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Energy and Global Warming News for August 17th: Record floods threaten to drown Pakistan’s economy; Levels plummet in crucial Lake Mead reservoir; Are batteries the key to electric cars, more responsive grid?

By Climate Guest Contributor on August 17, 2010 at 3:19 pm

"Energy and Global Warming News for August 17th: Record floods threaten to drown Pakistan’s economy; Levels plummet in crucial Lake Mead reservoir; Are batteries the key to electric cars, more responsive grid?"

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Are batteries the key to electric cars and a more responsive grid?

The Obama administration is betting that some of its stimulus grants for batteries will have a double whammy — helping electric cars as well as the electric grid. Yesterday, the president gave remarks at ZBB Energy Corp., a company northwest of Milwaukee. ZBB builds large batteries that can cushion the grid when there’s a power hiccup — and, it is hoped, that can eventually smooth out the electricity generated from the fickle forces of wind and sun.

But just before President Obama praised ZBB for exporting its batteries around the world, he mentioned a statistic: that in a matter of years, American firms will have gone from supplying 2 percent of the world’s batteries for vehicles to 40 percent. Experts say there are some commonalities between vehicle and grid batteries, but it’s not a perfect overlap.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act gave billions in grants to set up manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries in the United States. These are the batteries thought to have the best near-term potential for use in vehicles — they’re relatively light and carry plenty of energy. Nissan, General Motors, Ford and Toyota are among the companies planning to use the batteries in plug-in cars.

Some companies receiving the auto-battery grants will also be working on grid batteries. A123Systems and Ener1, for example, each make lithium-ion batteries for cars; together, they received more than $350 million in grants for auto batteries, and both have recently announced demonstration projects for storing power from the grid.

PAKISTAN: Record floods threaten to drown the nation’s economy

The floods wreaking havoc in Pakistan are also destroying the country’s economy, according to a senior U.N. Development Programme official who called for billions of dollars beyond what governments have already pledged.

In Pakistan earlier this week, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the flooding — the worst there in more than 80 years, responsible for the death of more than 1,300 people and still not over — is the worst natural disaster he has ever seen.

While the United Nations appealed last week for $459 million in emergency relief funds, U.N. Interim Resident Coordinator in Pakistan Onder Yucer said agencies are currently conducting separate assessments for long-term recovery needs.

“The damage that has been inflicted on the country’s economy, especially in the agricultural and farming sectors, is still being assessed, but we can confidently say that it is enormous,” Yucer said in a statement.

The United States so far has evacuated about 2,328 people and delivered 213,600 pounds of relief supplies, and pledged an additional $20 million in humanitarian assistance, according to the State Department. It also has delivered about $3.2 million worth of halal meals to Pakistani civilian and military officials, six water filtration units able to provide clean water to 10,000 people daily, about two dozen concrete-cutting saws and 12 pre-fabricated steel bridges valued at $3.2 million for temporary highway bridge replacements.

Levels Plummet in Crucial Reservoir

Water levels in Lake Mead, the Colorado River reservoir, fell sharply again this summer and are nearing an elevation that would set off the first-ever official water shortage on the river, The Arizona Republic reported last week.

The reservoir, which supplies roughly 30 million users in the West, dropped to 1,087 feet above sea level, or about 40 percent of capacity. Were the lake to hit 1,075 feet, allocations on the river would be cut by more than 100 billion gallons under the terms of a 2007 agreement struck by seven Western states and Mexico.

Las Vegas, which draws about 90 percent of its water from Lake Mead, is particularly vulnerable to dropping lake levels. Were levels to fall to 1,050 feet, or 26 percent capacity, one of the city’s two water intake pipes on the lake would cease functioning. In anticipation of such an event, water managers have developed a highly controversial plan to tap groundwater in northeast Nevada and transport it to the city via a multibillion-dollar pipeline.

Scientists work on freak weather warning system

Climate scientists gathering this week in Colorado are trying to come up with an early warning system to predict future meteorological disasters triggered by climate change.

