The Keystone pipeline running from Canada across the Great Plains leaked Thursday morning, spilling about 5,000 barrels of oil — or 210,000 gallons — southeast of the small town of Amherst in northeast South Dakota….
Any more questions?
This ad by the Independence USA PAC (a Super PAC) has been running in the Kansas City media market:
Narrator: President Obama’s clean power plan cuts carbon emissions and creates thousands of jobs. But now, Attorney General Chris Koster is fighting Obama and clean energy. Koster has taken hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations from polluters and uses your tax dollars to sue the Obama administration. He wants polluters to be free to pump billions of tons of carbon into the air each year, contributing to asthma and heart disease. Chris Koster puts polluters ahead of the health of Missouri families. [Paid for by Independence USA PAC]
From the Independence USA PAC web site:
INDEPENDENCE USA PAC DEFENDS CLEAN POWER PLAN WITH ADS AIMED AT STATE ATTORNEYS GENERAL
Independence USA Will Focus on AGs in Florida, Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin Joining Lawsuit Against EPA’s Signature Climate Change Rules
New York, NY, November 6, 2015 — Building on Michael R. Bloomberg’s longstanding commitment to environmental and health issues, and his work with local leaders in the US and around the world on climate change, Independence USA will air ads in Florida, Michigan, Missouri and Wisconsin in support of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan, which places the nation’s first-ever limits on carbon pollution from power plants. The ads will focus on Attorneys General Pam Bondi of Florida, Bill Schuette of Michigan, Chris Koster of Missouri, and Brad Schimel of Wisconsin, who have joined a federal lawsuit initiated by the State of West Virginia to block the Clean Power Plan. Independence USA PAC was created and is funded by Michael R. Bloomberg.
The ads released today, totaling an 8 figure buy across the 4 states, build on Bloomberg Philanthropies’ commitment of over $100 million to support national, regional, and state-based groups helping state governments implement the Clean Power Plan, as well as the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign. Beyond Coal, which aims to secure the retirement of half the nation’s coal fleet, has already led to the closure or phasing out 205 coal-fired power plants and helped prevent more than 5,500 premature deaths per year….
It’s not like any of the 2016 republican gubernatorial candidates are better on this issue.
Same planet, different worlds.
A news item today, in the Cleveland Plain Dealer:
Toledo water still unsafe: Gov. Kasich visits as city waits for EPA water test results
By Mary Kilpatrick, Northeast Ohio Media Group
on August 03, 2014 at 2:49 PM, updated August 03, 2014 at 2:55 PM
TOLEDO, Ohio — It’s too soon to tell if the water is safe in Toledo, Gov. John Kasich said Sunday.
The toxin microcystin, found in Lake Erie, polluted the water supply early Saturday morning. Residents have been without running water for more than 24 hours…
…Water samples rushed to Environmental Protection Agency laboratories showed low levels of the pollutant on Sunday, but scientists need more time to determine if the water OK to drink, Kasich said…
…The contaminant forms in algae blooms, when excessive fertilizer and manure runs off into the water. The EPA mandates a 24-hour period of clean water before the city can give an all-clear, City of Toledo spokeswoman Lisa Ward said. Most of the results will come back Sunday afternoon, but officials must review the findings before making a final decision on water safety…
That darn federal EPA.
Representative Vicky Hartzler (r), via Twitter this past week:
Rep. Vicky Hartzler @RepHartzler
ICYMI: I joined @McConnellPress yesterday to speak about the devastating effects of EPA regs. [….} 9:40 AM – 31 Jul 2014
Just don’t drink the water and don’t breathe the air.
A reply to Representative Hartzler (r), via Twitter:
Cody Welton @acoupstick
@RepHartzler @McConnellPress your corporate overlords approve. #bought 9:49 AM – 31 Jul 2014
A bill on the environment, introduced today by Representative Tom Hurst (r):
Repeals a provision allowing the Department of Natural Resources to take any action to assure protection of the environment and human health
Sponsor: Hurst, Tom (062)
Co-Sponsor: Miller, Rocky (124) … et al.
