IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: GNR Special Coverage: Deep freeze devastates Texas power grid, as death toll climbs; Privatization and deregulation left Texas vulnerable; PLUS: Rightwingers launch Texas disinfo campaign to attack renewable energy... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Texas and California Blackouts: A Song of Ice and Fire; Narrative Starts to Shift: Texas’ Crisis is Clean Energy Opportunity; Sea turtle rescue center in Texas takes in over 2,500 turtles during winter storm... PLUS: Billionaires’ Favorite Climate Solution Is a Dangerous Distraction... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Death toll climbs as deep freeze cripples Texas and other states:
- Winter storm deposits swath of snow, sleet and ice from Texas to New England (Washington Post):
A significant winter storm — the second in a week to batter Texas — is trekking east across the nation, sweeping through the Mid-Atlantic and the Northeast with significant sleet, ice and snow accumulations. A “crippling” ice storm was in progress for some, while others prepared for a plowable snowfall.
- VIDEO: Americans grapple with historic weather, with much of the U.S. still locked in deep freeze (PBS NewsHour)
- VIDEO: Frigid temperatures devastate Texas power grid as death toll climbs (CBS News)
- Texas power grid outage deepening into humanitarian disaster:
- Texas power outages: Water problems mount, food runs scarce and hospitals scramble (Texas Tribune)
- Texas largely relies on natural gas for power. It wasn’t ready for the extreme cold. (Texas Tribune):
Texas largely relies on natural gas — especially during times of high demand — to power the state. Experts say natural gas infrastructure, from pumping it out of the ground to the plants in city centers, was unprepared for the plunging temperatures brought by the winter storm.
- Texans running out of food as weather crisis disrupts supply chain (Texas Tribune)
- The Texas Saga Is A Dangerous Mix Of Weather, Tragedy, Energy, And Misinformation (Forbes)
- Perry says Texans willing to suffer blackouts to keep feds out of power market (Houston Chronicle/MS)
- Texas blackouts explained: Arctic weather shut down power plants as demand for heat surged, and the state's grid is on its own (Business Inside/MSN)
- Winter weather causes more than a dozen military bases to close (Stars & Stripes)
- VIDEO: Texas Gov. Abbott gives update on winter climate event (PBS NewsHour)
- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott orders Texas natural gas producers to sell the fuel to in-state power generators (Dallas Morning News)
- Privatization and deregulation left Texas vulnerable:
- Texas leaders failed to heed warnings that left the state's power grid vulnerable to winter extremes, experts say (Texas Tribune):
Texas officials knew winter storms could leave the state’s power grid vulnerable, but they left the choice to prepare for harsh weather up to the power companies — many of which opted against the costly upgrades. That, plus a deregulated energy market largely isolated from the rest of the country’s power grid, left the state alone to deal with the crisis, experts said.
- Gov. Greg Abbott and other Republicans blamed green energy for Texas’ power woes. But the state runs on fossil fuels. (Texas Tribune):
Green energy has been a political punching bag for Texas Republicans like Gov. Greg Abbott throughout the winter storm. Experts say that politicians never take responsibility for natural disasters when it comes to preparedness.
- Texas wholesale electric prices spike more than 10,000% amid outages (Reuters)
- Electricity retailer Griddy’s unusual plea to Texas customers: Leave now before you get a big bill (Dallas Morning News)
- Rick Perry: Texans Would Rather have Blackouts than Regulation (Climate Crocks)
- Rightwingers launch disinformation campaign attacking wind energy:
- VIDEO: How Fox News is exploiting Texas' power outages to fearmonger about clean energy (Media Matters)
- Texas Gov. Greg Abbott blames wind turbines, Green New Deal policies for outages. Critics call that ‘a lie.' (Washington Post)
- Conservatives Are Seriously Accusing Wind Turbines of Killing People in the Texas Blackouts (The New Republic)
- Fox News turns Winter Storm Uri into a cudgel to own the libs (Vox)
- Bill Gates says Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's explanation for power outages is 'actually wrong' (Yahoo Finance)
- Viral Image Claiming to Show a Helicopter De-Icing Texas Wind Turbines Is From Winter 2014 in Sweden (Earther)
- Another storm is slamming the South and Mid-Atlantic states:
- Hundreds of thousands still without power in Texas as new storm hits eastern U.S. (CBS News)
- Dangerous winter storm weather is disrupting vaccine distribution all around the US (CNN)
- Duke Energy projects 1 million outages across Carolinas due to ice storm (WFMY News)
- Biden proposes to upgrade nation's infrastructure for climate resilience:
- A Glimpse of the Future in Texas: Climate Change Means Trouble for Power Grids (NY Times):
Systems are designed to handle spikes in demand, but the wild and unpredictable weather linked to global warming will very likely push grids beyond their limits.
- White House says Texas storm proves 'climate change is real' as vast power outages continue (Guardian):
Liz Sherwood-Randall said the dire situation in Texas “demonstrate to us that climate change is real and it’s happening now and we’re not adequately prepared for it.”
- Biden gets his first energy crisis — and an opening (Politico)
- White House says severe winter storm likely due to climate change (Reuters)
- Fact check: Biden approved emergency measures in response to Texas freeze
Social media users have been sharing content online that claims President Joe Biden took no action in response to the unusually low temperatures in Texas. While Biden has not publicly spoken about Texas as of February 18, 2021, he has approved federal assistance for the state.
'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
- Texas and California Blackouts: A Song of Ice and Fire (Bloomberg)
- Narrative Starts to Shift: Texas’ Crisis is Clean Energy Opportunity (Climate Crocks)
- Billionaires’ Favorite Climate Solution Is a Dangerous Distraction (Earther)
- Sea turtle rescue center in Texas takes in over 2,500 turtles during winter storm (NBC News)
- Firefighters face lies, 'phony' studies on PFAS exposure (E&E News)
- 'Send Us Your Ideas': Biden Pledges To Protect 30% of US Lands By 2030 (Guardian)
- DuPont Sold La. Plant Amid Fears Over Cost Of Offsetting Toxic Emissions (Guardian)
- Piecing Together the Next Pandemic (NY Times)
- How the Fossil Fuel Industry Convinced Americans to Love Gas Stoves (Mother Jones)
- The Auto Industry Bets Its Future on Batteries (NY Times)
- Poultry Plant Workers Complain Of Intimidation After Fatal Chemical Leak (Guardian)
- The Staggering Decline of Oceanic Sharks and Rays (The Revelator)
- EPA Dumps Trump-Era Chemical Analysis Approach After Rebuke (Bloomberg)
- How climate change could undo 50 years of public health gains (Grist)
- Climate Change Will Force a New American Migration (Pro Publica)
- Exxon's Snake Oil: 100 years of deception (Columbia Journalism Review)
- 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