Storms, hurricanes, droughts, flooding and other weather catastrophes have dominated headlines throughout the world this year, and scientists predict that 2010 will likely be the hottest year on record. On the heels of such news, the meeting in Boulder, Colo., has been set up to cope with devastation in the future.

Freak weather events are likely to become more severe and persistent over the coming century as levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere rise, warn scientists. The events will be difficult to track, however, and scientists today cannot pinpoint where the worst devastation will occur. Although they can figure out general trends in climate and say with certainty that the world will be warmer and wetter, they cannot predict specific weather outcomes at particular places.

The Colorado meeting is aimed at developing precise techniques to find out regions that will be hit by droughts, floods and heat waves before the events happen. If such a system is available, the impact of events such as the peat fires in Moscow or the floods in Pakistan that have displaced 20 million and killed 1,600 people could be lessened.

Honda’s hybrid battery fix could hurt gas savings

Batteries in the Honda Civic hybrid can lose power years before expected, but it is the automaker’s fix that has customers up in arms. Rather than replacing the costly batteries, Honda is installing software programs on affected cars’ computers that drivers say make the cars guzzle more gas.

The Japanese company sent a letter to more than 100,000 owners of Civic hybrids warning that the batteries “may deteriorate and eventually fail” and saying a software patch would solve the problem. Honda says the patch is designed to make the car run more smoothly and prevent battery crashes.

But reports say the fix drops the car’s gas mileage, with one driver claiming says his has fallen to 33 miles per gallon, down from 45 miles per gallon when the car was new.

The California Air Resources Board, which monitors vehicle emissions, says that could prompt a mandatory recall or fines. The board says it was not adequately notified of the changes and that the fix could violate regulations if it does increase emissions. “It becomes a potential air quality concern for us,” said John Urkov, chief of the in-use vehicle branch.

Researchers Race to Catch Up With Melting, Shifting Polar Realities

When the Petermann Glacier calved an ice island four times the size of Manhattan earlier this month, GPS sensors embedded in the ice and time-lapse cameras sitting on nearby rock were watching.

But scientists who put them there were caught off guard. Traveling to northwestern Greenland to retrieve the data that equipment recorded will cost them roughly $93,000, money they currently don’t have.

That’s unfortunate, says Jason Box, a climate scientist at Ohio State University who helped place those instruments, because the difficulty comes as his research team has made a startling discovery. Of the 30 widest glaciers in Greenland, it’s the ones in the north — where Petermann is located — that are collectively losing the most ice.

“The science really hasn’t caught up with the observations,” he said of those results, which he will present at a scientific meeting this week in Ohio. “The observations are showing really dramatic changes. There is an element of surprise. The fact that there is so much change in northern Greenland is not something the community is aware of yet.”

Calif. mayors go on offensive for more block grants

Big-city mayors converged yesterday to make the case for more federal funds for energy efficiency. Cities and counties have spent only a fraction of the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act’s $2.8 billion for energy efficiency and conservation block grants — 8 percent, according to a recent report from DOE’s inspector general (Greenwire, Aug. 16). But they are putting the pressure on Congress and DOE to continue funding the grants, which fund local efficiency and emissions-reduction projects.

San Francisco is on track to spend 20 percent of its $7.7 million by the end of September and is projecting it will create 3,600 home energy audit and retrofitting jobs with the entire sum. Mayor Gavin Newsom expressed enthusiasm yet frustration yesterday with the pace and scope of progress.

“That’s what’s so frustrating — it’s so obvious and so easy,” he said.

Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider said her city has spent $868,000 on energy audits, lighting in four municipal parks and heating and air conditioning in eight buildings. The audits alone will save $150,000 annually in energy costs, she said.

Industrial nations divide on future World Bank anti-carbon policy

From Norway to New Delhi, leaders are struggling to define the World Bank’s role in eradicating energy poverty while keeping a lid on carbon emissions.

The global financial institution currently is revamping its blueprint for funding energy projects, a document it hopes to present to its board of directors by mid-2011. But in doing so, the bank finds itself confronting head-on some of the formidable policy questions that it previously had been able to resolve on a project-by-project basis.

