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Saturday, January 12, 2013

Weathering The Coming Storms: Governor Cuomo's Climate Panel Offers Smart Plan For Adaptation And Mitigation

Posted: 12 Jan 2013 07:30 AM PST
New Yorkers are all too familiar with the devastation that followed, and the disruption that spread far beyond the water’s reach. As the immediate crises are resolved, our attention is now on the complex challenge of long-term resilience.http://theenergycollective.com/josephromm/170491/weathering-coming-storms-governor-cuomo-s-climate-panel-offers-smart-plan-adaptati?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=The+Energy+Collective+%28all+posts%29

New Oil Sands Pipeline Plan Would Dramatically Increase Carbon Emissions


Posted: 12 Jan 2013 09:45 AM PST
The annual flow of carbon through the proposed twinning project and the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway project (presuming full operation) would dwarf greenhouse gas emissions from British Columbia, an issue presented here in the past.http://theenergycollective.com/simondonner/170066/new-oil-sands-pipeline-plan-would-even-more-dramatically-increase-carbon-emission?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=The+Energy+Collective+%28all+posts%29

More Americans Want Tough Fracking Regulations


Friday, January 11, 2013

'Catastrophic Mass Extinction' Likely if Temperatures Rise 6 Degrees in Next Century

'Catastrophic Mass Extinction' Likely if Temperatures Rise 6 Degrees in Next Century

"Catastrophic" mass extinction is likely within the next 100 years as the earth's temperature increases approximately 6º C and carbon dioxide accumulates in the atmosphere, predict scientists studying the last time the temperature rose rapidly by that much—55 million years ago.
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read morehttp://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/01/11-5

Draft US climate assessment released for review

Draft US climate assessment released for review

A US science advisory committee released a draft climate assessment for public review today, documenting a range of global warming impacts across the United States and declaring that more trouble is on the way in the coming decades.
Produced under the auspices of the interagency Global Change Research Program, the draft document will serve as the basis for the United States’ third national climate assessment, scheduled for release later this year or early in 2014. The previous assessments were released in 2000 and 2009.http://blogs.nature.com/news/2013/01/draft-us-climate-assessment-released-for-review.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+news%2Frss%2Fnewsblog+%28News+Blog+-+Blog+Posts%29

Federal Scientists Release Draft National Climate Assessment

Federal Scientists Release Draft National Climate Assessment

The United States Global Change Research Program released its draft National Climate Assessment today, just a week after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration confirmed the United States experienced its warmest year on record.http://www.ucsusa.org/news/press_release/federal-scientists-national-climate-assessment-0357.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A%20ucsusa%2Frss%20%28Union%20of%20Concerned%20Scientists%29

America, Prepare For A Century Of Drought

America, Prepare For A Century Of Drought

Corn and wheat prices surged today.  The immediate reason appeared to be the year-end USDA report, that showed supplies were lower than projected.
But concurrent with that report was the release of the Commerce Department's National Climate Assessment Development Advisory Committee National Climate Assessment survey.
One of the findings: we can expect up to a century of drought.http://www.businessinsider.com/noaa-commerce-department-drought-report-2013-1?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+clusterstock+%28ClusterStock%29

Salinisation of rivers: A global environmental problem

Salinisation of rivers: A global environmental problem
The salinisation of rivers is a global problem with a high environmental and economic cost, and which poses a significant risk to human health. Climate change and increasing water consumption could create even greater issues in the future, according to an article published in the journal Environmental Pollution, based on the research of an international team led by the experts of the Department of Ecology of the UB Narcís Prat and Miguel Cañedo-Argüelles. http://phys.org/news/2013-01-salinisation-rivers-global-environmental-problem.html#nwlt

