Enviro News Wrap: Climate Change and the Election; Koch Bros. Disinformation Campaign; the Scramble for the Arctic, and more...
GlobalWarmingisReal contributor Anders Hellum-Alexander wraps-up and comments on the climate and environmental news headlines for the past week:
- Obama is setting the stage for the 2012 Election and climate change will be front and center. With the majority of Americans supporting a national policy on greenhouse gas emissions, it's a seemingly sound strategy. My prediction is that Romney will use the Big Tobacco strategy of creating a cloud of confusion and doubt with the goal of hiding the Truth.
- Even during difficult times Obama is still supporting R&D (i.e. science) and choosing to invest in our future.
- Climate change is not a phenomenon of the future, the Arctic is in the process of melting away right now and the Northern Hemisphere is increasing its focus on what will be revealed when the ice is gone. Mostly everyone is hoping for a jackpot of fossil fuels to fight over, literally fight over, with guns and planes and submarines. I prefer a world where we use the strength of the international market to build a sustainable energy infrastructure. In global politics, generally speaking, where there is cooperation there is peace, where there is zero-sum competition there is conflict and sometimes war.
- Windows that generate Solar electricity are the Future!
- The group of Americans that are skeptical of scientists fluctuate between believing and not believing in climate change based on how extreme the weather was last year. What more needs to be said about climate change denial? It is a joke.
- The nations with the largest economies are blocking the United Nation's process to create a global agreement on how to deal with climate change. The countries that want to still make a commitment to a low carbon future are creating their own agreements. Peru has now joined this group and is committed to developing their economy sustainably.
- Japan is still dealing with the damaged nuclear reactors from the Fukushima disaster and trying to figure out how to power their country. With an understandably low confidence in nuclear energy, support for the rapid adaptation to renewable energy is growing in the Japanese government.
- The state of Virginia is also falling prey to the renewable energy bug where a new study claims that it is feasible to use renewable energy to create half of all future growth in energy generation.
- Natural gas prices are slowly increasing due to speculation and oil is hovering at $104ish. Oil prices are being kept at $104ish because Saudi Arabia has increased exports to stabilize the price, which needs stabilizing because of conflict in Sudan, Syria, Iran, Nigeria and any other politically difficult part of the world that exports oil.
- The Koch brothers never stop, their new task is to spend $6million on disinformation ads in swing states attacking Obama's record on energy. The Koch brothers will need many more campaigns like this in order to get Romney elected because the majority of Americans believe in climate change and the need for a sustainable energy economy and they want something done about it on the federal level.
- The BP Gulf Oil Spill legal drama is playing out, a $7.8bill penalty will likely be handed out just for one aspect of damages done. Much more money will be sucked out of BP in many other cases that will probably last decades.