June 2, 2011

Germans’ Deep Suspicions of Nuclear Power Reach a Political Tipping Point

Two intertwined phenomena — electoral maneuvering and longstanding angst about nuclear power — led to Chancellor Angela Merkel's ordering that nuclear plants be phased out.

Record Heat Costs France

France's record drought is threatening electricity supplies, as low water levels reduce hydroelectric power and make it hard to cool nuclear plants, widening the potential impact of the driest spring in memory.

World Bank Warns of 'Failing' International Carbon Market

The market in carbon credits has suffered an almost total collapse, with only $1.5bn of credits traded last year -- the lowest since the market opened in 2005, according to a World Bank report.

June 1, 2011

EPA to Spare Calif. Power Plant From New Emissions Rules

U.S. EPA has decided to exempt a planned natural gas power plant in California's San Joaquin Valley from new air pollution rules, including limits on greenhouse gas emissions.

20 Former World Leaders Discuss Looming Water Crisis

Twenty former heads of state, including Bill Clinton, warned Tuesday of an impending "water crisis" and agreed to establish a panel that will tackle a worldwide leadership gap on the issue.


Sen. Inhofe Pledges to Block Commerce Nomination

Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) said Tuesday that he will be "working actively" to defeat John Bryson, Pres. Obama's nominee for Commerce secretary, criticizing his environmental views.

PwC: Planning Biggest Threat to Europe's Renewables Revolution

Europe's renewable energy capacity grew 30 percent last year, but its recent successes are in danger of stalling unless the roadblock presented by byzantine and outdated planning rules is removed.

Experts Meet in Congo in Bid to Rescue World Forests

Representatives from 35 countries will seek ways to protect the world's largest rainforests during a week-long meeting in Republic of Congo that started on Tuesday.

World’s Cities Taking Steps on Climate Change as Governments Bicker at UN

Cities from Johannesburg to Los Angeles are changing street lights, insulating buildings and promoting bicycling to slash emissions as envoys at UN talks bicker about binding greenhouse gas goals.

Shell Urges Global Deal on Carbon

Global agreement on carbon policy is ''urgently needed'' if the world is to avoid political turbulence in the years ahead, according to Shell.

Battle over Australia's Planned Carbon Tax Heats Up

Mining giants warned Australia on Wednesday a planned carbon pollution reduction scheme could threaten sovereign risk and slash investment, output and jobs.

Female Fish Develop 'Testes' in Gulf Dead Zone

A low-oxygen "dead zone" in the Gulf of Mexico is causing sexual deformities in fish, a new study says.

TransCanada Shuts Keystone Line Due to New Leak

TransCanada cannot yet say when it will restart its 591,000 barrel per day Keystone oil pipeline as its second spill in less than a month pushed oil prices higher.

Climate Change Confounds Kenya’s Traditional Healers

An unprecedented drought is destroying the livelihoods of communities across northern Kenya, among them traditional healers and medicine men, who are at a loss to know how to respond.

German Nuclear Operator Threatens Suit Over Ban

Germany's decision to abandon nuclear power by 2022 is sparking a backlash from the country's biggest utilities, amid a debate in the country about the costs of shifting to other energy sources.

EU Energy Plan Threatens Carbon Billions

The Europe Union's carbon market could be flooded with excess pollution permits over the next decade, cutting prices in half and depriving governments of billions in budgeted revenues, EU sources say.

Feds Considered Hiring PR Firm to Polish Image of Oil Sands

The Canadian government has explored hiring a public relations firm and organizing trips for international leaders to promote Canada's oil sands industry, a new federal document has revealed.

UK: Blackpool Earthquake Tremors May Have Been Caused by Gas Drilling

A company using "fracking" to drill for gas in Lancashire has had to suspend operations following a 1.5 magnitude earthquake near Blackpool on Friday.

Record Carbon Emissions Mean 2 °C Rise Ever Closer

Last year's emissions from power stations and transport surpassed 2009 levels, hitting 30.6 gigatons. This is close to the 32 Gt per year the IEA warns would cause warming of 2 °C if it is reached before 2020.

German Nuclear Cull to Add 40 Million Tons CO2 Per Year

Germany's plan to shut all its nuclear power plants by 2022 will add up to 40 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually as the country turns to fossil fuels, analysts said on Tuesday.

France Pledges Aid for Drought-Hit Farmers

France's government will pay out several hundred million euros in aid to compensate farmers for losses caused by a drought that cut supplies of animal feed for livestock breeders, Agriculture Minister Bruno Le Maire said.

U.S. Green Donors Are 'Soul Searching'

Donors behind the green curtain are trying to figure out what's next and are asking whether the money could have been better spent on issues that were shoved to the sidelines over the past two years.

May 31, 2011

German Nuclear Shutdown Sets Global Example: Merkel

Angela Merkel said Germany could serve as a global trailblazer with its decision Monday to phase out nuclear power by 2022 but France, Europe's biggest producer, said it will not follow suit.


Greenpeace Clashes with Danish Navy after Activists Board Oil-Drilling Ship

A confrontation between Greenpeace protesters and the Danish navy has escalated sharply after the campaigners occupied a drilling ship off Greenland.

Cheap Gas Will Overtake Renewables, Energy Chief Warns

A glut of cheap gas will see the fuel overtake renewable sources in the global race to build new energy generation, says a senior energy industry executive.

China Coal Imports to Double in 2015, India Close Behind

Top coal consumer China should see import demand more than double in the next four years and India will be close behind, industry executives said on Monday.

Texas Becomes 1st to Make 'Frack' Chemicals Public

Texas has become the first state to require gas drillers to publicly disclose chemicals used to crack tight rock formations to release minerals.

Fukushima Risks Chernobyl 'Dead Zone'

Radioactive soil in pockets of areas near Japan's crippled nuclear plant have reached the same level as Chernobyl, where a "dead zone" remains 25 years after the reactor exploded.

Melting of the Arctic 'Will Accelerate Climate Change Within 20 Years'

An irreversible climate "tipping point" could occur within the next 20 years as a result of the release of carbon locked away as frozen plant matter in the permafrost region of the Arctic, scientists said.

India's Dieselization Worries Green Campaigners

With gasoline prices shooting up, an increasing number of Indians are now attracted to vehicles powered by cheaper, subsidized diesel, industry leaders and campaigners say.

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