China to trial two new nuclear generation technologies

China to trial two new nuclear generation technologies

HazardEx -
Construction has begun on a Chinese high-temperature gas cooled reactor known as HTR-PM, Xinhua news agency reported January 6. The 3 billion-yuan ($476 million) 200MW nuclear project is being built at Shidao Bay in the coastal city of Rongcheng in ...http://www.hazardexonthenet.net/article/55414/China-to-trial-two-new-nuclear-generation-technologies.aspx?AreaID=2

Argentina's Atucha nuclear power plant to operate in June


Argentina's Atucha nuclear power plant to operate in June
PennEnergy (press release)
Argentina's Atucha nuclear power plant to operate in June. January 11, 2013. By Diarmaid Williams International Digital Editor. Argentina's Atucha II nuclear power plant is schedule to be operational in June according to the country's federal planning ...http://www.pennenergy.com/articles/pei/2013/01/argentinas-atucha-nuclear-power-plant-to-operate-in-june.html

Material cleans water of nuclear waste | Nuclear | Generation

Material cleans water of nuclear waste | Nuclear | Generation ...
Graphene oxide can quickly remove radioactive material from contaminated water, U.S. and Russian researchers say they've discovered. Rice University ...
www.energycentral.com/.../Material-cleans-water-of-nuclear-w...

Room To Move

Room To Movehttp://www.defendersblog.org/2012/12/room-to-move/

Salinization of rivers: A global environmental problem

Salinization of rivers: A global environmental problem

The salinisation of rivers is a global problem that affects to countries all over the world and it causes a high environmental and economic cost, and poses a high risk to global health. Climate change and the increasing water consumption can worsen even more the future scene, according to a new article.http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130111092529.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sciencedaily%2Ftop_news%2Ftop_environment+%28ScienceDaily%3A+Top+News+--+Top+Environment%29

Contaminated rice found outside of Fukushima Prefecture

Contaminated rice found outside of Fukushima Prefecture

Kihara Rice Paddy
The Miyagi Prefectural government announced that cesium levels in rice grown in Kurihara had been found contaminated up to 240 becquerels of cesium per kilogram.  Kurihara is mostly farmland, mostly known for its rice fields, and small mountain ranges dispersed throughout. The prefectural government announced that it will prevent nearby rice farms from shipping their produce to the markets for sale.http://enformable.com/2013/01/contaminated-rice-found-outside-of-fukushima-prefecture/
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California quake model looks for ‘mega-quake’ along Cascadia

California quake model looks for ‘mega-quake’ along Cascadia

January 11, 2013PORTLAND, Or. - New research is giving us some insight into when a major earthquake could strike the Northwest. The research was done in part by Stanford geophysics Professor Paul Segall. He has been tracking a series of very small tremors that rumble deep within the earth. The slow tremors happen roughly every summer along the Cascadia Subduction Zone, an undersea fault about 70 miles off the Oregon Coast. Over the last decade, data shows the tremors have been getting progressively bigger. Last summer, the Pacific Northwest experienced a notably large one. Experts believe those tremors are adding stress to the offshore fault. Using this data, Segall built a computer model which suggests it will be one of those tiny quakes that triggers a major magnitude 9 earthquake. “What we do see is that ultimately one of these tends to develop into a fast and potentially, damaging earthquake,” said Segall. Segall said that scientists don’t yet know how big those tremors need to get before they explode into a mega-thrust quake. And that means a major earthquake in the Pacific Northwest could still be hundreds of years away. But, he added, those tiny tremors are a good reminder that we always need to be prepared. Scientists discover the largest-known spiral galaxy. –King 5 
San Andreas stress rupture could shake entire state: For the first time, scientists and emergency planners are examining whether a super quake could affect both Northern and Southern California, rendering the entire state helpless in the aftermath of the “Big One.” Seismologists have warned Southern California that a major quake on the lower San Andreas Fault, the so-called Big One is inevitable. But that the population centers of both Southern and Northern California could be affected simultaneously by one quake on the San Andreas Fault has only recently been recognized as a possibility. The study by Professor Nadia Lapusta at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and Japanese collaborator Hiroyuki Noda focused on explaining the behavior of two devastating quakes in Asia: the 1999 magnitude 7.6 temblor in Taiwan, and the 2011 magnitude 9.0 quake off the eastern coast of Japan. In both cases, the quake spread across so-called “creeping“ fault segments long thought to be incapable of transmitting quakes, according to Caltech Staff Seismologist Kate Hutton, a Lapusta colleague. “The general idea until this paper was that they would stop a quake,” Hutton said. It was believed the slow, creeping movement prevents stress from building up  and keeps  such a segment stable, Hutton added. Lapusta and Noda developed a computer model to explain how under certain conditions “a rupture could just kind of barge right through,” Hutton said. “Now the question is how this would apply to California.” Such a creeping zone has been identified in a stretch of the San Andreas Fault in central California, just north of seismically active Parkfield. The Great San Francisco quake of 1906 occurred on the San Andreas north of the creeping zone. The 1857 Fort Tejon quake occurred to the south. No known quake has ever spanned across that creeping zone. Whether the model developed by Lapusta and Noda could apply there would depend on local geological variables not yet completely understood, Hutton said. –NBC LA
Popout
                                                 Countdown to a catastrophic mega-quake in the U.S.

