April 17 News: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Back On The Rise In The U.S.

Our round-up of the latest in climate and clean energy. Please post more links below.

After dropping for two years during the recession, emissions of the gases blamed for global warming rose in 2010 as the economy heated up, the Environmental Protection Agency reports. “The increase from 2009 to 2010 was primarily due to an increase in economic output resulting in an increase in energy consumption across all sectors, and much warmer summer conditions resulting in an increase in electricity demand for air conditioning that was generated primarily by combusting coal and natural gas,” said EPA. [New York Times]

The Environmental Protection Agency’s apparent change of heart on plans to limit greenhouse gas emissions at existing power plants came during a White House review of the agency’s proposed greenhouse gas rule for new plants, according to documents obtained by Politico. [Politico]

In a new study in the journal Transport Policy, Ralph Buehler and John Pucher suggest that cities might actually be able to influence how many cyclists are on the road. Perhaps all they have to do is — and this shouldn’t come as a huge surprise — build more bike lanes and bike paths. [WonkBlog]

Many climate change models have predicted increases in pollen levels and associated allergies, as rising carbon dioxide levels and warmer temperatures spur plant growth. [Summit County Citizens Voice]

There’s a disconnect between the real world and congressional Republicans. I know, I know: This is a statement of the obvious. But if you want to see just how big the disconnect is, look at what’s going on with gas prices. [Washington Post Opinions]

A bill before the California Assembly Committee on Utilities and Commerce this month seeks to equalize renewable energy installation in the state by promoting small-scale solar rooftops in the disadvantaged communities. [California Watch]

At least one penguin at the St. Louis Zoo appears to be a feisty opponent of Newt Gingrich. [Huffington Post]

At a time when glacier melting is a burning issue in Pakistan, concerned experts met here on Monday to highlight the emerging climate-change challenges and to reduce threats of floods in Northern Pakistan. [Pakistan Observer]

Japan’s government is in a race against time to approve the restart of two reactors and possibly determine the fate of the country’s troubled nuclear power industry. [Guardian]

43 Responses to April 17 News: Greenhouse Gas Emissions Back On The Rise In The U.S.

  1. prokaryotes says:

    The company reported a nearly 3% drop in internaitonal oil production, which accounts for about three fourths of its total production. Chevron also reported a less sizeable drop in natural gas production, and suggested that gas production would begin to rise next year because of increases in production in their Australian fields, as well as in the Marcellus Shale.

    The company also reported a wide gain in the west coast refining division, which has not been particularly profitable over the past couple years, as WTI prices rose less than Brent prices.

    What is interesting to me about Chevron’s quarter is that it highlights the problem that all of the majors are having now. Dropping production numbers even while prices rise. Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) recently reported production drops of around 3%, Conoco-Phillips’ annual production numbers dropped significantly as well, although they were especially impacted by events in Venezuela. Exxon, the exception amongst the majors, still reported just a 1% increase in oil production.

    Oil is obviously becoming increasingly hard to find, and while Chevron still gets an appealing nearly two thirds of its production from their higher margin oil business, their production numbers continue to drop. Even when oil prices reached their 3 year peak, several years ago, around $115 a barrel in WTI prices, the company was unable to take any stronger action than a mere 8% dividend raise.

  2. prokaryotes says:


  3. prokaryotes says:

    Why do we continue to ignore China’s rise? Arrogance
    Martin Jacques, author of a bestseller on China, asks why the west continues to approach the rise of the new global powerhouse with a closed mind. We obsess over details of the race for the White House, yet give scant regard to the battle to replace China’s current leadership. If we fail to pay heed to the political and economic shift of gravity, we will be sidelined by history

  4. prokaryotes says:

    I tried to wake up politicians in Germany and Austria since 2004.
    I received 2010 a government invitation from China.
    My key note at the WEIS World Emerging Industries Summit

    My key note at the WEIS World Emerging Industries Summit

    I received 2010 a government invitation from China.
    My key note at the GELS Global Economic Leaders Summit

    I tried my best to make my key notes at last known in Austria where i live. But there had been a wall of silence from the mass media.

    There is this extreme cirsis in USA+EU. Should not everybody search for the reason? Discuss how it can happen? No! They want to ignore the reasons for theri downfall, so they ignore me.