Those are: how to bring energy to the 1.5 billion people in the world who live in darkness and another 2.5 billion without access to modern energy fuels without underwriting a mammoth increase in the global level of greenhouse gases — and what precisely should the bank’s policy be when it comes to the construction of major coal-fired power plants in developing countries?

“Any energy solution or proposal will stir controversy and debate in the public arena,” Lucio Monari, World Bank energy sector manager, said in a video the agency posted after a worldwide energy consultation that spanned 45 meetings in 37 countries.

“Between rich and poor countries, in particular, there is an awareness of the need to move to a low-carbon and climate change-conscious development, but at the same time, the issue is who is going to pay for it, and how is it going to be financed?” Monari said.

SHIPPING: Russian tankers take Arctic shortcut to China

Two Russian tankers carrying 70,000 metric tons of natural gas to China are, for the first time, using a shortcut through the Arctic Ocean.

Chaperoned by two nuclear-powered icebreakers, the shipment left the port town of Murmansk for Asia on Saturday. Shipping companies OAO Sovcomflot and OAO Novatek are aiming to cut their delivery time to China by half by using the northern route rather than the Suez Canal.

“We decided to try the new supply because Southeast Asia is a prime market for oil and gas,” Sovcomflot Deputy CEO Evgeny Ambrosov said today by phone. “Even with the accompanying icebreakers, the passage will break even. It’s true that it won’t give especially material returns.”

The journey will cut the distance to an unidentified port in China to 7,000 nautical miles, down from 12,000 via the Suez, according to Sovcomflot. But others were less sure about the economic justification for the trip.

“The fact that there are two icebreakers for a small ship would imply that there is no economic justification for the route, for condensate or LNG,” said Keith Bainbridge, a partner in charge of gas at RS Platou LLP, an offshore shipping broker and investment bank in London.

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40 Responses to Energy and Global Warming News for August 17th: Record floods threaten to drown Pakistan’s economy; Levels plummet in crucial Lake Mead reservoir; Are batteries the key to electric cars, more responsive grid?

  1. Prokaryotes says:

    ‘Big Solar’ Struggles To Find Home In California

    California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has set an ambitious plan that requires a third of the state’s electricity to come from renewable sources by 2020. But a fight over where to build large clean-energy projects is slowing the green revolution. http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=129129794

  2. Prokaryotes says:

    Time Running Out

    Similar debates over land use are playing out across California, and that has created a juggernaut of big solar and wind proposals — more than 200 are waiting approval.

  3. dbmetzger says:

    speaking of electrical cars…
    Carbon Neutral Round-the-World Race Underway
    Around the world in 80 days? Teams from Australia, Germany and Switzerland have set off on what they hope will be the first carbon neutral race around the world. http://www.newslook.com/videos/242027-carbon-neutral-round-the-world-race-underway?autoplay=true

  4. Prokaryotes says:

    OPEC Needs Low Oil Prices Because it Keeps Alternative Energy Down
    The Atlantic has a good piece about OPEC, everybody’s least-favorite cartel. It shows pretty clearly why OPEC is probably the most effective enemy of renewable energy. http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1XOlR6/www.treehugger.com/files/2010/08/opec-needs-low-oil-prices-to-keep-alternative-energy-down.php/r:t

    Where is this name plate again?

  5. Prokaryotes says:

    Massive coral die-off seen in 93-degree waters
    Area off Indonesia is 7 degrees warmer than usual

    Bleaching — a whitening of corals that occurs when symbiotic algae living within coral tissues are expelled — is an indication of stress caused by environmental triggers such as fluctuations in ocean temperature.

    Of particular concern is the scale of the warmer ocean waters, which the NOAA website indicates has affected the entire Andaman Sea and beyond. Similar mass bleaching events in 2010 have now been recorded in Sri Lanka, Thailand, Malaysia and many parts of Indonesia.

    The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) says a dramatic rise in sea temperature, potentially linked to global warming, is responsible for the devastation.

    “If a similar degree of mortality is apparent at other sites in the Andaman Sea this will be the worst bleaching event ever recorded in the region,” said Andrew Baird of James Cook University in Australia. “The destruction of these upstream reefs means recovery is likely to take much longer than before.”

