Clean Start: February 22, 2012

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?

In remarks to a crowd of about 250 people Tuesday night, former senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) appeared to suggest that President Obama has a plan to keep gasoline prices high in an effort to keep Americans driving less and, as a result, reduce carbon dioxide emissions. [Washington Post]

An unprecedented wave of severe weather hammered Canada’s national parks and historic sites in 2011. [Global News]

Peter Kendall, President of the National Farmers Union, said ongoing drought in the South East and Anglia, the “bread basket of Britain”, will cut food yields and force up prices. [Telegraph]

Something resembling a “fog of war” prevailed at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s headquarters in the first hours and days after the Fukushima accident began last March, the N.R.C.’s chairman said Tuesday, as the agency released a cache of transcripts of internal conference calls beginning hours after the earthquake. [NYT]

Hurricane force winds are expected through Thursday morning in Colorado, bringing unseasonably warm weather. [KGWN]

Some Democratic and Republican lawmakers still aren’t giving up on extending the wind production tax credit, which expires at the end of the year. [Politico]

As a winter storm blows through Western Washington, warnings have been issued for overflowing rivers and avalanche danger in the Cascades. [News Tribune]

The prospects for shale gas production in the European Union appear to be weakening, as both Bulgaria and France have banned fracking. [WSJ]

A day after a winter storm dumped several inches of snow on a handful of southern states, crews worked Monday to restore power to tens of thousands of customers as police responded to dozens of accidents on slippery roads. [Atlanta Journal-Constitution]

Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) is once again raiding the state’s clean energy fund, this time diverting $210 million from the program that pays to help residents and businesses save money on their utility bills by reducing energy consumption. [NJ Spotlight]

The pain at the pump is a further sign, certainly, that the proposed 54.5-mile-per-gallon vehicle standard that President Obama expects to finalize this summer is needed more than ever. [Inquirer]

A narrowing gap between the supply and demand for oil is increasing the likelihood that prices will “spike” higher, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. [Businessweek]

Buddy Trahan, a Transocean Ltd. rig supervisor who barely survived the BP Deepwater Horizon rig disaster, asked a federal judge to free his stalled personal- injury lawsuit from the oil-spill litigation set for trial in New Orleans on Feb. 27. [Businessweek]

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