  5. prokaryotes says:

    Australia’s Largest Solar PV Project Continues Apace

    Construction of Australia’s largest solar photovoltaic power project has reached a major milestone with the initiation of panel installation at the Greenough River Solar Farm in Western Australia.
    “The demonstration of this proven technology in WA on a commercial scale should encourage the development of larger projects and reduce renewable energy costs in the medium to long term,” said Western Australian Energy Minister, Peter Collier, who joined with landholders, members of the Geraldton community and local contractors and First Solar, Inc., Verve Energy, and GE Energy Financial Services to mark the commencement of panel installation.The 10-megawatt solar farm is located 50 kilometres south of Geraldton, with construction starting four months ago. Since then, above-ground electrical work has been completed and structural supports have been installed. Next on the list of things to do is to install approximately 150,000 First Solar photovoltaic modules, with completion of the project expected sometime in the middle of this year.
    “The successful delivery of the Greenough River Solar Farm will help kick-off a long-term, sustainable market for utility-scale solar in Australia. First Solar has a strong record of successful project delivery, enhanced by working with local communities to ensure projects make a meaningful and lasting contribution,” said Jack Curtis, Vice President — Business Development & Sales, First Solar.
    “When in operation, First Solar’s panels produce electricity with no water use, no waste production and no CO2 emissions,” Mr. Curtis added.
    “GE Energy Financial Services sees Australia as a key growth market that will continue to need capital to fuel its expanding renewable energy industry. We hope this is the first of many such milestones in the country,” said Jason Willoughby, GE Energy Financial Services’ Australia business leader. “With our strong partners, Verve Energy and First Solar, we are pleased to help make this landmark solar project a reality.”
    Source: Clean Technica (

  6. prokaryotes says:

    Fun with Trends
    by Richard Heinberg
    If current population trends continue . . .

    The population of the United States will increase to over 600 million by 2080, and in 2150 it will equal China’s present size.
    World population will achieve 14 billion by the year 2075 and 30 billion by 2150.

    If current energy trends continue . . .
    By 2015 China will be importing more oil than the United States does that year.
    By 2030 China will be absorbing all available global oil exports, leaving none for the US or Europe.
    In just 8 years China will be burning as much coal as the entire world uses today.
    Natural gas will be virtually free in the US by 2015.
    Officially assessed US natural gas reserves will be exhausted by 2025.

    If current economic trends continue . . .
    China’s economy will be 8 times as big as it is today by 2040.
    China’s economy will surpass the size of the present global economy before 2050.
    The US federal debt will double—from $14 trillion to $28 trillion—by 2022.
    In 2072, the federal debt will amount to $896 trillion, or $1,629,091 for each American (assuming a US population then of 550 million).
    By the end of the century, each American will “owe” over a billion dollars.
    Thanks to the doubling of US households living on less than $2 per person per day between 1996 and 2011, in 150 years there will be about 1.5 billion Americans living on practically no income.
    The number of billionaires in the world (having grown from 793 to 1210 in just two years, from 2009 to 2011) will equal the world population in only 70 years. (Given the previous trend, this is especially gratifying news: since the rate of growth in the number of billionaires in the world exceeds the rate of growth in extreme poverty in the US, this means each American will become a billionaire before his or her grandchildren plunge into desperate poverty).

    If current technology trends continue . . .
    Thanks to Moore’s Law (whereby the number of transistors that can be placed inexpensively on an integrated circuit doubles approximately every two years), within 20 years transistors will be the size of an atom, and after another generation or so, “transistors” (if they can be called such, at that point) they will be the size of an electron.
    It will eventually be possible to download into a computer all the memories and even the personality of a human individual.

    If current environmental trends continue . . .
    Due to the decades-long decline in male sperm counts, apparently caused by a proliferation of environmental hydrocarbon-based, estrogen-mimicking pollutants, the human species will go extinct sometime within the next two centuries.
    With China’s coal consumption climbing at 8 percent per year, annual global greenhouse gas emissions will skyrocket, setting off multiple strong self-reinforcing environmental feedbacks that will ensure the melting of all polar ice, the death of the oceans, and the collapse of most agricultural production on the planet.

  7. prokaryotes says:

    The latest Economist projection suggests China will overtake America in 2018. So why are we – and Europe – so far behind the curve? Why do we insist on living in a world that was rather than is?

  8. prokaryotes says:

    Terrified by peak oil, FedEx turns to biofuels, efficiency
    FedEx’s forthcoming all-electric pickup and delivery vans will cost one-quarter as much to operate per mile as their gasoline equivalents, says Smith. He also predicts that electric vehicles will be in wide commercial use in about six years.

    In the future, he sees his jets being powered by algae-based fuels, and his long-haul trucks running on natural gas. Smith is a staunch Republican, by the way, and a perfect example of how energy efficiency is a no-brainer that cuts across political lines.

