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Climate Change This Week: Solar Surges, Climate Change Got Real, and More!

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Today, the Earth got a little hotter, and a little more crowded.

And the chances of Donald Trump's family and fortune surviving climate change are small, dwindling daily and irreversibly. And no, this isn't photoshopped.


Saving BUB, Beautiful Unique Biodiversity, as in this tiny mighty ant in Borneo, Indonesia, is another reason to preserve carbon storing forests. Credit Frenki Jung

OO Consumer Pressure To Ditch Deforestation
Reaching Indonesia Oil Palm Plantation Giants
says a new report, with some of the giants issuing stronger sustainability policies - but that's far from enough.

OO After Asia, Palm Oil Faces Backlash In Africa - after being blamed for deforestation in Asia, palm oil plantations are now getting a similar rap in Africa.

OO An Indonesian Village's First Female Chief Ended Illegal Logging with spies and checkpoints.

Forests: the cheapest way to store carbon


This Was Once Amazonian Forest.

OO Brazil Risks Falling Behind on Climate Change As Deforestation Rises and the threat of anti-environmental legislation.

When we harm forests, we harm ourselves.




A Clever Parrot Remembered, But His Species Is Nearly Extinct - Alex had a vocabulary of 100 English words by the end of his life, and showed just how intelligent parrots can be. Source

OO Elephants, Giraffes, Cheetahs: We'll Never See These Animals Again -
in the multitudes that they were. Populations of many species are plummeting, and some may never recover, mostly because of habitat loss and human activities; climate change is also a factor.
  • Most scientists agree that we are experiencing a 6th mass extinction,
  • but unlike the previous 5 caused by cataclysmic natural disasters,
  • humans are responsible for this one -
  • and it's happening incredibly fast.
* *



Source NSF Central Arizona Phoenix LTER site

OO The Most Important Climate Stories Of 2016 says Climate Central. Takeaways:

  • It was the hottest year on record - again.
  • July and August tied for the hottest month recorded yet.
  • The Paris Climate Pact began enforcement.
  • Carbon Dioxide levels hit 400 ppm permanently, ensuring worse climate change.
  • The world breached the 1.5 C increase threshold - briefly.
  • The Great Barrier Reef was decimated by hot waters.


  • Fossil fuel divestment, and clean energy investment hit record highs.
  • The Arctic had a record heat wave during its winter twilight, and hit record highs;
  • Its ice dwindled to a record level for winter.


Without US Help Coral Reefs Will Likely Disappear - how willing is the US willing to tackle climate change? Source

OO 2016: When Climate Change Became Undeniable to anyone paying attention to the news:

1. a record amount of coral perished on the Great Barrier Reef:
almost all of the nearly 3,000 corals were affected by coral bleaching to varying degrees:
2/3rds of shallow water corals in the northern part died as waters became persistently hot.

Related Headline:

OO The Great Barrier Reef Is Dying, And Global Warming Set The Scene - Greenhouse-gas emissions must come down, and rules restricting runoff and fishing must be tightened.



2. Polar sea ice the size of India disappeared - ice at both poles is at record lows.
3. Biggest polar glacier is melting - adding to sea level rise.


US East Coast Communities Felt The Brunt Of Sea Level Rise- which now floods some areas regularly. Source

4. It's the hottest year yet - for the third year in a row...

5. Meanwhile, Brazil continues to eat up the Amazon forest, one of the planet's major air conditioners and carbon storage areas, and coffee production is now threatened.



@@ Climate Change 101: Why Care?
What You Need to Know
- Bill Nye tells it all in five minutes amid graphic, dynamic, engaging, compelling imagery. Check it Out!



OO 5 Under-Reported Climate Change Stories Of 2016


The Good
All Electricity Could Be Generated Cleanly From Renewables
research shows, if governments focus on:
  • Integration of electricity grids
  • Paying individual energy generators to feed excess energy into the grids;
  • Setting up price structures according to demand at time of use.

Keep It In the Ground Movement - is surging as millions recognize that we can't burn fossil fuels anymore and create a decent future with a safe climate.



