Unions And Climate Change – Some of their stances are just bad

As A HUGE disclaimer, my wife are both union members. Our prents were Union members. My great grandfather was a card carrying Socialist and ran for City Alderman in Chicago as such. So I believe in Unions. But when they get stuck on saving jobs no matter what. They get a little lost and sometimes real lost. These becomes apparent with police unions – though appropo to this topic. They protect bad cops for jobs sake. Well, the IBEW and other unions are no better. Instead of saying, “We will change power plant jobs for better jobs in the green sector”. They say, “We will not lose the jobs we have”. They act like it is heroic when it is pathetic.

https://www.vox.com/2019/5/22/18628299/green-new-deal-labor-union-2020-democrats

The Green New Deal is fracturing a critical base for Democrats: unions

National labor leaders oppose the Green New Deal but some state unions endorse it. That’s a challenge for presidential contenders.

As a statement of principles and goals, the Green New Deal seems to take economic justice and workers’ rights pretty seriously. It calls for a federal jobs guarantee. It says we need workforce retraining, strengthening collective bargaining rights, retirement security, and universal health care.

The resolution decries “antilabor policies” and says it must be fleshed out with input from “frontline and vulnerable communities, labor unions, [and] worker cooperatives,” with the goal of creating “high-quality union jobs.”

Which is why it was so surprising that the leader of the national AFL-CIO — the largest federation of labor unions in the United States, representing more than 12.5 million workers — recently came out against the proposal.

“We weren’t part of the process, so the worker’s interest wasn’t really figured into it,” AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka said in April. “We would want a whole bunch of changes made so that workers and our jobs are protected in the process.”

(Disclosure: I was on the bargaining committee of the Vox Media Union. We organized with Writers Guild of America, East, which is affiliated with the AFL-CIO.)

But this week, Maine Gov. Janet Mills signed her state’s version of a Green New Deal with the backing of labor unions.

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Go there and read. More next week

 

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Seize Their Assets And Put Their Executives In Jail – Big Fossil Fuels have come to the end of their line

If I have aired this piece before I apologized. But it is important and needs to be said again. Big Oil, Gas and Coal are the big nasty. They shit in our air, they pee in our politicians and they spit on our lawyers. They have know what they were doing pretty much all along. We should seize their assets and put their Executives in jail.

Special thanks to the GUARDIAN for the valuable work they do.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/jun/30/climate-crimes-oil-and-gas-environment?utm_source=pocket-newtab

Big oil and gas kept a dirty secret for decades. Now they may pay the price

Communities are now demanding the oil conglomerates pay damages and take urgent action to reduce further harm from burning fossil fuels.
Communities are now demanding the oil conglomerates pay damages and take urgent action to reduce further harm from burning fossil fuels. Illustration: Guardian Design/Getty Images

Via an unprecedented wave of lawsuits, America’s petroleum giants face a reckoning for the devastation caused by fossil fuels

Are you a fossil fuel industry insider? We want to hear from you

Supported by
guardian.org

About this content

After a century of wielding extraordinary economic and political power, America’s petroleum giants face a reckoning for driving the greatest existential threat of our lifetimes.

An unprecedented wave of lawsuits, filed by cities and states across the US, aim to hold the oil and gas industry to account for the environmental devastation caused by fossil fuels – and covering up what they knew along the way.

Coastal cities struggling to keep rising sea levels at bay, midwestern states watching “mega-rains” destroy crops and homes, and fishing communities losing catches to warming waters, are now demanding the oil conglomerates pay damages and take urgent action to reduce further harm from burning fossil fuels.

But, even more strikingly, the nearly two dozen lawsuits are underpinned by accusations that the industry severely aggravated the environmental crisis with a decades-long campaign of lies and deceit to suppress warnings from their own scientists about the impact of fossil fuels on the climate a decades-long campaign of lies and deceit to suppress warnings from their own scientists about the impact of fossil fuels on the climate and dupe the American public.