  9. prokaryotes says:

    I wonder how long he plans to stick with his 29 million Conocophillips shares.

  10. prokaryotes says:

    Greenland ice sheet on the slide

    The Greenland Ice Sheet is accelerating in its slide into the ocean, like snow sliding off a roof on a sunny day.

    Maybe the worst possible short term – large climate disrupting impact for society, in the making!

  11. Sasparilla says:

    This was a couple of days ago in NYTimes but I wanted to point a bit of an obvious flaw in the report and article.

    How Green Are Electric Cars? Depends on Where You Plug In

    Its a very nice article and measured well to wheels CO2 emissions comparing gas cars and electric cars using the Leaf as the baseline. They have a nice graph of the nation showing gasoline average mpg (for CO2 emissions) for a Leaf running on electricity generated in the associated areas.

    There was a big flaw in the report that the article was based on.

    The emissions for plug-ins does not take into account that most plug-in’s will be charged at night when there is a large amount of excess baseload power being generated (because certain types of plants can’t be throttled easily, coal being one of them) throughout the nation. With plug-in numbers being very small for years into the future, in most places in the U.S. plugging in at night will result in no additional CO2 emissions – whereas filling the car up with gasoline will result in additional emissions.

  12. Leif says:

    Easy Pro. Until he can make more money with renewable energy. Stopping the ability to profit from the pollution of the commons would speed the transition.

  13. prokaryotes says:

    Watch live: President Obama speaks about his plan to crack down on price manipulation in the oil market.

  14. EDpeak says:

    One request to CP about the headlines, could the headlines or key phrases in each of the main stories be put in bold?

    You do this in other stories and I think you did in the past with headlines, and it would make it much faster to skim at a glance and decide which of the headlines to read fully.


  15. prokaryotes says:

    Exxon is now the partner with RUSSIA’s Rosneft

    Rosneft wins American access in Exxon deal

  16. prokaryotes says:

    Russian state oil firm Rosneft (ROSN.MM) will gain access to North American energy sources and know-how for developing hard-to-produce reserves when it finalizes a joint venture with Exxon Mobil Corp (XOM.N) on Monday, industry sources said.

    Rosneft was offered a role in seven projects under its landmark deal last year with the biggest U.S. oil company, which could open up 36 billion barrels of oil in the Arctic offshore and help keep Russia’s place as the world’s top producer.

    === 1 Word: WTF are these loonatics doing? We need a ban on all arctic exploitation and we do not need “hard-tp-produce” ie. high risk stuff like deep sea drills! Someone sue these irresponsible idiots!

  17. prokaryotes says:

    UPDATE 1-US court rules for ExxonMobil over pipeline rates

    (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday reversed a decision by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that had ruled a crude oil pipeline owned by Exxon Mobil Corp had market power, and thus the rates it charged had to be capped.

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said that the record showed that producers and shippers of Western Canadian oil had “numerous competitive alternatives” to the Pegasus pipeline for moving the oil.

    The Pegasus pipeline, which runs from Illinois to Texas, “does not possess market power,” the appeals court ruled.

  18. prokaryotes says:

    World economy fragile, faces “uneasy calm:” IMF

    (Reuters) – Global growth is slowly improving as the U.S. recovery gains traction and dangers from Europe recede, but risks remain elevated and the situation is very fragile, the International Monetary Fund said on Tuesday.

    Another flare-up of the euro-zone sovereign debt crisis or sharp escalation in oil prices on geopolitical uncertainty could disrupt the world economy finding its feet now tensions in the euro zone have subsided, the IMF said.

    “An uneasy calm remains. One has the feeling that at any moment things could well get very bad again,” IMF chief economist Olivier Blanchard told reporters as he detailed the Fund’s World Economic Outlook.

  19. prokaryotes says:

    To secure the global recovery, the IMF urged central banks in the United States, euro zone and Japan to stand ready to deliver further monetary easing; governments to exercise caution over the pace of budget cutbacks wherever feasible; and Europe to consider using public funds to recapitalize banks.

    Why cutting back on renewable energy subsidies is counter productive – the worst thing one can do at this time of energy reliability, imbalance.

  20. prokaryotes says:

    First Solar, higher oil prices boost energy stocks

    SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — A surge in oil prices, a battle over ownership of Argentina’s biggest oil company and First Solar’s latest steps to rescue its flagging sun power business gave a boost to energy stocks Tuesday, pushing the sector to the top of the S&P 500 gainers list.

