Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - 10:22 • Justin Mikulka

In 1998, the U.S.'s largest oil and gas industry lobbying group, the American Petroleum Institute (API), was involved with a communications plan whose goal was promoting “uncertainties in climate science” among the American public. Over 20 years later, their communications plan looks a little different but still needs fact-checking. 

In September, API began running TV, billboard, and social media ads promoting natural gas as a climate solution. “Thanks to natural gas, the U.S. is leading the way in reducing emissions,” the ads claim, and “leading the world in cutting greenhouse gas emissions.” But is all of that true?

Wednesday, October 2, 2019 - 12:26 • Guest
Read time: 3 mins

By Karen Savage, Climate Liability News. Originally published on Climate Liability News.

A federal appellate judge ruled that Baltimore’s climate liability suit will proceed in state court, rejecting a motion by more than two dozen fossil fuel defendants to halt the suit while they try to convince the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals that the case belongs in federal court.

Wednesday, October 2, 2019 - 09:21 • Justin Mikulka
Read time: 6 mins

While Canadians turned out en masse for large climate protests last week, the country's oil and gas industry continued its plans to ramp up and export its massive and polluting reserves of tar sands oil, also known as bitumen, to the rest of the world. 

Several recent developments in the rail arena are setting up the tar sands industry to realize those plans in a major way.

Monday, September 30, 2019 - 13:20 • Sharon Kelly
Read time: 9 mins

Last week, as climate activist Greta Thunberg addressed the United Nations Climate Action Summit, invited leaders from major environmental groups spent their day listening to the leaders of fossil fuel companies discuss how they want to respond to the climate crisis.

Depending on which room you were in, you would have heard two very different messages.

Sunday, September 29, 2019 - 04:00 • Guest
Read time: 6 mins
By Maron Greenleaf, Dartmouth College

Fires in the Brazilian Amazon have outraged the world. But what can people living far from the world’s largest rainforest do to save it?

California thinks it has an answer.

On September 19, the California Air Resources Board endorsed the Tropical Forest Standard, which sets the groundwork for electric utilities, oil refineries and other California polluters to “offset” their greenhouse gas emissions by paying governments in tropical forest areas not to cut down trees.

Saturday, September 28, 2019 - 04:34 • Guest
Read time: 6 mins
By Joshua Conrad Jackson, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Michele Gelfand, University of Maryland

Two trends have defined the past decade and both have been on display at this year’s session of the United Nations General Assembly.

One has been the escalating effects of climate change, which were the focus of the United Nations’ Climate Action Summit. Forest fires, floods and hurricanes are all rising in their frequency and severity. Eight of the last 10 years have been the warmest on record. Marine biologists warned that coral reefs in the U.S. could disappear entirely by the 2040s.

The other trend has been the surge of right-wing nationalist politics across Western nations, which includes Donald Trump’s election in the U.S., and the rise of nationalist political parties around the world.

Friday, September 27, 2019 - 14:12 • Justin Mikulka
Read time: 7 mins

At a recent natural gas industry conference in Houston, Woodside Petroleum CEO Peter Coleman warned his colleagues to avoid the fate of another fossil fuel, according to trade publication Natural Gas Intelligence.

The industry really is at a critical juncture,” Coleman said. “We run the risk of being demonized like that other fossil fuel out there called coal.”

Oil and gas companies have been feeling mounting pressure, as signs emerge that oil is losing favor, both with the public amid climate concerns and with some investors.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019 - 15:26 • Justin Nobel
Read time: 6 mins

On Monday around 1:00 a.m., a “Virtual Pipeline” truck carrying compressed natural gas mined from the Marcellus Shale crashed on Interstate 88 near Binghamton, New York, after the vehicle swerved to avoid deer, flipped over, and fatally ejected 52-year-old driver Jeffrey Lind. The truck’s container system began leaking compressed methane gas, a potent greenhouse gas, into the atmosphere. Governor Andrew Cuomo declared a state of emergency in Broome County, where the crash occurred.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019 - 17:54 • Julie Dermansky
Read time: 7 mins

On Monday, the United Nations Climate Action Summit opened with a glossy video projected around the room. It hawked a hopeful message that climate catastrophe can be averted. With the lights turned down and music turned up, for a few minutes the summit felt like an IMAX movie experience. 

Unfortunately, the video is symbolic of the summit itself — all talk, little action,” Jesse Bragg, media director at Corporate Accountability, said via email.

A scathing speech by Swedish youth activist Greta Thunberg and the passing presence of President Trump upstaged presentations from world leaders, who in some cases did announce pledges to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 but overall failed to offer visionary solutions for the rapid transition away from fossil fuels.

Monday, September 23, 2019 - 13:53 • Justin Mikulka
Read time: 6 mins

This story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.  

According to climate scientists, limiting the worst impacts of climate change means weaning the world off of fossil fuels, not ramping it up. But two factors, the U.S. “fracking revolution” that helped boost domestic oil and gas production to record levels combined with lifting the 40-year-long ban on exporting crude oil in 2015, are complicating that vision.

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