Fox News Dismisses National Climate Assessment As “Untrue, Unrelenting Doom & Gloom”

A NASA picture of large wildfires burning across sections of northern Baja and southern California. PHOTO BY NASA VIA ASSOCIATED PRESS

A NASA picture of large wildfires burning across sections of northern Baja and southern California.


“What’s Behind Early Season Winds Fueling Southern California Wildfires?” is the title of a news article on about the forest fires currently raging through the state. Though the precise cause is as yet unclear, what is clear is that the weather system which brings strong winds that intensify forest fires in Southern California, called the Santa Ana winds, usually doesn’t occur until between September or October.

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Australian Broadcasting: How Global Warming Causes Extremes

Climate Denial Crock of the Week

Very good explanation of weather extremes worldwide under climate change.

Heads up on this came from Jennifer Francis.

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This Year’s Hurricane Season Is Going to Be Pretty Bad



Hurricane Sandy flood water in NYC subways - photo courtesy of

Hurricane Sandy flood water in NYC subways – photo courtesy of

In the June 6th episode of his news show, Chris Hayes discussed this year’s recently arrived hurricane season. He cited a report by the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a federal agency, which predicts:

” …there is a 70 percent likelihood of 13 to 20 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 7 to 11 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher), including 3 to 6 major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of 111 mph or higher).

These ranges are well above the seasonal average of 12 named storms, 6 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes.”

The report goes on to say that of the factors contributing to this increase in severity, warmer-than-average water temperatures in the tropical Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea play a significant role.

Hayes makes the obvious connection between warmer water and global warming during the broadcast in a way that should put any doubt as to whether or not human activities can alter the weather to rest. He also mentions Superstorm Sandy, which will now and forever be considered the hallmark of extreme weather brought on by global warming/climate change.

Chris Hayes - photo courtesy of

Chris Hayes – photo courtesy of


Watch the video to see him tell it.



Fracking Has Caused Earthquakes

A drilling rig- courtesy of

A drilling rig- courtesy of



Earthquakes triggered by fluids injected deep underground, such as during the controversial practice of fracking, may be more common than previously thought, a new study suggests.

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Good News: NY State Passes Solar Energy Bill In Earth Day Vote!

Solar panels- courtesy of

Solar panels- courtesy of

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Albany, N.Y.- 23 April, 2013– In honor of Earth Day, the New York State Senate unanimously passed legislation to extend the NY-Sun Initiative through 2023 and solidify the state’s long-term commitment to solar energy. Today’s bipartisan vote for the New York Solar Bill (S.2522) indicates growing support among lawmakers for delivering comprehensive solar policy to Governor Cuomo’s desk this legislative session.

Business and environmental groups praised bill sponsor Senator George Maziarz and other Senate supporters for passing the solar bill, which will create thousands of jobs, lower solar costs and increase energy reliability for all New Yorkers.

“The New York Solar Bill will help create new local jobs, modernize our power infrastructure, protect our environment, and put New York at the forefront of our growing clean energy economy. We commend New York’s Senate for committing to this 10-year solar program. It will drive the kind of private investment that it takes to build a world-class solar market,” said Carrie Cullen Hitt, senior vice president for state affairs at the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).

“At a time when the state faces the dual challenges of an economy still in recovery and failing energy infrastructure, this solar bill can help build a stronger New York,” said Peter Olmsted, east coast policy advocate for the Vote Solar Initiative (Vote Solar). “We thank bill sponsor Senator Maziarz and his colleagues for their leadership and look forward to working with the Assembly to get long-term solar policy across the finish line.”

“Environmental benefits aren’t the only kind of green worth celebrating this Earth Day. For all its eco-friendly credentials, solar power is also driving real investment and job creation right here in New York. With today’s successful vote, our Senators showed that they are committed to seeing solar economic growth continue up and down the state,” said Sail Van Nostrand, president of the New York Solar Energy Industries Association (NYSEIA).

