Clean Start: September 21, 2011

Welcome to Clean Start, ThinkProgress Green’s morning round-up of the latest in climate and clean energy. Here is what we’re reading. What are you?

A rig drilling for natural gas in rural Oklahoma exploded late Monday night, prompting the evacuation of the sparsely populated area and causing a fire likely to burn for days. [WSJ]

At least four people died and two were missing in Japan as typhoon Roke bore down on Tokyo on Wednesday, bringing heavy rain and strong winds and disturbing transport systems, public broadcaster NHK said. [Reuters]

The state of Kansas has filed a federal lawsuit against the Obama administration’s plan to clean up power-plant emissions that drift across state lines, saying that Kansas power plants were not given enough time to meet new limits on soot- and smog-forming gases. [E&E News]

A landslide in northern Guatemala caused by heavy rains on Tuesday killed three children and another 12 people buried in the disaster are believed dead, a local official said. [Reuters]

The former chief of staff to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has taken a job with one of the law firms representing BP in legal proceedings stemming from the massive Gulf oil spill last year. [Washington Post]

New research, to be published in the journal Climatic Change in November, suggests humankind may have to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere on a vast scale if emissions keep rising after 2020. [Reuters]

With a bill on the House floor this week that the American Lung Association says would gut the Clean Air Act, the advocacy group sent every member of Congress an audio card that featured a coughing baby on the steps of the Capitol and read, “Listen up Congress. More air pollution means more asthma attacks. Don’t weaken the Clean Air Act.” [Influence Alley]

The U.S. would not consider a climate deal “genuinely binding” if it excludes the biggest emerging economies or if those countries’ commitments were conditional upon financial support from developed countries, the lead U.S. climate negotiator said Monday. [Reuters]

The Obama administration’s offshore drilling chief has rescinded an offer to have Interior Department personnel meet with Rep. Jeff Landry (R-LA) after he accused his agency of behaving like the Gestapo. [E2]

Auburn University researchers said oil mats from BP submerged in the seabed more than a year after the biggest oil spill in U.S. history pose long-term threats to coastal ecosystems across the northern Gulf of Mexico. [Reuters]

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