The environmentalist Bill McKibben once characterized the fossil fuel industry’s behavior as “the most consequential cover-up in US history”. And now for the first time in decades, the lawsuits chart a path toward public accountability that climate activists say has the potential to rival big tobacco’s downfall after it concealed the real dangers of smoking.

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Go there and read. More next week.

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Climate Change Started In The 1960s – People spoke up

Just like CANCER. That was the first thought I had when I read this article. Evidence was gathered 60 years ago. People spoke up, and the oil and gas industry killed any discussion. Now we are stuck with more powerful Hurricanes. We are stuck with the American west being consumed by droughts and fire. The Arctic is gone and the Antarctic going. The world should confiscate their wealth and apply every dime to remediating the effects. Unfortunately the whole world never does anything. I mean the UN could pass a resolution but Pfffhh.

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2021/jul/05/sixty-years-of-climate-change-warnings-the-signs-that-were-missed-and-ignored?utm_source=pocket-newtab

Sixty years of climate change warnings: the signs that were missed (and ignored)

The effects of ‘weird weather’ were already being felt in the 1960s, but scientists linking fossil fuels with climate change were dismissed as prophets of doom

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Mon 5 Jul 2021 01.00 EDT
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In August 1974, the CIA produced a study on “climatological research as it pertains to intelligence problems”. The diagnosis was dramatic. It warned of the emergence of a new era of weird weather, leading to political unrest and mass migration (which, in turn, would cause more unrest). The new era the agency imagined wasn’t necessarily one of hotter temperatures; the CIA had heard from scientists warning of global cooling as well as warming. But the direction in which the thermometer was traveling wasn’t their immediate concern; it was the political impact. They knew that the so-called “little ice age”, a series of cold snaps between, roughly, 1350 and 1850, had brought not only drought and famine, but also war – and so could these new climatic changes.

“The climate change began in 1960,” the report’s first page informs us, “but no one, including the climatologists, recognized it.” Crop failures in the Soviet Union and India in the early 1960s had been attributed to standard unlucky weather. The US shipped grain to India and the Soviets killed off livestock to eat, “and premier Nikita Khrushchev was quietly deposed”.

But, the report argued, the world ignored this warning, as the global population continued to grow and states made massive investments in energy, technology and medicine.

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Go there and read. More next week (if we are still here)

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Chernobyl Awakes – What is going on at mankind’s biggest screw up

I do not normally post videos. It seems to defeat the purpose of a print blog. But in this case, because some people maybe trying to spread panic, and disinformation. This is a succinct way to show that the Russians have the situation at least somewhat under control.

https://digg.com/video/heres-a-comprehensive-breakdown-of-why-nuclear-reactions-at-chernobyl-are-spiking

It’s only 12 minutes long so it is not a large portion of you life.

Here is a bonus link for you gardeners out there:

https://backyard54.com/p/square-foot-gardening/231

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Go there and listen. sigh. More next week.

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Springfield Wants To Keep Burning Coal – They have come up with an insidious way to do it

Springfield IL has always been opposed to renewable energy. It took a Friend of mine with a degree in Solar Power 20 years at CWLP to get the City to erect a modest Solar Farm. 700 panels, I think. There is no Wind Power because the county changed the zoning ordinances to make turbine placement unfeasible. There is modest geothermal. For homeowners, the City Council is always trying to tax smart meters to Solar more expensive. So why does it not surprise me that CWLP came up with  “program to prevent global warming” by continuing to burn tons of coal daily.

https://www.sj-r.com/story/news/politics/state/2020/06/04/cwlp-could-become-worldrsquos-largest-carbon-capture-research-station/114279824/

State

CWLP could become world’s largest carbon capture research station

Kade Heather Staff Writer

JUNE 4, 2020

City Water, Light & Power is on path for constructing the world’s largest research and development pilot for a new carbon capture system.

