PHYSICISTS THINK THEY MIGHT HAVE JUST DETECTED A FIFTH FORCE OF NATURE...

May 26, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Hard Science   In Brief Scientists have long known the four forces: Gravity, electromagnetism, and the weak and strong forces between atoms. But could there be a fifth force still waiting to be discovered? New evidence suggests there is. Physics can be pretty intense at times, but one of the most straightforward aspects is that everything in the Universe is controlled by just four fundamental forces: gravity, electromagnetic, and strong and weak nuclear forces. But now physicists in Hungary think they might have found evidence of a mysterious fifth force of nature. And, if verified, it would mean we’d need to rethink our understanding of how the Universe actually works. Before we get into that, let’s go back to those four forces for a second, because they’re pretty important. They’re a fundamental part...

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THE DESPERATE PLIGHT OF PETROSTATES...

May 26, 2016 Posted by

[Translate]   By Michael T. Klare / TomDispatch  VIA TRUTHDIG Deepwater Horizon Response / CC BY-ND 2.0 This piece first appeared at TomDispatch. Read Tom Engelhardt’s introduction here. Pity the poor petro-states. Once so wealthy from oil sales that they could finance wars, mega-projects, and domestic social peace simultaneously, some of them are now beset by internal strife or are on the brink of collapse as oil prices remain at ruinously low levels. Unlike other countries, which largely finance their governments through taxation, petro-states rely on their oil and natural gas revenues. Russia, for example, obtains about 50% of government income that way; Nigeria, 60%; and Saudi Arabia, a whopping 90%. When oil was selling at $100 per barrel or above, as was the case until 2014, these countries could finance lavish government projects...

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MEET PROTERRA, THE NEXT GENERATION OF BUS...

May 26, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] by Joe Romm CLIMATE PROGRESS CREDIT: Proterra   “Everything that has an urban drive cycle will ultimately be an electric vehicle.” That’s what Ryan Popple, the president and CEO of Proterra, the leading U.S. electric bus company, explained to me in a recent interview. The future of transit isn’t cleaner diesel, hybrids, natural gas, or hydrogen fuel-cell buses, argues Popple. The rapidly dropping price for electric batteries combined with new fast-charging technology appears to render the competition obsolete. Right now, the biggest question isn’t which technology will win in the bus market — it’s how quickly all-electrics will take over, and whether Proterra can keep ahead of the Chinese competition, like electric vehicle giant BYD. Popple is focused on electrifying the transit market, which he expects “will be 100 percent electric” in a...

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SCIENTISTS JUST DISCOVERED EXACTLY WHAT AIR POLLUTION DOES TO YOUR ARTERIES...

May 26, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] by Alejandro Davila Fragoso CLIMATE PROGRESS CREDIT: AP Photo/Amel Emric A Bosnian man covers his mouth as he walks on the street during heavy smog in the northern Bosnian town of Tuzla, 140 kms. north of Sarajevo.   Air pollution has been linked to heart disease for years, prompting concern as well as some skepticism, as the physiological steps showing a cause-and-effect have gone less understood. But now, a multi-year study has for the first time documented that air pollution thickens blood and hardens arteries, a condition that causes cardiovascular problems like heart attacks and strokes. “What’s new here is the linkage between air pollution and actual evidence of progression of atherosclerosis, the underlying disease process that leads to most [heart] attacks and strokes,” Joel Kaufman, lead author and University of Washington professor,...

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NEW VIRUS IS CALLED THE TPP OR TRANS PACIFIC PARTNERSHIP...

May 26, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Friends   We have a serious crisis in our midst.     It is disguised under the auspices of free trade.   This new virus is called the TPP or Trans Pacific Partnership. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trans-Pacific_Partnership https://www.eff.org/issues/tpp The energy that makes the virus grow is called TPA or Trade Promotion Authority which is also known as  fast track.   TPP is illegal under the secrecy terms and conditions being presented in direct violation of US law.   See Gravel v United States.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gravel_v._United_States https://supreme.justia.com/cases/federal/us/408/606/case.html Any and all members of the US Senate, Congress or Executive branch engaged in secret trade agreements is in violation of the law and may be charged with both malfeasance and treason.  There is a dereliction of responsibility unintended or otherwise.   Most in America for reasons beyond belief have no...

