Will the ESA force Bush’s hand on climate change?

I've heard several times that the minute the Bush administration admits that a) an animal is endangered, and b) the endangerment results from climate change, the Endangered Species Act will kick in and force it to take steps to address the problem. Not being a legal type, I don't know how solid this line of reasoning is. But apparently the Bushies just admitted that coral is endangered by the effects of global warming. So if the ESA is going to force their hand, we'll find out soon when all the lawsuits start coming in.

Wind power 101

Discussion of environment and energy issues is coming so fast and furious these days that I could spend all day simply reading it -- which would make me a less-than-useful blogger. So I'll try to pick a few good bits to share. Jerome a Paris, who writes at dKos and its sister site, European Tribune, is the kind of writer I'd be if I'd studied something useful in school, with numbers and facts and such, rather than philosophy. I highly recommend two recent posts: one is a brief, cogent summary of wind power, listing its benefits and drawbacks; the second is an exhaustive, detailed rebuttal of wind-power skeptics. Everything you've ever wanted to know about wind power but were afraid to ask. (via EnergyBulletin, of course)

Environmentally friendly drag racing

When is that plug-in hybrid going to get here? And where is that cellulosic biofuel technology? I admit to having paranoid thoughts lately. Paranoia, as anyone who has eaten one too many "special" brownies knows, can be an unpleasant mental state (especially when combined with the giggles). Could it be true that oil companies are buying off researchers?

Americans and Climate Change: Problem summary

"Americans and Climate Change: Closing the Gap Between Science and Action" (PDF) is a report synthesizing the insights of 110 leading thinkers on how to educate and motivate the American public on the subject of global warming. Background on the report here. I'll be posting a series of excerpts (citations have been removed; see original report). If you'd like to be involved in implementing the report's recommendations, or learn more, visit the Yale Project on Climate Change website. Below the fold is an executive summary of the problems conference participants identified.

Melinda Kramer, advocate for grassroots women activists, answers questions

Melinda Kramer. Photo: Caitlin Sislin. With what environmental organization are you affiliated? I am cofounder and codirector of Women’s Global Green Action Network, an international organization that unites and empowers grassroots women advocates, entrepreneurs, and …

Army Corps of Darkness

Army Corps of Engineers has screwed up more than NOLA levees The Army Corps of Engineers spends hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars on ill-designed, ineffective, and environmentally disastrous projects — and that’s not the …

Americans and Climate Change: Intro and executive summary

We've talked a great deal on this site about how best to "frame" global warming. How can we shrink the gap between what science tells us about the dangers of climate change and the relative disengagement of the American public? How can we get the public fired up and thus spur more aggressive policy responses? That's the subject of "Americans and Climate Change," a new report from the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, based on a conference held late last year. The 200-page report can be ordered in book form or downloaded for free as a PDF (uh, PDF). (It's written by Associate Dean Daniel Abbasi, based on notes from the conference.) Now, normally, a post like this would end here. I would recommend the report and move on. But let's face it. None of you are going to pay $20 to order a conference report. None of you are going to read a 200-page PDF. And here's the thing: I actually read this one. The whole thing. And it's extraordinary: lucid, insightful, and practical. So I don't want to let it pass by. (Incidentally, thanks to the NYT's Andy Revkin for recommending it.) I contacted the folks at Yale, and they've agreed to let me reprint some or all of the report (depending on how it goes), in small chunks that are easier to read than, say, a 200-page PDF. I hope it starts some discussion. And I hope it isn't, as my wife tactlessly suggests, the dorkiest, wonkiest thing anyone's ever done, ever. Below you'll find the beginning of the Executive Summary, which frames the rest of the report.

Attribution 101

The Wall Street Journal editorial page is responsible for a great deal of the FUD that still surrounds global warming. But their news operation is top notch. Case in point: Here's an excellent, plain-language explanation for how climate scientists attribute warming to human activity, from Sharon Begley. Bookmark it and send the link to friends who've been reading too many WSJ editorials. (via Deltoid)

As the windmill turns: A native perspective

Who would have thought my sleepy little home town of Corpus Christi and nearby Padre Island would be in the news so much this year. First dead-eye Dick Cheney shoots his friend in the face at a ranch nearby, and the victim is whisked to our local hospital. Now the largest wind farm in the U.S. is slated for waters a little ways down the coast. (This picture showing the location of the wind farm even includes the town of Armstrong, near the Armstrong Ranch where the hunting of quail and shooting of friends took place!) So as you might guess, the news of the new wind farm caught my attention.

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