Credit Michael Lukovich

The Bad

US GOP Climate Denial Threatens Humanity by weakening US human will to confront an increasingly deadly reality and future.

Loss of Polar Ice which reflects light, a source of heat, back to space. Polar ice is at record lows as the poles heated to record highs.


Screencapture from the film Cowspiracy

The Ugly

Producing Meat Produces Lots of Climate-Changing Methane Worldwide.



OO Oil Companies Face Deadline To Stop Polluting California Groundwater with their oily wastewater into Central Valley aquifers. What in heaven's name were they thinking? Do any of them drink water?

OO China Fines 600+ Power Plants Nearly $50 Million For Environmental Breaches and falsifying data to claim green subsidies.




Credo of Wisconsin Leadership: Ignorance is Bliss! Source Political Humor -

OO Wisconsin Dept Natural Resources Purges Climate Change From Web Page - removing the facts that humans and greenhouse gases are the main cause of climate change.

Good going, gov! That will be SURE to make it go away!

OO Tillerson Led Exxon's Shift On Climate Change;
Some Say 'It Was All P.R.'
History suggests that however earnest Exxon Mobil might sound in its shift on policy, it has done little or nothing to help put carbon taxes into effect.




Donald Trump's Children Likely Face Climate Apocalypse in their lifetimes; the likely crash of civilization that follows will crash their fortune and survival chances for their kids - and all of ours. Unless, of course, Trump acts to cut emissions, hugely. Source

OO Climate Change May Be Escalating So Fast It Could Be 'Game Over' scientists warn; hnew research suggests the Earth's climate could be more sensitive to greenhouse gases than thought, raising the spectre of an 'apocalyptic side of bad' temperature rise of more than 7C within a lifetime.

OO Scientists Show Just On How Much Trump Could Damage The Planet - creating far more damage by slowing US policies, and discouraging other countries from acting.

And some of that damage will likely be irreversible.

OO Tillerson Climate-Change Testimony Set Before Trump Sworn In Lawyers for teenagers claiming the U.S. government failed to protect the environment from global warming plan to question under oath Tillerson on his knowledge of climate change.


Credit Mike Luckovish at the Atlanta Journal Constitution, modified

OO 2017: Trump Peddles Climate Doubt In A World Sold On Action in a world where climate change affects almost all international dealings.

OO Trump Spokesperson: No Climate Change, Earth Is 5500 Years Old says Anthony Scaramucci a member of the Trump transition team; as recently as June 2016, he had said was irrefutable, and decried climate deniers.

Yes - this flipflopper is a scarin' me, too!



@@ A Simple And Smart Way To Fix Climate Change given by Dan Miller in 2014 at a Ted talk suggests a way to profit as we tackle climate change, by finally charging those who sell and use fossil fuels - and distributing the revenues back to all of us.

The strategy is sure to speed transition to clean renewable energy. What's not to like? Check it out!




A Man of Courage - And Vision: John Kasich

OO Ohio Gov John Kasich Breaks With GOP,
Keeps Renewable Energy Standards
vetoing GOP legislators' attempt to halt the state's requirements that utility companies get more and more energy from renewable sources.


Net Zero Never Looked So Beautiful - as the town of Burlington, VT, which has created a plan to use no more energy than it generates. Source

OO Five US Cities At The Forefront Of The Fight Against Climate Change

  • Portland, OR has voted to ban construction of bulk fossil fuel facilities;
  • Burlington, VT has created a plan for the city to go 'net zero' - consuming only as much energy as it generates; in 2014, it became the first US city to run on 100% renewable power.


  • San Diego, CA is the largest US city to commit to run on 100% renewables
  • Cleveland, OH is working on the first US freshwater offshore wind farm, on Lake Erie.
  • Baltimore, MD is the first US city to develop neighborhood disaster centers to help the neediest when disasters strike.



OO 2016's Super Warm Arctic Winter 'Extremely Unlikely' Without Climate Change scientists and a new analysis say.




OO Positive Environmental Stories From 2016

1) Global carbon emissions appear to have stopped increasing. As more clean energy and other lower-emitting sources of energy like natural gas replace coal. A good start, but emissions have to dramatically drop to really slow climate change.

