IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: President Trump moves to strip states and the State Department of authority over oil and gas pipelines; Midwest states hit with second 'bomb cyclone' in three weeks; Earth's carbon dioxide levels highest in 3 million years; PLUS: World's glaciers melting faster than predicted, thanks to man-made global warming... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Dominion gas explosion kills 1 in NC; Vattenfall to test salt-based power storage technology; Stunning Video Shows What Happens After the Ice Melts; Extreme Hemispheric Heat Waves Like 2018's Growing More Common with Climate Change; Automakers Plan for Regulatory Chaos After Trump’s Emissions Rollback; Jay Inslee: I will make climate change No. 1; Montana approves bill to allow utility power sales to EV charging stations; Climate Chaos Is Coming — and the Pinkertons Are Ready... PLUS: The confidential oil plan that could cost Trump reelection... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Midwest hit with 2nd bomb cyclone and flooding in 3 weeks:
- The Latest: Bomb cyclone storm hits US interior (AP):
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis has activated the National Guard in case troops are needed to rescue stranded motorists as they did during last month’s blizzard...State officials in flood-ravaged Nebraska are bracing once again for a major snowstorm that threatens to disrupt travel and endanger motorists...A storm impacting Rockies and Plains states has met the scientific definition of what’s commonly known as a “bomb cyclone.” It’s the second such blast to hit the region in less than a month.
- 'Bomb cyclone' snow, wind making travel dangerous in parts of the Midwest (Chicago Tribune)
- VIDEO: Blizzard warnings issued across central U.S. as region faces "bomb cyclone" (CBS News)
- Midwestern Towns Prepare to Navigate More Flooding (and a Climate-Denying President) (Rolling Stone):
"Before I came into office 15 years ago, I was told not to worry about flooding because there had been a 100-year & a 500-year flood...it wasn't going to happen again. Since that time we've had something nearly every year & sometimes twice in one year."
- U.S. blizzard forces closure of some grain processors and elevators (Reuters)
- Flood victims will have to wait for disaster relief:
- Disaster aid talks collapse as Congress heads for recess (Politico):
Congressional action on emergency aid has been held up since December, due in large part to President Donald Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that Puerto Rico shouldn’t receive any more money because its politicians have mismanaged federal funds. Lawmakers are now scheduled to gavel out for two weeks beginning April 15.
- Disaster Relief Usually Sails Through Congress. The Sticking Point Now: Puerto Rico. (NY Times):
The pressure to get something done, and quickly, is rising by the day, from farmers in the Southeast who are still grappling with massive crop losses from Hurricane Michael last October, to people in Puerto Rico going hungry due to food stamp cuts, to officials in small-town Iowa and Missouri who are still bailing out from some of the worst floods in recent memory.
- With $13 billion in disaster relief still stuck in gridlock, lawmakers head to recess (Washington Post):
At stake is a sweeping $13.45 billion disaster aid package that would send money all over the nation, from California to Hawaii to Alaska to the Midwest and the South. The bill addresses damage from hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires, flooding and other natural disasters, and includes relief for farmers, assistance for veterans’ health facilities, money to restore highways and numerous other provisions.
- Trump's lies about Puerto Rico aren't just cruel — they're preventing disaster relief (op-ed, NBC News)
- False: Donald Trump falsely tweets that Puerto Rico got $91 billion in hurricane aid (Politifact):
We found that Trump is wrong about the dollar amount the territory has received and wrong when he said it was a record.
- WMO: 62 million impacted by extreme weather disasters in 2018:
- State of the Climate in 2018 shows accelerating climate change impacts (World Meteorological Organization)
- Fueled by climate change, extreme weather disasters hit 62 million people in 2018, U.N. says (USA Today):
Since 1998, about 4.5 billion around the world have been hurt by extreme weather. “We have seen a growing amount of disasters because of climate change,” said WMO Secretary-General Petteri Taalas.
- UN report: Extreme weather hit 62 million people in 2018 (AP):
The 44-page report says: Floods affected 35 million people. Drought hit another 9 million people, adding to the problem of growing enough food to feed the world...
- Trump moves to strip states, State Dept., of authority over pipelines:
- VIDEO: Trump signs executive orders seeking to speed up oil and gas projects (Washington Post):
That order also requires the Transportation Department to change its rules to allow the shipment of liquefied natural gas by rail and tanker truck. And it seeks to limit shareholder ballot initiatives designed to alter companies’ policies on environmental and social issues. Trump’s order requires the Labor Department to examine whether retirement funds that pursue those investment strategies are meeting their responsibility to maximize returns.