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GLOBAL BANKS TEAM WITH LAW FIRMS TO HELP THE WEALTHY HIDE ASSETS...

May 25, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Leaked records show that hundreds of banks and their subsidiaries and branches registered nearly 15,600 shell companies By Ryan Chittum, Cécile Schilis-Gallego and Rigoberto Carvajal CENTER FOR PUBLIC INTEGRITY In this story Major global banks work hand-in-glove with other players to help the superrich, politicians and criminals keep their assets under wraps More than 500 banks, their subsidiaries and branches registered nearly 15,600 shell companies with Mossack Fonseca Mossack Fonseca debated whether to continue to do business with Rami Makhlouf, the billionaire bagman of Syrian dictator Bashar Assad Two global companies were under mounting pressure, and threats were flying. For years, the Swiss banking giant UBS and a Panama law firm named Mossack Fonseca embraced each other in a mutually profitable relationship. UBS had customers who wanted offshore shell companies to keep their...

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THEY DON’T WANT TRUMP OR HILLARY: HALF OF VOTERS WOULD CONSIDER A THIRD-PARTY CANDIDATE...

May 25, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] 47% of registered American voters would vote third party, poll finds, as Trump begins overtaking Clinton nationally Ben Norton Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton (Credit: Reuters/Randall Hill/Mike Segar/Photo montage by Salon) Nearly half, 47 percent, of registered American voters would consider a third-party candidate if Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump were the major party nominees, according to a new NBC/WSJ poll. Support for third parties is steadily growing. Similar polls conducted during past presidential elections found that in 2012, 40 percent of voters would support a third-party candidate, and in 2008, 38 percent of voters would. The 2016 presidential campaign has inspired intense backlash against the establishment. Bernie Sanders has attacked it from the left, for kowtowing to corporate power and repressing grassroots activist movements. Donald Trump has attacked it from the right, pledging...

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OCCUPY WALL STREET IS BACK — AND IT MIGHT ACTUALLY SUCCEED THIS TIME...

May 25, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] A new group, Take on Wall Street, has emerged to leverage populist fury into real Financial Reform Sean Illing  SALON.COM (Credit: AP/Diane Bondareff) What the hell happened to Occupy Wall Street? After the Great Recession of 2008, the climate was ripe for populism. Americans were pissed off. The same people who wrecked the economy were, once again, rewarded for their recklessness. The logic of “too big to fail” made sense, but the reality was that these institutions were too big for justice. Necessary or not, the bailouts were an affront to the people whose livelihoods were plundered by the banks. In August of 2011, Occupy Wall Street was born. Initially a small protest in Zuccotti Park, just outside the Financial District in Manhattan, Occupy became a rallying point of sorts. It changed the...

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FIVE MOMENTS OF CLIMATE PROGRESS SINCE ‘AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH’...

May 25, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] TAKE PART Here’s something to smile about. Check out five climate successes in the past decade. The Climate Reality Project, founded and chaired by former Vice President and Nobel Laureate Al Gore, is dedicated to unleashing a global cultural movement demanding action on the climate crisis.   This story is produced in partnership with The Climate Reality Project as part of the campaign to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of An Inconvenient Truth. Ten years ago, An Inconvenient Truth brought the issue of climate change out into the open and into mainstream culture like never before. People began asking tough questions about our climate and wanted to know what they could do to make our planet a safer, healthier place for us all. And 10 years later, we can see the results. Advertisement Last...

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BAYER’S $62 BILLION PROPOSED TAKEOVER OF MONSANTO WOULD CREATE THE WORLD’S LARGEST AGRIBUSINESS...

