A summary of the April 24th BAECCC meeting is now available.
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02/24/2015 07:58 PM
Leak Is Disclosed at Nuclear Plant
New York Times: The operator of the ruined Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant said Tuesday that it had neglected to stop a leak of radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean since last May. The operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co., said it had first detected the flow of contaminated rainwater nine months ago, but did not explain why it had been so slow in responding. The company, known as Tepco, said it would place sandbags to block the leak of water, which it said was too small to change radiation levels in the...
02/25/2015 03:00 AM
Head of U.N. Climate Panel Resigns Amid Harassment Accusations
New York Times: The head of the United Nations panel on climate science resigned on Tuesday after allegations of sexual harassment were filed against him in India, where he lives and works. Rajendra K. Pachauri, whose 13 years as chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change had made him one of the world’s most important voices on the risks of global warming, had been scheduled to leave the post in October. But he tendered his resignation early after news that a woman employed at an institute that he...
02/24/2015 02:21 PM
On Rajendra Pachauri’s Resignation from the U.N. Climate Panel
New York Times: Rajendra K. Pachauri, the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change since 2002, resigned today amid allegations of sexual harassment by a 29-year-old female employee of the Indian energy institute he has long run. Bloomberg Business discusses the complaint: Last week, a 29-year-old researcher accused the 74-year-old Pachauri of making physical advances and sending lewd text messages and e-mails, according to a copy of the complaint and her lawyer. The female researcher had joined...
02/24/2015 06:24 PM
The remote Alaskan village that needs to be relocated due to climate change
Washington Post: This tiny and isolated town of 400 cannot be reached by road. It lies on a fragile barrier island along the Chukchi Sea, 83 miles above the Arctic circle. And for generations, the Iñupiat people of the region have hunted gigantic bowhead whales from camps atop the sea ice that stretches out from the town’s icy shores. But in recent years, climate change has thinned the ice so much that it has become too dangerous to hunt the whales. Soon, the U.S. government says, it may be too dangerous to live...
02/24/2015 06:45 PM
Lester Brown: 'World is overusing resources on a scale that's dangerous'
Guardian: Laurence Mathieu-Léger
02/24/2015 01:45 PM
Obama blocks Keystone pipeline in rare veto of Republican bill
Guardian: Barack Obama has blocked a Republican bill that would allow a contentious extension of the Keystone oil pipeline, in a rare veto that arrived in low-key fashion but leaves open a long road to the end of his presidency. Though long expected and downplayed by the White House, the symbolic clash over a pipeline from Canadian tar sands to US refineries on the Gulf coast is the first time the president has refused to sign legislation in his second term, and only the third veto of his presidency. Obama...
02/24/2015 05:27 PM
Climate Change Will Hit America in Breadbasket, Scientists Say
NBC: Climate experts have seen the future of America's breadbasket — and from their perspective, it doesn't look pretty. "I don't want to be a wheat farmer in Kansas in the future," said Harold Brooks, a senior scientist at the National Severe Storms Laboratory in Norman, Oklahoma. Brooks isn't a wheat farmer. He's a researcher who has analyzed how climate change could affect the weather in America's midsection, based on historical data and computer modeling. Last year, he and his colleagues found...
02/24/2015 01:57 PM
UN refuses to conduct probe against Pachauri in sexual harassment case
India Tv: The United Nations on Wednesday made it clear that it will not conduct any inquiry into accusations of sexual harassment against RK Pachauri, who resigned as the chairman of the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), as the case is being probed by national authorities. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesperson Stephane Dujarric told reporters that the UN chief received a letter from Pachauri informing him of his decision to step down as the chairman of the panel with immediate...
02/23/2015 07:00 AM
Most critical months for snowpack loom
Coloradoan: The coming months will make or break snowpack levels on the Cache la Poudre River Basin and determine all important water supplies for families and farmers. As of Feb. 1, the Poudre basin was at 92 percent of the median, seeing a rise in snowpack levels during the first part of February while levels in much of the Colorado declined. The same time last year, the Poudre Basin's snowpack was 112 percent. But February, March and April are historically the snowiest months on the Poudre basin and...
02/23/2015 10:01 AM
Here’s Where Ocean Acidification Will Hit the U.S. Hardest
Climate Central: U.S. coastal communities better start preparing for ocean acidification now, especially if we want scallops, oysters and other shellfish to keep appearing on our dinnerplates. That's the message of a new study that shows that shellfisheries across the U.S. are more vulnerable to climate change's less considered counterpart than previously thought. That vulnerability is due to more than changing ocean chemistry. Social and economic factors, local and more distant pollution and natural ocean processes...
