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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5360

PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2013 10:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CB--the coal industry has been resisting retrofitting their existing facilities for decades. There is, of course, a better way--cooperation. But I see no chance of that with the current crop of Republicans.

It will cost money to sequester carbon from burning coal. That will tend to give a further market edge to natural gas power generation--as well as perhaps to alternatives. But the far right wants to subsidize oil and coal and nuclear power--and then scream unfair at subsidies for renewables and conservation. The older and dirtier coal plants have truly reached the end of their lives and should be phased out.

The politics are interesting. Much of coal generation is municipal, and in red states that have been pissing in Obama's ear for 6 years. Do you think they've built up some political capital with him?
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5360

PostPosted: Mon Jul 01, 2013 6:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For those interested in the communication challenges, this is a fascinating interview with Bill Moyers: http://environment.yale.edu/profile/leiserowitz/
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5360

PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In this morning's news, the death of Jason-1, the satellite that has been measuring sea levels for the last ten years. From the AP story:
Quote:
Since its launch [Dec 7, 2001], Jason-1 recorded a rise of nearly 1.6 inches in global sea levels that are "a critical measure of climate change and a direct result of global warming"


Fifty years of that gives you 8 inches of sea level rise and increased coastal flooding. As always, there are cycles within cycles, so past performance is not a perfect predictor of future performance. The deniers have their own spin, but you can see the raw data, from scientists, here:

http://sealevel.colorado.edu/
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5360

PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 7:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A while back, mrgybe chastised the Port of Oakland, and me, for their environmental record, saying that those who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones, and cherry-picking this bit of information from the press:

Quote:
"Community groups and clean air advocates and regulators were counting on big commitments from the Port of Oakland this fall to slash diesel truck pollution that has contributed to a higher cancer risk in West Oakland. Now they are fuming, saying the city-owned seaport has pulled back rather than pay out for cleaner air, and public health as well as the port's long term financial health may suffer as a result. Oakland port commissioners voted Nov. 19 to indefinitely postpone a planned $5 million contribution to a government pool of grants for owners of old trucks to install diesel soot filters required by the state for trucks that want to keep visiting ports after Jan. 1, 2010."
http://www.insidebayarea.com/oaklandtribune/ci_11150757

In the wake of outrage from citizen/ environmental groups and the local media, a year later the Port grudgingly agreed to reinstate their pledge. Kicking and screaming, the Port was pressured into making some small inroads into the damage they have caused over decades. And yet, their former long time environment manager constantly berates the oil industry for it's environmental response. He should look closer to home.


The argument that the oil industries environmental record is better than that of the Port of Oakland is, quite simply, wrong. Here is a bit of actual information from their recent newsletter:

Quote:
Good news on air quality - Our goal is to reduce the health risk from diesel pollution from seaport sources by 85% by the year 2020 (2005 baseline). As a result of implementation of the first phase of our shore power system we estimate that the diesel particulate matter (PM) emissions from all of ocean-going vessels (OGVs) calling at the Port of Oakland has been To put it into context, our 2005 emissions inventory states that the PM emissions from OGVs are 220 tons annually. Today, the emissions are closer to 55 tons of PM annually or about 25% of what it was in 2005! Thank you to all of our partners including the shipping lines, Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) and the US Maritime Administration (MARAD).


Comprehensive Truck Management Program
Partnering with truckers who haul cargo to and from the Port, the BAAQMD, California Air Resources Board, and the US Environmental Protection Agency, resulted in the retrofitting or replacement of 1,521 trucks reducing the diesel particulate emissions from each truck by at least 85%. Additionally, the Port also banned older, more polluting trucks from accessing its marine terminals.

On January 1, 2014, the Port will implement Phase 2 of the state's regulations regarding drayage trucks, requiring that all trucks with engines older than 2007 not be allowed access to Port terminals. The Port also currently provides 20 acres of truck parking in its ongoing efforts to encourage truck parking in the Port area and away from neighboring streets.


A commitment to actually figuring out what is happening might help in establishing credibility. But you can always cherry-pick.
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2722

PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 11:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awwww. He misses me!! There is no doubt that the Port of Oakland has cleaned up it's act over the last 5 or 6 years, a fact which I have previously acknowledged. It's great that they plan to make a much needed 85% improvement over 2005, which was a time at which they had clearly reached a low point. Before launching yet another tedious attack on the oil industry, perhaps Berkeley can remind us in which year he retired after 15 years in charge of environmental matters at the Port.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5360

PostPosted: Thu Jul 04, 2013 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Indeed, he proves my point. Without, of course, resorting to accuracy or humility for past errors.
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2722

PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2013 12:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since we were not reminded of that momentous "retirement" date let's see who can guess. Was it:

a) 2005 or
b) 2005 or
c) the year the Port chose as the "baseline" (i.e. rock bottom) against which to measure future improvement (hint 2005)

Some of you will understand the reference to "people in glass houses". Clearly not all, or he wouldn't keep bringing it up.
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techno900



Joined: 28 Mar 2001
Posts: 1493

PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2013 7:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Another view point from Charles Krauthammer: Obama’s global-warming folly.