    Efforts to bring back the reefs will have to be both local and global in scale, McClennen said. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/38741347/ns/us_news-environment/

  6. Fredt34 says:

    Sripps 2008 report : Lake Mead may be dry by 2021
    http://scrippsnews.ucsd.edu/Releases/?releaseID=876

  7. Prokaryotes says:

    US Chamber Sues EPA to Challenge GHG Endangerment Finding

    “The U.S. Chamber, policymakers, numerous trade groups, state governments, and businesses throughout the country have collectively raised strong concerns about the significant negative impact the EPA’s endangerment finding will have on jobs and local economies,” said Robin Conrad, executive vice president of the U.S. Chamber’s National Chamber Litigation Center, in a prepared statement. http://www.environmentalleader.com/2010/08/16/us-chamber-sues-epa-to-challenge-ghg-endangerment-finding/

  8. Prokaryotes says:

    More than two dozen local chambers of commerce in the US will join forces to advocate for market-based mechanisms to price carbon, much to the dismay of the national US Chamber of Commerce.

    The Chambers for Innovation & Clean Energy (CICE), led by the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, is being organised under five core principles, including that businesses must be part of the solution to reduce greenhouse gases (GHG) and that market-based solutions produce the best results. http://oilprice.com/Alternative-Energy/Renewable-Energy/US-Chamber-of-Commerce-Dismayed-at-Breakaway-Clean-Energy-Group.html

  9. Lewis Cleverdon says:

    Prokaryotes -

    Only two subjects were vetoed during preparatory talks on the agenda for the Rio Earth Summit for Environment and Development, back in ’92.

    The Vatican took out any discussion of population issues, and the other veto was for sustainable energy, imposed by Saudi Arabia.

    Mind you, Saudi malfeasance goes much further than long-term market distortion – for decades now its official Wahabi cult of puritanical Islam has been exported, with heavy royal funding, to establish ‘colleges’ particularly in Pakistan, where they’ve been indoctrinating large numbers of poor young men – who are then suitably motivated for recruitment and further training by the Taliban.

    And America lets Saudi money own a chunk of Fox News ? Astounding !

    Regards,

    Lewis

  10. Prokaryotes says:

    Klaus Topfer, former head of UN Environmental Program: The cause of natural catastrophes & human made catastrophes are overlapping more and more. http://therealnews.com/t2/component/seyret/?task=videodirectlink&id=7360

  11. Prokaryotes says:

    About Saudi Arabia and “progress” – or lack thereof

    Close Encounters of the Absurd Kind http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/02/close-encounters-of-the-absurd-kind/#comment-162799

  12. fj2 says:

    re: “Researchers Race to Catch Up With Melting, Shifting Polar Realities”

    Yup: “The science really hasn’t caught up with the observations . . .”

  13. fj2 says:

    re: “PAKISTAN: Record floods threaten to drown the nation’s economy”

    Excellent opportunity for America to start to regain its moral authority in a call to action to right a serious climate-change wrong and do much better than war; and show the needed spine and undo the 9/11 missed opportunity to unite the world: “Americans who seek the marginalization of Muslims in this country are unwittingly doing the work of Islamist extremists” from

    “A Task for George W. Bush,” Jeffrey Goldberg, The Atlantic, Aug 9, 2010

    http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2010/08/a-task-for-george-w-bush/61133/

    “The singular threat, of course, is not posed by those who want to build mosques, but those who oppose the right of American Muslims to worship freely. The threat is not only to the Constitution, and to our self-image as a tolerant accepting nation, but to the War on Terror itself. As I’ve explained previously, it is the goal of Islamism — the politically radical and violent interpretation of Islam whose most famous proponent is the mass murderer Osama Bin Laden — to create a civilizational struggle between the West and Islam. It is the goal of the American national security apparatus to make sure that this war does not widen into such a struggle, and it should be the goal of both Democratic and Republican leaders to support this mission.”

    George W. Bush at the Washington Islamic Center a few days after 9/11 attacks:

    “When we think of Islam we think of a faith that brings comfort to a billion people around the world. Billions of people find comfort and solace and peace. And that’s made brothers and sisters out of every race — out of every race.”