“NY-Sun is delivering on its promise to jumpstart the solar industry in the Empire State; attracting private sector investment, creating local jobs, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions and other pollution from the electric sector,” said Jackson Morris, director of strategic engagement at the Pace Energy & Climate Center. “Thanks to the leadership of Senator Maziarz, today’s Senate vote moves us a critical step closer to a long-term solar program that will keep driving down costs and maximizing benefits to New Yorkers.”

“In the wake of Superstorm Sandy, New Yorkers understand all too well the urgent need to combat climate change and better prepare for its impacts,” said Pierre Bull, policy analyst at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). “Solar power is helping to tackle those challenges head-on. This bill—together with reductions in power plant pollution and increased energy efficiency and support for other renewable energy sources, like offshore wind—can help New York build a cleaner, safer and more secure energy future.”

About the New York Solar Bill:

The New York Solar Bill (A.5060/S.2522) would build on the success of the NY-Sun Initiative, a public-private partnership designed to drive growth in the state’s solar industry and lower solar costs for homes, businesses, schools and other energy users. NY-Sun was established to quadruple the amount of customer-sited solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity added between 2011 and 2013. In his 2013 State of the State address, Governor Cuomo committed to extending the NY-Sun Initiative through 2023. The New York Solar Bill would solidify a 10-year extension of NY-Sun in statute, ensuring that New Yorkers benefit from a stable and predictable long-term incentive program.

Sponsored by Senator George Maziarz (R-C, Newfane) and Assemblyman Steve Englebright (D- Setauket), the bill is expected to deliver the following benefits:

  • Build 2,200 megawatts (MW) of solar, enough clean, reliable electricity to power 400,000 New York homes.
  • Create thousands of new local jobs in New York.
  • Save New Yorkers billions by reducing the need to fire up our dirtiest and most expensive fossil power plants.
  • Spur millions of dollars of investment in the state’s growing clean energy economy.

The proposal has support from a coalition of businesses, trade associations and environmental groups, including: Alliance for Clean Energy – New York, Borrego Solar, Citizens Campaign for the Environment, Environmental Advocates of New York, EDF Renewable Energy, E.ON Climate & Renewables North America, Mainstream Energy Corp., NRDC, The Nature Conservancy, New York League of Conservation Voters, New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG), NYSEIA, Nexamp, Pace Energy & Climate Center, REC Solar, SolarCity, SEIA, Solar One, Sierra Club, SunEdison, Sungevity, SunPower Corp., Sunrun, Trinity Solar, and Vote Solar.

With enough solar to power 27,000 homes, New York currently ranks 12th in the country for total installed solar capacity. 3,300 New Yorkers are employed in the state’s growing solar industry. In 2012, $257 million was invested in New York to install solar on homes and businesses. This represents a 91% increase over the previous year and is expected to grow again in 2013.

Background Materials:

– The New York Solar Bill:
– U.S. Solar Market Insight: 2012 Year in Review:
– The Solar Foundation’s State Solar Jobs Map:

As a New Yorker, I’m so glad that my state is doing this. It’s about time! What’s especially encouraging about this is that currently  NY State is still operating the infamous Indian Point nuclear power plant for energy. People, such as myself, who live near the power plant are terrified that one day an accident will happen. Just look at the devastation Chernobyl and the more recent disaster in Japan wrought upon the residents close enough to be affected by the toxic nuclear material oozing out of damaged nuclear facilities. People in my area, the Lower Hudson Valley, are dreading the phone call or neighborhood siren telling us that we’re next.
What we all hope is that this solar energy program will continue to expand not only in duration, but in scope. The main objective should be to meet the current goals in the amount of homes using solar energy, then set new, bigger goals until we can completely phase out nuclear energy and shut Indian Point down.

Weird Wintry Weather and the Climate-Change Link




It was high time to pass around a few cold ones in the shade of an awning in Amarillo, Texas, just a few days ago. Now it’s time to hunker inside, drink whiskey neat, and play charades.