Quote:
For the sake of argument, nonetheless, let’s concede that global warming is precisely what Obama thinks it is. Then answer this: What in God’s name is his massive new regulatory and spending program — which begins with a war on coal and ends with billions in more subsidies for new Solyndras — going to do about it?

The United States has already radically cut carbon dioxide emissions — more than any country on earth since 2006, according to the International Energy Agency. Emissions today are back down to 1992 levels.

And yet, at the same time, global emissions have gone up. That’s because — surprise! — we don’t control the energy use of the other 96 percent of humankind.

At the heart of Obama’s program are EPA regulations that will make it impossible to open any new coal plant and will systematically shut down existing plants. “Politically, the White House is hesitant to say they’re having a war on coal,” explained one of Obama’s climate advisers. “On the other hand, a war on coal is exactly what’s needed.”


For more good stuff: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/charles-krauthammer-obamas-global-warming-folly/2013/07/04/a51c4ed0-e3fc-11e2-a11e-c2ea876a8f30_story.html
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5360

PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2013 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

On glass houses, let me see if I can explain it in terms that a "public" school student from the small island can understand. As the saying from the 1960's went, if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.

Just looking at conventional pollutants, carcinogenic air contaminants caused by the burning of mrgybe's beloved and innocent fuels. Until oxygenates were required by EPA, the highest cancer risk in the United States was due to crankcase emissions from passenger cars and light trucks. Oxygenates dramatically reduced that risk, leaving diesel particulate emissions the greatest cancer risk to the general public.

Mrgybe's position, and that of the oil companies? Opposition to oxygenates, claims that the Exxon product MTBE was foisted upon them, and opposition to proposals to make the diesel particulate standards more protective of public health. The Port of Oakland's position? The first port in the United States to adopt mitigation measures for diesel emissions on equipment that was not owned by the Port. Adopted a policy to reduce diesel particulate emissions by 85% Done with some reluctance by the port, and it sure pissed off the environmental managers at the other US ports.

Maybe it is time to update the 1960's saying. If you oppose all of the solutions, maybe you are the problem. Such is the policy stance of the oil companies and their apologists.

I don't really think that mrgybe sees the two issues as equivalent; he can generally string a a few sentences together and find a right-wing reference to support a few cherry-picked sites. But his characterization of me, while somewhat beyond obsessive, is pretty funny. Anything that the Port did or didn't do after I retired that was bad is my fault. Anything that the Port did or didn't do after I retired that was good--was because I left. Just to be clear, I hired and trained the people working on air quality mitigation. Some of it was underway when I retired--part of a $50 million dollar environmental mitigation package for a project completed about ten years ago. Some of it is new. The Port of Oakland decided, at my urging and due to lawsuits, to be part of the solution. Interesting concept.
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feuser



Joined: 29 Oct 2002
Posts: 1395

PostPosted: Fri Jul 05, 2013 12:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

techno900 wrote:
Another view point from Charles Krauthammer: Obama’s global-warming folly.

Quote:
For the sake of argument, nonetheless, let’s concede that global warming is precisely what Obama thinks it is. Then answer this: What in God’s name is his massive new regulatory and spending program — which begins with a war on coal and ends with billions in more subsidies for new Solyndras — going to do about it?

The United States has already radically cut carbon dioxide emissions — more than any country on earth since 2006, according to the International Energy Agency. Emissions today are back down to 1992 levels.

And yet, at the same time, global emissions have gone up. That’s because — surprise! — we don’t control the energy use of the other 96 percent of humankind.

At the heart of Obama’s program are EPA regulations that will make it impossible to open any new coal plant and will systematically shut down existing plants. “Politically, the White House is hesitant to say they’re having a war on coal,” explained one of Obama’s climate advisers. “On the other hand, a war on coal is exactly what’s needed.”


For more good stuff: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/charles-krauthammer-obamas-global-warming-folly/2013/07/04/a51c4ed0-e3fc-11e2-a11e-c2ea876a8f30_story.html


It's pretty hard to get other countries on board when you sign an emissions control treaty but not ratify it:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kyoto_Protocol

Here's some more "good stuff" to put Krauthammers numbers into perspective:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_oil_consumption

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