Category Archives: Natural Gas

Problema!

 

Problema The Movie is a documentary that answers questions and more importantly, doesn’t shrink from asking the tough ones.

Find a selection of questions on its affiliate website, Dropping Knowledge.org.

Droppingknowledge_breakthelaw
Droppingknowledgeendofpoverty
Droppingknowledgewhatisyourtree

 

It received a standing ovation at the recent European Independent Film Festival held in Paris. Its filmmaker told of the experience of assembling hundreds of “regular” people – who included the likes of Willem Dafoe – to participate in the roundtable that sought to provide answers to a few of the hundreds of thousands of questions submitted by people from around the globe.

IMPORTANT: Free Screenings

Problema is a completely not-for-profit film. Free Downloads of the movie are provided from the website. The filmmakers encourage Free Screenings and ask that you host Free Screenings as a way to fundraise for your preferred charities. Please see details on the WEBSITE HERE.

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Carbon Nation

“Here’s a movie that doesn’t even care if you believe in Climate Change…,” that’s the tagline for Carbon Nation, a new documentary slated for release in L.A. on February 18th.

WATCH THE TRAILER HERE

“I just want clean water and clean air. It’s that simple,” says a geothermal engineer.

“A full employment economy based on retrofitting the nation,”

“You don’t have to believe in climate change or terrorism or any of that to want to drive a vehicle at 10% of the cost of what you’re driving now.”

“It’s the most patriotic thing you can do, think or feel today. Green. It’s the new red, white and blue.”

Film is by Peter Byck.

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Paris Announces Autolib’ Car Service On Demand

Modeling itself after the successful Autolib’ service already in practice in Lyon, France, Paris announced earlier this week that by March 2012, at the latest, their Autolib’ service will be fully in play.

AutoLib’, the electric car rental program, is modelled after the wildly popular Velib’ program, whereby citizens, tourists and visitors alike can pick up a bicycle at numerous points around the city, use it for a half an hour, half a day or longer, and then drop it off at another station when they’re finished with it. The pick-up and drop-off stations, which function as one and the same, are nearly as numerous as Metro stations.

The program is designed for short-term use for both the bicycle and Auto usage. They’re available 24/7. And it is ridiculously cheap. To use an Autolib’ car in Lyon prices start at 2,10 Euro for basic car models from Citroen, Peugeot, Toyota. You first purchase a membership for a minimum of one year and on top of that you pay a deposit to cover any possible damages. But you can even take a car between the hours of 11pm and 7 am for free.

On this program, Paris is worlds ahead of, for example, Santa Monica, a city in California, the nation’s greenest state, that prides itself on its green transportation policies.

On December 16th the California Air Resources Board (CARB) voted in favor of California’s nation leading Cap-and-Trade program under AB 32.

Here is what California’s Governor had to say about it:

And I’m so proud of this team here because it’s one thing when the legislators get together and say AB 32  and here’s the bill  and they give you these documents that are 1,000 pages long and all this stuff. And then the governor goes out and talks about it and I sign it and we have bill signing ceremonies and all of those things that we had. But then someone has to follow through and make it become a reality  and the people you see in front of you here are the people that make this become a reality. I know today, even though we are 10 years away from 2020 but I know today that we will have a reduction of 25 percent of greenhouse gases by the year 2020, only because I have such an excellent team here.

I am thinking that California may just need to take some pages from Paris’s playbook on public transportation policy. Especially in cities such as San Francisco, Santa Monica, Pasadena and other such coastal cities that are already readily adaptable to something like the Autolib’ and the Velib’.

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Elizabethan Era Bank Buys First Carbon Credits From the New World

By Susan Kraemer, RePosted from Clean Technica

The venerable British bank, Barclay’s, founded four centuries ago right at the end of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, and NRG Energy Inc, the largest US independent power producer, have just completed a deal for the very first carbon permits to be offered by California’s planned cap and trade program to reduce pollution in its AB32 climate legislation, according to Bloomberg News.

The permits will be delivered in December 2012, according to the head of US emissions trading at Barclays in the UK, which has been involved in (EU) carbon trading for some time. The trading begins in 2012 for utilities and manufacturers, and by 2015, for vehicles.

(Tesla has already benefited from carbon trading, receiving $13 million from Honda in carbon trades, since electric vehicles reduce greenhouse gases. Honda has been one of the last of the major car manufacturers to move to develop electric vehicles, so by 2015, it may still need permits to produce gas cars.)

The first permits are offered at $11.50 a ton, but by 2020, could reach as high as $30 a ton. Market conditions can only determine the price to pollute, so the cost (to polluters) and the benefit (to innovators) can vary. By contrast, pollution limits are fixed. They cannot be exceeded.

The advantage of cap and trade over carbon taxes is certainty. Pollution is capped and reduced.