The city broke a heat record on April 30, reaching a scorching hot 97 degrees. Then it got hit by unseasonably cold weather that has swept through the nation’s heartland. A couple days after reaching 97, the temperature bottomed out at 33 degrees, with the cold snap bringing some snow.

The topsy-turvy weather in Amarillo is emblematic of the climatic incoherence reigning across the country. The coasts are basking in spring weather while the Rockies, Great Plains, and Midwest are being smacked by snow storms.

The unseasonably late chill appears to be one of many symptoms of the changing climate. But before we dive into that, let’s take a look at the extraordinary weather pummeling the Midwest. From The Weather Channel:

Winter Storm Achilles may have set the record for the biggest May snowstorm at any single location in four different states! That said, these potential records are based on preliminary data and will have to be verified.

Wisconsin — We’ve seen snowfall reports of 18 inches near Hayward and 17 inches in Rice Lake. …

Minnesota — 18 inches of snow was measured in Blooming Prairie, between Albert Lea and Rochester. …

Iowa — 13 inches of snow has been measured by an observer in Osage. …

Arkansas — Up to 3.5 inches reported in Gravette.

The notion that global warming could trigger cold weather is enough to make a conservative pundit’s head explode. Science is hard!

But Minnesota Public Radio asked a meteorologist about possible links between the late-season snowstorms and climate change. While issuing the standard caveats about how climate change doesn’t “cause” any particular weather events, he explained some likely connections. Here’s a partial transcript of the the exchange during the radio station’s weekly Climate Cast program:

[Host Kerri] Miller: I think this late spring snow is a good opportunity to ask again as we have during our Climate Cast — weather or climate? How do we answer that?

[Meteorologist Paul] Huttner: What’s happening today is weather, there’s no doubt about it. This is a very out-of-season event. All weather in a way seems to be colored or flavored by the climate changes we’re seeing. If you’re going to tie a link to today’s weather to climate change you would have to cite Arctic amplification. We’ve touched on that before. That’s where this slower jet stream gets stuck. It slows down and these blocking patterns set up and our weather patterns get stuck. That’s what’s been happening a lot in Minnesota and the Upper Midwest this spring. Some links that this may be tied to the warmer Arctic Ocean that we saw last summer. It’s not a slam dunk, but the clues all seem to be pointing in the same direction. …

We’re seeing a trend where the atmosphere overall holds about four to five percent more water vapor than it did a decade ago, and that injects these storms with more moisture.

The other thing about this storm and drawing a parallel with Hurricane Sandy late last fall, it’s a little bit out of season. In fact, this is well out of season for Minnesota. It’s unprecedented, the amount of snowfall we’ve had today in Minnesota. Mark Seeley tells me that Dodge Center, with 15.4 inches of snow, broke the all-time state snowfall record for May 2 today. This is definitely an unprecedented out-of-season event. When you get these events in May, when we’ve still got cold enough air for snow but we’ve got so much warmth and moisture to the south, it just supercharges these storms and that can tend to produce more precipitation than an atmosphere with less water in it.

Schoolkids in Minnesota and Wisconsin got a rare May snow day on Thursday, while lucky students at one school in the Seattle area got a “sun day” on Friday to celebrate unusually warm and sunny weather.

John Upton is a science aficionado and green news junkie who tweets, posts articles to Facebook, and blogs about ecology. He welcomes reader questions, tips, and incoherent rants:

Blame blistering heat waves on global warming, study says

In this Sept. 30, 2011, file photo, sailboats and a floating dock lie on the dry, cracked dirt in a harbor at Lake Hefner in Oklahoma City as drought continues to be a problem across the state.

In this Sept. 30, 2011, file photo, sailboats and a floating dock lie on the dry, cracked dirt in a harbor at Lake Hefner in Oklahoma City as drought continues to be a problem across the state.

From The Associated Press and NBC News: 

The relentless, weather-gone-crazy type of heat that has blistered the United States and other parts of the world in recent years is so rare that it can’t be anything but man-made global warming, says a new statistical analysis from a top government scientist.

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