DOD Says Uncertain Cause 'Cannot Be An Excuse For Delaying Action'
In case the Pentagon didn't make it clear enough that climate change is a real and dangerous thing in its Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) earlier this year, perhaps the new Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap (PDF) will drive the point home. Some of the content is roughly the same, but that title sure makes it sound more desperate.
Bill O'Reilly is a fan of Tesla. Calling the California car company "the one concrete thing that all responsible people should be rooting for," the popular Fox Network host is asking everyone to ignore the green lobby, the politics of global warming and dim opinions of alternative energy, declaring, "If Tesla can make a clean car, the entire automotive industry can. Therefore the air would be cleaner everywhere, and our wallets thicker. So let's get on it, people."
Like the Olympics and leap year, the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) comes at us every four years. A big-picture look by the US military at the threats they see out there, the QDR (PDF) is a broad document, but you can read in it just how big the military thinks its mission is (global dominance, really). As part of that mission, the military tries to find a way to reduce the threats it sees, but what do you do about dirty air that we all create? You can't go and bomb the highways to stop the ca
BMW has joined Daimler and, potentially, Audi in quitting an automotive industry research program studying a proposed new air conditioning refrigerant, the simply named HFO-1234yf. BMW disagrees with the test methods being used. "We do not want to say the test results are wrong, but we are not convinced the methods applied are sufficient to achieve a definitive conclusion that guarantees our high safety standards," a spokesman for BMW told Reuters.
Well, this bit of news isn't going to make German automakers or truckmakers terribly happy. Following the connection between diesel fumes and cancer, scientists have found that the black particles created by burning fuels – i.e. black carbon or soot – do more to warm the earth than previously estimated, The New York Times reports, citing a study written by more than 30 scientists that was released this week.
For consumers coming to terms with years of driving a gas-guzzling, carbon-producing clunker car, there is a solution – trade it in for fresh, young saplings. That's the premise for a program in the United Kingdom, where owners can turn in their gas guzzler and have tree groves planted in return.
Our moms always told us that you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. Sometimes, however, if you take that vinegar and mix it with a bit of olive oil and then drizzle it over some thickly-sliced ripe tomatoes adorned with rings of sweet Vidalia onions, and then sprinkle all that with a few pinches of crushed pepper and sea salt, well, you've got yourself a pretty tasty salad. We raise this culinary quandary to ask this: Is it ever okay to say horribly nasty things about people –
Climate change was barely mentioned during October presidential debates, but that doesn't mean the public doesn't care. After all, climate change affected Hurricane Sandy, and that got some media coverage. Some analysts say climate change is just part of historic weather patterns that humans have little say over but most scientists say humans play a big part in the matter, in part through our increasing consumption of fossil fuels.
For a multitude of reasons – climate change, air quality, national security, etc. – a large reduction in the burning of carbon-based fuels is a good idea. Since higher prices are known to reduce consumption, one way to achieve this is to simply put a tax on fuel at the pump. It's been proposed by GM's Dan Akerson, Bill Ford and others, but the idea can be difficult politically and economically. With current prices already relatively high, further increases negatively impact the cost
The Heartland Institute is a big daddy in climate change denialism and recently became a more household name thanks to a trove of documents that were exposed on DeSmogBlog. The documents purport to be leaked internal memos that detail the ways the institute is funded and disseminates its "nothing to see here, folks" message. The Institute started off decades ago when it helped cigarette company Phillip Morris minimize the association between smoking and cancer, and there have been many questions
Why does widespread adoption of "green" vehicles matter? Well, according to a report released by consultancy group Mercer, along with the World Bank's International Finance Corporation, climate change will significantly impact the transportation, construction, and manufacturing industries over the course of the next 20 years. In fact, the report states that damages caused by climate change could cost over $8 trillion by 2030. We know that "green" vehicles won't curb climate change by themselves,
Wednesday marked the end of an era in the U.S. – the demise of the Select Committee for Energy Independence and Global Warming. Created under Nancy Pelosi in 2006, the global warming committee – devoted entirely to scientific discussions of climate change and energy-related issues – has been disbanded under Republican leadership.
Newsweek writer Stefan Theil makes a convincing argument that the political world has become blasé about the issue of climate change, and that has far-reaching effects. In 2007, you couldn't throw a rock without hitting a politician who made reducing CO2 levels or another green issue a top priority. Today, like with most things in politics and the media, attention has shifted to other things, like health care and the economy. Some numbers Theil found to back this statement up:
We noted the other day that a recent survey from PriceWaterhouseCoopers that found out fuel economy has finally overtaken cup holders as the most important feature in new cars and trucks for Americans. That fuel economy wasn't at the top of