- Trump's energy orders spark partisan and legal brawl (E&E News)
- Trump executive order will aim to prevent states from blocking pipelines, energy infrastructure (CNBC):
The state powers are laid out in federal law, and a presidential order cannot override them, some lawyers and energy analysts have said. Under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act, companies must obtain certifications from the state before they can build federally-approved infrastructure, like pipelines, within that state’s borders.
- Trump signs executive orders aimed at boosting energy infrastructure (S&P Global-Platts)
- VIDEO: President Trump Delivers Remarks and Signs an Executive Order on Energy & Infrastructure (White House)
- Earth's CO2 levels now highest in 3 million years:
- More CO2 than ever before in 3 million years, shows unprecedented computer simulation (press release, Potsdam Institute for Climate Research)
- Earth's carbon dioxide levels highest in 3 million years, study says (USA Today)
- Last time CO2 levels were this high, sea levels were 60 feet higher and Antarctica had trees (Climate Progress)
- CO2 levels at highest for 3 million years --- when seas were 20 meters higher (CNN):
This research isn't the first to suggest that today's CO2 levels are the highest since the Pliocene, but the Potsdam researchers say their work is the first to combine ocean-floor sediment data with analysis of past ice volumes, and is more sophisticated than other model studies.
- VIDEO: The Pliocene: The Last Time Earth had >400 ppm of Atmospheric CO2 (Royal Meteorlogical Society)
- World's glaciers melting faster than predicted:
- Global glacier mass changes and their contributions to sea-level rise from 1961 to 2016 (Nature)
- Global warming is shrinking glaciers faster than thought (AP):
The world’s glaciers are shrinking five times faster now than they were in the 1960s. Their melt is accelerating due to global warming, and adding more water to already rising seas, the study found..."Over 30 years suddenly almost all regions started losing mass at the same time," said lead author Michael Zemp, director of the World Glacier Monitoring Service at the University of Zurich. "That's clearly climate change if you look at the global picture."... "In these regions, at the current glacier loss rate, the glaciers will not survive the century," Zemp said.
- Glaciers worldwide are disappearing even faster than we realized (Quartz):
A new study that surveyed 19,000 glaciers—a far higher number than in previous research—shows that most of them are melting, fast. Glaciers are shedding about 335 billion tons of ice per year—or fully three times the ice volume stored in the entirety of the European Alps...[F]rom 1961 to 2016...enough volume to cover the US’s lower 48 states in 4 ft (1.2 m) of ice.
- Melting glaciers contribute a third of sea-level rise (National Geographic)
- Two-thirds of glacier ice in the Alps 'will melt by 2100' (Guardian UK):
Alpine glaciers are likely to lose half their volume by 2050 regardless of any emission cuts.
'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
- Dominion gas explosion kills 1, injures 17 in North Carolina (Utility Dive)
- The confidential oil plan that could cost Trump reelection (Politico)
- Vattenfall to test salt-based power storage technology (Reuters)
- This Video Shows What Happens After the Ice Melts (Mother Jones)
- Extreme Hemispheric Heat Waves Like 2018's Growing More Common with Climate Change, Study Says (Inside Climate News)
- Automakers Plan for Regulatory Chaos After Trump’s Emissions Rollback (NY Times)
- VIDEO: Jay Inslee, CNN Town Hall: I will make climate change No. 1 priority (CNN)
- Montana approves bill to allow utility power sales to EV charging stations (Utility Dive)
- Climate Chaos Is Coming — and the Pinkertons Are Ready (NY Times)
- More than 4,500 Amazon employees push for aggressive action on climate change (CNBC)
- Endangered turtle returns to beach to lay its eggs only to find runway has been built (Independent UK)
- Closed Loop report calls for increased investment in chemical recycling (Waste Dive)
- The Energy 202: John Kerry: Ocasio-Cortez 'offered more leadership in one day' on climate change than Trump ever has (Washington Post)
- This Is How Human Extinction Could Play Out (Rolling Stone)
- SEJ Backgrounder: Green New Deal Proposes Sweeping Economic Transformation (Society of Environmental Journalists)
- Explainer: The 'Green New Deal': Mobilizing for a just, prosperous, and sustainable economy (New Consensus)
- 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.
FOR MORE on Climate Science and Climate Change, go to our Green News Report: Essential Background Page