IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Shell refinery fire in Houston finally out, but pollution concerns remain; Biden Admin proposes money-saving efficiency standards for dishwashers; Greenland ice sheet melting faster than thought; Oil and gas production's billions in public health impacts in U.S.; PLUS: Minnesota to enact nation's strongest restrictions on PFAS 'forever' chemicals... All that and more in today's Green News Report!
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IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): EPA proposes new rules that would dramatically slash planet-warming pollution from power plants; EPA tightens pollution standards for power plants, with a big loophole for coal and gas; Norway's EV transition well underway - with few hitches; Supreme Court upholds California animal-cruelty law that bans narrow cages for pigs; New pipeline agency rule aimed at cutting methane leaks; 'Mind-boggling' methane emissions from Turkmenistan revealed; New Florida law allows radioactive waste to be built into Florida roads... PLUS: Can we engineer our way out of drought? ... and much, MUCH more! ...
STORIES DISCUSSED ON TODAY'S 'GREEN NEWS REPORT'...
- Warming ocean tides are melting Greenland ice sheet from below:
- Warming ocean tides accelerate melting of Greenland (UC Irvine/Science Daily)
- Warming-Stoked Tides Eating Huge Holes In Greenland Glacier (AP):
Scientists used to think the daily tides weren't a big deal on melt..."The sea water actually goes much farther beneath the grounded ice (than previously thought), kilometers, not hundreds of meters," Rignot said. "And that water is full of heat and able to melt the glaciers vigorously. And it's kind of the most sensitive part of the glacier."
- Tidal Effects on Ice Sheets Could Mean Faster Sea Level Rise (Climate Crocks):
The study provides strong evidence that models need to include these tidal effects deep inland and if they don't, then they are underestimating future sea level rise, said Pennsylvania State University glaciologist Richard Alley, who wasn't part of the Rignot study.
- A Greenland glacier's rapid melting may signal faster sea level rise (Washington Post)
- A major Greenland glacier is melting away with the tide, which could signal faster sea level rise, study finds (CNN)
- Texas Shell refinery fire out, pollution concerns remain:
- Shell: Fire that reignited at Texas plant is extinguished (AP)
- VIDEO: Runoff from Shell chemical fire being directed to Houston Ship Channel (KHOU-Houston)
- Shell refinery unit in Deer Park had history of malfunctions before fire (Texas Tribune):
In every case prior to this weekend's fire, Shell invoked the "affirmative defense," an element of Texas law that relieves industrial operators of liability for pollution events that are reported as accidents or emergencies.
- How harmful was that thick, black smoke from the Shell Deer Park fire? Experts weigh in. (Houston Chronicle/MSN):
"They’re monitoring for several known carcinogens," said Jennifer Hadayia, executive director of Air Alliance Houston. "No one has been monitoring for particulate matter, which is one of the most concerning pollutants out there because it lodges into the lungs and the cardiovascular system"
- What to know about the Shell chemical plant that caught fire in Deer Park (Houston Chronicle)
- Injured contractor sues Shell after Deer Park chemical facility fire (Houston Chronicle/MSN)
- High cost of oil and gas production impacts on public health:
- Air pollution from oil and gas production responsible for $77 billion in annual US health damages, contributes to thousands of early deaths, childhood asthma cases nationwide (Boston School of Public Health/Science Daily):
A new study found that air pollution from the oil and gas sector in the United States has substantial adverse impacts on air quality, human health, and health costs. The findings show that the pollutants nitrogen oxide (NO2), fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone (O3) from U.S. oil and gas production contributed to 7,500 excess deaths, 410,000 asthma attacks, and 2,200 new cases of childhood asthma across the U.S. in 2016.
- Oil and Gas Production Causes 7,500 Premature Deaths Per Year (Earther)
- Biden DOE upgrades energy/water efficiency of dishwashers:
- Water-wasting dishwashers are Biden's latest green target (Bloomberg)
- Biden administration proposes stricter energy standards for dishwashers, other appliances (National Daily)
- Now Biden is going after your DISHWASHERS: new rules to fight climate change (Daily Mail/MSN)
- EPA orders Chemours to knock it off with the PFAS pollution:
- US agency takes unprecedented action to tackle PFAS water pollution: EPA orders chemical company Chemours to stop discharging high levels of the toxic substance into WV's Ohio River (Guardian):
The step by the EPA drew praise from some environmental groups, but at least one noted the permit still allows high levels of PFAS pollution and may not adequately protect the environment and human health. The EPA and states should also be taking similar action against PFAS polluters everywhere, not just Chemours, critics say.
- EPA cites Chemours for exceeding PFAS limits in wastewater (Chemical and Engineering News)
- EPA announces enforcement action against Chemours over PFAS (Parkersburg News and Sentinel)
- Minnesota to enact nation's strictest PFAS regulations:
- Minnesota prepares for near-total ban on 'forever chemicals' (AP):
Minnesota is on the verge of banning non-essential uses of “forever chemicals.” And lawmakers say they are naming the legislation after a woman who spent the last months of her life campaigning for restrictions that will be some of the toughest in the country.
- VIDEO: Minnesota lawmakers, advocates celebrate deal to ban PFAS in consumer products (CBS News):
"Amara wanted to do whatever she could – whatever strength she could call up, whatever needed to be said --- to make her community a safe place to live," said her father, Michael Strande. "Amara was willing to do whatever it takes to prevent other people from having to face a disease like her own."
- VIDEO: Bill banning PFAS in consumer products inspired by young Minnesota woman (KVLY-TV Fargo/MSN)
- Outdoor Brands Phase Out PFAS, "Forever Chemicals," Ahead Of State Bans (EHN)
- Michiganders demand action on cancer-causing PFAS chemicals (WILX-TV Lansing/MSN)
'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
- EPA proposes new rules that would dramatically slash planet-warming pollution from power plants (CNN)
- The EPA tightens pollution standards for power plants, with a big loophole for coal and gas (The Verge)
- Norway's EV Transition Well Underway - With Few Hitches (Climate Crocks)
- Supreme Court upholds California animal-cruelty law that bans narrow cages for pigs (LA Times)
- New pipeline agency rule aimed at cutting methane leaks (AP)
- 'Mind-boggling' methane emissions from Turkmenistan revealed (Guardian)
- Spanish Civil Guard raid illegal wells amid drought (AP)
- Can we engineer our way out of drought? (The Land Desk)
- Florida lawmakers pass bill allowing radioactive material to be built into Florida roads (WFTV-Orlando)
- Whales are dying, but it’s not because of wind farms
- These are the places most at risk from record-breaking heat waves as the planet warms (CNN)
- Why It's Time to Officially Get Over Your EV Range Anxiety (Inside Climate News)
- Building Steam in Lithium Valley (The American Prospect)
- Feeling Overwhelmed About Going All-Electric at Home? Here's How to Get Started (Inside Climate News)
- 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.