IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: While we were out: Trump's government shutdown is seriously impacting national parks and federal scientific research; Trump EPA launched another serious attack on public health; PLUS: New Democratic U.S. House majority pledged to act on our climate crisis... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Democrats are shockingly unprepared to fight climate change; U.S. greenhouse gas emissions spiked in 2018;
U.S. Supreme Court rejects Exxon in climate change document dispute; US Interior Dept. plans to skirt FOIA requests; Colorado could save $2.5 billion by rapidly shutting down its coal power plants; Sharp drop in monarch butterflies in California; PG&E could be prosecuted for murder in record CA wildfires; Waste Management's 20-year path to 'moonshot' climate goal... PLUS: 10 easy ways to reduce your plastic use in 2019... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Government shutdown impacting national parks, federal scientific research:
- In shutdown, national parks transform into Wild West — heavily populated and barely supervised (Washington Post)
- Former Park Service Chief Says Keeping National Parks Open During the Shutdown Is a Tragic Mistake (Mother Jones):
Leaving the parks open without these essential staff is equivalent to leaving the Smithsonian museums open without any staff to protect the priceless artifacts.
- National parks may use fees to fund cleanup as shutdown lingers and trash piles up (LA Times)
- Toll on Science and Research Mounts as Government Shutdown Continues (NY Times)
- The National Weather Service is ‘open,’ but your forecast is worse because of the shutdown (Washington Post)
- Hundreds of federal scientists miss conferences in government shutdown (AP):
[H]undreds of government scientists are also no longer allowed to attend the conference or two other major scientific gatherings scheduled to begin this week. Those meetings will address pressing issues in the fields of technology, space exploration, extreme weather and climate change.
- The Shutdown Shows Just How Vital Government Scientists Are (Wired)
- Bright spot: Government shutdown delaying oil and gas extraction:
- The Government Shutdown Has Stalled Trump’s Plan to Drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (Earther)
- Shutdown delays oil exploration plans in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (Anchorage Daily News):
Two shuttered Interior Department agencies, the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, can’t advance the process to issue permits for seismic activity until the shutdown ends.
- Despite shutdown, Trump administration continues work to begin oil drilling in ANWR (Anchorage Daily News)
- Energy agencies roll through shutdown while EPA, Interior stalled (Utility Dive)
- Trump EPA proposes eliminating health benefits calculation for pollution regulations:
- EPA to make it harder to tighten mercury rules in the future (Washington Post):
The proposal, which revisits a 2011 rule limiting mercury emissions from coal plants, argues EPA lacked justification to curb the neurotoxin in the first place because many benefits stemmed from the overall drop in air pollution that would occur once power companies adopted new technologies... the agency wants to alter the underlying calculations to set a precedent for future public health rules.
- New E.P.A. Plan Could Free Coal Plants to Release More Mercury Into the Air (NY Times)
- Trump EPA orders rollback of Obama mercury regulations (AP)
- Michigan's new Democratic Gov. Whitmer acts to reverse failure in Flint Water Crisis:
- Whitmer signs 1st executive directive in response to Flint water crisis (Detroit Free Press)
- State employees required to report health, safety threats in Gov. Whitmer’s first executive directive (MLive)
- Speaker Pelosi calls for climate action, but climate advocates say it's not nearly enough:
- VIDEO: 'The existential threat of our time': Pelosi elevates climate change on Day One (Politico)
- Democrats Establish a New House ‘Climate Crisis’ Committee - but it will likely lack the broad powers favored by supporters of a Green New Deal. (The Atlantic)
- Ocasio-Cortez spokesman says Dems’ ‘Climate Crisis’ panel sounds like ‘screen door on a submarine’ (AP)
- House to Launch Climate Panel, But It Won’t Issue Subpoenas (Bloomberg)
- The Green New Deal, explained (Vox)
- Democrats Are Shockingly Unprepared to Fight Climate Change: There’s no magic bill waiting in the wings—and no quick path to arriving at one. (The Atlantic, 11/15/2017)
'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
- U.S. greenhouse gas emissions spiked in 2018 — and it couldn’t happen at a worse time (Washington Post)
- U.S. top court rejects Exxon in climate change document dispute (Reuters)
- 'War on transparency': US Interior Dept. plans crackdown on information requests (Guardian UK)
- It’s not just about recycling: 10 Easy Ways to Reduce Your Plastics Use in 2019 (Mother Jones)
- Colorado could save $2.5 billion by rapidly shutting down its coal power plants (Vox)
- Count finds sharp drop in monarch butterflies in California (AP)
- U.S. Supreme Court Refuses to Block Exxon Climate Fraud Investigation I(nside Climate News)
- California AG: PG&E could be prosecuted for murder in record wildfires (Utility Dive)
- Waste Management's 20-year path to 'moonshot' climate goal: cleaner fleet, more recycling (Waste Dive)
- ‘An uphill battle’: Lead poisoning stunts students’ learning while Cleveland leaders fail to tackle lingering problem (Cleveland Plain Dealer)
- Silvopasture Can Mitigate Climate Change. Will U.S. Farmers Take it Seriously? (Civil Eats)
- HUD delays release of billions of dollars in storm protection for Puerto Rico and Texas (McClatchy)
- Fourth National Climate Assessment, Vol. 2: Impacts, Risks, and Adaptation in the United States [PDF] (U.S. Global Change Research Program)
- 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
- NASA Video: If we don't act, here's what to expect in the next 100 years: