Today’s Climate: October 13, 2009

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UN: Climate Negotiators Don’t Meet Leaders’ Pledges (Reuters)

Negotiators at global climate change talks are not delivering on promises by their leaders to clinch a deal in Copenhagen in December, a top U.N. environmental official says.

Coal, Environmentalists Massing for MTR Hearings (OH&S)

Six public hearings, one each in six affected states, begin today and give both sides the chance to defend their positions on mountaintop removal mining, a flash point in Appalachia’s coalfields.

Cleansing the Air at the Expense of Waterways (New York Times)

Even as a growing number of coal-burning power plants around the nation have moved to reduce their air emissions, many of them are creating another problem: water pollution.

Measure Could Block New EPA Ship Pollution Rules (Journal Sentinel)

Democratic Rep. David Obey, chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, is crafting language that would let Great Lakes ships escape some of the tougher EPA-proposed regulations for large vessels.

Battle over Tar Sands Spreads to Investors, Clients (Edmonton Journal)

Last week in France, 30 activists scaled a security fence at the nation’s largest oil refinery, owned by Total S.A.. Their message: Get out of the tar sands; Get out of Alberta. It’s a sign that the battle over tar sands development is spreading.

Nobel Economics Prize Goes to Student of Public Commons (Guardian)

A political scientist from Indiana University whose work exploring how people come together to preserve their collective resources may provide important clues in the fight against climate change has become the first woman to win the Nobel prize for economics.

Kashmir Glaciers Shrinking at ‘Alarming’ Rate (AFP)

Rising winter temperatures are shrinking Himalayan glaciers in Indian Kashmir at "alarming" speeds, threatening water supplies to vast tracts of India and Pakistan, according to a new study.

Australia Steps Up Pressure Over Carbon Laws (Reuters)

Australia’s government stepped up pressure on a divided opposition over climate policy, saying it would only negotiate changes to controversial carbon trade laws if the amendments did not hurt the budget.

California Solar Users to Feel Surge in Wallet (Mercury News)

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed two solar energy bills that will make it possible for consumers and businesses to actually make money if they generate surplus electricity.

A Blueprint for Restoring 
the World’s Oceans to Health (Yale Environment 360)

In her long career as an oceanographer, Sylvia Earle has witnessed the damage that humanity has done to the Earth’s oceans. But in an interview with Yale Environment 360, she says there’s still time to pull the seas back from the brink.

Offsets for Copenhagen Conference Emissions to Help Bangladesh (COP15)

Denmark plans to offset the emissions generated by December’s UN climate change conference by replacing 20 old, heavily polluting brickwork factories in Bangladesh with modern, efficient ones.

Green Walls Take Root in Green Building Design (AP)

The next big thing in green building design might be to turn an existing idea on its side. PNC Financial Services Group recently installed a green wall the size of two tennis courts on one side of its headquarters.