Puerto Rico exposes the true nature of Trump administration’s energy agenda

During his first year as head of the Department of Energy, Secretary Rick Perry has been almost singularly focused on one thing: realizing President Donald Trump’s empty promise to revitalize coal as a power source in the United States. Perry’s crusade for coal began in April, when he ordered the DOE to conduct a study on grid reliability — namely, whether renewable energy was … [Read more...]

More than 700 employees have left the EPA since Scott Pruitt took over

Since Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt took over the top job at the agency in March, more than 700 employees have either retired, taken voluntary buyouts, or quit, signaling the second-highest exodus of employees from the agency in nearly a decade. According to agency documents and federal employment statistics, 770 EPA employees departed the agency between April and … [Read more...]

Environmental group sues Irish government over climate change

For the first time in the country’s history, an Irish environmental group is turning to the legal system for help answering an important question: Is the government doing enough to protect its citizens from climate change? According to a lawsuit filed earlier this week by Friends of the Irish Environment (FIE), the Irish government is not taking adequate steps to protect residents from the … [Read more...]

No chemical release, just massive fire at Texas plant that exploded overnight

The Arkema chemical plant in Crosby, Texas suffered two explosions late Wednesday night, after having lost power for days following Hurricane Harvey. The explosions sent black smoke into the air, and at least 10 deputies have gone to the hospital following the incident, citing complaints of headache and dizziness, according to Morning Joe. All of the plant’s employees, as well as about 300 … [Read more...]

Trump’s tweets ignore a very real threat facing Texas

The first major natural disaster of the Trump presidency could be making its way to Texas, with Tropical Storm Harvey threatening to bring winds up to 73 miles per hour and drop as much as 40 inches of rain in some parts of the Gulf. Gov. Greg Abbott (R) has already declared a state of disaster for 30 Texas counties and ordered extra emergency preparedness throughout the rest of the state. Looking … [Read more...]

Department of Justice reduces Harley-Davidson’s pollution fine by $3 million

The fine was part of an Obama-era settlement for selling motorcycle tuners that increased air pollution.CREDIT: Photo by Darren Hauck/Invision for Harley-Davidson/AP ImagesThe Trump administration’s Department of Justice has dropped a $3 million penalty imposed on the motorcycle company Harley-Davidson by the Obama administration, citing “certain new developments” in the department’s policy.The … [Read more...]

Trump officially nominates climate-denying conservative talk radio host as USDA’s top scientist

The Trump administration’s war on science continues apace.CREDIT: AP Photo/Charlie NeibergallSam Clovis, a former Trump campaign adviser and one-time conservative talk radio host, has no background in the hard sciences, nor any policy experience with food or agriculture. Still, that did not stop President Donald Trump from officially nominating Clovis to the position of the United States … [Read more...]

Climate change will fuel terrorism, report warns

A new report from a German think tank cautions that climate change will increase terrorism recruitment.CREDIT: AP Photo/Hussein Malla. FileClimate change-fueled natural disasters and resource shortages will strengthen recruiting efforts of terror groups like ISIS and Boko Haram, according to a new report commissioned by the German government.“As the climate is changing, so too are the conditions … [Read more...]

House Republicans vote to curb the EPA’s use of science

Critics say the HONEST Act would seriously chill science.CREDIT: iStockThe House of Representatives voted Wednesday to significantly limit the science that the Environmental Protection Agency can use when creating regulations, leaving some critics concerned that the agency will not be able to issue important safeguards on public health and the environment.Known as the Honest and Open New EPA … [Read more...]

No charges for Florida prison guards who allegedly locked mentally ill black man in scalding shower

Darren Rainey, a schizophrenic man serving time for cocaine possession, died in 2012.Dade Correctional Institution, where Darren Rainey died. CREDIT: AP Photo/Lynne SladkyIn June of 2012, 50-year old Darren Rainey, a schizophrenic man serving time for cocaine possession, died in the Dade Correctional Institution. According to prison witnesses and civil rights groups, Rainey died after guards … [Read more...]

Australia’s record-breaking summer heat linked directly to climate change

According to recent analysis, climate change made Australia’s summer 50 times more likely.CREDIT: AP Photo/Rick RycroftThe record-breaking heat seen across southeast Australia in the last few months was made 50 times more likely by climate change, according to new analysis that links the heat directly to global warming.Southeast Australia was struck by three major heatwaves in January and … [Read more...]

Seattle found a new way to resist the Dakota Access Pipeline

The city council wants to send a clear message to Wells Fargo by divesting some $3 billion.A rally outside of Seattle City Hall for the committee hearing regarding the Wells Fargo ordinance. CREDIT: 350 SeattleOn Tuesday, word came from Washington, D.C. that the Trump administration would be issuing the final easement needed to complete the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline. The announcement … [Read more...]

Insurers paid $50 billion in natural disaster claims in 2016

That’s the highest cost since 2012, according to reinsurance company Munich Re.A woman braves the wind on the waterfront of Victoria Habour as Typhoon Haima approaches Hong Kong, Friday, Oct. 21, 2016. CREDIT: AP Photo/Vincent YuAltogether, natural disasters cost $175 billion in 2016 — and insurers paid around $50 billion in natural disaster-related insurance claims, the highest amount since 2012, … [Read more...]

The environmental movement grapples with social justice in the age of Trump

This year, big environmental stories also had big social justice components. What happens now?Protesters in Philadelphia demonstrate in solidarity with members of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe in North Dakota over the construction of the Dakota Access oil pipeline. CREDIT: AP Photo/Matt RourkeIn late August, a group of protesters, led by the Standing Rock Sioux, blocked construction sites for the … [Read more...]

The global divestment movement has topped $5 trillion

Divestment campaigns are picking up, even as Trump prepares to take office.Panel of speakers, including Lou Allstadt (second from left) at the DivestInvest press conference on December 12. CREDIT: FentonLou Allstadt wasn’t always sitting on divestment panels or rallying politicians to support a fracking ban. A little less than a decade ago, Allstadt simply wanted to retire to Cooperstown, New … [Read more...]

Canada’s climate commitments in jeopardy as Trudeau approves two major pipeline projects

Environmentalists are not happy about the decision.CREDIT: AP Photo/Ramon EspinosaOn Tuesday, Canada’s Liberal government approved two major oil pipelines that, if constructed, would send one million more barrels of oil a day from Alberta’s tar sands — known in Canada as oil sands — to markets overseas. The move brought a chorus of criticism from environmentalists and indigenous communities, which … [Read more...]

EPA’s Efforts To Curb Methane Emissions Suffers A Setback As 13 States Sue

Thirteen states are suing the Obama administration over the EPA's new methane rules for oil and gas producers. The post EPA’s Efforts To Curb Methane Emissions Suffers A Setback As 13 States Sue appeared first on ThinkProgress. … [Read more...]

Can Kelp Save The Pacific Ocean?

A new program in Washington state is testing to see whether kelp can help slow ocean acidification. The post Can Kelp Save The Pacific Ocean? appeared first on ThinkProgress. … [Read more...]