Proposed Effective Date: 8/28/2014
LR Number: 6378H.01I
Last Action: 03/26/2014 – Introduced and Read First Time (H)
Bill String: HB 2185
Next Hearing: Hearing not scheduled
Calendar: Bill currently not on a House calendar
SECOND REGULAR SESSION
HOUSE BILL NO. 2185
97TH GENERAL ASSEMBLY
INTRODUCED BY REPRESENTATIVES HURST (Sponsor), MILLER, POGUE AND ROSS (Co-sponsors).
6378H.01I D. ADAM CRUMBLISS, Chief Clerk
To repeal section 644.051, RSMo, and to enact in lieu thereof one new section relating to water pollution.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the state of Missouri, as follows:
Section A. Section 644.051, RSMo, is repealed and one new section enacted in lieu thereof, to be known as section 644.051, to read as follows:
[However, nothing shall prevent the department from taking action to assure protection of the environment and human health.] [to be removed from the statute]
This is a good idea because no one thinks protection of the environment and human health is that important?
Barack Obama, Cartoons of Vicky Hartzler, energy policy, Energy Security, environment, Foreign Oil, Keystone Pipeline Cartoon, Keystone XL Pipeline, Missouri GOP, missouri political cartoon, Missouri politics, Missouri Republicans, Petroleum Imports, Vicky Hartzler
On October 24, 2009 350.org is promoting a worldwide day of action to raise awareness of global climate change. An environmental group in Warrensburg is participating and helping raise awareness about the event.
…* So, what is global warming and what’s the problem anyway?
The science is clear: global warming is happening faster than ever and humans are responsible. Global warming is caused by releasing what are called greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The most common greenhouse gas is carbon dioxide. Many of the activities we do every day like turn the lights on, cook food, or heat or cool our homes rely on energy sources like coal and oil that emit carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases. This is a major problem because global warming destabilizes the delicate balance that makes life on this planet possible. Just a few degrees in temperature can completely change the world as we know it, and threaten the lives of millions of people around the world. But don’t give up hope! You can help stop global warming by taking action here at 350.org.
* And what does this 350 number even mean?
350 is the number that leading scientists say is the safe upper limit for carbon dioxide–measured in “Parts Per Million” in our atmosphere. 350 PPM–it’s the number humanity needs to get back to as soon as possible to avoid runaway climate change….
A Warrensburg resident is doing her part to reduce her carbon footprint.
…* If we’re already past 350, are we all doomed?
No. We’re like the patient that goes to the doctor and learns he’s overweight, or his cholesterol is too high. He doesn’t die immediately-but until he changes his lifestyle and gets back down to the safe zone, he’s at more risk for heart attack or stroke. The planet is in its danger zone because we’ve poured too much carbon into the atmosphere, and we’re starting to see signs of real trouble: melting ice caps, rapidly spreading drought. We need to scramble back as quickly as we can to safety.
* How do we create the political change to steer towards 350?
We need an international agreement to reduce carbon emissions fast, and 2009 might be our best shot.
The United Nations is working on a global climate treaty, which is supposed to be completed in December of 2009 at a conference in Copenhagen, Denmark. But the current plans for the treaty are much too weak to get us back to safety. This treaty needs to put a high enough price on carbon that we stop using so much. It also needs to ensure poor countries a fair chance to develop.
This year, we can create a grassroots movement connected by the web and active all over the world.
We can hold our decision-makers accountable to producing a treaty that is strong, equitable, and grounded in the latest science. On 24 October, we’re holding a Global Day of Climate Action to do just this.
If this global movement succeeds, we can get the world on track to get back to 350 and back to climate safety. It won’t be easy, that’s why we need all the help we can get.
* How do we get the world on track to get to 350?
