IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Drought deepens across the U.S., disrupting crops and increasing fire risks; U.N. warns greenhouse gas emissions are rising and nations must do more to avoid catastrophe; Australia to build world's largest battery; PLUS: Biden Administration kicks off billion dollar transition to all-electric school buses... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Investigation of Brazil's ethanol sector uncovers slavery; Illegal fishing spurs billions in losses for developing countries; Big Oil funding Republican takeover plans; New UK PM Sunak will keep ban on fracking; From E. coli to flesh-eating bacteria, floodwaters are a health nightmare; Huge EV-station battery opens in Calif. desert; Rich countries keep fueling our demise... PLUS: IEA: Russia's war in Ukraine won't save fossil fuels.... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Drought deepens across U.S.:
- NOAA sees no winter drought relief across parched West (E&E News)
- Mississippi River record-low water levels ease some, but long-term forecast is dry (Yale Climate Connections):
Intense, widespread drought conditions across much of the U.S. this year have cost more than $9 billion and are causing havoc to shipping on the mighty Mississippi River, which in three states has hit its lowest levels on record. The low water levels come at an extremely inopportune time - during the peak of the U.S. harvest season, when barges carrying grain provide the predominant transportation method to carry America's bounty...If barge traffic on the Mississippi River is slowed for an extended period of time, the entire U.S. economy suffers, with impacts to the global economy and world food supplies.
- U.S. Winter Outlook: Warmer, drier South with ongoing La Nina (NOAA)
- VIDEO: Mississippi River's Low Water Levels Stalls Boat Traffic, Stokes Economic Fears (NBC News)
- More than 80 percent of the U.S. is facing troubling dry conditions (Washington Post)
- Severe drought triggers assistance in nearly all of Kansas, half of Missouri (Successful Farming)
- VIDEO: Dry Mississippi Symptom of Larger Drought in Heartland (Climate Crocks)
- U.N. Emissions Gap Report: Still not enough:
- Huge gap remains in curbing climate pollution, UN finds (E&E News)
- World falls 'pitifully short' of meeting climate goals, U.N. report says (Washington Post)
- Nationally determined contributions under the Paris Agreement. Synthesis report by the secretariat (UNFCCC)
- Emissions reductions pledges 'nowhere near' what's needed, UN says (CNBC):
Countries are not doing enough to limit the planet's temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius by the end of this century, according to a new report from U.N. Climate Change. In an assessment published Wednesday, the U.N. said that "the combined climate pledges of 193 Parties under the Paris Agreement could put the world on track for around 2.5 degrees Celsius of warming by the end of the century."
- W.M.O. warns 3 greenhouse gas emissions rose to record levels:
- Climate-warming methane emissions rising faster than ever, study says (Washington Post):
"Methane concentrations are not just rising, they're rising faster than ever," said Rob Jackson, a professor of Earth system science at Stanford University.
- More bad news for the planet: greenhouse gas levels hit new highs (World Meterological Organizaiton):
In yet another ominous climate change warning, atmospheric levels of the three main greenhouse gases - carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide all reached new record highs in 2021, according to a new report from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). WMO's Greenhouse Gas Bulletin reported the biggest year-on-year jump in methane concentrations in 2021 since systematic measurements began nearly 40 years ago. The reason for this exceptional increase is not clear, but seems to be a result of both biological and human-induced processes.
- UNICEF: Nearly all children will be exposed to extreme heat by 2050:
- 559 million children currently exposed to high heatwave frequency, rising to all 2.02 billion children globally by 2050 (UNICEF)
- 'Virtually every child' to face frequent heat waves by 2050, UNICEF says (Washington Post):
She added, "Children now and children who haven't been born yet are going to exist in the world in very different ways, and some of those ways we can't even conceive yet."
