IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Doomsday Clock inches closer to midnight, thanks to climate change; Trump further weakens pollution standards for streams and wetlands; China announces national ban on single-use plastics; PLUS: Massive locust swarm threatens food security in Eastern Africa... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Gulf shrimpers fight for their livelihoods in a fertilizer-fueled dead zone; Court battles, 2020 election loom over Trump WOTUS rule; New emails reveal the Trump Admin manipulated wildfire science to promote logging; U.S. Southeast struggles with climate change; Bankrupt coal company's environmental violations could cost KY millions to fix; Amazon workers defy rules to protest company's climate failures... PLUS: A Rewilding Triumph: Wolves Help To Reverse Yellowstone Degradation... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Doomsday Clock inches closer to midnight:
- VIDEO: Closer than ever: It is 100 seconds to midnight (The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists):
Humanity continues to face two simultaneous existential dangers—nuclear war and climate change—that are compounded by a threat multiplier, cyber-enabled information warfare, that undercuts society’s ability to respond. The international security situation is dire, not just because these threats exist, but because world leaders have allowed the international political infrastructure for managing them to erode.
- The Doomsday Clock is now at “100 seconds to midnight.” Here’s what that means. (Vox):
Climate change, nuclear war, accelerating technology, and incompetent leadership threaten us.
- Doomsday Clock is 100 seconds to midnight, the symbolic hour of the apocalypse (Washington Post):
“People are starting to get it,” Bronson said, pointing to the movement ignited by teen climate activist Greta Thunberg. “But we need our leaders to be responding.”
- Australia Is Committing Climate Suicide (op-ed, NY Times)
- Plague of Locusts threatens food security in East Africa:
- Kenya suffers worst locust infestation in 70 years as millions of insects swarm farmland (AP):
When rains arrive in March and bring new vegetation across much of the region, the numbers of the fast-breeding locusts could grow 500 times before drier weather in June curbs their spread, the United Nations said.
- A Massive Locust Swarm Poses an 'Unprecedented Threat' to East Africa (Earther):
This news couldn’t be worse for a region still recovering from extreme weather...[N]o less than eight cyclones formed in the basin last year. Mozambique was hit the hardest by Cyclones Idai and Kenneth, which caused widespread flooding. The heavy rains have come after farmers in East Africa deadly with multiple years of drought. That these locusts are now poised to descend upon recovering crops is truly tragic.
- AP Explains: How climate change feeds Africa locust invasion (AP):
Is this another effect of a changing climate? Yes, researchers say. An unprecedented food security crisis may be the result.
- Why today's biblical locust swarms can't be stopped (Mashable)
- Climate change helped spawn East Africa’s locust crisis (Grist)
- Trump weakens Obama-era pollution standards for streams and wetlands:
- Trump Administration Cuts Back Federal Protections For Streams And Wetlands (NPR)
- California will be hit hard as Trump administration weakens clean water protections (LA Times)
- 'This Will Be the Biggest Loss of Clean Water Protection the Country Has Ever Seen': Trump Finalizes Clean Water Rule Replacement (EcoWatch)
- Pelosi slams Trump administration's new water rule: 'An outrageous assault' (The Hill)
- Critics question data used in rule replacing Obama-era waterway protections The Hill):
“How can you promulgate a rule when you don’t know what the impacts are going to be?” House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) told reporters on a press call Thursday.
- Rolling back Clean Water Act rules endangers New Mexico (op-ed, Santa Fe New Mexican)
- Drilling industry seeks freedom to dump fracking wastewater in rivers:
- Big Oil wants to dump more wastewater into rivers. What could go wrong? (grist):
Much to the alarm of environmentalists and public health experts, those three states are now exploring expanding avenues for produced water disposal — including discarding the wastewater in streams and rivers.
- America’s Radioactive Secret (Rolling Stone)
- 4 Louisiana tribes file U.N. human rights complaint over U.S. climate action failure:
- Louisiana tribes file complaint with United Nations over U.S. inaction on climate change (NOLA):
"It looks like our community could be gone in 20 years," she said. "We’re not only losing our homeland. We lose so much more than that. We lose our culture. We lose our identity."
- Louisiana, Alaskan Tribes File UN Climate Change Complaint (AP)
- AUDIO: 5 U.S. Native Tribes File A UN Climate Change Complaint (WBUR):
Louisiana lost an average of a football field of land every hour over the course of 25 years due to coastal erosion...Host Tonya Mosley talks to Chief Shirell Parfait-Dardar Grand of the Caillou/Dulac Band of the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw tribe.
- China bans single-use plastics nationwide:
- Single-use plastic: China to ban bags and other items (BBC)
- China Says It Will Ban Plastics That Pollute Its Land and Water (NY Times):
Though likely to be welcomed by many Chinese who worry about pollution, the measures could be a hard sell for a society used to convenience.
- The problem with China’s single-use plastic ban: What will replace the plastic? (Fast Company):
Environmentalists say that it’s a major step. But it might not necessarily work as intended: If it results in just shifting to compostable plastic, without a massive investment in composting technology and infrastructure, it will still create massive trash problems. Real change requires a culture shift, not just different materials.
'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
- Gulf shrimpers fight for their livelihoods in a fertilizer-fueled dead zone (Grist)
- Court battles, 2020 election loom over Trump WOTUS rule (E&E News)
- Trump Ups Mileage Proposal, But It’s Well Below Obama Plan (AP)
- New Emails Reveal that the Trump Administration Manipulated Wildfire Science to Promote Logging (Guardian)
- Caught Off Guard: The Southeast Struggles with Climate Change (Inside Climate News)
- A Rewilding Triumph: Wolves Help To Reverse Yellowstone Degradation (Guardian UK)
- 100s of Workers Defy Amazon Rules To Protest Company's Climate Failures (Guardian UK)
- Florida Gulf Fish Farm Could Be Bellwether, But Not Without A Fight (E&E News)
- Bankrupt coal company has environmental violations that could cost KY millions to fix (Lexington Herald-Leader)
- Amazon Emissions Lowest From Indigenous And Protected Lands: Scientists (Reuters)
- Sanders Scores Highest On Green Group's Voter Guide (The Hill)
- E.P.A. Is Letting Cities Dump More Raw Sewage Into Rivers for Years to Come (NY Times)
- What Does '12 Years to Act on Climate Change' (Now 11 Years) Really Mean? (Inside Climate News)
- VIDEO: A Message From the Future With Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (The Intercept)
- 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