  21. prokaryotes says:

    First Solar Inc. FSLR +9.89% shares rose as much as 2% at the open after the struggling company announced plans to drastically curtail its manufacturing operations and eliminate 3,000 jobs, or roughly 30% of its work force. Read about First Solar’s restructuring plan.

    The restructuring includes shutting first Solar’s plant in Frankfurt, Germany, and idling indefinitely four production lines in Kulim, Malaysia.

  22. fj says:

    May be worth a post on Climate Progress regarding the coming transition:

    What Does E.O. Wilson Mean By a “Social Conquest of The Earth”

  23. prokaryotes says:

    How One Startup Sold $6,000 Worth of Charcoal on Kickstarter

  24. prokaryotes says:

    Report says Apple iCloud isn’t green

    Greenpeace has issued a report that slams the cloud computing efforts of Apple, Amazon and Microsoft for consuming too much energy that’s harmful to the environment.

    The environmental group’s report says that the three technology giants are rapidly expanding their data centers to feed the media needs of consumers. But the companies are not placing a priority on clean sources of energy, such as from solar or wind, and rely on “dirty energy,” says Greenpeace.–/1#.T42_D-3EP18

    Apple shares are failing atm … ofc this has other reasons too :)

  25. prokaryotes says:

    Canada streamlines environmental reviews

    Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver said the changes will “help prevent the long delays in reviewing major economic projects that kill potential jobs and stall economic growth by putting valuable investment at risk.”
    But the opposition New Democrats and environmental activists said the new process puts business interests ahead of local and environmental concerns, and will result in weaker environmental standards.
    Canada’s resource sectors employ an estimated 760,000 workers nationwide, and represent a large segment of the economy. The mining and energy sectors alone account for 40 percent of exports.
    Over the next decade, more than 500 projects representing over Can$500 billion (US$500 billion) in new investments are proposed across Canada, according to the natural resources ministry.

  26. prokaryotes says:

    “Yahoo and Google both continue to lead the sector in prioritizing access to renewable energy in their cloud expansion,” says the report.

    === The Google stock has still a lot of potential – so i give it a BUY!

  27. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Do you think that an Israeli attack on Iran would allow certain, carefully chosen, speculators to make a killing on futures’ trading?

  28. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Apparently, according to the Australian Treasury, the GNPs of the non-Western world exceeded that of the Western world in late March. Here, the antipathy of the ruling caste towards China has been growing for years, and is now reaching that familiar frenzy of hysteria that the Right is so prone to. An interesting and despicable recent development is the growth in hate propaganda vilifying not just the evil ‘ChiComms’, but Chinese culture and the Chinese themselves. In one recent example, in the Murdoch sewer, naturally, the writer observed, quite matter-of-factly, that the Chinese were innately dishonest and untrustworthy, as a cultural characteristic and claimed that a (anonymous, of course) Chinese had told him so.

  29. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    The ‘magic of compound interest’ as the sadly deluded Alan Greenspan, Ayn Rand groupie and all-round ‘genius’, used to chortle. Apparently certain other malignant microbes ascribe to the same faith.

  30. prokaryotes says:

    I think this would be irrelevant, when looking at what is at stake and would could this possibly mean = radioactive contamination of large areas. Because in the event of a war with Iran they or others would use any force i imagine, including dirty bombs.

    So for Israel i hope they come to their senses, because the risk a lot – at least that is my impression.

  31. Paul Magnus says:

    Here we go, Climate Change aka GW, invades via the back door. Easter Island Syndrome …. (ie panic sets in).

    This is like Déjà vu and even more so because of the trees!

    Were going to cut every tree down on our beautiful blue island.

    The Tyee – Open to Cutting Old Growth, Says Premier
    A leaked cabinet submission that considers reduced conservation of old growth forest and wildlife habitat is indicative of the discussion the British Columbia government is having

  32. Paul Magnus says:

    Albertans: Gripped by Stockholm Syndrome?
    Concessions to Big Oil keep causing deficits. Yet Wildrose promises deeper petro-captivity.
    By Mitchell Anderson, Today,

  33. Paul Magnus says:

    Pine Beetle aka GW coming to get you….

    Report warns of economic, social impact from B.C. pine beetle epidemic
    Keven Drews, Today, Canadian Press

    VANCOUVER – The mountain pine beetle epidemic has chewed the guts out of British Columbia’s forest industry and up to 12,000 jobs are in danger of disappearing within five years, says Independent MLA Bob Simpson, citing a confidential government report.

    “If they don’t do anything, the government documents show it’s 12,000 jobs,” said Simpson. “If they relax a whole bunch of land-use plans, it’s still 8,800 jobs that they lose.”