A staggering amount according to ClimateProgress.org:
“Amid an unprecedented surge in mostly secret money into this year’s election campaign, a report released last week by the Center for American Progress Action Fund details how 13 right-wing groups — including large secret money groups like American Crossroads, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and American Action Network — have spent more than $68.5 million this year on “misleading and fictitious televisions ads designed to shape midterm elections and advance their anti-clean energy reform agenda.” In addition to the anti-clean energy ads polluting our airwaves, an earlier CAPAF report outlined an astonishing $242 million in spending on lobbying by the 20 biggest oil, mining, and electric utility companies.”
An important article from the New York Times:
“It’s hardly surprising that a study released the other day by a scientist with the National Center for Atmospheric Research didn’t register on any political radar screens, amid Kentucky foot stomps, dead wrestlers, $2 billion in campaign spending and the pitched battles for control of Congress.”
“And, political year or not, there’s only so much news value in any projection of what might happen in climate science. Still, you don’t need a Ph.D. to ponder the potential ramifications of the study, by Aiguo Dai, who works with the center’s Climate and Global Dynamics Division.”
“It concluded that, over the next 30 years, warming temperatures associated with climate change were likely to create increasingly dry conditions in the United States and droughts around the globe on levels seldom seen before. Previous studies by Dr. Dai have indicated that climate change may already be producing drier conditions. A 2004 study found that the percentage of the world’s land area facing serious drought more than doubled from the 1970s to the early 2000s.”
If you haven’t already, make sure you vote today. You can locate your polling location by clicking here.
Rainforest Action Network and the Yes Men have put together a great campaign focusing on Chevron’s efforts to green wash their poor environmental record:
“Angry and frustrated that oil companies like Chevron think they can ignore their environmental and human rights abuses while cleaning up their image with high-cost ad campaigns? We agree! Enter our contest now and help hold Chevron accountable by making sure the company doesn’t get away with its greenwash.”
“If you're game, study "Chevron's real "We Agree" campaign and their TV and print ads. Figure out the funniest mashups, image swaps, collages, rewrites, or remixes of their print, web, and/or TV productions. And make sure to post whatever you do to your Facebook, and twitpic them with the hashtag #weagree. If you can, wheatpaste your posters around town, and twitpic photos of them with the same hashtag (#weagree). The best ad gets a big prize, the best picture of an in-situ Chevron ad gets another, and I'm sure we'll be coming up with some other categories.”
Participate in this campaign by clicking here.
More evidence of our changing planet:
“Catastrophic floods in Pakistan, wildfires in Russia, hurricanes in Mexico: 2010 has so far been an "exceptional" year for weather disasters, German reinsurance giant Munich Re said Thursday.”
"This year really has been a year of weather records," Peter Hoeppe, an expert from Munich Re's Geo Risks Research department, told journalists.”
"The first nine months of the year have seen the highest number of weather-related events since Munich Re started keeping records," he added.”
For some time, the media has failed to appropriately cover the climate crisis. A new report from Oxford University’s Reuters Institution for the Study of Journalism provides us with a snapshot of the problem:
“Less than 10 percent of the news articles written about last year's climate summit in Copenhagen dealt primarily with the science of climate change, a study showed on Monday.”
“Based on analysis of 400 articles written about the December 2009 summit, the authors of the report for Oxford University's Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism called for a rethinking of reporting on future such conferences.”
“Author James Painter concluded that "science was under-reported" as the essential backdrop when about 120 world leaders met in Copenhagen but were unable to agree on a binding treaty to slow climate change.”
Our media has a responsibility to educate the public on issues affecting the planet. Covering the climate crisis only as a political issue shields from public view the vital scientific and moral elements of the debate.
To help raise awareness of Koch Industries and its leadership in the climate denial movement, Repower America launched a new website last week called KochIndustriesFacts.com.
I’ve learned some startling facts while browsing the site. For example:
“Koch is responsible for over 300 oil spills in the U.S. and has leaked 3 million gallons of crude oil into fisheries and drinking waters.”
Click here to visit KochIndustriesFacts.com.
"Heavy rains and storms this year have left Mexico and Central America with hundreds of millions of dollars in repair bills, a trend officials expect to be a perennial strain on budgets as climate change sets in."
"The unusually fierce hurricane season, which brought 19 major storms through the region, left local governments scrambling to find the money to rebuild roads, bridges and homes, forcing them to rethink tax cuts or seek outside aid."
"Climate change models show the situation will only get worse as temperatures rise, taking a real toll on budgets across Latin America. Development banks and ratings agencies alike have urged the region to brace itself for severe weather and the resulting heavy repair costs."
More companies should follow GE's lead:
“General Electric announced Thursday that it plans to buy 25,000 electric cars in an effort to give the nascent technology a jump start and help develop a potentially big new market for the company.”
“The first mass-market electric cars are set to go on sale next month…GE estimates the sector could bring it up to $500 million in revenue over the next three years. GE builds natural-gas-fired generators for utilities, electric motors, advanced electric meters and a home electric-car charging station - all of which could be in higher demand if drivers buy electric cars.”