IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Trump EPA replaces Obama's Clean Power Plan with deadly scheme to prop up polluting coal industry; Sorry, Mr. President, but US air pollution is measurably worse since you took office; May 2019 was the fourth warmest May on record; PLUS: New York State to approve one of the world's most ambitious climate change action plans... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): With more storms and rising seas, which cities should be saved first?; $400 billion for U.S. sea walls may not be enough against rising seas; India's 6th largest city runs out of water; Scorching temperature records in Kuwait and Pakistan confirmed as third and fourth hottest; Americans think fossil fuel companies are responsible for the damages caused by global warming; Wind, solar to hit 48% of global generation by 2050, but coal use to rise until 2026; Weather woes cause American corn farmers to throw in the towel... PLUS: Trump's weak replacement for Clean Power Plan can't stop coal's decline... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Trump EPA replaces Obama's Clean Power Plan with scheme to prop up coal:
- Trump’s EPA just replaced Obama’s signature climate policy with a much weaker rule (Vox):
The EPA is still required to regulate greenhouse gases, but the CPP’s new replacement, the Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) rule, is drastically weaker. The ACE rule would lower power sector emissions by 11 million tons by 2030, or between 0.7 percent and 1.5 percent. The EPA noted that long-term industry trends are expected to still push emissions down 35 percent, but that’s largely independent of the ACE rule...Speaking at the announcement, White House acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney said Wednesday that US emissions are “flat or down.” That is wrong. In fact, US greenhouse gas emissions are on the rise after years of decline.
- VIDEO: Trump's EPA reverses Obama's Clean Power Plan (Now This News)
- Four Important Points About EPA’s Affordable Clean Energy Rule (Climate Law Blog, Columbia Univ.)
- Trump’s EPA Signs 'Deadly' Clean Power Plan Replacement (DeSmogBlog)
- Amid urgent climate warnings, EPA gives coal a reprieve (AP):
It came despite scientists’ cautions that the world must cut fossil fuel emissions to stave off the worst of global warming and the EPA’s own analysis that the new rule would result in the deaths of an extra 300 to 1,500 people each year by 2030 compared to the never fully enacted Clean Power Plan, owing to additional air pollution from the power grid.
- Clean Power Plan replacement triggers rush to court (Utility Dive)
- Air pollution is measurably worse since Trump took office:
- US air quality is slipping after years of improvement (AP):
President Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed just the opposite, saying earlier this month in Ireland: “We have the cleanest air in the world, in the United States, and it’s gotten better since I’m president.” That’s not quite the case. There were noticeably more polluted air days each year in the president’s first two years in office than any of the four years before, according to new Environmental Protection Agency data analyzed by The Associated Press.
- Breathing dirty air takes years off people’s lives. This tool shows just how much. (Vox)
- Diabetes, cancer and death: These are the effects of polluted air (CNN)
- VIDEO: Fact check: Trump's Orlando rally featured more than 15 false claims over 76 minutes (CNN)
- May 2019 was the fourth hottest May in recorded history:
- May 2019: Earth's Fourth Warmest May on Record (Weather Underground):
May 2019 was the planet's fourth warmest May since record keeping began in 1880, said NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI) on Tuesday. NASA rated May 2019 as tied with 2015 for third warmest May on record, behind 2016 and 2017. Minor differences in rankings between NASA and NOAA can arise because of how they handle data-sparse regions such as the Arctic, where few surface weather stations exist.
- 2019 On Track to Be Earth's Third Warmest Year on Record, NOAA Says (Weather Channel)
- After a miserable May with unusual warmth, Arctic sea ice hits a record low for early June (Discover Magazine)
- New York State approves ambitious climate change action plan:
- New York just passed the most ambitious climate target in the country (David Roberts, Vox):
New York is the fourth most populous state in the US and its third-largest economy. Now it is poised to adopt the country’s most ambitious climate targets, including 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2040 and economy-wide, net-zero carbon emissions by 2050...This is a big deal.
- New York to Approve One of the World’s Most Ambitious Climate Plans (NY Times):
The state would pledge to eliminate net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, with all its electricity coming from carbon-free sources.
- New York Is About to Pass One of the Most Ambitious Climate Bills in the Land (The Nation):
Activists describe it as a climate, jobs, and justice bill that would make it New York’s goal to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions 100 percent over 1990 levels by the year 2050 and create thousands of jobs over the next decade. It would also require that a significant portion of the benefits of state spending on clean energy and energy efficiency programs be invested in “front-line” communities—those facing the worst effects of climate change.
- NY State's Ambitious New Climate Change Legislation: 'Really Major' Or 'Partial Victory'? (Gothamist)
- VIDEO: New York to pass climate change law called nation's most aggressive (USA Today)
'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
- With More Storms and Rising Seas, Which U.S. Cities Should Be Saved First? (NY Times)
- America Could Spend $400 Billion on a Wall to Hold Back the Rising Seas—and It Might Not Be Enough (Earther)
- India water crisis: Chennai city's reservoirs run dry (BBC)
- Recent scorching temperatures in Kuwait and Pakistan confirmed as third and fourth hottest on Earth (Washington Post)
- A majority of Americans think fossil fuel companies are responsible for the damages caused by global warming (Yale Climate Communications)
- Trump’s Weaker Clean Power Plan Replacement Won't Stop Coal’s Decline (Inside Climate News)
- Wind, solar to hit 48% of global generation by 2050, but coal use to rise until 2026 (Utility Dive)
- Weather woes cause American corn farmers to throw in the towel (Washington Post)
- Ohio Supreme Court rejects FirstEnergy's grid modernization charge (Utility Dive)
- Revised federal flood plain map could affect Texas landfill construction (Waste Dive)
- Rising Temperatures Ravage the Himalayas, Rapidly Shrinking Its Glaciers (NY Times)
- What’s Wrong With Modern Buildings? Everything, Starting With How They’re Made (Bloomberg)
- UAW Opposes Trump Proposal To Freeze Fuel Rules At 2020 Levels: Testimony (Reuters)
- Trump U.N. Pick Craft Says Climate Change A Threat To Planet (Reuters)
- Florida Could Face $76 Billion In Climate Change Costs By 2040: Report (Tampa Bay Times)
- Canada OKs Contentious Oil Pipeline Expansion, Expects Legal Challenges (Reuters)
- PG&E To Pay $1 Billion To Local Governments For Calif. Wildfire Damage (NPR)
- We Gotta Pay More Attention to This Boring Guy - EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler (The New Republic)
- VIDEO: A Message From the Future With Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (The Intercept)
- 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