2) Worldwide, wind and solar are booming. The U.S. solar and wind power industries experienced a blockbuster year in growth, which shows few signs of slowing.


Credit Jean-Paul Pelissier at Reuters

Renewables account for only about 23 % of the electricity produced worldwide, but that will rise to 28% by 2021, says a new International Energy Agency report, as the costs of building wind and solar farms continue to decline.

3) Most world leaders seem determined to combat global warming, with nearly 200 countries joining a landmark climate accord in late October.


OO Green Energy Can Increasingly Match - Or Beat - Fossil Fuel Prices a new report says.

OO Big Utility Sees More Efficiency, Cheap Renewables Lead To $10 Oil By 2025 if not sooner, says the innovation chief at French untility giant, Engie SA.

"Solar, battery storage, electrical and hydrogen vehicles, and connected devices are in a 'J' curve," Thierre Lerpercq said.

OO China To Cut Solar, Wind Power Prices As Project Costs Fall due to solar panel price plunges of about 30% in 2016 alone. Wind turbine prices have also fallen.


Bright Blows The Breeze and the homes it lights with the first US offshore wind farm.
Credit Michael Dwyer at AP

OO Block Island Wind Farm: First US Offshore Wind Farm should power 17,000 Rhode Island homes from 600-foot turbines, anchored in 90 feet of water fifteen miles off the coast.

OO Alberta's New Carbon Tax Is All About The 'Long Game, says deputy premier. Nearly
$10 billion of expected carbon tax revenues will either be siphoned back into the economy by way of diversifying the energy industry, or rebate it back to low- and middle-income Albertans.

OO Ontario Set To Tackle Climate Change With Cap-And-Trade Launch on Jan. 1, 2017.


OO 'This Is Possible. We Did It':
The Week Portugal Ran On Renewables
proving they can replace fossil fuels.

OO Christmas Day 2016 Sets New UK Green Record for renewable energy use.

OO Top China Coal Province Vows 20 % Cut In Pollution By 2020 overseen by a government known to push people to fulfill public vows.




Now Imagine the First Floors Flooding before 2100 in Miami.

OO Which US Cities Will Climate Change Flood First? Takeaways:

  • Climate change is real,
  • Sea levels are rising, and pretty soon,
  • ocean-front property will become ocean-floor property.
  • Watch out Miami, New Orleans, New York - and coastal military bases.

OO Sea Level Rise May Permanently Flood Parts Of Tampa By 2040 says a new study released by the city and country planning commission.


Faces Fleeing Climate Change seeking refuge at a center that will provide them food, after their own crops failed. Credit Josh Haner at the New York Times

OO Photographing Climate Change Refugees by drone and on foot.

OO Smog In Northern China Shuts Highways, Causes Canceled Flights disrupting the first day of the New Year holiday.

OO Robin Hood's Sherwood Forest Faces Fracking Threat


OO Major Flooding In UK Now Likely Every Year warns lead climate adviser, but ministers still have no coherent long-term plan to deal with it.

OO Rising Seas Drowning Maryland Refuge destroying habitat at Blackwater refuge, rising sea levels drown habitat and native plants, and converting nearly eight square miles of marsh into open water.

OO Climate Change Threatens Famed Tourist Destination: The Amalfi Coast As changing land use and increasingly intense rains threaten mudslides on its steep slopes.


OO Fish Seek Cooler Waters, Leaving Some US Fishermen's Nets Empty - Catch limits for fishermen are often based on where fish have been most abundant in the past. But they have failed to keep up with geographical changes, wreaking havoc among state fisheries.

OO Bangladesh Heads Towards A Water Crisis as mismanagement, pollution, declining groundwater tables and rising seas increase salt intrusion into dwindling supplies.




Source Reuters

OO The Next Wave Of Migrants Needs Better Policies To Ensure Their Survival Takeaways:

  • Given worsening climate change effects, from prolonged drought to rising seas,
  • the next wave of climate migrants will be bigger, mostly Asian,
  • and find a world less prepared to receive them.
Governments must:
  • educate citizens on the threats of climate change;
  • make it easier and safer for people to move - or stay.
  • Destination countries will need structures and services to receive migrants,
  • Or face the chaos these migrants will cause.
  • It's time to start the discussion.