Interagency Report Published on Information Required for Short-Term Water Management Decisions

Interagency Report Published on Information Required for Short-Term Water Management Decisions

Washington DC (SPX) Jan 11, 2013
Adapting to future climate change impacts requires capabilities in hydroclimate monitoring, short-term prediction and application of such information to support contemporary water management decisions. These needs were identified in a report, "Short-Term Water Management Decisions: User Needs for Improved Climate, Weather, and Hydrologic Information," published by the Bureau of Reclamationhttp://www.terradaily.com/reports/Interagency_Report_Published_on_Information_Required_for_Short_Term_Water_Management_Decisions_999.html
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Report: World wastes half of its food

Report: World wastes half of its food

London (UPI) Jan 10, 2013
Billions of tons of food are wasted because of inadequate storage, strict sell-by dates and a desire for cosmetically perfect food, a British report says. The report by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers has found as much as 50 percent of all food produced around the world is never consumed and ends up as waste. The report, "Global Food, Waste Not Want Not," said the world phttp://www.seeddaily.com/reports/Report_World_wastes_half_of_its_food_999.html

What Will It Take to Solve Climate Change? by David Biello, Scientific Amer

What Will It Take to Solve Climate Change?

Is the Dream of Arctic Oil Now a Nightmare?

Is the Dream of Arctic Oil Now a Nightmare?

David Unger, CS Monitorhttp://www.realclearenergy.org/2013/01/11/is_the_dream_of_arctic_oil_now_a_nightmare_251055.html

RECOMMENDED ARTICLES

January 7, 2013
Arctic Dangers to Oil Platforms
Neal Lineback, National Geographic
The Arctic Ocean is a formidable foe to ships, even in the summer. Nonetheless, oil exploration continues despite the dangerous conditions created by wind and ice floes, particularly in the winter. Concerns by Alaskans and... more ››
January 4, 2013
The Perils of Arctic Oil Drilling
Editorial, Los Angeles Times
There's at least a tiny bit of good news in the grounding of an oil rig in the Beaufort Sea off Alaska: As of midday Wednesday, the Kulluk, which ran aground near Kodiak Island, didn't appear to be leaking fuel, thanks to its... more ››

Asbestos over WHO limit found at 17 spots in disaster areas

Asbestos over WHO limit found at 17 spots in disaster areashttp://mainichi.jp/english/english/newsselect/news/20130111p2a00m0na015000c.html

Desert groundwater dirtier than most

Desert groundwater dirtier than most

USGS report shows more natural contaminants in local acquifers than in other parts of Californiahttp://www.mydesert.com/article/20130109/NEWS07/301090039/Desert-groundwater-dirtier-than-most?gcheck=1&nclick_check=1

