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MARCH 5, 2021

Amazing, but climate news is now daily.  A very positive development. Now that every government agency (Federal and in California)) has a climate mission, there are many stories, often in depth. Not to say that the deniers aren't still at work and that a new opposition isn't coalescing. We are adding climate books, other newsletter references and, of course, local and Bay Area events. Welcome to March.

Links to climate articles

Legislation, regulations, politics

Small government is no match for a crisis born of the state’s twin addictions to market fixes and fossil fuels.

By Naomi Klein

We used to dream big. Now we’re increasingly thinking short term.

The Texas freeze fits a recent pattern of increasingly destructive “global weirding.” I much prefer that term over “climate change” or “global warming.”

If global weirding is our new normal, we need a whole new level of buffers, redundancies and supply inventories to create resilience for our power grids — and many more distributed forms of energy, like solar, that can enable households to survive when the grid goes down. 


Interview: The author on the deniers’ new tactics and why positive change feels closer than it has done in 20 years.

Who is the enemy in the new climate war? It is fossil fuel interests, climate change deniers, conservative media tycoons, working together with petrostate actors like Saudi Arabia and Russia. I call this the coalition of the unwilling.

Extreme weather - Texas

By Christopher Flavelle, Brad Plumer and Hiroko Tabuchi

Even as Texas struggled to restore electricity and water over the past week, signs of the risks posed by increasingly extreme weather to America’s aging infrastructure were cropping up across the country.

The winter storm that crippled Texas this week and heat wave that hit California last summer show much more needs to be done to protect power supplies from extreme weather.

Extreme weather – more

The 1,270sq km chunk separated from Brunt Ice Shelf near a British Antarctic Survey station on Friday


We need to develop an early warning system to forecast climate-induced extreme weather events.

By Abhishek Chatterjee, William Collins, David Crisp and Arun Majumdar

The authors are scientists who study climate change and its impact on the weather.

In 2018 alone, homeowners and businesses suffered damages in excess of $150 billion in California and beyond due to climate-stoked wildfires. And the costs of the biggest fire season on record, which we all just went through, have not even been calculated yet, and will undoubtedly be even more immense.

By Ellie Cohen, The Climate Center, and Torri Estrada, Carbon Cycle Institute

California is in the early stages of a severe multi-decadal drought, exacerbated by the climate crisis. As Dan Walters pointed out in his recent op ed, we must move quickly to prepare for water shortages and wildfires.

Silke Valentine

Who wouldn’t want cheap gas? Who wouldn’t want their city to have revenue from a Costco gas station. As a member of 350 Marin — a group of grassroots activists who are deeply concerned about climate breakdown — I can say we don’t.

The city’s measure prohibits permits for new sites and the expansion of existing gasoline fueling equipment.Petaluma’s move this week to become the first city in the nation to ban new gas stations to combat climate change could be the beginning of a trend in Marin and beyond, supporters and opponents said.

The controversial measure, which the Petaluma City Council approved unanimously on Monday night, prohibits the permitting of new gas stations. It also prohibits the expansion of gasoline fueling equipment, such as gas pumps and underground storage tanks, at existing stations. Existing stations would still be allowed to apply for permits to install electric vehicle chargers and hydrogen fueling equipment.

Climate science 

Mike Mann on Climate Change and Cold Air Outbreaks (excellent video)

February 21, 2021

This science is still an area of intense debate – the frequency and intensity of arctic cold outbreaks, and their relation to climate change.

Mike Mann addresses starting at :50 here.

Clean energy, economics, new technologies, social justice

The Treasury secretary dropped hints about her priorities — if you know how to interpret them.

On Climate:

“There’s a new movement now toward stress testing of financial institutions,” she said, which acknowledges that finance firms face risks from the changing climate, in terms of “physical risks and also risks due to price changes, stranded assets and the like.”It is “encouraging” that the Fed is looking into this, she said, “and I think that’s something that at Treasury we may be able to discuss and facilitate.” She added, “It’s not envisioned that these tests would have the same status in terms of limiting payouts and capital requirements, but I think they would be revealing to both regulators and to the firms themselves.”

President Biden on Friday dramatically altered the way the U.S. government calculates the real-world cost of climate change, a move that could reshape a range of consequential decisions, from whether to allow new coal leasing on federal land to what sort of steel is used in taxpayer-funded infrastructure projects.

We must attend to the structural injustices

New climate pledges submitted to the United Nations would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by less than 1 percent, the world body announced.

Costco’s push to build a 14-pump gas station next to its Novato warehouse store makes sense from a business standpoint.

The “Big Box” retail giant can also cash in on the money its shoppers spend to get to and from its store.

Climate books

The New Climate War: The Fight to Take Back Our Planet by Michael E Mann Learn more and buy a copy from our local Copperfield’s Books.

Events

Electrify Your Ride: We’ll review available electric vehicles, charging at home and on the road, incentives, total cost of ownership, and you’ll have the chance to ask the questions you’ve always wondered about EVs. Register here for any of the events below, if those dates don’t work for you check back later for these ongoing presentations.

Monday, March 29th, 5pm

Wednesday, April 14th, 7pm

Tuesday, April 20th, 4:30pm

Thursday, April 29th, 12:30pm

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