Today’s Climate: April 6, 2009

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EU, U.S. Converging on Climate Change (Reuters)

Opinions in Europe and the United States on how to battle climate change are converging, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso says.

Wilkens Ice Shelf on Verge of Collapse (Guardian)

Antarctica’s Connecticut-size Wilkens ice shelf is in the last stages of collapse and could break up within days in the latest sign of how global warming is thought to be changing the face of the planet.

Japan’s $100B Stimulus Will Have Shades of Green (Reuters)

The Japanese stimulus plan, to be released Friday, is expected to have solar power as a key element and include money energy efficiency programs.

Shell Headed to Court over Nigeria Executions (Guardian)

Fourteen years after the execution of environmental activist Ken Saro-Wiwa, Shell and one of its senior executives are headed to court on charges that in the 1990s in Nigeria they were complicit in human rights abuses, including execution and torture.

Business Group Slams UK Climate Policy for Not Helping Enough (Business Green)

The business group CBI says politics are getting in the way of green investment, not the economy, and it urges the government "to get on with it" or risk losing more low-carbon investment to U.S. and China.

Airline Groups Back Global Emissions Trading Plan (Guardian)

Four of the world’s top airlines have backed a global scheme to curb carbon emissions and hope the proposal will be included in a broader U.N. pact to fight climate change.

Berlusconi Backs Prince Charles’ Plan to Save Rainforests (Telegraph)

Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has agreed to use his country’s presidency of the G8 to drive through a scheme to raise the huge sums needed to pay rainforest nations to safeguard them.

Proposed Dam Would Drown 200 Square Miles of Amazon (McClatchy)

The Brazilian government power company wants to harness a section of the Amazon’s largest tributary by building the world’s third-biggest dam. The project would drown 200 square miles of tropical rainforest and flood the homes of 19,000 people.

Study: Insurers Move Slowly on Climate Risks (New York Times)

A report from Ceres suggests that the insurance industry has been slow to adopt policies aimed at forestalling atmospheric warming and protecting its massive investments from weather risks.

Hidden Ingredient In New, Greener Battery: A Virus (NPR)

Scientists at MIT have developed a new, more environmentally friendly way to make lithium batteries. Their approach employs an unusual component: genetically engineered viruses.

Elephant Seals Help Monitor Climate Change (AP)

Instrument-equipped elephant seals’ long-distance swims and 1,000-foot dinnertime dives for squid are giving investigators valuable data about a key piece of ocean of Antarctica.

Interactive Energy Bill Just Around the Corner? (Earth2Tech)

Internet-enabled refrigerators and other household appliances with the computing intelligence to manage their own energy use have existed in corporate labs for years. If the climate and energy bill passes, they may finally make it into your kitchen.

“Clean Coal” Remains a Faraway Dream (Brisbane Times)

The coal industry and politicians should come to grips with the reality that coal is beginning to lose its social license to operate in Western democracies and the strategy of pointing to a future built on CCS as the holy grail is not working.

NBA Gets Its Green Game On (CNet)

The NBA launched Green Week with the National Resources Defense Council with videos encouraging fans to change their position on the environment from center to power forward.