The terms of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) treaty have finally been concluded in a closed session in Atlanta. While the text is still secret, the arguments have begun. Climate Hawks are suspicious of the ‘Investor State Dispute Resolution” mechanism, which gives enormous opportunities for Big Oil to undermine future climate legislation. Here in Massachusetts, the Governor will allow utilities to charge a fee to electrical ratepayers to cover the cost of new pipelines. Is it fair to call that a tax? Still it is a pretty a sweet deal for Kinder Morgan!Read more
You have to admit that it would really be quite great to see Exxon's execs busting rocks and pressing license plates...
I hope these fossil-fuel fiends aren't considered "too big to jail," especially after the revelation that Exxon (now known as ExxonMobil) not only knew about the severe risks of human-caused climate change in the late-1970s and early-1980s, but actually financed cutting-edge research into the dangers of carbon dioxide--only to abandon such groundbreaking research and go all-in on denying climate science and attacking climate scientists.Read more
The real possibility of a shutdown of the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station creates a crisis (or perhaps an opportunity.) It means that Climate Hawks should demand clean energy to fill the gap. It would take only four projects comparable to Cape Wind to fill that gap. There are bills in the Massachusetts Statehouse that relate to clean energy, and they are the being debated. Further, now that KXL is in deep trouble, and Shell has withdrawn from the Chukchi Sea, what is next for Climate Hawks? Our next big push should be for a ban on the extraction of carbon based fuels from federally owned lands, whether they are in the American West or off our coastal shores.Read more
Pope Francis came to town this week and spoke openly about the need to address climate change. That was remarkable all by itself, but there were several other heartening signs- from new Senate bills to promises from China. It has been a good week.Read more
The political battles over clean power continue, and Climate Hawks need to stay in the game. We discuss.Read more
In an ironic moment, the California Assembly tip-toed away from aggressive climate legislation, at the behest of Big Oil, even as climate-enhanced wildfires marched with a heavy footprint through various towns outside Sacramento. Further, the destructive behavior of the oil industry was highlighted by a report that Exxon realized even in the 1970’s that their petroleum products were creating a serious global problem. The report might be the ‘smoking gun’ equivalent to revelations in past decades about what the tobacco industry knew about cancer even as they denied the medical evidence.Read more
Near the bottom of the landing page for the Massachusetts Power Forward there is a quote from Grace Paley: “The only recognizable feature of hope is action.” That is a great turn of phrase, and the Clean Power Vision puts the idea in to action:
Massachusetts has emerged as a national leader on energy, making substantial progress in transitioning away from polluting sources of power to renewable energy and energy efficiency. But now our state is poised to invest billions of dollars to replace retiring power plants with long-lived infrastructure that will shape our future. We must ensure that our state adopts an energy policy that supports local renewable energy resources, keeps energy dollars in our communities, creates good green jobs and protects our Commonwealth from climate change and life-threatening pollution. We call on our Governor and legislature to power forward with energy solutions that are accountable to our communities, our environment and our future.
In July, the Seattle Times explained the controversy:
"This summer, as Washington bakes in a West Coast drought, a flock of petition-toting activists has fanned out to parks, festivals and street corners, trying to force the sort of sweeping action on global warming that has eluded state lawmakers.