    . . .

    “I’ve been told that some fear to leave; some don’t want to go shopping for their families; some don’t want to go about their ordinary daily routines because, by wearing cover, they’re afraid they’ll be intimidated. That should not and that will not stand in America.”

  14. catman306 says:

    Atlanta’s water source, Lake Lanier, has fallen 2 feet since last October when it was last full, from heavy rains that caused much flooding. Mild draught in the watershed is blamed. Atlanta has been ordered by a judge to find another water source within 2 years. Since Lanier was more than 20 feet low during Georgia’s draught, nature may be telling Atlanta the same thing.

    http://www.accessnorthga.com/detail.php?n=231510

  15. Windsong says:

    I’ve read that it takes 30 years to switch to a new energy source (from coal to oil; from oil to clean energy, etc.) According to Peak oil experts, we don’t have 30 years. Doesn’t this pose a “big” problem?

  16. Prokaryotes says:

    It’s not the global warming, it’s ‘sunspots’

    The Republican hopeful for U.S. Senate in Wisconsin raised eyebrows with comments yesterday in which he attributed climate change not to global warming but to sunspots and other phenomena.

    “It’s far more likely that it’s just sunspot activity or just something in the geologic eons of time,” Ron Johnson said, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

    Instead, Johnson said, extra carbon dioxide that exists all around us “gets sucked down by trees and helps the trees grow.”

    He also harked back to the Middle Ages, saying that the average temperatures for the planet were pretty warm then, and “it’s not like there were tons of cars on the road.”

    He also dismissed efforts to regulate climate change as a waste of time and said, “I absolutely do not believe in the science of man-caused climate change. It’s not proven by any stretch of the imagination.”

    “And it’s pretty clear that the guy is completely out of touch with where voters are, No. 1, and he’s completely out of touch with reality on the issue as well.” http://www.politico.com/blogs/maggiehaberman/0810/Its_not_the_global_warming_its_sun_spots_.html

  17. Prokaryotes says:

    Novel ideas!

    Punish climate change deniers

    By avoiding its responsibility to fight climate change, the government of Canada is guilty of letting millions of people suffer around the world. Stephen Harper and his “climate change denying” friends and acolytes in the business industry, should be tried under the International Criminal Court and condemned as environmental criminals. http://www.thestar.com/opinion/letters/article/849049–punish-climate-change-deniers

  18. Prokaryotes says:

    Coal: The cheap, dirty and direct route to irreversible climate change

    The global dominance of industrial interests dependant on cheap energy sourced from coal mean climate change is inevitable

    In Europe, indigenous coal production no longer plays an important economic role. It is thus not surprising that Europe could enact a cap-and-trade system that imposes a carbon price on a large part of its industry. Indeed, the tax seems to fall mostly on foreign suppliers of coal (and to a lesser extend on foreign suppliers of hydrocarbons in the Middle East and Russia). By contrast, opposition by US states whose economies rely significantly on coal production proved decisive for the fate of Obama’s climate-change bill.

    The US experience has wider implications. If it proved impossible to introduce a moderate carbon tax in a rich economy, it is certain that no commitment will be forthcoming for the next generation from China, which remains much poorer and depends even more on indigenous coal than the US. And, after China, India looms as the next emerging coal-based industrial superpower. http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/cif-green/2010/aug/06/coal-climate-change

  19. Prokaryotes says:

    Former Vice President Gore is calling for major rallies to protest congressional inaction on climate change.

    Gore has in recent weeks stepped up his criticism of the Senate for its inability to pass a comprehensive energy and climate bill that would put a price on carbon. In a conference call with environmental activists last week, he reportedly said “the United States government in its entirety, largely because of the opposition in the United States Senate to taking action on clean energy and a solution to the climate crisis, has failed us.” http://thehill.com/blogs/e2-wire/677-e2-wire/114717-al-gore-calls-for-us-protests-on-climate-change-inaction

    Hell, Yes!

