IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Water crisis persists in Texas and Jackson, Mississippi, two weeks after extreme winter storm; Latinos disproportionately exposed to worst water in US, new study finds; US House passes Biden's COVID relief bill boosting heating assistance for low-income families; PLUS: As cities move to electrify buildings, the natural gas industry is striking back... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Austin, Texas had a bold new climate plan – until a gas company got involved; Biden administration pauses transfer of holy Native American land to mining firm... PLUS: More States Follow California's Lead On Vehicle Emissions Standards... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Water crisis persists in Texas:
- “It’s after the storm that’s the hardest part”: 390,000 Texans still don’t have clean water (Vox)
- Plumber shortage and supply chain issues are delaying storm recovery efforts in Texas (Texas Tribune)
- Winter storm could cost Texas more money than any disaster in state history (Texas Tribune)
- Public Utility Commission chair resigns after Texas officials criticize management of power outages (Texas Tribune)
- Texas workers struggle to pay for groceries and rent after losing wages during winter storm (Texas Tribune)
- Texas leaders failed to heed warnings that left the state's power grid vulnerable to winter extremes, experts say (Texas Tribune)
- Jackson, MS enters 3rd week with no water:
- Frustrated Jackson Locals Are Nearing Two Weeks With No Water (Daily Beast):
What’s different this time, residents say, is the sheer scale—the entire city is either without water or under a boil water alert...More than a few residents have noted that the crisis has hit south and west Jackson hardest while leaving northeast Jackson, the one predominantly white corner of this 80 percent Black capital city, relatively unscathed.
- VIDEO: Water crisis in South persists following devastating winter storm (ABC News)
- In Jackson, Mississippi, some residents have been without water going on two weeks (CNN)
- In Jackson, Miss., two weeks with no running water and no end in sight (Washington Post)
- Study: Latinos disproportionately exposed to worst water in US:
- More than 25m drink from the worst US water systems, with Latinos most exposed (Guardian UK):
Millions of people in the US are drinking water that fails to meet federal health standards, including by violating limits for dangerous contaminants...Water systems in counties that are 25% or more Latino are violating drinking water contamination rules at twice the rate of those in the rest of the country.
- 'It's a toxic blend': where the kids are warned not to swallow the bath water (Guardian UK)
- Biden's COVID relief bill passes House; Infrastructure bill in the works:
- The House passed Biden’s $1.9 trillion Covid-19 relief package (Vox)
- Biden administration preparing wider economic package for U.S. infrastructure beyond virus relief (AP)
- What Dem troubles with COVID-19 bill say about climate push (E&E News)
Ahead of Friday's Rules Committee hearing on the relief package, Republicans filed multiple amendments that would have placed restrictions on the LIHEAP funding...In addition to the disputed minimum wage hike, the measure also includes direct payments, extensions of unemployment benefits, $350 billion for state and local governments, as well as $4.5 billion for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), $500 million in low-income water assistance and $100 million in environmental justice grants.
- Texans' Frozen Pipes Are Warnings of Yet Another Climate Threat (Bloomberg)
- After Stimulus, Biden to Tackle Another Politically Tricky Issue: Infrastructure (NY Times)
- Natural gas industry mobilizes to block building electrification:
- Seattle mayor signs legislation to ban natural gas in some new buildings (NBC-TV Seattle)
- AUDIO: As Cities Grapple With Climate Change, Gas Utilities Fight To Stay In Business (NPR):
Gas utilities and their powerful lobby, the AGA, are racing on multiple fronts to convince lawmakers and the public that swapping out natural gas with electric would harm consumers and lead to higher bills. They argue that using natural gas is compatible with addressing climate change, despite scientific evidence to the contrary.
- The battle over climate change is boiling over on the home front (Washington Post):
Municipalities want new buildings to go all electric, spurning gas-fired stoves and heating systems. The gas industry disagrees.
- How the Fossil Fuel Industry Convinced Americans to Love Gas Stoves (Mother Jones)
- Gas stoves can generate unsafe levels of indoor air pollution (David Roberts, Vox, 5/11/2020)
'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
- Fossil fuel emissions in danger of surpassing pre-Covid levels (Guardian UK)
- Not Just Texas: Entire Energy Grid Needs An Upgrade For Extreme Weather (NPR)
- Austin, Texas had a bold new climate plan – until a gas company got involved (Guardian UK)
- Feds Withdraw Environmental Impact Statement, Delaying Oak Flat Land Swap (AZ Republic)
- More States Follow California's Lead On Vehicle Emissions Standards (The Hill)
- New Deal Electric Coops Struggle to Democratize and Make Green Transition (Inside Climate News)
- Biden Admin To Consider Carbon Border Tax As Part Of Trade Agenda: USTR (Reuters)
- We Had Electric Cars in 1900 ... Then This Happened (EcoWatch)
- Cancel all planned coal projects globally to end ‘deadly addiction’, says UN chief (Guardian UK)
- Environmental racism in Louisiana’s ‘Cancer Alley’, must end, say UN human rights experts (United Nations News)
- 'Run Oil Industry In Reverse': Fighting Climate Change By Farming Kelp (NPR)
- House Passes Historic Public Lands Bill Protecting Nearly 3M Acres (Guardian UK)
- Who Will Clean Up The 'Billion-Dollar Mess' Of Abandoned US Oilwells? (Guardian UK)
- Sky-High Levels of Fracking Chemicals Detected in Children's Bodies (EcoWatch)
- New Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm has advice for Texas — and for the oil industry (Washington Post)
- 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