- Emperor Penguins listed as endangered species:
- Emperor penguin gets protections from Endangered Species Act (Axios)
- Emperor penguins are now a threatened species due to climate change, U.S. officials say (NBC News)
- Climate change threatens emperor penguins with extinction, officials say (Washington Post):
"This listing reflects the growing extinction crisis," Martha Williams, the federal wildlife agency's director, said in a statement, as the agency gave the iconic seabird protection under the Endangered Species Act. "Climate change is having a profound impact on species around the world."
- Australia to build world's largest battery:
- Australia to replace coal plant with record-busting 850MW battery (Canary Media):
The startup will deliver an 850-megawatt/1,680-megawatt-hour behemoth called the Waratah Super Battery in New South Wales. The battery will sit on the former location of the Munmorah coal plant, and it will deliver capacity to the grid to support the 2025 closure of Eraring, Australia's largest coal plant.
- VP Harris kicks off transition to all-electric school buses:
- EPA awards $1 billion for school districts to buy electric school buses (Yahoo News)
- Harris will announce awards for electric school buses for all 50 states (CNN):
Harris "will announce nearly $1 billion in total awards from the EPA's Clean School Bus program to deliver 2,468 electric and low-emission buses to school districts across all 50 states, Puerto Rico, American Samoa, and a number of tribal run or tribal serving schools," White House senior adviser and infrastructure coordinator Mitch Landrieu told reporters in a briefing on Tuesday afternoon. "The vast majority of those buses, 95% will be purely electric."
- VP Harris: 'Who doesn't love a yellow school bus?' (E&E News)
- VIDEO: Vice President Harris Remarks on Clean Energy School Buses (C-SPAN)
- How to get electric school bus incentives just right (Protocol)
'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
- We Investigated Brazil's Ethanol Sector And Uncovered Slavery (Thompson Reuters Foundation)
- Illegal Fishing Spurs Billions In Losses For Developing Countries: Study (Guardian UK)
- Oil companies helping fund Republican takeover plans (E&E News)
- Rishi Sunak Will Keep Ban On Fracking In UK, No 10 Confirms (Guardian UK)
- IEA: Russia's war in Ukraine won't save fossil fuels (E&E News)
- From E. Coli to Flesh-Eating Bacteria, Floodwaters Are a Health Nightmare (Earther)
- Semafor's Infuriating Climate Misinformation (HEATED)
- Interior, NOAA ink right whale and offshore wind strategy (E&E News)
- Climate law prods Postal Service as EV feud continues (E&E News)
- Mark Jacobson: Backing Up a Clean Grid (Climate Crocks)
- Huge EV-station battery opens in Calif. desert (E&E News)
- Rich Countries Keep Funding Our Demise (Earther)
- Opponents Of US Carbon Pipeline Draw Lessons From Prior Pipeline Fights (Reuters)
- Analysis: Africa’s Unreported Extreme Weather In 2022 And Climate Change (Carbon Brief)
- Feeling Overwhelmed About Going All-Electric at Home? Here's How to Get Started (Inside Climate News)
- Focusing on the climate actions that can make a real difference (David Roberts, Volts)
- VIDEO: See what three degrees of global warming looks like (The Economist/YouTube)
- The 7 climate tipping points that could change the world forever (Grist)
- The 1977 White House climate memo that should have changed the world (Guardian UK)
- Four solutions to mitigate climate change, from the IPCC (Dr. Michael Mann, Penn Today)
- UN warns Earth 'firmly on track toward an unlivable world' (AP)
- Environmental Sacrifice Zones: 8 Places We've Given Up-Probably Forever (Environmental Health Network)
- Feeling Hopeless About the Climate? Try Our 30-Day Action Plan (The Revelator)
- VIDEO: 2050: what happens if we ignore the climate crisis (Guardian UK)
- 99.9 percent Of Scientists Agree Climate Emergency Caused By Humans (Guardian UK)
- Climate Fund Choices for Investors Are Multiplying (Bloomberg/Yahoo)
- 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)
- VIDEO: A Message From the Future With Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (The Intercept)
- 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.