News is hurdling along this Tuesday PM: Ed Snowden may now be aÂ “tasty morsel” for Vladimir Putin, and much more; President Obama offered up supposedly a heavy-duty, ‘sweeping plan,‘ to fight climate change, but cited no patience for “Flat Earth Society” nit-twits; and the US Supreme Court reportedly “gutted-out” the 1965 Voting Rights Act — aÂ move way-similar to “…throwing away your umbrella in a rainstorm because you are not getting wet.”
(Illustration found here).
These stories will slosh the media waves the next few days, from blog posts to TV newscasts, and all three carry the spreading stain of disaster in greatly influencing life in the way-near future — especially the toil towards climate change.
Although Obama has touted the work to be done, he’s at least finally taken king coal by the neck (via the Guardian):
But Obama’s boldest move by far was the decision to bypass a deadlocked Congress and issue an executive memo to the Environmental Protection Agency, calling for new rules curbing greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.
Such measures were long overdue, Obama said.
“Power plants can still dump limitless carbon pollution into the air for free,” he said.
“That’s not right, that’s not safe and it needs to stop.”
And he maybe-hinted an outcome on the Keystone XL pipeline:
Obama gave no indication of how he will decide on the project, which would open up Canada’s vast store of carbon.
However, he offered campaigners a measure of reassurance, saying climate implications would be critical to making a final determination.
“The net effects of pipeline impact on our climate will be absolutely critical in determining if the project is allowed to go forward,” he said.
This was the conclusion, however, to the Guardian piece, which most-likely should have been the lede:
The significance of Tuesday’s strategy will only become apparent in time, said Van Jones, a co-founder of the activist group Rebuild the Dream and Obama’s former White House green jobs advisor.
“Cracking down on carbon pollution is very good and it is long overdue, but it’s going to take two years to produce the rules and then probably five years to litigate it so that is a big chunk of time,” Jones said.
“That is a big chunk of carbon to go after there, but it is going to take a while before there is any effect. So celebrate, but be realistic.”
Years and years and years on down the line. And while all this is going on, the clock is ticking and more shit is spewed into the environment, not only in the US, but all over this fevered planet. The reality of time is not so good. Particularly if confronted with coal-carnivorous China.
â€œIt is very unlikely that demand for thermal coal in China will peak before 2030,â€ said William Durbin, the Beijing-based president of global markets with Wood Mackenzie, an energy research and consulting firm, in a statement accompanying the release of a new report entitled â€œChina: The Illusion of Peak Coal.â€
â€œDespite efforts to limit coal consumption and seek alternative fuel options, Chinaâ€™s strong appetite for thermal coal will lead to a doubling of demand by 2030,â€ the report concludes.
Coal consumption in China, bolstered by a period of rampant construction of coal-fired plants that has only recently slowed, must rise to feed Chinaâ€™s explosive demand for power, which will nearly triple to 15,000 TWh by 2030.
Even existing goals for reducing coal consumption are sketchy, many analysts believe.
â€œAchieving these targets eventually would come at considerable economic cost,â€ John Reilly, an environmental economist at MIT, told New Scientist magazine.
The world is not ready to play hard ball on climate.
Of course, I did my part yesterday in allowing the earth to build upÂ temperatures at a rate equal to heat generated by four Hiroshima nuclear bombs every second by putting another $20 worth of gas in my old Jeep.
The cost this pump visit was $4.29 a gallon for regular, same price the last time, and the time before that — up here along California’s north coast gas prices seem to hang awhile at one spot.
We’re all contributing to our own demise, a bit of oil-soaked, coal-fed irony.