The U.S. Department of Energy had about 30 responses from power plants across the country when it initially proposed the idea about three years ago. The DOE has narrowed it down to about five competitors – CWLP being one.

While CWLP is not guaranteed to host the pilot system, Kevin OBrien, director of the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center at the University of Illinois, and the principle investigator overseeing the project, said DOE is “very impressed by the team,” and by CWLP’s facility.

“They toured the plant, they feel it’s a very, very well-run plant and they’re impressed by that, and that’s an important factor when you’re competing for these types of projects. So there’s no guarantee, but we think we’ve got a really high probability of winning this one,” OBrien said.

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Go there and read. Then write letters to the Mayor and the City Council condeming the idea. More next week.

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How We Drained The Largest Lake West Of The Mississippi – OH My

This is the story of a man named Boswell and Boswell had a very lovely wife (Sorry Brady Bunch) who turned the San Joaquin Valley from a lush river and lake wildlife area into the nation’s bread basket. Also how it destroyed a massive habitat This was and is a despicable enterprise. Sort of on the order of a Nuclear Testing site in the desert. Or a Copper Mine for that matter. If you want to hear a video about it. There is This:

https://digg.com/video/heres-why-the-united-states-drained-its-ninth-largest-lake

If you want to read about it. You can go here:

http://www.tularebasinwildlifepartners.org/history.html

Hydrologic History of the Tulare Basin

The Tulare Basin historically supported an amazing complex of wetland habitats, unique in the world. This largely flat and arid region served as the floodplain for water flowing west from the southern Sierra Nevada, north from the Transverse Ranges, as well as from small intermittent arroyos flowing east from the Coast Ranges. Oak woodlands and riparian forests formed green corridors across the broad prairie on the eastern edge of the Tulare Basin. Freshwater tule marshes and alkaline wetlands adorned the slow-moving sloughs and shallow margins of Kern, Buena Vista, Goose, Tulare, and Summit lakes. Emergent marsh vegetation, such as tules and cattails, grew in permanent standing water at the shallow edges of freshwater wetlands. Upslope from the marshes, water intermittently flooded iodine bush scrub and alkali grassland habitats.

This highly-productive, shallow water system supported abundant populations of endemic lake-adapted fishes such that American white pelicans (Pelacanus erythrorhynchos) nested by the thousands on islands in Tulare Lake and Buena Vista Lake. The Tulare Basin’s extensive wetland habitats historically attracted significant numbers of resident and migratory waterbirds, including grebes, pelicans, cormorants, herons, egrets, ibises, geese, swans, ducks, rails, sandhill cranes, plovers, stilts, avocets, sandpipers, phalaropes, gulls, and terns.

The conversion of this water system to a lake-and-slough wetland to agriculture began in the mid-1800s when European settlers began to build canals and diversion structures to irrigate their crops.  This early irrigation infrastructure upstream from Tulare Lake slowly cut off the lake from its source waters, shrinking the lake’s footprint.  By 1899 – less than 50 years after irrigation was initiated – Tulare Lake went dry for the first time in history.

FOR STARTERS
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Go there and read. More next week.

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When The World Stops – We all get OFF

When the atmosphere is so gunked up and the ocean so full of crap then the currents both in the atmosphere and the ocean slow down and eventually stop. At that point we all die. End game. Checkmate. But here I’ll let these people tell you in more technical language. I am sure if you don’t believe me, you will believe them.

https://arstechnica.com/science/2021/02/atlantic-currents-seem-to-have-started-fading-last-century/?utm_source=pocket-newtab

In deep —

Atlantic currents seem to have started fading last century

Another predicted impact of climate change may be here.

The major currents in the Atlantic Ocean help control the climate by moving warm surface waters north and south from the equator, with colder deep water pushing back toward the equator from the poles. The presence of that warm surface water plays a key role in moderating the climate in the North Atlantic, giving places like the UK a far more moderate climate than its location—the equivalent of northern Ontario—would otherwise dictate.

