The fading hopes for the Lieberman-Warner climate bill have all but ended (see E&E News, "Sponsors lower expectations for Lieberman-Warner bill," $ub. req'd, reprinted below). Serious climate legislation had been in critical condition for some months (see "Boucher lets conservatives block House climate bill" and "Don't hold your breath on Lieberman-Warner passing in 2008."). Doctors and family members finally pulled the plug this week, and the patient appeared to lose all vital signs. The coroner listed "apathy" as the cause of death. The only hope for revival now rests in the faint possibility that Lieberman-Warner turns out to be either an immortal cop, a vampire private detective, or possibly a relentless, indestructible killing machine from the future that had taken on the guise of so-so climate legislation in an effort to fulfill its mission of ruining life on this planet for Homo "sapiens." (Note to self: That was a bit harsh.) More seriously, too many senators simply wanted to do too much watering down of L-W, plus we have the little-known provision of the Constitution that says all pieces of legislation aimed at sparing billions of people from unimaginable misery must receive 60 votes. The messy details are below:
This post is by ClimateProgress guest blogger Kari Manlove, fellows assistant at the Center for American Progress. ----- The fact that our country has a National Environmental Policy Act means we should have a national environmental policy, and any national environmental policy is bound to take into consideration global warming, right? Wrong on two counts. The U.S. is sorely lacking an updated environmental policy. It's been over a decade and counting. With the EPA as example, and based on its condition as of late (see here and here), the climate's looking grim. As for a cohesive national policy that takes into account global warming's causes and impacts? Think again. States have been infinitely more active than our federal government (and we thank them).
Ado, ado, ado. It’s been a while since our last sports roundup, so with no further ado: Baseball: Major League Baseball was all about Earth Day. The Seattle Mariners hosted the league’s first carbon-neutral game, …
Goldman Sachs' Arjun N. Murti said this in a May 5 report: The possibility of $150-$200 per barrel seems increasingly likely over the next 6-24 months, though predicting the ultimate peak in oil prices as well as the remaining duration of the upcycle remains a major uncertainty. That would mean gasoline prices of $5 to $6 a gallon. Unless, of course, we permanently suspend the gasoline tax, in which case gasoline prices would only be $5 to $6 a gallon. Why should we listen to Murti? Well, back in 2005, when prices averaged under $60 a barrel, he was one of the few Wall Street analysts who predicted oil could soon hit $105 a barrel -- or higher if we don't take the right actions quickly:
Has the oil industry borrowed the (laughable) tagline of presidential candidate John McCain? As Fox Business reported last Friday: The American Petroleum Institute took out a full-page ad in USA Today, and other major media were tapped this week to provide "straight talk on earnings." The earnings that need "straight talk": ExxonMobil's $11 billion quarterly profit, and Chevron's $5.2 billion quarterly profit. (Note to Big Oil: When Fox doesn't give your spin favorable coverage, you've definitely become the Britney Spears of industries.)
Some of the nation’s largest oil companies will over the next 30 years have to pay to clean up groundwater befouled with gasoline additive MTBE. In settling a suit brought by 153 public water providers …
A livable climate can (probably) survive the burning of almost all of the world's conventional oil and gas -- but not if we also burn even half the coal (see here [PDF] and figure below). So the top priority for any climate policy must be to stop the building of traditional coal plants -- which is why that has become the top priority of NASA's James Hansen (see here). The next priority is to replace existing coal plants with carbon-free power, which could include coal with carbon capture and storage (CCS), as fast as possible. And that means a related priority is to encourage the introduction of CCS as quickly as possible, to see if that is a viable large-scale solution. A climate policy that does not start by achieving at least the first goal, a moratorium on coal without CCS, must be labeled a failure. By that measure, the cap-and-trade system currently being employed by the Europeans looks to be a failure, as we'll see.
I can’t decide if this is horribly crass or effing genius, or both:
Senate Democrats are trying once again to yank $17 billion in tax breaks away from oil companies that are enjoying booming profits. The Consumer-First Energy Act, introduced in the Senate on Wednesday, would also put …
We've devised the world's shortest survey to find out what kind of actions our readers are taking. You know you want to.