The failure of Democrats’ high priority climate policy last week was a gut punch that left supporters disbelieving and bitter, loudly denouncing Oregon’s runaway Republican senators for sabotaging “the Oregon Way” and the arrival of Trumpian, anything-goes politics in Salem.The reaction was hardly surprising, given backers’ decade-long, Sisyphean struggle to push this policy up the hill, only to see it roll back down at the end of every legislative session. But 2019 was supposed to be different.Democrats had a supermajority in both houses. The governor, House Speaker and Senate President were all on board. Workgroups were established. A joint interim committee met. The governor had her own Carbon Policy Office. And backers had developed a broad coalition of advocacy groups supporting the legislation.This was the year for Oregon to enact the nation’s second economy-wide cap on greenhouse gases and reclaim her national environmental bona fides. Even … [Read more...] about How Oregon’s climate-change bill ran out of gas
How long until climate change is irreversible
In a nondescript office building in Pinellas Park, a group of officials came together Feb. 11 to start figuring out how the 3.1 million people who live in the coastal plain that is the Tampa Bay area should grapple with a global crisis.It was the sixth meeting of the recently formed Tampa Bay Regional Resiliency Coalition’s Steering Committee. Officials call it the first time local governments have come together in a meaningful way to identify, address and plan for climate change.It quickly became clear that the group has a lot of work to do.PREVIOUS COVERAGE: New climate report warns of more rain, hurricanes and flooding in Florida and elsewhereJust a few minutes into the meeting, Gulfport City Council member Michael Fridovich voiced concern about $1 billion in waterfront residential construction and road improvements slated for the Tampa end of the Gandy Bridge.“Municipalities keep okaying buildings being built in areas that they shouldn’t be being built,” he … [Read more...] about Climate change is here. Will Tampa Bay finally get ready?
Lisa Lake / Getty images Twelve years. That’s how long we have until the devastating effects of climate change become irreversible, according to the fourth National Climate Assessment released in November. It isn’t a lot of time, especially when viewed through the lens of politics and bureaucracy. Especially when the political party that controls most of D.C. remains willfully ignorant to the threats climate change poses. “That was an alarm,” Rep Suzanne Bonamici, who represents Oregon’s Washington County in the US House of Representatives, said about the assessment. “It was more than a wake-up call.” But there’s a ray of hope in the House, where Democrats recently regained control after nearly a decade of Republican rule. When the GOP took over the House in 2011, it gutted the United States House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, and since then the House hasn’t had a committee specifically focused on … [Read more...] about Oregon Rep Bonamici Talks Combating Climate Change Under Republican Rule
(CNN)There may actually be a way to keep the worst of climate change at bay, but it's going to take a herculean effort, according to a new study published Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications. Climate change is well underway already, the time to act and limit its human causes is now, many studies have shown. This latest report maps out what it may take to get there. Antarctica ice melt has accelerated by 280% in the last 4 decades It posits that if the world was to phase out its "carbon-intensive infrastructure" at the end of its design lifetime starting from the end of 2018, there's a 64% chance that the planet's peak temperature can remain below the goal of 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit) above pre-industrial levels. Above that, scientists predict the planet will see even more extreme weather events such as wildfires, droughts, floods, massive animal die offs and food shortages for millions. The planet is already two-thirds of the way there, with global … [Read more...] about One simple — but really hard — solution to stop climate change
“Americans are well aware of the damaging and sometimes catastrophic effects of climate change,” said Noah Oppenheim, PCFFA's executive director, in a press release. “For crab fishermen, that means significant portions of the Dungeness crab fishery have been closed repeatedly since 2015, including parts along the coast this year.” Photo of Noah Oppenheim by Dan Bacher. On the day before the commercial crab season was scheduled to begin on most of the California coast, the West Coast’s largest commercial fishing association filed a landmark lawsuit against Big Oil. The Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen's Associations (PCFFA) on November 14 filed the litigation to hold 30 fossil fuel companies, including Chevron, Exxon-Mobil, BP other oil industry giants, accountable for losses caused by four straight years of fishery closures that have harmed crabbers, their businesses, their families, and local communities in … [Read more...] about West Coast crab fishermen sue fossil fuel industry over losses caused by climate change : Indybay