But the temperature differences that drive that flow are expected to fade as our climate continues to warm. A bit over a decade ago, measurements of the currents seemed to be indicating that temperatures were dropping, suggesting that we might be seeing these predictions come to pass. But a few years later, it became clear that there was just too much year-to-year variation for us to tell.

Over time, however, researchers have figured out ways of getting indirect measures of the currents, using material that is influenced by the strengths of the water’s flow. These measures have now let us look back on the current’s behavior over the past several centuries. And the results confirm that the strength of the currents has dropped dramatically over the last century.

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Go there and read some. If there is one, More next week.

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Biden’s Got A Shitload Of Work To Do – Saving the environment from the cheeto burrito will be hard

From the XL Pipeline, to “saving” coal, to selling off Public Lands Trump did everything he could to gut environmental regulations and destroy the Environment. Here is some of what it is going to take to undue it, including probably 30 or 40 Executive Orders.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/on-climate-biden-must-do-more-than-undo-trumps-damage/

Climate

On Climate, Biden Must Do More Than Undo Trump’s Damage

The new administration cannot just go back to the future on carbon emissions

On Climate, Biden Must Do More Than Undo Trump's Damage
Credit: Egle Plytnikaite

One word sums up what the Biden administration must do to address climate change: restart.

In 2015 nearly 200 nations committed to the Paris Agreement, which aims to prevent the worst impacts of climate change by limiting global warming by 2100 to less than two degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels. The U.S. pledged to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. Then Donald Trump was elected president. He soon announced that the U.S. would pull out of the accord, and his administration spent four years relentlessly rolling back regulations intended to curb emissions and protect the environment. Dozens of coal-burning power plants, the worst carbon polluters, shut down anyway as market forces expanded the role of cheaper, cleaner natural gas, wind and solar power. And various states, cities and industries cut emissions. Yet even with that progress, Trump’s rollbacks could add the equivalent of 1.8 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere by 2035, according to the Rhodium Group, an independent research organization.

Joe Biden must now make up for lost time, and last November he said the U.S. would rejoin the Paris Agreement immediately after he became president. This commitment is important because the U.S. is still the world’s second-largest emitter, behind China, and it can return as a world climate leader. But Biden will also have to ratchet up the original U.S. pledge because warming—and its effects—has only sped up since the Paris Agreement was established. Biden promised to issue an executive order calling for net-zero emissions by 2050, but he will need to set specific interim targets. The World Resources Institute says reducing emissions to 45 to 50 percent below 2005 levels by 2030 could put the country on track.

Congressional legislation is the most effective way to create the concrete policies needed to achieve those goals because it gives federal agencies clear priorities, is much harder to override with presidential actions, and can better withstand legal challenges that might be brought by industry or special-interest groups. But the divided U.S. Senate will make sweeping laws hard to pass. Biden will have to work through executive orders and will have to charge federal agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency with issuing new regulations under existing laws such as the Clean Air Act. He will need to “turn every stone possible,” says Narayan Subramanian, an environmental lawyer working with the Center for Law, Energy & the Environment at Berkeley Law. The most immediate focuses are transportation, power plants, methane emissions and pesky hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).

With coal plants retiring, transportation has surpassed power generation as the country’s largest carbon emitter. The quickest action Biden can take to tackle those emissions is to reinstate California’s waiver to the Clean Air Act, allowing the state to enforce its Advanced Clean Cars regulations. The regulations set fuel-efficiency standards for cars and light-duty trucks that are tougher than federal rules, which means fewer emissions. In the past, automakers have built their nationwide fleets to meet the state’s standards to avoid making two versions of their vehicles, and some states, such as New York, typically follow California’s lead. The Rhodium Group estimates that reinstating the waiver would save about 573 million metric tons of emissions by 2035.

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Go there and sob. (at least he is gone) More next week.

