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Senators include clean-energy incentives in economic stimulus bill

More than 40 senators, of both the Democrat and Republican persuasion, got behind a successful effort to include green-job boosting and renewable-energy incentives in the Senate version of an economic stimulus package. The legislation passed markup in the Finance Committee today and now heads to the Senate floor for a final vote.

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Companies are greening but progress is limited, says report

Hardly a day goes by without some U.S. company touting its green credentials, but don't get too optimistic about corporate eco-friendliness. Consulting company Greener Media studied companies' performance on 20 economic and environmental indicators, from alternative-fuel vehicles to telecommuting to pesticide use, and has published the results in a new 65-page report. Only eight of the 20 indicators showed progress last year: emissions disclosure, clean-tech investment and patents, energy efficiency, green office space, recycling, quality of management, and toxic emissions. Two issues, electronic waste and carbon intensity, actually got worse in 2007, while 10 stayed about the same. Says report …

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The Big Three attempt to persuade other states of the danger of fuel efficiency standards

Automakers are ramping up their PR effort to persuade states not to adopt California's auto emission standards, which they fear will survive the Bush administration's latest monkey wrench. But their arguments are as silly as ever: Dave McCurdy, chief executive of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers ... said the California-inspired initiative would result in a "patchwork quilt of inconsistent and competing fuel economy programs" that would lead to "confusion, inefficiency, and uncertainty for automakers and consumers." Is this supposed to persuade any of those wavering states? For one thing, it's not true, and for another, why should states care if …

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Biz to gov: no, you first

Despite all the hype about the greening of the private sector, the big businesses of the world largely don't rate climate change as a top priority: Nearly nine in 10 of them do not rate it as a priority, says the study, which canvassed more than 500 big businesses in Britain, the US, Germany, Japan, India and China. Nearly twice as many see climate change as imposing costs on their business as those who believe it presents an opportunity to make money. And the report's publishers believe that big business will concentrate even less on climate change as the world …

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Grist’s Today show appearance falls through, fans mourn

To all our devoted fans who sat in front of the TV this morning waiting for a Grist-tacular appearance on NBC's Today show, we apologize. Due to Today's relatively tight schedule and an earlier interview that ran overtime, Grist's Katharine Wroth was pulled from the show before she made it on stage. Alas, the world is a much less-informed place than it could have been. As a consolation, you can read some of the tips Katharine would have offered, now conveniently expunged of all references to the show. Enjoy!

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WV Supreme Court to get out of bed with Blankenship, reconsider his case

A while back, loathsome mountaintop-mining outfit Massey Energy was hit with a $50 million judgment in a West Virginia court, in a ruling that they had illegally driven other area mining companies out of business. They appealed to the W. Va. Supreme Court, which overturned the ruling in a vote of 3-2. Later, pictures turned up of loathsome Massey CEO Don Blankenship vacationing on the French Riviera with W. Va. Supreme Court justice Elliott "Spike" Maynard -- one of those three votes -- way back in 2006, as the case was being litigated. They were both in Monte Carlo by …

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Al Gore’s cable TV network plans to sell shares

Want a piece of Al Gore? Here's your chance (kind of): The cable television network Gore cofounded, Current Media Inc., is planning to go public. Current TV is aimed at socially minded young folk and is largely composed of viewer-created content.

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Intel replaces PepsiCo as biggest U.S. buyer of alternative energy

Tech giant Intel has announced that it will buy 1.3 billion kilowatt hours of renewable energy credits a year, making it the biggest U.S. buyer of alternative energy. Previous record-holder PepsiCo is bumped into second place with a purchase of 1.1 billion kilowatt hours annually -- but if Pepsi's advertising is to be believed, every sip gets them closer.

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Schmeiser to play David to Monsanto’s Goliath again

Most of you will recall the high-profile battle fought by Saskatchewan farmer Percy Schmeiser when he was sued for growing their GM seed without tithing to the corporation for the privilege. Schmeiser insisted that Monsanto's patented DNA blew onto his land, but he lost an acrimonious fight in Canada's Supreme Court anyway. Now Percy's back for more. Schmeiser has filed suit against the agribusiness giant in his Bruno, Saskatchewan, small claims court for C$600, claiming damages when Monsanto's GM seed blew onto his land, which he had to pay to have removed so that he could plant mustard. His contention …

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Conventional oil will peak within seven years

The oil company with the best strategic planning says the day of reckoning is nigh: World demand for oil and gas will outstrip supply within seven years, according to Royal Dutch Shell. The oil multinational is predicting that conventional supplies will not keep pace with soaring population growth and the rapid pace of economic development. Jeroen van der Veer, Shell's chief executive, said in an e-mail to the company's staff this week that output of conventional oil and gas was close to peaking. He wrote: "Shell estimates that after 2015 supplies of easy-to-access oil and gas will no longer keep …