Sun, 2014-09-21 02:56Brendan Montague
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Labour Attacks Climate Denier Lawson for Gas Bills Double Standards

Shadow minister vents fury on eve of world climate summit about environment being blamed for higher gas bills by climate deniers and says privatisation and deregulation are the real culprits 

Labour shadow minister Barry Gardiner today accused the Tory grandee Lord Lawson of “promoting global warming” and apparent double standards after the former chancellor blamed climate change measures for high gas bills for British families.

The shadow minister for the natural environment said the former chancellor’s “militant privatisation” played a key role in increasing energy prices for millions of hard working families when the Tory was in power.

Lawson helped double gas prices over three years shortly before privatising British Gas. Gardiner added Lawson was rarely “troubled by misfortunes more likely to affect others than himself”. 

Sat, 2014-09-20 05:00Mike G
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Proximity To Fracking Wells Increases Incidence Of Health Problems: Study

A new study has found that people living in close proximity to a fracked natural gas well are twice as likely to suffer upper-respiratory or skin problems.

The study, published by Environmental Health Perspectives, found that 39% of people living less than a kilometer from a well in Washington County, Pennsylvania, which is part of the Marcellus Shale, reported upper respiratory problems, compared to 18% of people living 2km or further from a well.

Some 13% of people living a kilometer or less from a natural gas well reported rashes and other skin problems, while 3% living 2km or further reported similar problems.

The study was led by researchers at Yale University and surveyed 492 people in 180 households with ground-fed water wells. The authors concluded:

While these results should be viewed as hypothesis generating, and the population studied was limited to households with a ground fed water supply, proximity of natural gas wells may be associated with the prevalence of health symptoms including dermal and respiratory conditions in residents living near natural gas extraction activities. Further study of these associations, including the role of specific air and water exposures, is warranted.


Further study is certainly warranted, especially in light of several other recent news items pointing to the dangers of fracking.

Fri, 2014-09-19 09:12Don Lieber
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New York City is Amped for The People’s Climate March

Peoples Climate March by Chris Stain

The People’s Climate March” is quickly approaching.  The level of organization for Sunday's event is more impressive than any other rally — climate or otherwise — this writer has ever witnessed in New York City. Organizers have predicted some 100,000 people will march, making it not only the largest climate rally in history, but very likely one of the largest public rallies in support of any issue in the United States in decades.  

Posters, flyers and billboards about the rally are everywhere; this writer noticed the following posters all across lower Manhattan while running a few random errands:

USE Union Square.jpg
Poster at 3rd Avenue near Union Square. Photo by Don Lieber. 

Fri, 2014-09-19 04:46Brendan Montague
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Quite a Chain of Consequences for a Chicken Farmer!

Antony Fisher founded the think tanks in Britain that first promoted climate denial. His dramatic life story is a vital morality tale for those concerned about climate change. Picture: Antony (right) and Basil at Eton.

Without Fisher, no IEA; without the IEA and its clones, no Thatcher and quite possibly no Reagan; without Reagan, no Star Wars; without Star Wars, no economic collapse of the Soviet Union. Quite a chain of consequences for a chicken farmer.”

So remarked Oliver Letwin MP in the Times in 1994. Two decades later and he might add, “no slander of climate science, and no sabotage of government action on global warming”.

The life of Antony George Aston FisherAGAF to his friends—is fascinating in its own right. But contained within his remarkable story lies the foundation myth of neoliberalism, and, by consequence, climate denial.

Thu, 2014-09-18 10:54Guest
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Sick of Enviro Documentaries? Why You Should Still Watch Disruption

Disruption

This is a guest post by Zach Roberts.

As a documentary producer, I watch more than my fair share of environmental protest documentaries — probably about 20 a year. And almost all of them have the same, vague message: we need to do something!

Their scenes re-play like a bad video montage in my mind: earnest young people speaking at podiums, boring climatologists rambling on about the coming end of the world, forest fires, melting ice shelves, you know how it goes. In the lefty journalism world, we call this “preaching to the choir.”

Then there's Disruption, which is not so much a protest documentary as a call to arms. In an interview, co-director Jared P. Scott classified it under new genre of documentary — 'action films.' These are films that send a clear message about what must be done and then give viewers the information they need to actually get it done. And that's Disruption in a nutshell.

The documentary, made in collaboration with the organizers of the People’s Climate March, uses a mix of familiar footage from the likes of Yann Arthus-Bertrand and new behind-the-scenes footage from organizing meetings for the Sept. 21st protest, set to be the largest climate march in history.

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