We need an international agreement to reduce carbon emissions fast. The United Nations is working on a treaty, which is supposed to be completed in December of 2009 at a conference in Copenhagen, Denmark. But the current plans for the treaty are much too weak to get us back to safety. This treaty needs to put a high enough price on carbon that we stop using so much. It also needs to make sure that poor countries are ensured a fair chance to develop.
* How do we actually reduce carbon emissions to get to 350?
Make no mistake–getting back to 350 means transforming our world. It means building solar arrays instead of coal plants, it means planting trees instead of clear-cutting rainforests, it means increasing efficiency and decreasing our waste. Getting to 350 means developing a thousand different solutions–all of which will become much easier if we have a global treaty grounded in the latest science and built around the principles of equity and justice. To get this kind of treaty, we need a movement of people who care enough about our shared global future to get involved and make their voices heard.
* Will this thing work? Will world leaders listen?
Only if we’re loud enough.
If we can make this number known across the planet, that mere fact will exert some real pressure on negotiators. We need people to understand that 350 marks either success or failure for these climate negotiations. It’s not an easy fight-the other side has the power of the fossil fuel industry. But we think the voice of ordinary people will be heard, if it’s loud enough. That’s all of our job-to make enough noise that we can’t be easily ignored.
* Where did this 350 number come from?
Dr. James Hansen, of NASA, the United States’ space agency, has been researching global warming longer than just about anyone else. He was the first to publicly testify before the U.S. Congress, in June of 1988, that global warming was real. He and his colleagues have used both real-world observation, computer simulation, and mountains of data about ancient climates to calculate what constitutes dangerous quantities of carbon in the atmosphere. The Bush Administration has tried to keep Hansen and his team from speaking publicly, but their analysis has been widely praised by other scientists, and by experts like Nobel Prize winner Al Gore. The full text of James Hansen’s paper about 350 can be found here.
* Isn’t America the biggest source of the problem? What about China and India?
Yes-America has been producing more CO2 than any other country, and leads the industrialized world in per capita emissions. Even though China now produces as much CO2 annually, the US still produces many times more carbon per person than China, India, and most other countries. And America has blocked meaningful international action for many years. That’s why many of us at 350.org have worked hard to change U.S. policy-we staged more than 2,000 demonstrations in all 50 states in 2007, and helped spur Congress to pass the first real laws to reduce CO2. Now we need help from around the world to persuade both the U.S. and the U.N. to continue the process.
China and India and the rest of the developing world need to be involved. But since per capita they use far less energy than the West, and have been doing so for much shorter periods of time, and are using fossil fuels to pull people out of poverty, their involvement needs to be different. The West is going to have to use some tiny percentage of the wealth it built up filling the atmosphere with carbon to transfer technology north to south so that these countries can meet their legitimate development needs without burning all their coal. A great resource for thinking about these questions is the paper prepared by the Greenhouse Rights Network, which can be found here.
* 350 is just a number. Wouldn’t “Climate Emergency” or “Clean Energy Now” be a better call to action?
350 translates into many languages–numerals are among the few things most people around the world recognize. More to the point, 350 tells us what we need
to do. Far from boring, it’s the most important number in the world. It contains, rightly understood, the recipe for a very different world, one that moves past cheap fossil fuel to more sensible technologies, more closely-knit communities, and a more equitable global society.
This human powered vehicle weighs approximately one hundred pounds. There are six forward gears (and the owner tells me reverse is a “Flintstones” gear), hand brakes, a pedal crank for driver and passenger, and plenty of room for cargo.
We took a spin around the block in downtown Warrensburg this afternoon. Pedaling uphill in first gear isn’t too bad, but you do have to work. When you’re going downhill you can really move at quite a clip – and it’s a lot less work.
St. Louis Earth Day celebrations will be held tomorrow in Forest Park. While sustainability, recycling and the like will be on the agenda, the most important happening will be the continued petitioning for signatures for a Renewable Energy Standard (RES) in Missouri.
Earth Day represents one of the last big gatherings of like-minded folks at which to gather signatures to get the RES on the ballot in November. Hopefully Sunday’s surge will actually work.