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Posts Tagged ‘Environment & Climate News’

The Maryland General Assembly has rejected the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2008, which would have required a statewide 25 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions by 2020.

Although the bill had the support of Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) and received strong backing from environmental activist groups, it was weakened in the Senate and then defeated in the House.
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The claim that the debate about the severity and cause of global warming is “settled science” has taken a beating with the release of the names of 31,072 American scientists who reject the assertion that global warming has reached a crisis stage and is caused by human activity.

“No such consensus or settled science exists,” Arthur Robinson, founder and president of the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine (OISM), told a press conference May 19 at the National Press Club in Washington, DC. “As indicated by the petition text and signatory list, a very large number of American scientists reject” the hypothesis of human-caused global warming.
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The Sierra Club and congressmen from New York and Illinois are leading a campaign to pressure the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to restrict the authority of Utah officials to determine how land in the state will be utilized.

Rep. Maurice Hinchey (D-NY), Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), and a Sierra Club affiliate organized 95 congresspersons–mostly eastern state Democrats–in writing a letter to the federal BLM urging it to overrule the Utah Bureau of Land Management and ban energy recovery in more than three million acres of rich energy deposits in the state.

The letter was circulated by the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance (SUWA), an affiliate of the Sierra Club. Notably, not one of the congressmen signing the petition was from Utah.
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The U.S. Department of the Interior, on the advice of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, has decided to list the polar bear as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.

The listing represents the first time a species has been given protected status based not on current animal population trends but instead on speculative climate models.
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Who doesn’t like polar bears? They’re cute and cuddly and lend themselves to heart-melting images.

So when the federal government commissioned studies last year to support the listing of polar bears as a threatened or endangered species, the project was greeted with near-universal acclaim. Those studies concluded the current growth trend in the polar bear population will reverse and the bears’ population will decrease substantially in the future.
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In an effort to increase domestic energy supplies and bring down rising gas prices, a group of 19 senators has introduced the Domestic Energy Production Act of 2008.

Sponsored by Sen. Pete Domenici (R-NM), the ranking Republican on the Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee, the bill is one of the first congressional responses to growing nationwide unrest over soaring energy prices.

The legislation would reduce America’s dependence on foreign sources of energy by expanding the recovery and development of traditional energy sources while simultaneously promoting alternative energy technologies.

“For years now, I have been trying to develop more domestic production of oil and gas, and for years, with one exception in the Gulf of Mexico, I have been blocked for political reasons. Consumers are now paying the price for those years of obstruction,” Domenici said in a press statement accompanying introduction of the bill.
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California State Sen. Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) has introduced a bill declaring the state’s iconic redwoods the victor over solar panels in a battle between environmental interest groups.

The conflict came to a head in January, when a California judge ordered a Sunnyvale couple to cut down or drastically reduce the size of their backyard redwood trees, which were partially shading a neighbor’s rooftop solar panels.
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