Politics

British citizen sues government over distribution of climate-change film to schools

In July, a judge ruled that the British government’s decision to send Al Gore’s Inconvenient Truth documentary to 3,500 English secondary schools did not constitute political indoctrination of children. British citizen and fun-name owner Stewart Dimmock disagrees, and is suing his government to quash the dastardly distribution. Dimmock claims the “irredeemable” film contains “serious inaccuracies” and “misrepresentations”; that “the majority of the arguments are false, or falsely exaggerated”; that the movie is aimed at “scaring children into a particular point of view”; and that, by his calculations, An Inconvenient Truth is “just over half scientific material, 30 percent pure politics …

The Hill goes green

Legislators take to the pages of the capitol’s mag to talk eco-this and that

Insidery capitol mag The Hill has a special section on "going green." There’s some amusing stuff. First, it’s nice to see a couple of members of Congress exposing the travesty that is corn ethanol. Seattle’s own Rep. Dave Reichert has a hilariously poorly written essay on why Republicans should go green. It starts like this: America has come to a consensus. The American people want to protect the environment. OMG! Really?! Suspiciously, Reichert never offers a theory about why Republicans have come to be so anti-environment. I recommend, for reference, he check out Jonathan Chait’s new book The Big Con. …

Passionate but confused

A response to Shellenberger & Nordhaus from David Hawkins of NRDC

The following is a guest essay from David Hawkins, director of the Climate Center at the Natural Resources Defense Council. —– Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger are two passionate but confused individuals. They lambaste “environmentalists” for being fixated with a “pollution paradigm” that operates by “limiting human power” and by “increasing the cost of dirty energy.” This approach, they argue, will not solve global warming. What is really needed is a five to ten-fold increase in government expenditures on “breakthrough” energy technologies. While their opinions are strong, their grasp of the facts is not. Unquestionably, we need to shift from …

Quick, before the people who really mean it show up!

U.S. industry may well help push climate legislation through the Senate this session

Joe Lieberman says that comprehensive climate legislation in the Senate is more likely this session than people think (sub. rqd.), and that debate will probably get underway later this year or early next. But the reason he gives isn’t exactly comforting: The Connecticut independent said U.S. industry has shifted on the global warming debate and is ready for regulation. "They want the rules of the road to be set by a Congress with the current political makeup," he said. "And they want the rules of the road to be set by an administration that is viewed as a friend of …

Bush admin talks up voluntary actions with strong words at D.C. climate summit

President Bush’s climate summit of the world’s top polluters kicked off yesterday in Washington, D.C., with rhetoric aplenty and the arrest of some 49 protesters from Greenpeace and other environmental groups outside the State Department offices. Meanwhile, inside the conference, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice talked up the need for strong climate action even while advocating the administration’s position that each nation should act in its own self-interest and at its own speed toward as-yet-undefined voluntary goals. President Bush said in a brief speech to the summit this morning, “We acknowledge there is a problem, and by setting this goal, …

Hey hey, ho ho ...

Climate protesters arrested outside State Department

Greenpeace executive director John Passacantando was among 50 activists arrested today outside the State Department, protesting Bush’s farcical climate meetings.

Be careful what you wish for

Conservative candidate in Ontario will expand nuclear power industry, if elected

Me, a month ago: What the Ontario election needs is for the parties to talk more about energy issues! Me, a few days ago: Crud. Progressive Conservative Leader John Tory said Saturday that environmental approval for energy projects is operating at a snail's pace, and if his party comes to power, he will revitalize the province's nuclear sector. I would so love for the expansion of nuclear power to not be the one point of agreement between the two biggest parties in my province.

Bill Clinton vs. the World Bank

Clinton’s push for sustainable development dismissed by World Bank prez

The opening plenary was fascinating. Clinton explained how CGI commitments had already avoided 20,000,000 tons of greenhouse gases. Then he tried to get Robert Zoellick, head of the World Bank, to realize that the "Bank can show people options for sustainable development." Zoellick, however, was full of little more than platitudes, saying we need to address "questions of adaptation and mitigation," and noting that there is a sensitivity in the developing world that climate change funds will come at the expense of development -- totally missing Clinton's point that green development is the only winning path (and Gore's point that global warming, left unchecked, will negate all other efforts aimed at development). Clinton, however, persisted -- especially after H. Lee Scott, CEO of Wal-Mart, touted his various successes:

That spade is a spade

Unusually straightforward journalistic fact-checking at the Post

Huge kudos to Juliet Eilperin and Steven Mufson at the Post. You don’t often see traditional journalists willing to call out the Bush administration’s lies and distractions so plainly: Seeking to counter international pressure to adopt binding limits on greenhouse gas emissions, the Bush administration has been touting the success of three mandatory programs to curb U.S. energy consumption: gas mileage standards for vehicles, efficiency standards for home appliances and state laws requiring utilities to increase their use of renewable energy sources. But for most of the Bush presidency, the White House has either done little to promote these measures …

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