May 24, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] By Renae Merle  THE WASHINGTON POST genetically modified corn plants inside greenhouses housed on the roof of Monsanto agribusiness headquarters in St Louis, Missouri, 21 May 2009. Bayer said on Monday that it had offered to buy Monsanto for $62 billion in cash. (Photograph by Brent Stirton/Getty Images.) The German pharmaceutical giant Bayer announced on Monday that it had offered $62 billion to acquire Monsanto, potentially pushing the iconic maker of aspirin and Alka-Seltzer further into the world of genetically modified seeds and agricultural chemicals. The unsolicited offer, if accepted by St. Louis-based Monsanto, would create the world’s largest agrochemicals company. The 115-year-old Monsanto would be absorbed into the overseas giant, Bayer, bringing with it the herbicide Roundup and a controversial history as one of the first companies to create a genetically engineered...

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What’s the True Cost of Fracking? This Eye-Opening Infographic May Surprise You...

May 24, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Environment There are significant pros and cons, making fracking a highly controversial issue. By Reynard Loki / AlterNet KERN COUNTY, CALIFORNIA – NOVEMBER 26, 2013: Pumpjacks extract oil from an oilfield in Kern County, CA. About 15 billion barrels of oil could be extracted using hydraulic fracturing in California. Photo Credit: Christopher Halloran / Shutterstock.com Arsenic. Cadmium. Chromium. Radon. Lead. These are just a few of the toxins used in hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking, a controversial drilling process to retrieve oil and natural gas from shale deposits under the surface of the Earth. Concerns about the process have been mounting, as studies have linked it to a host of environmental and public health problems, from increased infant mortality and low birth weight babies to the release of cancer-causing radioactive gas, contamination of drinking...

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WHY A HARVARD M.B.A. IS OUT TO BRING DOWN THE CLINTONS...

May 24, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] TRUTHDIGs Charles Ortel is examining the Clinton Foundation, an organization he calls the “largest unprosecuted charity fraud ever attempted”; tracing donations to the Clintons as well as their speaking fees can give us an idea of who the two are most likely to protect during another Clinton presidency; meanwhile, pop singer Taylor Swift has become a Nazi idol. These discoveries and more below. A Harvard MBA Guy Is Out to Bring Down the Clintons Charles Ortel has his sights set on the charity operations of Hillary and Bill Clinton, known as the Clinton Foundation and its myriad tentacles. How Corporate America Bought Hillary Clinton for $21M “Follow the money.” That telling phrase, which has come to summarize the Watergate scandal, has been a part of the lexicon since 1976. Just What Were Donald...

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THE NEW AGENDA FOR TAKING ON WALL STREET...

May 24, 2016 Posted by

[Translate]   Isaiah J. Poole  CAMPAIGN FOR AMERICA’S FUTURE More than 20 progressive organizations representing millions of voters are putting their weight behind a five-point agenda for the next stage of Wall Street reform. What these groups will formally announce Tuesday, in an event featuring Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, sets a high but practical standard for what a candidate would have to embrace to be considered a progressive on reining in the financial sector. The Take On Wall Street campaign says it intends to ensure that the voices of working people and consumers are heard above the power and influence of Wall Street. The Washington Post reports that Take On Wall Street will combine the efforts of “some of the Democratic parties biggest traditional backers, from the American Federation of Teachers and the AFL-CIO...

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DR. ANDREW WAKEFIELD DEALS WITH ALLEGATIONS – VIDEO...

May 23, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Dr. Andrew Wakefield Deals With...

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LAWSUIT ACCUSING 16 BIG BANKS OF LIBOR MANIPULATION REINSTATED BY U.S. COURT...

May 23, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Judge warns case could ‘bankrupt 16 of the world’s most important financial institutions’ including Barclays, Bank of America, Deutsche Bank, HSBC and UBS Barclays’ headquarters in the Manhattan. In 2013 a Manhattan judge dismissed claims of conspiring to manipulate the Libor, a ruling which has now been overturned. Photograph: Mike Segar/Reuters Jana Kasperkevic in New York and agencies     A US appeals court on Monday reinstated a civil lawsuit accusing 16 major banks of conspiring to manipulate the Libor benchmark interest rate. The ruling, which overturns a 2013 decision, could bankrupt the institutions, the judges warned. A lower court judge erred in dismissing the antitrust portion of private litigation against Barclays, Bank of America, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, UBS and others on the ground that the investors failed to allege harm to competition,...

