Skip to content Skip to site navigation

RL Miller's Posts

Comments

Fossil-fuel industries push for a Great Outdoors Giveaway

Do you want to see this waterfall get fracked? If not, tell Congress to protect the San Miguel Peak and other roadless areas.Photo: Adam BakerTens of millions of acres of public land would lose protection under the Wilderness and Roadless Release Act of 2011, now being considered in the U.S. House. These parcels, currently designated as wilderness study areas or roadless areas, would be stripped of their status and potentially opened up for drilling, fracking, and mining. Republicans on the House Energy and Natural Resources Committee last week brought in a carefully choreographed parade of witnesses, including disabled veteran hunters, …

Comments

Rage of a dying dinosaur: Why is AEP really shutting down five coal plants?

Coal-fired energy is going extinct.Photo: MarkusramA huge animal, thrashing around in its death throes, threatens nearby smaller animals. Such is the case with coal-dependent American Electric Power (AEP). Thursday, it announced that it would be closing five coal plants in Virginia, West Virginia, and Ohio, adding up to about 25 percent of its total capacity. And it attributed the closure to the cost of EPA regulations. Cue the noise machine on the "job-killing EPA." The Bluefield, W.Va. Daily Telegraph editorial could have been written by AEP executives: "One must look no further than last week's stunning announcement from American Electric Power …

Read more: Climate & Energy, Coal

Comments

Keystone pipeline spilled tar-sands oil 11 times in past year. Do we really want to supersize it?

The routes of the existing and proposed Keystone pipelines. Image: RL MillerThe State Department is currently weighing whether to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry tar-sands oil some 2,000 miles southward, from Alberta, Canada, to Houston and Port Arthur, Texas. It would be an expansion of the now-operational Keystone pipeline that goes as far as Cushing, Okla. The original Keystone pipeline has been in operation less than one year, and its owner TransCanada predicts no more than one spill every seven years. Instead of one spill every seven years, oil has spilled 11 times in the last year. …

Comments

Will natural-gas fracking turn New York into a 21st century Appalachia?

How much is it worth to you to put up with contaminated drinking water?Photo: Helen SlottjeLet's define "Appalachia" at the beginning: a place blessed with mountains above below-ground natural resources, but cursed with chronically high unemployment; a place where natural resources are not owned by the landowners; a place where extracting those natural resources poisons its waters, land, air, and human beings. The Appalachian Mountains run from New York to Georgia. The term "Appalachia" usually refers to the coal-dependent central and southern parts, i.e., West Virginia and adjacent states ... until now. The Marcellus Shale is turning Pennsylvania and upstate …

Comments

Stupid goes viral: Climate Zombies of Oregon, Hawaii, Minnesota, and northern Rocky Mountains

They prowl the halls of Congress, moaning for caaasshh. Their stupid has gone viral. And if they win, humanity loses. I'm tracking Climate Zombies: every Republican candidate for House, Senate, and governor who doubts, denies, or derides the science of climate change. Today, I finish up all states west of the Rocky Mountains, throw in Minnesota as a bonus, and find not one, but two Republican incumbents who admit the reality of climate change. The extraordinary hostility of this year's crop of Republican candidates toward climate science, which started being documented in the blogosphere, is finally drawing mainstream attention. Two …

Comments

The curious case of why Chevron is sitting out Prop 23

Proposition 23, known as the Dirty Energy Proposition for its financial backing from oil companies, has garnered national publicity for its effort to roll back California's greenhouse gas law. Virtually all of its funding has come from outside California, beginning with Texas-based Valero, Texas-based Tesoro, and the Kansas-based Koch brothers. Californians who care about our state, and who remember Texas-based Enron and the Utah-based Mormon Church, resent the intrusion of out-of-state interests meddling in our politics. But what of in-state oil companies and businesses who might normally put their money into Proposition 23? Chevron and the California Chamber of Commerce …

Comments

Stupid goes viral: Climate Zombies of Kansas, Nevada, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and Tennessee

They prowl the halls of Congress, moaning for caaasshh. Their stupid has gone viral. And if they win, humanity loses. I'm tracking Climate Zombies: every Republican candidate for House, Senate, and governor who doubts, denies, or derides the science of climate change. Today, a look at five states turns up one Republican who worries about his carbon footprint and a second who's acknowledged climate science in the past. Kansas Hardly a shock: the Koch brothers' headquarters state is heavily infected. House candidate Tim Huelskamp (Kan.-01) authored state bill SR 1809, the resolution condemning the controversial recent EPA "endangerment finding" that …

Comments

Stupid goes viral: Deep in the heart of Climate Zombieland

They prowl the halls of Congress, moaning for caaasshh. Their stupid has gone viral. And if they win, humanity loses. I'm tracking Climate Zombies: every Republican candidate for House, Senate, and governor who doubts, denies, or derides the science of climate change. Like this elected representative, whose website proudly informs us that: Global warming is simply a chicken-little scheme to use mass media and government propaganda to convince the world that destruction of individual liberties and national sovereignty is necessary to save mankind, and that the unwashed masses would destroy themselves without the enlightened global dictatorship of these frauds. In …

Comments

Stupid goes viral: Climate Zombies in Iowa, Missouri, Utah, Vermont, and Washington

I'm tracking Climate Zombies: every Republican candidate for House, Senate, and governor who claims that global warming is a hoax, doubts the science of climate change, and wants a new Dark Ages for America. First, a brief note on why. During the Bush years, most Republican politicians ducked questions on climate change, professed a desire to do something vague and unspecified about energy independence, and derided cap-and-trade. Only a few, led by James Inhofe (R-River in Egypt), openly mocked science. The emergence of the Tea Party has changed that. The respected science journal Nature, in a piece entitled Science Scorned: …

Comments

Stupid goes viral: The Climate Zombies of the new GOP

After researching the causes of temperature fluctuations on earth, I found the largest factor to be the sun. The earth's orbit changes. Also the earth's spin and axis change over time. When areas of the earth are closer to the sun, the temperature is hotter and when they are further away, cooler. The sun also has more activity at times and less at other times. They have been able to map out large changes in the earth's temperature over time to the sun. Times with no polar ice caps have corresponded to times when we were closer to the sun. …

Read more: Politics