Keeps Pushing to Whittle Away Payments to Residents (Pro Publica)
- Drilling overwhelms agency protecting America's lands (Center for Public Integrity)
- Big Oil v the planet is the fight of our lives. Democrats must choose a side (Guardian)
- US climate politics just got even more polarized. Here’s how Democrats can move forward. (Vox)
- What genuine, no-bullshit ambition on climate change would look like: How to hit the most stringent targets, with no loopholes. (David Roberts, Vox)
- A Global Shift To Sustainability Would Save Us $26 Trillion (Vox)
- Project Drawdown: 100 Solutions to Reverse Global Warming (Drawdown.org)
- An Optimist's Guide to Solving Climate Change and Saving the World (Vice)
- The great nutrient collapse: The atmosphere is literally changing the food we eat, for the worse. And almost nobody is paying attention. (Politico)
- 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)
- 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