02/24/2015 02:01 PM
Obama’s Keystone XL Veto Not a Death Blow to Pipeline
Climate Central: President Obama on Tuesday vetoed the bill Congress passed this month forcing approval of the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline. But the project isn't dead yet, and the U.S. State Department's long approval process for the Keystone XL continues. The bill, an effort by Congress to override the State Department's protracted environmental review of the pipeline, would have authorized TransCanada to build the $8 billion Keystone XL along 875 miles of U.S. soil from the Canadian border in Montana to Steele...
02/23/2015 06:01 AM
As ocean acid grows, coasts and fisheries vulnerable, study says
McClatchey: The gradual increase of acid in the oceans threatens coastal communities in 15 states, although the reason for the impact – and what to do about it – varies widely, according to a new study. Writing in the journal Nature Climate Change, a group of researchers declared ocean acidification “a complex and seemingly overwhelming problem.” That’s partly because of its varied nature, and partly because of big gaps in what is known about it. States are at risk, according to the study, because of straight...
02/23/2015 04:55 AM
European grain yield stagnation related to climate change, says researcher
PhysOrg: The European Union led the world in wheat production and exports in 2014-15. Yet Europe is also the region where productivity has slowed the most. Yields of major crops have not increased as much as would be expected over the past 20 years, based on past productivity increases and innovations in agriculture. Finding the causes of that stagnation is key to understanding the trajectory of the global food supply. Logically, it would seem that climate change would affect crops. But in the overall...
02/23/2015 05:56 PM
UN climate panel head steps down amid sex claims
Agence France Press: The head of the UN's climate science panel, Rajendra Pachauri, stepped down Tuesday in the wake of sexual harassment claims against him that have surfaced at a crucial time on the climate agenda. Pachauri, chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) since 2002, has denied any wrongdoing, claiming his email account and mobile phone were hacked. But the 74-year-old Indian tendered his resignation with immediate effect on Tuesday in a letter to UN chief Ban Ki-moon. "The...
02/24/2015 04:59 PM
Santander Bank cuts off APRIL due to deforestation
Mongabay: Banking giant Santander says it will not extend further financing to Asia Pacific Resources International Limited (APRIL) due to evidence that the Singapore-based pulp and paper company is continuing to destroy rainforests in Indonesia. The move comes after Greenpeace launched a global campaign against the bank. In a message sent to customers Tuesday, Banco Santander (NYSE:SAN) admitted to a relationship with APRIL and said it recently requested an audit of the logger's operations, which raised...
02/24/2015 05:32 PM
3 reasons give a damn about deep sea
Grist: It`s not news that the ocean plays a role in climate change. It absorbs heat, sequesters carbon, releases carbon, impacts local weather patterns, etc. Hell, the ocean covers about 70 percent of the Earth`s surface, so it would be kind of shocking if it didn`t have a big role to play. But we are still literally in the dark about some of the deepest, darkest parts of the ocean - they might as well be in outer space given how much we know about them. Fortunately, scientists are working hard to remedy...
02/24/2015 08:50 AM
Keystone XL Bill Heads Obama Desk Today, Pipeline Opponents Urge Veto
EcoWatch: Congress plans to send the Keystone XL pipeline bill to President Obama’s desk today. The president is “poised to reject” the GOP-backed legislation “with a swift veto,” according to The Hill. “I would anticipate, as we’ve been saying for years, that the president will veto that legislation, and he will, so I would not anticipate a lot of drama or fanfare around it,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told The Hill. Republicans say a veto will not be the end. “The allure of appeasing environmental...
02/24/2015 08:46 AM
Report: UK will need to import half of food to meet 2040 demand
Blue and Green: Farming leaders have warned that by 2040 the UK will need to import almost half of its food to meet demand as the population rises. A report from the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) warns of “serious implications” for the economy and food security if the country does not improve productivity. The union predicts that by 2040 there will be an extra 13 million people living in the UK, putting pressure on food resources. If farming continues at current rates, the UK will only produce enough food to meet...
02/24/2015 05:36 AM
EU calls for 60% emission cut by 2050
Blue and Green: The European Union has said it wants to see a legally binding emissions cut of 60% by mid-century and reviews every five years agreed at the UN climate summit in Paris later this year, according to a leaked document. The treaty set to be agreed in Paris will replace the Kyoto Protocol and aims to avoid dangerous levels of climate change. The leaked document has been published ahead of the European Commission publishing a blueprint for tackling climate change on Wednesday. The paper states,...
02/24/2015 01:40 PM
‘Not Under Our City’ — Oil train protest speaks defiance to power
Post-Intelligencer: Derailment and fires of two oil trains last week, in a remote region of Ontario and a populated West Virginia river shore, have intensified opposition here even as oil refiners step up shipments along waterfronts of Puget Sound population centers. “Not Under Our City,” said the sign behind speakers at a Tuesday rally outside King Street Station above the entrance to Seattle’s century-old railroad tunnel, through which trains pass en route to Anacortes and Cherry Point refineries. “The railroad...