USDA declares drought disaster in much of Wheat Belt Reuters

USDA declares drought disaster in much of Wheat Belt Reuters
Read more at http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/01/links-11113.html#AMDERffDeCxGCXjG.99

Thursday, January 10, 2013

NASA prepares for launch of next Earth observation satellite

NASA prepares for launch of next Earth observation satellite
NASA's Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LDCM) is scheduled to launch Feb. 11 from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. A joint NASA and U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) mission, LDCM will add to the longest continuous data record of Earth's surface as viewed from space. http://phys.org/news/2013-01-nasa-earth-satellite.html#nwlt

NASA chases climate change clues into the stratosphere

NASA chases climate change clues into the stratosphere
Starting this month, NASA will send a remotely piloted research aircraft as high as 65,000 feet over the tropical Pacific Ocean to probe unexplored regions of the upper atmosphere for answers to how a warming climate is changing Earth. http://phys.org/news/2013-01-nasa-climate-clues-stratosphere.html#nwlt

Preventing climate change: the size of the energy challenge

Preventing climate change: the size of the energy challengehttp://environmentalresearchweb.org/cws/article/yournews/51990

Climate Impact of the Keystone XL Pipeline: Some Further Thoughts

Climate Impact of the Keystone XL Pipeline: Some Further Thoughtshttp://www.cato.org/blog/climate-impact-keystone-xl-pipeline-some-further-thoughts

Will Shell have their Arctic Exploration License Revoked?


Will Shell have their Arctic Exploration License Revoked?

Shell has been in the news a lot lately for the disastrous set of events that plagued the theoretically simple task of towing the Kulluk deep water drill rig from Arctic waters down to a safe harbour in Seattle.In truth Shell’s entire Arctic venture has been a mess form start to end, with constant problems and accidents that have gradually reduced confidence in Shell’s ability to operate in the Arctic.Ken Salazar, the US Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, has ordered a 60 day internal assessment of Shell’s operations in the Beaufort…Read more...

http://oilprice.com/Latest-Energy-News/World-News/Will-Shell-have-their-Arctic-Exploration-License-Revoked.html

Interior launches probe into Shell arctic drilling operations

Interior launches probe into Shell arctic drilling operations
The approximately 60 day review will pay special attention to challenges that Shell encountered in connection with its containment vessel, the Arctic Challenger; and operational issues associated with its two drilling rigs, the Noble Discoverer and the Kulluk.
Full Articlehttp://www.pennenergy.com/articles/pennenergy/2013/january/department-of-interior-launches-high-level-assessment-of-shell-arctic-drilling.html?cmpid=EnlDailyPetroJanuary102013

Climate Change in the Age of Truthiness

Posted: 10 Jan 2013 05:30 AM PST
Does reality shape our beliefs, or do our beliefs shape "reality"? A fascinating paper by "Did the Arctic Ice Recover? Demographics of True and False Climate Facts" by Lawrence Hamilton examined this question using polling data on people's beliefs about climate change and their knowledge of several key climate facts, including that the Arctic sea ice is decreasing.
Posted: 10 Jan 2013 05:15 AM PST
At Politico today, there is an important article focusing on the inability of the environmental movement -- for the most part -- to move beyond a primarily white, liberal base and to engage minority communities.  As Politico's Talia Buford reports, many greens blame the failure of the cap and trade campaign to engage minority communities on opponents who warned of the damaging economic costs to low income communities.
Posted: 09 Jan 2013 09:01 AM PST
Last year was officially the hottest ever recorded for the lower-48 states. Scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) tallied weather and temperature data for 2012, and found that the year was both the warmest and the second-most extreme for weather ever recorded for the contiguous U.S.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Op-Ed Columnist The Market and Mother Nature

