Today’s Climate: August 26, 2010

Share this article

U.S. Spill Panel Question Drilling Policy (Reuters)

The BP spill was a massive "failure" in government oversight and administrations should be forced to consult with experts in the field before making drilling policy, top spill commission officials said on Wednesday.

On Doomed Rig’s Last Day, a Divisive Change of Plan (Wall Street Journal)

On April 20, a young BP engineer sent an email to colleagues aboard the Deepwater Horizon rig, spelling out a recent change to a key safety test. Less than 12 hours later, the rig was engulfed in flame.

Key Device in Gulf Spill Didn’t Get Recertified (AP)

A critical device at the center of an investigation into the Gulf oil rig explosion didn’t undergo a rigorous recertification process in 2005 as required by federal regulators.

BP Frozen Out of Arctic Oil Drilling Race (Guardian)

BP confirmed last night that it was no longer trying to win an oil exploration license in Greenland, despite earlier reports of its interest, owing to its tarnished reputation after the Gulf spill.

Asia’s Glaciers in Retreat, Could Signal Crop Failure and Flooding in the Future (USA Today)

Glaciers throughout all of Asia are retreating, which could mean drought, plus crop losses upstream and flood conditions downstream for millions of people, a report published by the U.S. Geological Survey. 

Absentee Ballots May Hold Key to a Murkowski Win Over Joe Miller (Fairbanks Daily News-Miner)

Sen. Lisa Murkowski trailed Fairbanks attorney Joe Miller by nearly 1,500 votes after totals were updated on Wednesday, but as many as 16,000 absentee and questioned ballots remain.

Burr Could Be Top Republican on Senate Energy Committee (The Hill)

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) could become the top Republican on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee if Sen. Murkowski loses her GOP primary. Burr is considered more conservative on energy than the Alaskan senator.

Obama Admin Urges Supreme Court to Vacate Greenhouse Gas ‘Nuisance’ Ruling (Greenwire)

The Obama administration has urged the Supreme Court to toss out an appeals court decision that would allow lawsuits against major emitters for their contributions to global warming.

Montana Tribe: $7B Coal-to-Liquids Plant Needs More Federal Support (AP)

Leaders of the Crow Tribe warned Wednesday that a $7 billion coal-to-liquid fuels plant proposed for the Montana reservation could founder unless the federal government throws more support behind the industry.

US Export-Import Bank Clears Loan To India Power Plant (Dow Jones)

The U.S. Export-Import Bank has decided to make a $ 900 million loan to Reliance Power Ltd. to build a coal plant in India, reversing an earlier decision to reject the financing.

Federal Official: Gas May Be Bubbling in WVa Mine (AP)

Methane gas may be bubbling up in a flooded area of West Virginia’s Upper Big Branch mine where 29 men died in an April 5 explosion, a federal mine regulator said Wednesday.

Australia’s Capital Sets 40% Carbon Cut Law (Reuters)

The government of the Australian Capital Territory, which includes the capital Canberra, said on Thursday it will set a target of cutting carbon emissions by 40% by 2020 from 1990 levels.

Africa May Become Next Big Market for Carbon Projects, Emission Group Says (Bloomberg)

Africa may be the next major market for carbon-reduction ventures amid investigations into Chinese certification and as the EU imposes new regulations, the International Emissions Trading Association said.

UK’s Nuclear Reactor Program Falls Behind Schedule (Guardian)

The schedule for the UK’s nuclear reactor building program has slipped behind already, the safety regulator has admitted, reinforcing concerns that the first reactor will not be built on time.

Scotland Throws Down Gauntlet in Battle to Become Offshore Wind Hub (Business Green)

Scotland could emerge as one of the world’s leading developers of offshore wind energy within the next decade, according to a new report that predicts the industry has the potential to create up to 28,000 jobs by 2020.

Ford, PGE Readies the City of Portland for EVs (Environmental Leader)

Ford Motor Company and Portland General Electric are working in tandem to help prepare the city of Portland, and the entire Pacific Northwest, for electric vehicles.

Shell, Cosan Sign Final Agreement to Form Biofuels Joint Venture (Bloomberg)

Royal Dutch Shell, Europe’s largest oil company, and Cosan SA Industria & Comercio, the world’s largest sugar-cane processor, signed the final accord to form a joint sugar and biofuels venture in Brazil.

Bill Delays Calif’s TV Energy-Efficiency Standards (AP)

The nation’s first energy-efficiency standards for televisions would be delayed by six months if Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signs a bill approved by the California Senate.

Energy Storage Market Report: 26.6% Annual Growth in the U.S. (Earth2Tech)

The global market for utility-scale energy storage could grow 26.6 percent per year to nearly $2 billion in 2015, according to an SBI Energy report released Wednesday.