  20. Prokaryotes says:

    Most comments from above article are part of a concerted campaign to manipulate the politicans which read the Hill. Funny how all the comments use the same script – ad hominem attacks – irrelevant when it comes to the threat of climate change.

  21. ozajh says:

    I don’t know enough about the differences between displays to be certain here, but doesn’t the UUIC picture show the North-West passage open end-to-end?

  22. Prokaryotes says:

    Groups file brief supporting U.Va. in case against Cuccinelli

    “If the court permits the attorney general to gain access to the private communications among scientists whenever he disagrees with their ideas, the scientists will simply stop sharing their ideas,” said Kent Willis, executive director of the ACLU of Virginia. “The chilling effect on academic freedom and scientific inquiry is incalculable.”

    Cuccinelli has said the results of Mann’s research aren’t at question but that he is investigating whether Mann defrauded Virginia taxpayers as he sought five public grants while employed at the university. http://voices.washingtonpost.com/virginiapolitics/2010/08/groups_file_brief_supporting_u.html

  23. David B. Benson says:

    Interview with physicist Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, 2 K limt advocate:
    http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,712113,00.html

  24. Prokaryotes says:

    Why our children need to get outside and engage with nature

    More and more children today have less and less contact with the natural world. And this is having a huge impact on their health and development

    But a growing body of evidence is starting to show that it’s not so much what children know about nature that’s important, as what happens to them when they are in nature (and not just in it, but in it by themselves, without grownups). Respectable scientists – doctors, mental health experts, educationalists, sociologists – are beginning to suggest that when kids stop going out into the natural world to play, it can affect not just their development as individuals, but society as a whole.

    “There’s a paradox,” says Stephen Moss, naturalist, broadcaster and author. “More kids today are interested in the natural world than ever before; they watch it on the telly, they may well visit a nature reserve or a National Trust site with their families. But far fewer are experiencing it directly, on their own or with their friends, and that’s what counts: this is about more than nature.”

    The American writer Richard Louv, author of the bestseller Last Child in the Woods, has defined the phenomenon as “nature deficit disorder”. Something “very profound” has happened to children’s relationship with nature over the last couple of decades, he says, for a number of reasons. http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2010/aug/16/childre-nature-outside-play-health

  25. fj2 says:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/16/opinion/16joseph.html

    re: “Are batteries the key to electric cars and a more responsive grid?”

    “ZBB builds large batteries that can cushion the grid . . . ”

    Seems provide somewhat of a backa up solution to another current concern:

    “The Sun Also Surprises,” Lawrence Joseph, NY Times, Aug 15, 2010

  26. Mike says:

    ‘Straddling Bus’ Offered as a Traffic Fix in China
    By BETTINA WASSENER and ANDREA DENG
    Published: August 17, 2010

    HONG KONG — What do you do if your roads are congested and polluted? Try designing a vehicle that takes up no road space. And make it partly solar powered.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/18/business/global/18bus.html

  27. Prokaryotes says:

    Senators Urged to Clean Up Oil Money Spill in Washington

    Oil Change International Launches Accountability Campaign Demanding a Separation of Oil and Senate

    As 60,000 barrels of oil or more spilled into the Gulf of Mexico a day, the U.S. Senate voted to preserve subsidies to the oil industry. As the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Agency announced the planet has just come through the warmest decade, the warmest year, and the warmest April, May, and June on record, the Senate utterly failed to pass any energy, climate change, or even oil spill response legislation.

    Oil Change International offers an explanation for this complete abrogation of leadership with the launch of its new campaign: CleanUptheSenate.com. The website profiles 46 U.S. Senators – Democrat and Republican – who are aligned with the oil industry. They are portrayed bobbing in a sea of petroleum. http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/senators-urged-to-clean-up-oil-money-spill-in-washington-100881399.html

  28. Prokaryotes says:

    Oil Change International: It’s Time To “Clean Up The Senate”

    “We hope Americans are motivated to clean up the gusher of oil money that is currently covering these Senators. This campaign exposes these Senators and lets people send them a message that it’s time they clean up their act. It’s time for a Separation of Oil and State.” http://www.treehugger.com/files/2010/08/oil-change-senate-clean-up.php

  29. Prokaryotes says:

    GOP candidates knock global warming

    Republicans running for the House, Senate and governor’s mansions have gotten bolder in stating their doubts over the well-established link between man-made greenhouse gas emissions and global warming.

