Beyond Olympic Glory: Athletes Blast Canada’s Tar Sands Industry

The Winter Olympics this year in Vancouver, BC, is a little more than the usual venue for endless corporate advertising and big money sponsorship of “amateur” athletes, thanks to the Sierra Club and its campaign against Canada’s tar oil sands extraction industry. A few prominent winter athletes are joining with various international environmental groups in … Continued

Brace for Impact: the West Coast Anticipates Electric Vehicles

It’s hard not to see the flurry of activity preceding Dec 2010’s slated electric vehicle launches as an expression of joyous excitement. A range of stakeholders are taking action, and coordinating to prepare for widespread electric vehicle ownership. But are they in fact preparing for a new Golden Age in transportation, for the most significant … Continued

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House Resolution Passed in Utah: Climate Change a Conspiracy

Hundreds of private e-mail messages and documents hacked from a computer server last November caused a stir among global warming skeptics, who said they show that climate scientists conspired to overstate the case for a human influence on climate change. These events, combined with constant back and forth debate, have left people here in America, … Continued

What The U.S. Can Learn From Denmark About Health Care

President Obama touted the merits of computerizing health records last year. “This will cut waste, eliminate red tape, and reduce the need to repeat expensive medical tests,” said Obama. “It won’t just save billions of dollars and thousands of jobs — it will save lives by reducing the deadly but preventable medical errors that pervade … Continued

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Is the Tea Party the Alternative Energy Party?

I have to be honest. I don’t know much about the Tea Party movement. But as someone who sees our two party system as offering little more than the illusion of a real and effective democracy, I applaud any group that stands up and forces the status quo to take notice. In fact, after doing … Continued

Commerce Secretary Organizes Climate Change Office

A little-known agency within the Commerce Department, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), will become the Obama Administration’s focal point for climate change information and services. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke says NOAA is launching a separate unit, NOAA Climate Service, to address the nation’s “fast-accelerating climate information needs.” The agency is also creating a … Continued

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Is Climate Change Legislation Dead in 2010?

The latest chatter on the Hill is that climate legislation is not likely to pass this year. High jobless numbers, financial reform and the health care debate continue to thwart efforts focused on the environment. It is possible that the Senate will settle for an energy-only bill and call it a day. The likelihood of … Continued

Groups Sue California Over Low Carbon Fuel Standard

Last week the American Trucking Association (ATA) and the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association (NPRA) filed a lawsuit against California’s low-carbon fuel mandate, which calls for the state’s petroleum dependence to be reduced by 20 percent by 2020. The California Air Resources Board (CARB) adopted the standard last April. The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. … Continued

China Now World Leader in Smart Grid Investment

Just imagine if we were only now building our first electric infrastructure. Of course that would mean that we’d be decades behind our other modern counterparts. But it would also mean that we’d be in a position to build it using the very latest and best technology. That is exactly the position China is in … Continued

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Why Electric Vehicles Worry California Power Regulators

Though historically high gas prices provide a strong market demand for electric vehicles (EVs) in California, it is the state with an electric grid that is the least able to support these cars. With automakers set to launch at least a dozen EV models by 2012, California’s electricity regulators are scrambling to respond to the … Continued

Newly-Emancipated Corporations Seek their Rightful Place in Government

I’m a huge fan of science-fiction movies with dystopian futures, such as Blade Runner, Minority Report, Children of Men, or my favorite, Idiocracy. In most of these stories, the villain is an very powerful entity or its minions, and power-hungry corporate conglomerates are, more often than not, the driving force for evil. These stories have … Continued

Obama Calls for End of Oil Subsidies in 2011 Budget

In Obama’s 2011 FY budget proposal sent to Congress this week, the administration calls for eliminating more than $2.7 billion in tax subsidies for oil, coal and gas industries. As a result, more than $38.8 billion dollars in tax revenue could be generated for the federal government over the course of the next ten years. … Continued

KPMG: Looking back at Copenhagen

A quick post today: KPMG has been no stranger to climate change issues and has offered some interesting commentary in the past, particularly during the COP15 conference in December. The following is a great COP15 wrap up conversation I though was worth sharing. It features Alan Buckle, KPMG’s Global Head of Advisory, and Barend van … Continued

Holy Job Creation: Bring on High Speed Rail

Say what you will about the stimulus package and government spending in general, there are some things that work well with government investment, and massive infrastructure projects are high on that list. Like Eisenhower in the 1950s, who kicked off the interstate highway system, last week’s (albeit 25 years late) investment of $8 billion in … Continued

SEC Issues Guidance On Climate Change Risk Disclosure

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) voted yesterday to issue interpretative guidance on what public companies must disclose to investors concerning climate change risks. A press release issued by the SEC states that the interpretative guidance is meant to clarify “certain existing disclosure rules that may require a company to disclose the impact that business … Continued