OO How To Expand Solar Access To New York's Affordable Housing Community by partnering with entities whose expertise combined can do far more in tackling technical and financial obstacles.

OO Ohio Considers Landfills For Solar Farm Sites




OO Dangerous Climate Change Truths Are Growing as scientists understand better the links between extreme weather and climate change.

OO Climate Change Driving Birds To Migrate Early, Research Reveals, arriving at their breeding grounds earlier - where their food sources may not be ready.




OO Trump Trump: Fund Climate Action Abroad say 100+ organizations to Obama, before he leaves office.

How? Pay the remaining $2.5 billion pledged to the UN Green Climate Fund, which helps poor countries reduce emissions and adapt to climate change. This is something Trump could not undo.

OO A Climate Doubting Scientist Doubts No Longer:
Global Warming Is Melting Greenland Ice Sheet
- it took five years of increasing evidence to finally convince him. He'll see a lot more in the years ahead.

OO Two Pipeline Protesters Arrested After Hanging Banner At Vikings Game protesting the Dakota Access oil pipeline.




Painting the River Black: Coal Ash gives you an idea of how coal ash can destroy an environment and your water, a valuable resource. Source

OO More Coal Ash Concerns Uncovered
At North Carolina Belmont Duke Plant
Environmentalists say Duke Energy failed to inspect a potentially dangerous 50-year-old pipe.

OO Frack Drilling Site Noise Can Be Hazardous to human health, in addition to other hazards, like breathing silica dust or drinking methane-infused water, says a new study.

OO China Energy Consumption Edged Up 1.4 % In 2016


Devastation Machine Faces Dark Future while Canada facese a greener one, as it stops turning carbon storing forests into dead martian landscapes. Credit Peter Essick at National Geographic

OO 2016: Canada's Oil Sands Downturn Hints At Ominous Future

OO 'Outrageous': Aussie Coal Mine Gets Expansion Nod Despite Secret, Incomplete Studies



If we do not live sustainably,
Our children will die inhumanely.

@@ The Cost of Unintended Pregnancy: Too Young

Teen childbearing cost US taxpayers $9+ Billion in 2010
And the costs of raising a child usually ensures decades, if not a life, of poverty for its mother.
- US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


Help prevent unintended pregnancies in your community:
publicize where women can access affordable contraception.


They can go here to find locations:


And there are many more actions you can do, right here.




OO Solarcity Raises Another $241 Million To Deploy Ever More Solar - Keep it up!

OO Panasonic To Invest Over $256 Million In Tesla's U.S. Plant For Solar Cells


Check it out here, right now!




Daily Climate Change: Global Map of Unusual Temperatures, Jan 10, 2017


How unusual has the weather been? No one event is "caused" by climate change, but global warming, which is predicted to increase unusual, extreme weather, is having a daily effect on weather, worldwide.

Looking above at recent temperature anomalies, much of the US and the waters surrounding it are experiencing warmer than normal temperatures: the eastern Pacific warm spot continues and so does the drought in California, despite the heavy rains hitting the SF bay area.

Much of the areas surrounding the North Pole are experiencing much warmer than normal temperatures - not good news for our Arctic thermal shield of ice. Hotter than usual temperatures continue to dominate human habitats.



There is, of course, much more news on the consequences and solutions to climate change. To get it, check out this annotated resource list I've compiled, "Climate Change News Resources," at here. For more information on the science of climate change, its consequences and solutions you can view my annotated list of online information resources here.

To help you understand just what science does and does NOT do, check this out!

Every day is Earth Day, folks, as I was reminded by these wild French orchids I photographed one spring. Making the U.S. a global clean energy leader will ensure a heck of a lot more jobs, and a clean, safe future. If you'd like to join the increasing numbers of people who want to TELL Congress that they will vote for clean energy candidates you can do so here. It's our way of letting Congress know there's a strong clean energy voting bloc out there. For more detailed summaries of the above and other climate change items, audio podcasts and texts are freely available.