    GOP climate skeptics have held powerful positions on Capitol Hill recent years, including the chairmanship of the House Energy and Senate Environment panels. But they’ve typically been among the minority. Now, they could form a key voting bloc, adding insult to injury for climate advocates who failed to pass an energy bill this year.

    Four independent reviews have concluded that the so-called “Climategate” e-mails stolen last fall from a United Kingdom research unit showed nothing more than a frank discussion among scientists http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0810/41192.html

    LOL!

  30. Prokaryotes says:

    Sceptics crash climate change rally

    A police spokesman later said the sceptics had “crashed” the event, causing a disturbance, but no one was charged with an offence. http://news.smh.com.au/breaking-news-national/sceptics-crash-climate-change-rally-20100815-124×2.html

    Climate Sceptics = Terrorist 2.0

  31. Prokaryotes says:

    Wake-Up Call: Are extreme weather events signs of things to come?

    Russian President Dmitri Medvedev, for one, has not been quick to embrace action to curb global warming in the past. But this month he had no qualms about linking the unprecedented weather in his country to climate change.

    “Unfortunately, what is happening now in our central regions is evidence of this global climate change, because we have never in our history faced such weather conditions in the past,” he told the Russian Security Council. http://blog.syracuse.com/opinion/2010/08/wake-up_call_are_extreme_weath.html

  32. Prokaryotes says:

    Group launches website uncovering senators connected to oil

    Oil Change International on Tuesday launched a six-figure advertising campaign and extensive social media push that shows the cozy relationship some senators have with Big Oil.

    One aspect of the push is the website CleanUptheSenate.com that profiles 46 senators from both parties that the group claims are closely aligned with the oil industry. http://thehill.com/blogs/on-the-money/voting-records/114729-group-launches-website-uncovering-senators-connected-to-oil

  33. Prokaryotes says:

    Indonesia’s coral reefs dying at alarming rate

    JAKARTA, Indonesia — Coral that survived the 2004 tsunami is now dying at one of the fastest rates ever recorded because of a dramatic rise in water temperatures off northwestern Indonesia caused in part by global warming, conservationists said Wednesday, warning that the threat extends to other reefs across Asia. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/18/AR2010081801926.html

  34. Prokaryotes says:

    Ozone + nicotine = bigger asthma threat

    The study, published in the journal Atmospheric Environment, finds nicotine can react with ozone to form secondary organic aerosols that are less than 100 nanometers in diameter and become a source of thirdhand smoke. http://www.upi.com/Health_News/2010/08/17/Ozone-nicotine-bigger-asthma-threat/UPI-75191282103541/

  35. Prokaryotes says:

    Green Chemistry Is Good For Business

    Almost daily, another consumer product is found to contain chemicals that none of us would knowingly use or give to our children. In California the legislature has attempted to protect public health by banning some toxic chemicals, only to see their efforts frustrated when banned chemicals are replaced by substitutes that pose risks that are similar to or worse than the original, or that are unknown. Our public health agencies face a similar challenge: California EPA, for example, phased out the use of toxic chlorinated solvents in the vehicle repair industry, only to see them replaced by products formulated with hexane and acetone, a neurotoxic blend that injured workers throughout the industry. This and other examples highlight the need for a process to identify chemicals of greatest concern, provide an analysis of safer alternatives, and give consumers and businesses vital information about the products they make, purchase and use. http://www.forbes.com/2010/08/17/green-chemistry-business-environment-opinions-contributors-craig-criddle-robert-bergman.html

  36. Prokaryotes says:

    Australian election: breakthrough forecast for Greens

    Major parties’ failure to address public climate change concern may hand Greens up to 14% of vote and balance of power in senate http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/aug/18/green-party-australian-elections

  37. Solar energy is becoming more accessible, more affordable and easier for the average homeowner to undertake. It may take a little effort and expense on the front end, but the pay off will be so worth it. It truly is the wave of the future.