The U.S. Interior Department last week proposed new regulations aimed at permanently legalizing high-altitude strip mining of coal, a ruthless process that has thus far ruined 1,200 miles of streams and hundreds of square miles of forests. Due to the financial might of the coal industry, neither Democratic nor Republican administrations have made a serious effort to curb this serial decapitation of Appalachian coal seams, but the Bush people have been especially resourceful in perpetuating it.
In a case brought by environmentalists, a U.S. court has ruled the White House broke the law by failing to prepare studies and plans for dealing with climate change, and ordered the administration to produce the required documents by early next year.
As greenhouse-gas emissions continue to build in the atmosphere, nuclear power is emerging from the shadows in the struggle to curb climate change. More than a decade after a nuclear plant was completed in the U.S., the Bush administration now touts it as a possible solution and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change hasn’t ruled it out. And the U.S.’s leading nuclear research lab is working to render the controversial source a safe alternative to fossil fuels.
The U.S. Supreme Court has recently endorsed California's strategy to regulate greenhouse gases from vehicles, validating the state's claim emissions should be classified as air pollutants over the objections of the Bush administration.
At least a dozen other states are expected to follow should the Environmental Protection Agency give California the right to limit auto emissions. A final decision is expected, coveniently, after Bush leaves the White House next year.
Global warming has taken center stage at the meeting – whose theme is “growth and responsibility in the global economy” – and Bush risks alienating his German counterpart , a former physicist who has made climate change her signature issue.
Driven to areas where people live by shrinking ice due to global warming, polar bears have become a prime target for poachers, both for meat and the thousands of dollars their pelts can fetch. Russia’s government hopes a legal hunt can rein in the rampant poaching.
A global coalition of investors managing $4-trillion US in assets has called on the U.S. Congress, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the White House to approve stronger policies to control global warming, saying the competitiveness of U.S. businesses hinges on developing clean technology.
Internal memorandums circulated in Alaska’s federal Fish and Wildlife Service appear to muzzle government biologists traveling abroad in Arctic countries from discussing climate change, polar bears or sea ice without official authorization. Only those who “understand the administration’s position” can talk to the issues.
Not surprisingly, Bush Administration officials are putting a positive spin on the report, which sees an 11 per cent increase in emissions during the decade ending in 2012. But an assortment of experts on climate trends say the result is unacceptable given rising evidence of risks from unabated global warming.