Stop the Frack Attack rallies in Dallas

Dozens of people worried about the environmental effects of gas and oil drilling in the US, gathered at the Stop the Frack Attack conference in Dallas this weekend. Highlights included presentations by people whose water and land have been contaminated by fracking, and a Skype address by Gasland director Josh Fox, who urged people to “stand and fight.”

How ‘The Washington Post’ got it dead wrong

Electric car supporters and companies have responded to a slap down by the Washington Post editorial board last week, which accused the Obama Administration of wasting money to help launch electric vehicles, such as GM’s Volt and Nissan’s Leaf.

The opinion piece “GM’s Vaunted Volt is on the Road to Nowhere Fast ” accused the administration both of having “paltry” goals for electric vehicles — 1 million by 2015 — and of spending too much money on subsidies for the new technology.

Coal is plentiful, so let’s keep it that way

You know that argument about how the U.S. can’t really impact greenhouse gases because they’re spiraling out of control in other developing nations like China and India?
It’s illogical on its face, but that’s not stopping fossil fuel interests from pushing this idea.

GOP senators try to force-start Keystone pipeline, despite Obama’s order for additional review

ess than a month since the Obama Administration delayed the proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline for at least a year, a group of GOP senators is trying to force the project to begin anyway.

The partisan showdown is led by Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), minority chair of the Foreign Relations Committee. Supporters include 37 other senators, including those from Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, which would host segments of the 1,700 mile pipeline.

California’s Prop 23 looks increasingly combustible

When the Prop 23 proponents launched their grenade to blow up California’s greenhouse gas emissions targets, they likely hoped that the measure would sail to victory during the traditional shakeup of midterm elections.

But according to a poll released Monday, it ain’t happening.

A new Los Angeles Times/ USC poll of likely voters shows that most do not agree with Prop 23, which would roll back California’s progressive carbon emissions standards. The poll found 48 percent opposed Prop 23, compared to 32 percent who were in favor. The remainder were undecided.

J.R.’s back and he’s not promoting oil

Solar World AG, one of the largest solar PV manufacturers in the world with factories in California, Oregon and Washington, has scored a dream advocate for its products: J.R. Ewing. Actually, the spokesman is Larry Hagman, who played the oilman on the long-running Dallas series. Hagman reprises his oil baron role in an ad for Bonn-based Solar World, where someone obviously decided the possibilities were too rich to leave untapped.

How to — and how not to — help dolphins during the oil spill

You’ve probably encountered those “Don’t Feed the Bears” signs in national parks. Well, it’s true of dolphins also.

NOAA has put out notice that the public should not feed, corral, swim or approach dolphins in the gulf, even if they appear distressed from possible exposure to the oil spill.

But residents concerned about suffering or stranded dolphins should call in about them on the federal government’s wildlife hotline at 866-557-1401.

While they wait for a response team, they can and should:

  • Stay with the animal until rescuers arrive, but use caution. Keep a safe distance from the head and tail.

Hands Across the Sands: The story in photos

In a symbolic but moving gesture, the Hands Across the Sands oil drilling protest on Saturday brought out people from Miami to Melbourne to stand in solidarity for clean beaches, and against more offshore oil drilling.

There were events around the world, but the turnout was especially heavy in the U.S., spanning the nation from High Line Park in New York City and Nags Head in North Carolina in the East, to Puget Sound and Los Angeles and several beaches in between on the West Coast. People lined up in Anchorage and Maui.

Hands Across the Sands plans a public demo against oil drilling

The message of Hands Across the Sands, its founder likes to say, is simple: Say ‘No’ to oil drilling and ‘Yes’ to clean energy.
To make that point crystal clear, thousands of Americans are expected to line up on beaches tomorrow (June 26) at 11 a.m. to join hands and show their solidarity on that point. The gatherings will last 15 minutes. Organizers will take a photo of the group, and then members will disband, leaving only their footprints behind.

Oil spills, and the economics and environmental impact of resource depletion

Following the failure of the latest efforts to plug the gushing leak from BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil well in the Gulf of Mexico, and amid warnings that oil could continue to flow for another two months or more, perhaps it’s a good time to step back a moment mentally and look at the bigger picture—the context of our human history of resource extraction—to see how current events reveal deeper trends that will have even greater and longer-lasting significance.

Much of what follows may seem obvious to some readers, pedantic to others. But very few people seem to have much of a grasp of the basic technological, economic, and environmental issues that arise as resource extraction proceeds, and as a society adapts to depletion of its resource base. So, at the risk of boring the daylights out of those already familiar with the history of extractive industries, here follows a spotlighting of relevant issues, with the events in the Gulf of Mexico ever-present in the wings and poised to take center stage as the subject of some later comments.

Schweitzer Calls For “Clean, Green and American-made” Energy

By Barbara Kessler

For those yearning to hear more about the Democrats’ energy plans, Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer’s vigorous speech Tuesday night at the Democratic National Convention in Denver opened a more detailed dialogue on the subject.

Schweitzer, a first-term Democratic governor who chose a Republican lieutenant governor, called for “a new energy system that is clean, green and American-made.” He lamented U.S. dependence on foreign oil and what he labeled the Bush Administration’s single-minded focus on drilling to extract more oil, not just abroad but also domestically.