The cap: a total pollution allowance, is set in advance and reduced each year, in order to meet greenhouse gas reduction targets.

Read MORE on CleanTechnica.com….

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could have another four centuries of civilization?

If widely adopted, cap and trade would make this possible, by simply capping and reducing the dangerous greenhouse gases that foreclose our future. Queen Elizabeth’s legislative heritage, and the longevity of Barclay’s Bank shows us that good legislation like AB32 builds real civilizations that last.

Read More…SusanKraemer@Twitter

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Zero EMISSIONS Race

By Matthias Bank

What auto race blasts its way around the world in eighty days without leaving a trace of emissions in its wake? And, almost as astonishingly, inspires crowds to come out and cheer on a rainy weekend in Southern California?

The answer is a group of 21st century hot rods Jules Verne would have loved called the Zero Emissions Race, an international group of solar powered electric vehicles that have been driving about 11,000 miles since leaving the United Nations in Geneva. Their aim: to prove a point that instead of dreaming about 100 percent renewable energy powered vehicles for someday, we should be living that dream today.

The mastermind of the race, Louis Palmer, made a pit stop in Malibu two years ago during his Solar Taxi tour, the first circumnavigation of the globe by a solar powered car. On that trip, celebrities greeted him everywhere he went, including James Cameron, Larry Hagman, and Brian Grazer in Malibu.

Mr. Palmer reflects that he does not feel as exotic this time. With people now lining up to purchase plug-in vehicles from companies like Nissan and Chevrolet, the wow factor is not what it once was.

Far from fretting like a Hollywood starlet past his prime, Mr. Palmer is celebrating the shift as success.  He revels in the fact that people are so quickly becoming the change he hoped to inspire.

And the glittery set has not exactly cast him aside. Those checking out the Zero Race on their adventure through coastal L.A. included German mega star Thomas Gottschalk, composer and former Oingo Bongo band member Richard Gibbs, and “Who Killed the Electric Car?” filmmaker Chris Paine.

Matthias Bank is Media and Marketing Director for Renewables 100 Policy Institute, one of the event sponsors for Zero Emissions Race in Southern California. Renewables 100 Policy Institute will be re-joining Zero Emissions Race at the World Climate Conference in Cancun, where both will be advocating for a 100% renewable energy by mid-century target.

Photo caption 1.”Who Killed The Electric Car?” Filmmaker Chris Paine and Plug-In America’s Paul Scott welcome Zero Emissions Race to Southern California at Santa Monica Pier 2. Zero Emissions Race Founder Louis Palmer greets Southern California at Santa Monica Pier.

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Problems With The Media On Climate Reporting – by Al Gore

Read More by Al Gore here:  http://blog.algore.com/

Problems With The Media November 17, 2010 : 10:23 PM

 

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.

Link

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World Water Act – Please Watch Video Clip

 

 

Water for the World: New Video

The U.S. House of Representatives should be voting on H.R. 2030/S. 624, the Senator Paul Simon Water for the World Act, during its current “lame duck” session. This new Chronicles Group video presents the depth and dimension of the legislation:

http://www.runningdry.org/worldwateract.html

The legislation is important to the world and the U.S. for moral and international security reasons because it presents an opportunity to bring water and sanitation to 100 million people. It would be greatly appreciated if you would widely circulate the video.

 

Thank you,

Jim Thebaut
The Chronicles Group

 


 

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Only 150 Hawaiian False Killer Whales Remain in the Wild

Officials Propose Adding Unique Marine Mammal to Endangered Species List

Only 150 Hawaiian False Killer Whales Remain in the Wild

LOS ANGELES (November 17, 2010) – In a move to save the dwindling population of the Pseudorca crassidens—better known as the insular Hawaiian false killer whale—the Obama Administration today proposed classifying the population as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act.

“The whales are losing their food, getting hooked on fishing lines and accumulating toxins at a rate that threatens their survival,” said Michael Jasny, Senior Policy Analyst of NRDC’s Marine Mammal Project. “Protecting them will go a long way towards protecting the extraordinary marine environment of the Hawaiian Islands.”

Video of the Hawaiian false killer whales are available here:

http://player.vimeo.com/video/6738086?portrait=0

http://player.vimeo.com/video/6737837?portrait=0

The Hawaiian false killer whale is a small and ecologically unique population that has suffered a significant decline over the last 25 years and, according to recent analysis by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), only 150 of the animals may be left. Last month the NMFS released a 230-page report concluding that the population stands “at a high risk of extinction.”

“Today’s announcement recognizes the serious situation the Hawaiian false killer whales face due to a series of manmade threats,” said Sylvia Fallon, wildlife biologist with NRDC. “Toxic chemicals, reduced food sources and interactions with fishing vessels continue to harm this unique mammal. Endangered species status will give the population a chance to recover.”