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THERE ARE NO WORDS TO DESCRIBE HOW BAD IT IS: INDIA ENDURES SEVERE HEATWAVE – VIDEO...

May 23, 2016 Posted by

[Translate]   India  THE GUARDIAN AP via THE GUARDIAN Residents of India’s north-western cities struggle to cope as record temperatures hit the country. Temperatures climbed to 45C on Friday in the city of Ujjain while the city of Phalodi reported temperatures of 51C. Local governments have set up free water stations for residents and visitors but one man in Ujjain says the tanks are running out rapidly because of the high demand for water Indians demand government action after temperatures hit 51C...

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OBAMA VISIT VIETNAM TO PROMOTE TPP. WAIT, VIETNAM? REALLY?...

May 23, 2016 Posted by

[Translate]   Dave Johnson CAMPAIAGN FOR AMERICA’S  FUTURE President Obama is in Vietnam promoting the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Vietnam? Really? A year ago the post “Obama To Visit Nike To Promote the TPP. Wait, NIKE? Really?,” noted how Nike pioneered moving jobs out of the country to take advantage of low wages and lack of environmental protections in places like Vietnam, which led to many of the problems in our economy today. It seemed that Nike was possibly the worst company to use to support claims that TPP would benefit the American economy. President Obama is scheduled to visit Nike’s Oregon headquarters on Friday to promote the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Yes, Nike – a company that grew to billions by outsourcing jobs to overseas sweatshops, a company that sets up P.O.-box subsidiaries in tax...

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RENEWABLES ARE LEAVING NATURAL GAS IN THE DUST THIS YEAR...

May 23, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Climate by Joe Romm CLIMATE PROGRESS CREDIT: Nati Harnik, AP   In the first three months of 2016, the U.S. grid added 18 megawatts of new natural gas generating capacity. It added a whopping 1,291 megawatts (MW) of new renewables. The renewables were primarily wind (707 MW) and solar (522 MW). We also added some biomass (33 MW) and hydropower (29 MW). The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) latest monthly “Energy Infrastructure Update” reports that no new capacity of coal, oil, or nuclear power were added in the first quarter of the year. So the U.S. electric grid added more than 70 times as much renewable energy capacity as natural gas capacity from January to March. Of course, generating capacity is often quite different from the amount of power generated, since fossil fuel...

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TRUMP’S NEWEST ENEMY: ENVIRONMENTALISTS...

May 23, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] by Emily AtkinCLIMATE PROGRESS CREDIT: AP Photo/Paul Sancya Mary Dickens holds a sign outside a Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump campaign rally in Boca Raton, Fla., Sunday, March 13, 2016.   Donald Trump has officially taken aim at the environment. And environmentalists are starting to aim back. The billionaire and presumptive Republican presidential nominee fired first shots on Friday, when he announced his key energy policy adviser: U.S. Congressman Kevin Cramer, a North Dakota Republican who loves drilling for oil and denies human-caused climate change. Cramer is staunchly opposed to president Obama’s landmark climate change regulations, and is widely expected to advise Trump to repeal them. Trump fired once more on Tuesday, telling Reuters that he would, at minimum, “renegotiate” the U.N. global climate accord, an agreement between nearly 200 nations to keep...

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THIS COUNTRY JUST SET A MAJOR RENEWABLE ENERGY RECORD...

May 23, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] by Evelyn Anne CrundenCLIMATE PROGRESS CREDIT: shutterstock The Aldeadávila Dam, on the border between Portugal and Spain.   Last week, Portugal set a record for renewable energy use. Through a combination of hydroelectric, solar, and wind power, electricity use in the country was completely covered for four consecutive days. The news was reported by the Portuguese Renewable Energy Association (APREN) in collaboration with ZERO System Sustainable Land Association. According to their measurements, from 6:45 a.m. on Saturday, May 7 to approximately 5:45 p.m. on Wednesday, May 11, Portugal was able to rely entirely on renewables for an impressive 107 hours, the longest the country has ever been able to go. Renewable energy records like these are something Portugal has been striving for: The country is working to create a dramatic shift in how...

