We think these tax credits are important to get industries up and running, but we don't think they should continue on indefinitely. … We also want to make sure our tax code isn't one that has too many loopholes, which rewards some industries and not the others.
This week, I spoke at the University of Kentucky, home to a polluting coal plant, lots of coal industry money, and a student body hungry to move beyond coal and embrace a clean energy future. Many of us look to colleges and universities as pioneers of new technology and innovation, where a new generation learns and leads. That's definitely what I saw this week on the beautiful campus of the University of Kentucky. UK students want their school to be a leader, too, but unfortunately the campus remains stuck in the past due to their ties to coal. They know …
A vast outcrop of the Arctic Siberian coast that had been frozen for tens of thousands of years is releasing huge carbon deposits as rising temperatures thaw parts of its coastline, a study warned yesterday.
The carbon, a potential source of Earth-warming CO2, has lain frozen along the 7000km northeast Siberian coastline since the last ice age. But atmospheric warming and coastal erosion are gnawing at the icy seal, releasing about 40 million tonnes of carbon a year -- 10 times more than previously thought, said a study in the journal Nature.
Ten times more than previously thought. We knew warming was a vicious cycle, just not this vicious.
By Emily E. Adams Forests provide many important goods, such as timber and paper. They also supply essential services—for example, they filter water, control water runoff, protect soil, regulate climate, cycle and store nutrients, and provide habitat for countless animal species and space for recreation. Forests cover 31 percent of the world’s land surface, just over 4 billion hectares. (One hectare = 2.47 acres.) This is down from the pre-industrial area of 5.9 billion hectares. According to data from the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization, deforestation was at its highest rate in the 1990s, when each year the world lost …
President Obama promised to begin to slow the rise of the oceans and heal the planet. My promise...is to help you and your family. – Willard Mitt Romney, August 30, 2012
The moment Mitt Romney mocked the climate crisis will be cursed, rued, and lamented by future generations. It might even be cursed, rued, and lamented by Mitt Romney, if he looks back on that line as the beginning of the end of his flirtation with young voters and their planet. After all, America’s best and brightest youth are pouring themselves into innovation to create clean energy, to solve the climate crisis, and win the future…and Mitt Romney tonight sent the message that his America has no place for them.
But while Romney mocked the Earth with his words, President Obama is mocking the planet with his actions.
Isaac, downgraded to a tropical storm yesterday, is still winding his way slowly up the Mississippi River valley. As the storm meanders north and then east, it will bring much-needed rain to one of the areas hardest-hit by the drought. But following two days of heavy rain, the Gulf Coast isn't yet entirely out of danger. Some 770,000 people are still without power in Louisiana as destruction trails as the storm's shadow.
This is what the rainfall looked like in Tangipahoa Parish, Louisiana, over the past week. See if you can figure out when Isaac hit.
Just across the Mississippi border from Tangipahoa sits a small lake. This morning, gorged with rain, it began to overtop its dam. With 90 minutes notice, 50,000 people were ordered to evacuate their homes. From NBC News:
Up to 50,000 people in Louisiana's Tangipahoa Parish were ordered to evacuate Thursday morning when water from Tropical Storm Isaac threatened to overwhelm a dam across the state line in Mississippi. …
Located about 100 miles north of New Orleans, the parish initially said "imminent failure" of the dam was expected but later emphasized that the dam was "damaged but has not failed" and that the evacuations were "out of caution."
In 2009, two farmers from Missouri checked into local hospitals. Each had a fever, nausea, a headache. Their blood platelets dropped severely. Doctors eventually figured out that they had a new virus, now called the Heartland virus. Transmitted by ticks, it's only ever been seen in two people on Earth -- these farmers, two men who live 60 miles apart.
[The Centers for Disease Control's William] Nicholson says the new virus is in the phlebovirus family, which contains more than 70 members. And here's another twist: Heartland virus appears to be a cousin of another new human virus called Severe Fever with Thrombocytopenia Syndrome virus, discovered last year in China. Another possible cousin may be Bhanja virus, a little-studied virus that has been found in some mammals, birds and reptiles in Asia, Africa and Europe.
Nicholson says the CDC ... is looking for other people with symptoms similar to the two Heartland victims to see if they're infected with the same virus. The researchers are also analyzing thousands of samples from Missouri ticks, other crawling insects and animals wild and domestic to see if any harbor Heartland virus.
No, this is not a script for the first five minutes of a horror movie. Unfortunately, it's real.
A total of 1,590 cases of West Nile virus, including 66 deaths, were reported through late August this year in the United States, the highest human toll reported by that point in the calendar since the mosquito-borne disease was first detected in the country in 1999, health officials said on Wednesday.
The toll is increasing quickly and "we think the numbers will continue to rise," said Dr. Lyle Petersen, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Division of Vector-Borne Infectious Diseases.
Through last week, 1,118 cases and 41 deaths had been reported. The updated figures represent a 40 percent increase in the number of cases and a 61 percent spike in the number of deaths, but are short of the all-time record for a full year: 9,862 cases and 264 deaths in 2003.
A mountaintop removal coal mining site in Fork Ridge, Virginia. Photo courtesy of SouthWings and Appalachian Voices. In the tranquil, misty mountains of southwest Virginia, the coal industry is trying to build its very own road to nowhere. King Coal's latest scheme is to try and take $2 billion of federal funds -- our tax dollars -- to build the Coalfields Expressway through rural Southwest Virginia. Coal companies plan to use mountaintop removal mining to flatten the area to make way for the road, while they keep the profits from the coal they extract. While the coal companies call it …
Mike Leighton watched as his well overflowed, filled with methane. His neighbors, the Franklins, watched their well go dry, then turn black. Both families live in Leroy Township, Penn. -- over the Marcellus Shale, near where energy companies are fracking for natural gas. NPR has the story.
Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection blames a nearby hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, operation. It says methane gas has leaked out of the well, which is operated by Chesapeake Energy, and into the Leightons' and Franklins' water supplies.
The danger goes beyond contaminated water. In a letter to both families detailing test results and preliminary findings, state regulators wrote that "there is a physical danger of fire or explosion due to the migration of natural gas water wells." Chesapeake has installed ventilation systems at the two water wells, but the letter warns, "it is not possible to completely eliminate the hazards of having natural gas in your water supply by simply venting your well."
NPR suggests that part of the problem is the concrete surrounding the pipe that extracts the natural gas.