Published on June 25th, 2012 | by Zachary Shahan0
Oil Companies Fear Financial Impacts of Climate Change (+ Global Warming & Climate Change News Roundup)
June 25th, 2012 by Zachary Shahan
Some top global warming and climate change news from around the interwebs (a new feature here on CleanTechnica):
We all know oil companies make an amazing amount of money ($33.5 billion in 2012 first quarter profits by the Big Five alone) selling gasoline and other petroleum products to the world. The U.S. government gives billions of our tax dollars back to these companies every year. The oil companies spend big to keep the system running this way.
Not a bad system, if you’re a huge fossil fuel corporation. Unfortunately, the oil companies make a product that warms our planet and disrupts our climate, which affects all of us. So what does the fossil fuel industry do? They fund organizations and people that make the case for denial and inaction. So this is an industry that profits from products that science shows will change the climate, then spends money on cover-up.
Actually, though, it gets even stranger. When it comes to protecting their profits, oil companies explicitly acknowledge that climate change poses a threat to their bottom line….
IMAGINE coming in to work and opening your inbox to read an email asking you to “kill yourself” before another note reads “I hope someone puts a bullet between your eyes”.
How about another email where the sender describes themselves as a “one man swat team” telling you to “back the F*** off” or they will “smack the living sh** out of you”.
Another emailer says “I’d kill you in a second if given the chance” and another writes that you have been “blacklisted” and that “your children and family will know because we know where you live… expect us at your door to say hello.”
This is not an imaginary scenario, but is instead a sample from the inbox of climate scientist Professor Phil Jones, of the University of East Anglia in the UK, as revealed following a Freedom of Information request released [last] week….
Carbon dioxide emissions have risen by even more than previously thought, according to new data analysed by the Guardian, casting doubt on whether the world can avoid dangerous climate change.
The data has emerged as governments met in Rio de Janeiro to finalise the outcome of the Rio+20 conference, aimed at ensuring that economic growth does not come at the expense of irreparable environmental degradation, but which activists say has not achieved enough to stave off severe environmental problems.
Global carbon emissions from energy are up 48% on 1992, when the original Earth summit took place in Rio – a historic summit at which governments agreed to limit emissions in order to prevent dangerous climate change….
Starting today, you can help kickstart Climate Crocks to a whole new level – at kickstarter.com.
As of now, I am starting a 3 week fundraiser aimed at outfitting myself to join a scientific team on Washington’s Mt Baker, an active volcano in the Cascades Range. I’ve been invited by one of the world’s foremost glacier experts, (and an advisor to this series..) Dr. Mauri Pelto, to come along and document his annual research foray onto a rapidly declining mountain glacier….
The rates of sea level rise along the U.S. Atlantic Coast are increasing 3 to 4 times faster than they are globally, according to a new report by the U.S. Geological Survey….
The Emperor penguin, Antarctica’s iconic, nearly 4-foot-tall sea bird, is likely to see its populations collapse as warming and ice loss in Antarctica accelerates. According to a new study from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute (WHOI), the Emperor penguins living in Terre Adélie, in East Antarctica, will eventually disappear if the presently occurring warming and loss of ice continues. Which, according to nearly all research done on the matter, is likely to not only continue, but rapidly accelerate….
The Arctic is becoming greener as plant growth increases due to warmer temperatures. More plant growth means more carbon stored as biomass, so it had been thought that this would lead to the Arctic removing enough carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to slow warming slightly.
But new research shows that the stimulation of decomposition rates in the Arctic soil outweighs the influence of the increased plant biomass. The researchers found that the expansion of forests into the tundra in northern Sweden will release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere….
I don’t understand why a state would outlaw climate change. North Carolina is on the sea and if the water levels rise it would kill their tourism industry, which in turn would almost bankrupt the state. A lot of people go to the beaches in the state for vacations and spend tons of money there. So, wouldn’t it make better sense to fight climate change than try to outlaw it?
Makes no sense to me, but I’m sure in the near future they will regret doing this. Especially when they lose millions in tourism dollars.
North Carolina is no stranger to the “if you dislike it then you should have made a law against it” model of legislation, but this is extreme: the state General Assembly’s Replacement House Bill 819 would rule that scientists are not allowed to accurately predict sea-level rise….
[A] broad coalition of groups supporting clean air safeguards announced they have collected more than two million comments in support of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Carbon Pollution Standard, which limits industrial carbon pollution from new power plants. The comments, totaling 2.1 million were collected over the past 10 weeks and the groups expect thousands more to be collected in the coming weeks. This unprecedented tally is the largest number of comments ever submitted to the EPA during a public comment period, and far exceeds the number of comments EPA has ever received on any prior issue.
“We already knew that Americans strongly support the EPA’s efforts to address climate change and to reduce dangerous air pollution that threatens the health and safety of our children, communities, and wildlife. Doctors, scientists and other experts agree that carbon pollution threatens our health, plain and simple, by driving climate change which increases the formation of lung-damaging and asthma-attack inducing smog, which is particularly dangerous for kids and seniors. Climate change will also drive more deadly heat waves, floods and increase the spread of infectious diseases.
“But our expectations have been exceeded by the unprecedented support demonstrated by the more than 2 million comments from Americans who support EPA’s historic standard to curb dangerous industrial carbon pollution from new power plants while urging EPA to move forward with a strong standard for existing power plants. The message is clear: Americans want cleaner air and less industrial carbon pollution and they want EPA to protect their kids, their families and their communities from the dangerous effects of climate change.”
Maggie L. Fox, President and CEO of the Climate Reality Project, comments:
“It is fitting that two million Americans are speaking out in support of pollution limits on new coal-fired power plants, as many parts of the country swelter under yet another spring and summer of record-breaking temperatures. The reality and urgency of the climate crisis has never been more clear, yet many of our leaders are either ignoring the crisis or blocking action to move toward a clean energy future. Burning coal is one of the single largest sources of pollution causing climate change. Setting pollution limits on new coal-fired power plants is a common-sense first step that Americans clearly support. It’s time for our political leaders to listen to the American people, not just the fossil fuel industry.”
Image: oil-drained world via Shutterstock
Drive an electric car? Complete one of our short surveys for our next electric car report.
Keep up to date with all the hottest cleantech news by subscribing to our (free) cleantech newsletter, or keep an eye on sector-specific news by getting our (also free) solar energy newsletter, electric vehicle newsletter, or wind energy newsletter.