Today’s Climate: August 4, 2010

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U.S. Finds Most Oil From Spill Poses Little Additional Risk (New York Times)

The government is expected to announce today that three-quarters of the oil from the Deepwater Horizon leak has already evaporated, dispersed, been captured or otherwise eliminated — and that much of the rest is so diluted that it does not seem to pose much additional risk of harm.

Pumped Mud Holds Well Shut as BP Execs Visit Russia (Reuters)

Oil giant BP claimed "a significant milestone" on Wednesday in its efforts to plug for good the well that spewed millions of barrels of crude into the Gulf of Mexico over three months.

Reid Abandons Oil-Spill, Energy Legislation Until September (The Hill)

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Tuesday yanked the oil-spill response bill for the summer, giving Democrats a talking point about GOP obstruction even though some of their own members were blocking it.

EPA Left to Pick Up Climate Change Where Congress Dropped the Debate (Washington Post)

The next few months could bring a climax to the long-running debate over how to combat climate change, with the EPA trying to implement its rules and industry groups and opponents in Congress seeking to block it with lawsuits or legislation.

EPA Undertakes Overdue Review on Oil, Gas Rules (AP)

The EPA is reviewing four air emission rules for oil and natural gas operations, albeit years later than it should have done so. It is supposed to review the standards every eight years under the Clean Air Act, but some haven’t been updated since 1985.

Fire, Brimstone and Sympathy: The New Drilling Czar (Green)

The head of the new federal agency for regulating offshore drilling would like to lift the moratorium on deepwater offshore drilling as soon as the agency is "comfortable" that enough safety improvements are in place, he told reporters on Tuesday.

Climate Pact Loopholes Risk Wiping Out Greenhouse Gas Cuts (Bloomberg)

Loopholes in the Kyoto Protocol risk wiping out emissions reduction pledges made by developed nations for 2020, an alliance of island nations said at UN global warming talks in Bonn.

Cancun Talks Will Not See Big Climate Deal: EU (Reuters)

A UN summit in Cancun, Mexico, at the end of the year will not result in a new climate treaty to succeed the Kyoto Protocol, the co-head of the EU’s climate delegation said in an interview on Tuesday.

Heat Wave and Drought Slam Europe (Wall Street Journal)

The scorching temperatures and dry skies threatening Russia’s wheat harvests have also been beating down on Western Europe, which is forecasting lower output of crops from French wheat to Italian tomatoes.

UK’s Largest Coal-Fired Power Plant Could Switch to Biomass Within 10 Years (Guardian)

Drax, Britain’s largest emitter of carbon dioxide, could stop burning coal by the end of the decade and burn biomass instead.

Archer Daniels Midland 4Q Net Income Surges (AP)

Archer Daniels Midland Co., a major corn and soybean processor and ethanol maker, said Tuesday its fourth-quarter net income surged even as sales slipped.

China to Invest $15 Bln over 10 Yrs for Green Autos: Paper (Reuters)

The Chinese government will invest more than $14.8 billion to subsidize its fledgling environmentally friendly car industry over the next 10 years, the Shanghai Securities News reported on Wednesday.

Carbon Capture Closer to Profit as Brent Rally Continues (Bloomberg)

Capturing pollution from European power plants and using it to force oil from underground reservoirs may turn a profit for the first time as crude prices rise.

Spanish Town Dreams of Nuclear Dump (Wall Street Journal)

Mayor José María Saiz believes he has a shot at reenergizing his dying town in central Spain. On a site just beyond its old white houses, amid fields of barley and sunflowers, he envisions building Spain’s first centralized depot for nuclear waste.

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