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PATRIOTS AT THE GATE: THE AMERICANS PREPARING FOR BATTLE AGAINST THEIR OWN GOVERNMENT...

May 22, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] WASHINGTON POST B.J. Soper works on welding a target that he and fellow members of the Central Oregon Constitutional Guard were going to use for firearms training on March 4 in Redmond, Ore. (Matt McClain/The Washington Post) By Kevin Sullivan May 21 at 6:54 PM REDMOND, Ore. —BJ Soper took aim with his AR-15 semiautomatic rifle and fired a dozen shots at a human silhouette target. Soper’s wife and their 16-year-old daughter practiced drawing pistols. Then Soper helped his 4-year-old daughter, in pink sneakers and a ponytail, work on her marksmanship with a .22-caliber rifle. Deep in the heart of a vast U.S. military training ground, surrounded by spent shotgun shells and juniper trees blasted to shreds, the Central Oregon Constitutional Guard was conducting its weekly firearms training. “The intent is to be...

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LONG BEACH FILES LAWSUIT AGAINST MONSANTO...

May 22, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] TRUTHDIG posted by emma niles   The Port of Long Beach. (via Flickr) Following the lead of six other West Coast cities, the city of Long Beach on Thursday filed paperwork to sue Monsanto, alleging that the agrochemical giant is responsible for chemical contamination of its water sources, including the Port of Long Beach. The Long Beach Post reports: According to the complaint, PCBs find their way to Long Beach waters when they leach, leak, off-gas and escape their intended applications, causing runoff during naturally occurring storm and rain events, after being released into the environment. … The city said it continues to “incur significant costs related to PCBs in its storm water and the sedimentary deposits in the Port of Long Beach and adjacent ocean floor areas,” according to a release. In...

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THE PANAMA PAPERS: AN INTRODUCTION...

May 22, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] By ICIJ Staff Apr 3, 2016 Follow investigation The Panama Papers is a global investigation into the sprawling, secretive industry of offshore that the world’s rich and powerful use to hide assets and skirt rules by setting up front companies in far-flung jurisdictions. Based on a trove of more than 11 million leaked files, the investigation exposes a cast of characters who use offshore companies to facilitate bribery, arms deals, tax evasion, financial fraud and drug trafficking. Behind the email chains, invoices and documents that make up the Panama Papers are often unseen victims of wrongdoing enabled by this shadowy industry. This is their story. Executive producer: Hamish Boland-Rudder Producer: Carrie Ching Animation artist: Arthur Jones Report: Will Fitzgibbon Narrator: Eleanor Bell Fox Supported by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis...

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Can Entrepreneurship Save the Planet?...

May 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Environment Watch a clip of the new documentary ‘Time to Choose’ from Oscar-winning filmmaker Charles Ferguson. By Alexandra Rosenmann / AlterNet Photo Credit: Falco Ink. Climate change is the greatest crisis that humanity faces, and an opportunity to implement radical changes in infrastructure. Academy Award-winning documentary director Charles Ferguson’s new film TIME TO CHOOSE captures the scope of global innovation in response to climate change. In our journey to create a sustainable future and world for the better, Ferguson investigates the steps we can take to stop the global threat. The films’ scope across five continents, investigates the costs of fossil fuels and industrialized agriculture – and their drivers. From the poisoned waters of Appalachia, dangerous coal pits of China, deforestation in Indonesia the red night skies of Nigeria’s gas lands, the effects of...

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THE WORLD’S LARGEST FLOATING WIND FARM WILL BE OPERATIONAL NEXT YEAR...

