Hot News: December 22, 2016 - Years Of Living Dangerously

Hot News: December 22, 2016

By Climate Nexus

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Arctic Temperatures Skyrocket: Three days before Christmas, temperatures in the North Pole are expected to spike to above 50 degrees F hotter than usual and approach the melting point of 32 degrees F. This trend is only the latest in a series of troublingly hot temperature readings in the Arctic in recent months, and historical temperature records reveal that the Arctic is warming more than twice as fast as the rest of the planet. Scientists project that this extreme warming, still a rare event in the Arctic, will become increasingly routine as global temperatures increase, and may start to happen every other year towards the later end of the century if emissions stay at the current rate. (New York Times $, The GuardianReutersNPRUSA TodayGristMashableThinkProgressChristian Science MonitorClimate HomeCarbon Brief. Analysis: Climate Central.)

Trump Really, Really, Really Hates Windpower: In a series of letters sent between 2011 and 2013, Donald Trump repeatedly and persistently lobbied and cajoled then-First Minister Alex Salmond of Scotland to oppose a planned offshore wind farm near Trump’s golf course in Aberdeen. The 16 letters, obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request by Huffington Post UK, show Trump calling wind turbines “monsters” that “[destroy] Aberdeen’s magnificent coastlines,” while warning upkeep costs of renewables will make Scotland’s economy “a third world wasteland.” On the campaign trail, Trump seemed particularly fixated on dragging down wind power, claiming that it’s too expensive and that turbines kill “so many eagles.” The president-elect, who has tweetedabout the Scottish project 60 times since 2012, reportedly urged British politician Nigel Farage to oppose offshore wind farms that spoil views in a meeting shortly after the election. (Huffington Post UKWSJ $, The GuardianPoliticoGristThe Hill)

Arizona Axes Net Metering: Arizona regulators voted to do away with the state’s retail net metering policies on Tuesday evening, the end of a protracted two-year process. Members of the Arizona Corporation Commission voted 4-1 for a proposal to replace net metering with policies allowing the utility to pay less than retail price for electricity homeowners contribute to the grid. State solar advocates panned the move, with some groups estimating the policies will result in a 30 percent reduction in what utilities pay solar customers. (Greentech MediaMidwest Energy NewsArizona RepublicArizona Daily StarPhoenix Business JournalJZZKTAR. Background: Climate Nexus.)

US News
  • DOE commits $2B loan guarantee for CCS methanol plant (Washington Post$, APGreenwire $)
  • US water projects aimed at easing drought to get $225M (AP)
  • Trump’s pick for Interior secretary can’t seem to make up his mind about climate change (Washington Post $)
  • Alaska lawmakers mull legislation to block Obama drilling ban (The Hill)
  • Troubled clean-coal plant could get new lifeline (WSJ $)
  • Outgoing EPA chief: Science is ‘fundamental to absolutely everything we do’ (Washington Post $)
  • Does Rick Perry have the wattage for Energy? (Politico PRO $)
  • Donald Trump’s adviser from Goldman may be his most environmentally friendly pick yet (Huffington Post)
  • Icahn tapped as Trump’s special adviser on regulatory issues (Reuters)
  • Renewable energy sector remains optimistic amid Trump policy outlook (KQED)
  • Sources: Solar lobby group picks BOEM’s Hopper as next CEO (Politico PRO $)
  • Why is corporate America picking wind power over solar? (The Guardian)
  • Las Vegas now runs completely on renewable energy (USATodayMic)
  • California forests failing to regrow after intense wildfires (InsideClimate NewsClimateWire $)
  • The U.S. has been overwhelmingly hot this year (Climate Home)
  • Abandoned Texas oil wells seen as “ticking time bombs” of contamination (The Texas Tribune)
  • Obama admin, insurers partner on climate risk initiative (Greenwire $)
  • Iowa’s new energy plan: More renewable energy, stronger power grid (The Des Moines RegisterQuad City TimesBusiness Record)
  • The growing urgency of building a new economy in coal-powered Appalachia (Nexus Media News)
  • In Boston, climate change could take the food off your plate (Next City)
  • Maine regulators push net metering decision into 2017 (UtilityDive)
  • Digital media are shaking up reporting on climate change (Thomson Reuters Foundation)

World News

  • Trudeau sees carbon price as investment edge in age of Trump (ReutersBloombergThe Canadian Press)
  • 2016: A year of transition from talk to action on climate change (Reuters)
  • India plans nearly 60% of electricity capacity from non-fossil fuels by 2027 (The GuardianBloomberg)
  • Activist investor ramps up pressure on Shell to act on climate change (Reuters)
  • China sends carbon fight into orbit (WSJ $)
  • EU Commission favours keeping limits on Chinese solar panels (Reuters)
  • ‘Smog refugees’ struggle to escape dangerous conditions in China (Mashable)
  • India ‘lacks plan’ to cope with climate-linked migration (Climate Home)
  • Lawmakers consider carbon tax for shipping industry (ClimateWire $)
  • Women are breaking the climate taboo and questioning whether to have kids in such a world (Fusion)
  • Warming is sending mountain glaciers ‘off a cliff’ (Climate Home)
  • Bacteria, methane, and other dangers within Siberia’s melting permafrost (Wired)
  • The new reindeer games: reducing climate change (ClimateWire $)
  • This NASA simulation highlights why climate change research is essential (Motherboard)
  • Wasted food contributes to climate change (Christian Science Monitor)

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