Today’s Climate: April 23, 2009

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New UK Policy Declares No New Coal Without Carbon Capture (Guardian)

The UK’s energy and climate secretary today announced that no new coal plants would be allowed unless they had CCS capability. He said the policy balanced three challenges: energy supply security, a low-carbon economy and emissions.

FERC Chief: No New US Coal, Nuclear Plants Needed? (New York Times)

No new nuclear or coal plants may ever be needed in the United States, the chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission says. That might be a stretch, but it’s worth exploring the numbers.

The Green Collar Corps Is Starting to March (Daily Climate)

Some of the first energy efficiency workers are hitting the streets with salaries paid by the proceeds of the Northeast states’ cap-and-trade program.

Native Peoples Sound Dire Warning on Climate Change (IPS)

Coastal erosion, mud slides and droughts are just some of the impacts of climate change already affecting the Caribbean, Chief Charles Williams of the Kalinago people of Dominica told a U.N. summit on indigenous people.

Western Dust Storms Escalate, Prompting Environmental Fears (Washington Post)

Dust storms are a harbinger of a broader phenomenon, researchers say, as global warming translates into less precipitation and a population boom intensifies the activities that are disturbing the dust.

Climate Sceptic ‘Baffles’ Energy Secretary (Guardian)

When ‘Smokey’ Joe Barton wonders if oil reached the Arctic Circle via a big pipeline from Texas, he actually believes he’s left the energy secretary puzzled. Judge for yourself.

UK’s £1.4B Clean Energy Package Called Inadequate (Independent)

As a program for a green recovery, Alistair Darling’s budget left a lot to be desired, environmental campaigners chorused yesterday – but it still contained measures that were undeniably significant in environmental terms.

G8 Seek Stronger Commitments on Biodiversity (AFP)

The environment ministers of rich and emerging nations are seeking new commitments to stop the alarming loss of biodiversity. The climate talks under way in Italy view biodiversity "no longer as a limitation but as a resource."

Minister: China to Meet 2010 Pollution Target (Reuters)

China is on track to meet its pollution targets by 2010 even though it is still struggling to deal with its coal-dependent energy sector, the country’s environment minister has reported to parliament.

Sempra Planning Whopping 300MW of Solar in Arizona (Earth2Tech)

Sempra aims to be the first company to own and operate 500 MW of solar power in the U.S. That’s an aggressive goal for a company whose assets are almost entirely in natural gas, and it’s getting started.

Florida ‘Drill Bill’ Raises Hackles (Sun-Herald)

Republicans rammed a bill through the Florida House Policy Council that would force the state to accept applications for offshore drilling leases within 10 miles of the Florida coast.

Study: Utility Overstated Need for SC Coal Plant (The State)

Santee Cooper underestimated the cost of building and operating and overstated the need for a new coal-fired power plant near Florence, S.C., a new study says.

Texas Senate Passes $500M Solar Energy Bill (Houston Chronicle)

Solar energy could have a brighter future under a Texas Senate-passed bill that would invest half a billion dollars in the industry over five years.

Maine Wind Farm Clears Major Hurdle (Bangor Daily News)

The state Department of Environmental Protection issued First Wind of Massachusetts a permit to build a 40-turbine industrial wind site for $130 million on Rollins Mountain.

LCV Ups Pressure On Climate Bill Opponents (Politico)

The League of Conservation Voters is increasing the pressure to pass a sweeping environmental measure by taking out ads in the home districts of Republicans who oppose the bill.

Landfills Reveal Changes in What We Consume (Oregonian)

A funny thing happened on the way to financial collapse: Landfills started receiving less and less garbage. A quick look here shows how consumption has changed.