May 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Norwegian company Statoil is building the world’s largest offshore floating wind farm near Scotland – and it’s set to start producing energy as early as 2017. The Hywind Scotland Pilot Park wind farm will feature five turbines generating six megawatts of power each. Statoil has pioneered Hywind turbine technology – a different way to construct wind turbines so they’re sturdy even in stormy ocean conditions. Statoil was an oil company before they pursued wind, and they based their approach to turbine design on oil rigs. Hywind turbines are essentially steel cylinders stabilized by ballast and connected to the ocean floor, making them more economical than traditional offshore wind turbines. Statoil tested their technology with one turbine back in 2009, and they say that the new Pilot Park will “demonstrate cost efficient and low...

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LAKOTA LEADERS WIN THE BATTLE AGAINST ‘LIQUID GENOCIDE’...

May 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] Belief The successful fight to block the invasion of alcohol. By Evelyn Nieves / AlterNet Photo Credit: Sopotnicki/Shutterstock The horse riders arrived at the Oglala Lakota tribal headquarters from the near and far corners of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. They were bundled against rain, cold and cutting winds. Obviously, this was no joy ride. Not at first—the joy came later. The members of the Horse Spirit Society, a Pine Ridge non-profit dedicated to teaching and practicing Lakota traditions, along with their supporters, stood outside tribal headquarters to oppose a referendum on allowing alcohol on the reservation. The vote set for Tuesday was the second in three years, after the first, which barely passed, was tossed for wording that was non-legally binding. This time, those opposed knew what to do. One after another,...

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NEW YORK ATTORNEY GENERAL TO HOUSE REPUBLICANS: ARE YOU KIDDING?...

May 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] by Samantha PageTHINK PROGRESS CREDIT: P Photo/Bebeto Matthews In this Aug. 21, 2014, file photo, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, center, speaks during a news conference in New York.   Not content to let the House Committee on Space, Science, and Technology’s reputation for hating science rest for even a moment, Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) has now subpoenaed the New York attorney general over his investigation into Exxon’s role in sowing climate denial. Calling the investigation a “coordinated attempt to deprive companies, nonprofit organizations, and scientists of their First Amendment rights and ability to fund and conduct scientific research free from intimidation and the threat of prosecution,” Smith’s letter calls for documents and communication between the attorney general’s office and environmental groups, the EPA, and the Justice Department, and internally, regarding any...

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THIS RETIRED MILITARY LEADER IS NOW HELPING PREP THE BUSINESS WORLD FOR CLIMATE CHANGE...

May 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] by Jeremy Deaton – Guest Contributor   CLIMATE PROGRESS CREDIT: AP Photo/Scott Threlkeld A man wades through flood waters in Hammond, La., Friday, March 11, 2016.   Retired Rear Admiral David Titley used to be a climate skeptic. But after decades in the service, he came to see the carbon crisis as “one of the preeminent challenges of our century.” As the Navy’s chief oceanographer, he spearheaded a task force to investigate the national security implications of climate change. Titley has since turned his attention to the world of business. He now teaches Weather Risk and Financial Markets at Pennsylvania State University, the capstone course for meteorology majors specializing in risk management. Titley explained in an interview that climate change will soon become a regular intrusion into the economy, dispensing heat waves, drought, and...

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NEW THREAT FROM ANTARCTIC GLACIER COULD RAISE SEA LEVELS BY NEARLY 10 FEET...

May 21, 2016 Posted by

[Translate] By Tim Radford / Climate News Network   VIA TRUTHDIG     Totten Glacier is expected to melt far faster than previously thought. (Esmee van Wijk / Australian Antarctic Division) This piece first appeared at Climate News Network. LONDON—One of Antarctica’s great glaciers could become unstable if global warming continues at the present pace. As warm seas wash the ice shelf, the land-based mass of ice could begin to retreat, cross a critical threshold in the present century and then withdraw 300 kilometres inland. In the course of doing so it would spill tremendous quantities of water into the oceans: enough to raise global sea levels by 2.9 metres and threaten cities that are home to billions.  And here is the bad news: glaciologists have known for decades that West Antarctica’s ice sheets are unstable....

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