Op-Ed Columnist

The Market and Mother Nature

More Signs Of Accelerating Sea Level Rise

More Signs Of Accelerating Sea Level Rise

East Greenland Ice Sheets (Photo credit: christine zenino) Evidence continues to mount that recent estimates of sea level rise from global warming were wrong, and that the potential inundation to come may be much worse than previously contemplated, possibly exceeding an average of 3 feet worldwide. This from a new study [...]http://www.forbes.com/sites/johnmcquaid/2013/01/09/more-signs-of-accelerating-sea-level-rise/

Shale Gas Will Fuel a U.S. Manufacturing Boom

Shale Gas Will Fuel a U.S. Manufacturing Boom

Chemical producers abandoned the U.S. in droves. Cheap natural gas is luring them back.
People predicting a manufacturing renaissance in the United States usually imagine whirring robots or advanced factories turning out wind turbines and solar panels. The real American edge might be in something entirely more mundane: cheap starting materials for plastic bottles and plastic bags.http://www.technologyreview.com/news/509291/shale-gas-will-fuel-a-us-manufacturing-boom/

2012 was warmest and second most extreme year on record for the contiguous U.S.

2012 was warmest and second most extreme year on record for the contiguous U.S.

According to NOAA scientists, 2012 marked the warmest year on record for the contiguous United States with the year consisting of a record warm spring, second warmest summer, fourth warmest winter and a warmer-than-average autumn. The average temperature for 2012 was 55.3°F, 3.2°F above the 20th century average, and 1.0°F above 1998, the previous warmest year.http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130108131149.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sciencedaily%2Ftop_news%2Ftop_environment+%28ScienceDaily%3A+Top+News+--+Top+Environment%29
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Eric Zuesse: Obama Administration Lies, Then Covers Up, to Minimize BP Liabilities for Deepwater Horizon Disaster

Eric Zuesse: Obama Administration Lies, Then Covers Up, to Minimize BP Liabilities for Deepwater Horizon Disaster

By Eric Zuesse, an investigative historian and the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.
The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the Federal Government has refused to investigate why it vastly underestimated the amount of oil spilled in BP’s Deepwater Horizon huge blowout in the Gulf of Mexico, and thus refused to understand why the actual liability of BP will never be able to be estimated accurately, for calculating BP’s penalties and compensation-payments.
Read more at http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/01/eric-zuesse-obama-administration-lies-then-covers-up-to-minimize-bp-liabilities-for-deepwater-horizon-disaster.html#s36pUz7zdeIR9Wz0.99 http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/01/eric-zuesse-obama-administration-lies-then-covers-up-to-minimize-bp-liabilities-for-deepwater-horizon-disaster.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+NakedCapitalism+%28naked+capitalism%29

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The Year Ahead in Keystone XL: Climate Worry Introduces Big Unknown

The Year Ahead in Keystone XL: Climate Worry Introduces Big Unknownhttp://insideclimatenews.org/news/20130107/keystone-xl-obama-kerry-clinton-lisa-jackson-nebraska-transcanada-climate-change-ogallala-aquifer

Adapt or Die: Why the Environmental Buzzword of 2013 Will Be “Resilience”

Adapt or Die: Why the Environmental Buzzword of 2013 Will Be “Resilience”

What Do Global Warming Skeptics Fear?

What Do Global Warming Skeptics Fear?http://www.consumerenergyreport.com/2013/01/08/what-do-global-warming-skeptics-fear/

Groups fighting nuclear energy and advocating industrial wind and solar are not environmentalists!

Groups fighting nuclear energy and advocating industrial wind and solar are not environmentalists!

