Today’s Climate: Juy 17-18, 2010

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Scientists Get Another Day to Study Gulf Spill Cap (AP)

Scientists got an extra day to evaluate whether the giant cork bottling BP’s busted well in the Gulf of Mexico will hold, while officials overseeing the disaster pondered their next step.

Shallow Water Drilling Delay May Be Near End (Bloomberg)

Shallow-water drilling companies hope a meeting with the U.S. Interior Department will help end delays in approval of new permits, Hercules Offshore Inc. executive Jim Noe said.

Failed Safety Device on Deepwater Horizon Rig Was Modified in China (Guardian)

BP ordered the owner of the Deepwater Horizon rig to overhaul a crucial piece of the rig’s safety equipment — the blow-out preventer — in China, a common industry practice that saves money.

New W.Va. Senator Signals Opposition to Cap and Trade (Greenwire)

Carte Goodwin, who will officially be sworn in Tuesday to replace the late Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.), said he will not support any of the cap-and-trade proposals under consideration on Capitol Hill.

Climate Bill Would Reduce U.S. GDP by $452 Billion, Energy Department Says (Bloomberg)

Proposed Senate legislation to limit greenhouse gases from power plants, refineries and factories would cut U.S. GDP by $452 billion, or 0.2%, between 2013 and 2035, the Energy Information Administration said.

Financial Reform Bill Includes Byrd-Rockefeller Mine Safety Reporting Language (Coal Tattoo)

The big financial reform bill that just passed Congress and is awaiting Pres. Obama’s signature contains some new mine safety reporting requirements for publicly traded companies.

China’s CNPC Seeks to Contain Oil Spill After Pipe Blast (Reuters)

China’s largest oil company, China National Petroleum Corp, sought to contain ocean pollution and other impacts from an explosion of two crude oil pipelines in the northeastern port of Dalian, state media reported on Sunday.

Climate Panel Clarifies Its Media Plan (Dot Earth)

Rajendra K. Pachauri, the chairman of the UN IPCC, has sent a letter clarifying the panel’s media policy to the 831 lead authors and review editors of its next set of assessments, after being accused of sending a signal of a lack of openness.

More Than Half of New Power in U.S., EU is Green (Reuters)

More than half of all new electricity capacity added in the U.S. and Europe last year was from renewable power, a body backed by the International Energy Agency and the UN reported.

‘Carbon Trading Used to Launder Money’ (AFP)

Organised crime gangs are using carbon emissions trading schemes as fronts for money laundering, experts who attended a meeting of the Asia Pacific Money Laundering Group said.

Russia Swelters in Heatwave, Many Crops Destroyed (Reuters)

Soaring temperatures across large swathes of Russia have destroyed nearly 10 million hectares of crops and prompted a state of emergency to be declared in 17 regions.

Australian PM Calls Poll, Vowing to ‘Move Forward’ (AFP)

Australian PM Julia Gillard Saturday called an August 21 election, vowing to tackle the flashpoint issues of refugees, the economy and global warming, just weeks after taking power.

Red Sea Coral Growth ‘To Halt by 2070’ (BBC News)

A species of coral in the Red Sea could stop growing by 2070 if current warming trends continue, scientists said after discovering that the growth of a vital reef-building organism has declined by 30% since 1998.

Germany to Levy Up to $33 Per Flight (AP)

Germany plans to levy up to $33 for each passenger on flights under a plan aimed at taxing air traffic’s impact on the environment and bolstering government finances.

Maldives Hosts Meeting on Climate Change (Xinhua)

The Maldives is hosting an innovative meeting of developing and rich world countries that want strong international action on climate change, the Maldivian presidential office said on Saturday.