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Why Do Nuclear Power Plants Cost So Much – Because they are freakin BIG

People are always asking why Nuclear Power Plants cost so much. They want to blame regulation, or safety measures. Maybe even because of unnecessary cost over runs. Mainly they do this because “They want to build more NUCLEAR Power Plants”. But the fact of the matter is you can’t build them cheaper and in fact given the costs of the 2 Major Nuclear catastrophes, maybe you need to build them more expensive. The simple fact, is that a new Coal Fired Plant can cost 2 billion dollars and kill the atmosphere while a Uranium Fired Plant could cost 4 billion dollars and kill us.

Anyway here is some discussion of that:

https://arstechnica.com/science/2020/11/why-are-nuclear-plants-so-expensive-safetys-only-part-of-the-story/?utm_source=pocket-newtab

The price is not right —

Why are nuclear plants so expensive? Safety’s only part of the story

A look at the history of nuclear power in the US, and why plant costs have soared.

Should any discussion of nuclear power go on for long enough, it becomes inevitable that someone will rant that the only reason it has become unaffordable is a proliferation of safety regulations. The argument is rarely (if ever) fleshed out—no specific regulation is ever identified as problematic, and there seems to be no consideration given to the fact that we might have learned something at, say, Fukushima that might merit addressing through regulations.

But there’s now a paper out that provides some empirical evidence that safety changes have contributed to the cost of building new nuclear reactors. But the study also makes clear that they’re only one of a number of factors, accounting for only a third of the soaring costs. The study also finds that, contrary to what those in the industry seem to expect, focusing on standardized designs doesn’t really help matters, as costs continued to grow as more of a given reactor design was built.

More of the same

The analysis, done by a team of researchers at MIT, is remarkably comprehensive. For many nuclear plants, they have detailed construction records, broken out by which building different materials and labor went to, and how much each of them cost. There’s also a detailed record of safety regulations and when they were instituted relative to construction. Finally, they’ve also brought in the patent applications filed by the companies who designed the reactors. The documents describe the motivations for design changes and the problems those changes were intended to solve.

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Go there and read. Sorry I was late. More next week.

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The Cheeto Burrito Seeks To Destroy Tsongass National Forest – Destruction is his legacy

(please note that i use tsongas and tongass interchangeably)

Destroy, Destroy, Destroy. That is what this President does because he has bought the general idea of “Disruption and Replacement” coming from Silicon Valley as a good thing for society. He doesn’t not understand that Disruption with out planning is BAD for society in general and only makes a few men (and women) rich. Or maybe, he actually does understand and just doesn’t care. One makes him evil by nature and the other makes him evil by nurture. I’ll leave it up to you to decide. One thing for sure is that his whole Presidency has been a disaster for the environment and the Earth, and that will be his lasting legacy.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2020/10/28/tongass-national-forest-alaska-exempt-roadless-rule-usda/6065610002/

USA Today

Feds end road, logging restrictions in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest, one of the world’s largest temperate rainforests

Becky Bohrer
The Associated Press
Published 11:00 pm Oct 28, 2020

JUNEAU, Alaska — The federal government announced plans Wednesday to lift restrictions on logging and building roads in the country’s largest national forest, a pristine rainforest in Alaska that provides habitat for wolves, bears and salmon.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture said it has decided to exempt the Tongass National Forest from the so-called roadless rule, which bans road construction and timber harvests with limited exceptions. It applies to nearly one-quarter of all U.S. Forest Service lands.

Conservation groups vowed to fight the decision, describing it as short-sighted and driven by politics.

“The decision to roll back the roadless rule on the Tongass was made in spite of, not in support of, southeast Alaskans and our communities,” said Meredith Trainor, executive director of the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council. “In making this decision, the Trump administration and the sham rulemaking process they undertook in our region ignored economic realities, environmental imperatives, and worst of all, the will of the people who actually live here.”

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