Rod Adamshttp://atomicinsights.com/2013/01/groups-fighting-nuclear-energy-and-advocating-industrial-wind-are-not-environmentalists.html

Climate change won't wait for Obama

Climate change won't wait for Obama

From the Jersey shore to the parched Midwest, Americans have met the effects of climate change up close and personal as billion-dollar "natural" disasters multiply. Despite the increasing awareness this it isn't a vague, futuristic disaster but a growing reality, US President Barack Obama - fearful of voters and powerful lobbies - hasn't seized his "Peal Harbor" moment. - Bill McKibben (Jan 8, '13)http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Global_Economy/OA09Dj02.html

Oil sands study shows negative impact on lake systems

Oil sands study shows negative impact on lake systems
(Phys.org)—Fifty years of Athabasca oil sands development has left a legacy of contaminants in lake ecosystems and that contamination reaches further from the development areas than previously recognized, according to new research at Queen's University. http://phys.org/news/2013-01-oil-sands-negative-impact-lake.html#nwlt

Study shows mountains are only minor contributors to erosion and climate regulation

Study shows mountains are only minor contributors to erosion and climate regulation
Though churning smokestacks, cud-chewing cows and gasoline-burning vehicles are contributing constantly to greenhouse gas emissions, there are also many processes that do the reverse, pulling molecules like carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. One of these is chemical weathering, which occurs when rock turns into soil. Carbon dioxide molecules and rain combine to dissolve rock, and the weathering products, including sediment, eventually make their way through waterways to the ocean where some become trapped on the ocean bottom and in coral reefs and seashells. http://phys.org/news/2013-01-mountains-minor-contributors-erosion-climate.html#nwlt

Research shows isoprene from biofuel plants likely to lead to ozone deaths

Research shows isoprene from biofuel plants likely to lead to ozone deaths
(Phys.org)—A trio of researchers from the Lancaster Environment Centre, in the UK has found that planting trees for use as a biofuel source, near populated areas, is likely to increase human deaths due to inhalation of ozone. The team, in their paper published in the journal Nature Climate Change, suggests that increased levels of isoprene emitted from such trees, when interacting with other air pollutants can lead to increased levels of ozone in the air which might also lead to lower crop yields. http://phys.org/news/2013-01-isoprene-biofuel-ozone-deaths.html#nwlt

Monday, January 7, 2013

The Human Cost of Energy

The Human Cost of Energy

Fossil fuels exact the biggest toll in terms of lives lost


Major Cuts to Surging Carbon Dioxide Emissions Are Needed Now, Not Down the Road, Study Finds

Major Cuts to Surging Carbon Dioxide Emissions Are Needed Now, Not Down the Road, Study Finds

 
Halting climate change will require "a fundamental and disruptive overhaul of the global energy system" to eradicate harmful carbon dioxide emissions, not just stabilize them, according to new findings.http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/01/130107100053.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sciencedaily%2Ftop_news%2Ftop_environment+%28Science

How Do Americans View Environmental Issues?

How Do Americans View Environmental Issues?

A Revolution in Radiation Protection?

A Revolution in Radiation Protection?

Dr. Wade Allison, author of Radiation and Reason, recently shared a short paper titled A revolution in radiation protection that would lead to safer and cheaper nuclear power. He described it as “reference light”, explaining that his intended audience for this work is not the journal-reading academic community but the kind of people who want good information that can help them make informed decisions.http://theenergycollective.com/rodadams/167386/dr-wade-allison-revolution-radiation-protection?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=The+Energy+Collective+%28all+posts%29

Can 'Promised Land' Change Minds For Or Against Fracking?

Can 'Promised Land' Change Minds For Or Against Fracking?

