At the National Center for Atmospheric Research, we don’t forecast the weather. We get inside the weather, climate, and surrounding environment to understand it better. We collaborate with researchers all over the country and all over the world to study the thin layer of air that surrounds our planet and connects all of us to each other. We study the Sun, air chemistry, how the atmosphere interacts with the land and oceans, and how we change and are changed by weather and climate.
Congress is looking to push through a bill that would make it nearly impossible to require agricultural giants like Monsanto and food makers to label their food if it contains genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Legal and media analyst “Lionel” takes a look at why more Americans aren’t clamoring for labels on their food.
A win against the DuPont Company awarded the plaintiff, Carla Bartlett, $1.6 million for negligence after she developed kidney cancer linked to the contamination of her drinking water by chemicals used in manufacturing DuPont’s Teflon products. Lindsay France speaks with Bartlett’s lawyer, Chris Paulos, about the legal strategies employed in taking on the chemical giant.
Bevis Longstreth Former SEC Commissioner 1. Background. Rising temperatures around the globe are a reality, and so too is the primary cause: Energy-related CO2 emissions caused by human-beings. Long term energy analysis by the highly respected International Energy Agency (IEA) shows the world traveling down an unsustainable track. Very unsustainable. In 2012, CO2 emissions grew by 1.4 percent to a record high. Looking ahead, in its ‘business as usual’ scenario, the IEA shows energy-related CO2 emissions growing 1/3rd by 2035 and doubling by 2050, while global temperatures increase by up to 5.3 degrees Centigrade to 2100.
Recent disasters around the globe illustrate the growing problem with a warming planet: rising sea levels, changing rainfall patterns, more droughts, floods and heat waves, all adversely affecting ecosystems, food production and water resources. All costing immense sums of money. Consider, e. g., Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina; the wild fires and colossal floods in Colorado; the die-off of pine trees across the Rocky Mountains; the historic floods across the Midwest; deepening droughts in New Mexico, Texas and Oklahoma; and record heat waves in Alaska.
Unless large restrictions on carbon emissions are established around the globe, but particularly in the world’s two top emitters, China and the US, scientists predict ocean level rises of three to six feet in this century, triggering massive evacuations. What’s worse, we know scientists systematically understate the case -repeatedly discovering the globe’s climate system is more, not less, sensitive to man-made assault, whose impacts are being experienced at ever-increasing rates.
In news from Japan, a new study says children living near the Fukushima nuclear plant during the 2011 meltdown have been diagnosed with thyroid cancer at a rate between 20 and 50 times higher than children on average. The report will appear in the November issue of Epidemiology. Thyroid cancer in children is the one illness the medical world has definitively linked to radiation, based on studies following the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster.
Mercedes-Benz, Honda, Mazda and Mitsubishi have joined the growing list of manufacturers whose diesel cars are known to emit significantly more pollution on the road than in regulatory tests, according to data obtained by the Guardian.
In more realistic on-road tests, some Honda models emitted six times the regulatory limit of NOx pollution while some unnamed 4×4 models had 20 times the NOx limit coming out of their exhaust pipes.
“The issue is a systemic one” across the industry, said Nick Molden, whose company Emissions Analytics tested the cars. The Guardian revealed last week that diesel cars from Renault, Nissan, Hyundai, Citroen, Fiat, Volvo and Jeep all pumped out significantly more NOx in more realistic driving conditions. NOx pollution is at illegal levels in many parts of the UK and is believed to have caused many thousands of premature deaths and billions of pounds in health costs.
All the diesel cars passed the EU’s official lab-based regulatory test (called NEDC), but the test has failed to cut air pollution as governments intended because carmakers designed vehicles that perform better in the lab than on the road. There is no evidence of illegal activity, such as the “defeat devices” used by Volkswagen.
Diesel cars made by Renault, Nissan, Hyundai, Citroen, Fiat and Volvo among others emitted far more NOx in more rigorous tests, research shows
New diesel cars from Renault, Nissan, Hyundai, Citroen, Fiat, Volvo and other manufacturers have been found to emit substantially higher levels of pollution when tested in more realistic driving conditions, according to new data seen by the Guardian.
Research compiled by Adac, Europe’s largest motoring organisation, shows that some of the diesel cars it examined released over 10 times more NOx than revealed by existing EU tests, using an alternative standard due to be introduced later this decade.
Adac put the diesel cars through the EU’s existing lab-based regulatory test (NEDC) and then compared the results with a second, UN-developed test (WLTC) which, while still lab-based, is longer and is believed to better represent real driving conditions. The WLTC is currently due to be introduced by the EU in 2017.
The Guardian has obtained data showing diesel cars from four major car manufacturers are emitting significantly more pollution on the road than in their regulatory tests. Tests conducted by the company Emissions Analytics show that models of Mercedes-Benz, Honda, Mazda and Mitsubishi all emit far more toxic pollution than previously thought. This comes as Volkswagen CEO Michael Horn apologized for the emissions cheating scandal in his testimony to Congress Thursday.
Michael Horn: “On behalf of our company and my colleagues in Germany, and me personally, I would like to offer a sincere apology—sincere apology—for Volkswagen’s use of a software program that served to defeat the regular emissions testing regime.”
The Guardian reported similar revelations about higher pollution emissions from cars made by Renault, Nissan, Hyundai, Citroën, Fiat, Volvo and Jeep last week. Nick Molden, whose company has tested the cars, said: “The issue is a systemic one.”
Welcome to Transition Studies. To prosper for very much longer on the changing Earth humankind will need to move beyond its current fossil-fueled civilization toward one that is sustained on recycled materials and renewable energy. This is not a trivial shift. It will require a major transition in all aspects of our lives.
This weblog explores the transition to a sustainable future on our finite planet. It provides links to current news, key documents from government sources and non-governmental organizations, as well as video documentaries about climate change, environmental ethics and environmental justice concerns.
The links are listed here to be used in whatever manner they may be helpful in public information campaigns, course preparation, teaching, letter-writing, lectures, class presentations, policy discussions, article writing, civic or Congressional hearings and citizen action campaigns, etc. For further information on this blog see: About this weblog. and How to use this weblog.
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