One thing Matt Damon and colleagues are accomplishing with the new movie “Promised Land” about hydraulic fracturing is to increase the public’s understanding — even if just a little bit — of the controversial drilling technique which flushes natural gas to the surface from shale rock formations deep underground.But that’s about it.http://theenergycollective.com/jimpierobon/167166/spinning-promised-land-move-needle-or-against-fracking?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=The+Energy+Collective+%28all+posts%29

Hurricane Sandy Relief Bill Fails to Face Coastal Realities

Hurricane Sandy Relief Bill Fails to Face Coastal Realities

As part of the sorely-needed aid package to help victims of Hurricane Sandy, Congress is also considering spending billions on ill-advised and environmentally damaging beach and coastal rebuilding projects that ignore the looming threats of rising seas and intensifying storms. BY ROB YOUNGhttp://e360.yale.edu/feature/hurricane_sandy_relief_bill_fails_to_face_coastal_realities/2606/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+YaleEnvironment360+%28Yale+Environment+360%29

As Biofuel Demand Grows, So Do Guatemala’s Hunger Pangs -- New York Times



As Biofuel Demand Grows, So Do Guatemala’s Hunger Pangs -- New York Times

GUATEMALA CITY — In the tiny tortillerias of this city, people complain ceaselessly about the high price of corn. Just three years ago, one quetzal — about 15 cents — bought eight tortillas; today it buys only four. And eggs have tripled in price because chickens eat corn feed.

Meanwhile, in rural areas, subsistence farmers struggle to find a place to sow their seeds. On a recent morning, José Antonio Alvarado was harvesting his corn crop on the narrow median of Highway 2 as trucks zoomed by.

“We’re farming here because there is no other land, and I have to feed my family,” said Mr. Alvarado, pointing to his sons Alejandro and José, who are 4 and 6 but appear to be much younger, a sign of chronic malnutrition.

Read more ....http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/06/science/earth/in-fields-and-markets-guatemalans-feels-squeeze-of-biofuel-demand.html?hp&_r=1&

Inside the meat lab: the future of food


Inside the meat lab: the future of food

With billions of mouths to feed, we can't go on producing food in the traditional way. Scientists are coming up with novel ways to cater for future generations. In-vitro burger, anyone?http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2013/jan/05/the-future-of-food

Why Other U.S. Energy Revolution Matters

Why Other U.S. Energy Revolution Matters

William Pentland, Forbes
If you believe in the benefits of energy innovation, support national security or consider climate change to be a non-negligible threat to our planet, you need to stop listening to Al Gore and start reading Adam Smith. . .http://www.forbes.com/sites/williampentland/2013/01/05/americas-other-energy-revolution-and-why-it-matters/

Arctic Dangers to Oil Platforms

Arctic Dangers to Oil Platforms

Neal Lineback, National Geographic
The Arctic Ocean is a formidable foe to ships, even in the summer. Nonetheless, oil exploration continues despite the dangerous conditions created by wind and ice floes, particularly in the winter. Concerns by Alaskans and Canadians have been expressed often about the exposure of oil platforms and pipelines to extreme Arctic weather conditions, but the recent grounding of a Shell Oil's floating oil platform has heightened concerns. . .http://newswatch.nationalgeographic.com/2013/01/06/geography-in-the-news-arctic-dangers-to-oil-platforms/

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Clean Tech Investments Plunged in 2012

Clean Tech Investments Plunged in 2012

Global investments in clean technologies tanked in 2012, as investors shied away from capital-intensive deals and technology risks, according to Cleantech Group.The San Francisco-based analysis firm’s preliminary 2012 results recorded venture capital (VC) investments of $6.5 billion in the clean-tech sector, down from the record $9.6 billion in 2011.The number of deals seen in 2012 were 704, 15% lower than the 829 tracked in the previous year.Clean-tech mergers and acquisitions (M&A) deals have consistently dropped in value over the past…Read more...http://oilprice.com/Alternative-Energy/Renewable-Energy/Clean-Tech-Investments-Plunged-in-2012.html

A new approach to assessing future sea level rise from ice sheets

A new approach to assessing future sea level rise from ice sheets
Future sea level rise due to the melting of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets could be substantially larger than estimated in Climate Change 2007, the Fourth Assessment Report of the IPCC, according to new research from the University of Bristol. http://phys.org/news/2013-01-approach-future-sea-ice-sheets.html#nwlt
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