This decision comes one year after NR

DC submitted a formal scientific petition to list the population. Should the administration follow through on its proposal, the Hawaiian false killer whale would become only the fourth U.S. whale or dolphin population to appear on the endangered species list since 1970.

Under the endangered species listing, the government would have to identify critical habitat for the population, ensure that activities do not jeopardize its survival, and prepare a “recovery plan” to bring it back from the brink.

Background on the Hawaiian False Killer Whale

Hawaiian false killer whales are large members of the dolphin family. Females can grow up to 15 feet and males can reach 20 feet. In adulthood, false killer whales can weigh up to 1,500 pounds. They are pelagic animals that tend to prefer deep, open water, and the Hawaiian inshore population is the only one of its entire species known to make its home near land. This indicates not only the uniqueness of the population, but also the biological importance of Hawaiian waters as an oasis for marine mammals.

Research shows that Hawaiian false killer whales establish long-term bonds within their species, sometimes mating for up to 20 years. They also display unique feeding habits that promote trust among members of their pod by passing prey back and forth with fellow hunting partners before consuming the catch.

The population faces a number of threats including interactions with local fisheries, reduced food sources and exposure to toxic chemicals. It is likely that the whales are affected by both long-line and unregulated near-shore and “short” long-line fisheries. A recent study showed that disfigurement from fishing gear in this population was four times higher than for other

dolphin and toothed whale species around the islands, suggesting high rates of interactions with fisheries. These fisheries may also be contributing to a decline in the size and number of the primary food source for false killer whales: large, deep-water fish including mahi mahi and yellowfin tuna.

The cumulative effects of these risks combined with the population’s dangerously small size qualify it for listing under the federal Endangered Species Act. NRDC petitioned to list the Hawaiian false killer whale as an endangered species in September 2009. Granting of endangered species status would extend a special level of protection to the whales and their habitat in order to help the population rebound.

Recent population surveys of the insular population of Hawaiian false killer whales shows a precipitous decline in size over the past 10-20 years. In 1989, more than 300 individuals were seen in aerial surveys compared to more recent population estimates of 150 individuals.

The National Marine Fisheries Service will have one year from today’s proposed rule to issue a final rule designating the Hawaiian false killer whale as a federally protected endangered species.

 

 

 

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Eureka! Audi Green Car of The Year Runs On Synthetic Diesel Fuel

Audi, Rentech, Inc., and the Green Car Journal are partnering to drive two Audi A3 TDIs the length of California, powered exclusively by low-carbon, synthetic RenDiesel® fuel produced by Rentech, Inc. (NYSE AMEX: RTK). The tour promotes advanced clean diesel and demonstrates the ability of the Audi A3 TDI to run on synthetic clean diesel for greater efficiency and reduced greenhouse gas emissions. The Audi A3 TDI® is Green Car Journal’s 2010 Green Car of the Year®.

OK. There are as many trademark symbols in that above paragraph as there are sentences but bottom line is that a consumer friendly car built by a household name automobile manufacturer was driven the length of California this week using synthetic renewable diesel fuel.

 

Audi Green Car of The Year runs on sythetic diesel fuel. Photo courtesy Steve Jennings for WireImage.

“California was the first state to implement a low carbon fuel standard, and we continue to see innovation, investment and job creation in our state because of this commitment,” said Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger who also had Mary Nichols, of the California Air Resources Board on hand for the Sacramento Capitol Steps press event.

The four-day, 1,000 mile journey kicked off on Monday in Eureka. The following event in Sacramento included a tour of the Audi A3 TDIs; a display of RenDiesel® exhibiting the ultra-clean nature of the synthetic fuel; and remarks by the Governor and executives from Rentech, Audi and the Green Car Journal.

 

L-R Mary Nichols, Bradley Stertz of Audi, Hunt Ramsbottom of Rentech and Gov. Schwarzenegger.

Audi has long embraced environmental stewardship, most recently with this clean diesel journey to demonstrate that RenDiesel® works with existing diesel engines and that today’s Audi TDI technology can achieve its customary performance using a synthetic fuel.

The emissions produced by combustion of RenDiesel® are lower in particulate matter (PM), nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur oxides (SOx) and carbon dioxide (CO²), compared to petroleum-based fuels. In addition, RenDiesel® produces fewer emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOC) than ethanol or traditional clean diesel and has the potential to be twice as fuel-efficient as a car running on ethanol.

All photos courtesy Steve Jennings, Wire Image.

The “Eureka! Diesel Driving the Future” will celebrate the 1,000-mile journey’s conclusion with a clean diesel panel discussion at the Peterson Automotive Museum in Los Angeles.

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Hollywood’s Green Moguls Take Home Top Awards

James Cameron and wife Suzy speak on EMA Red Carpet at Warner Bros. backlot for Saturday’s Environmental Media Awards, for which Avatar took home top Feature Film Award. Photo courtesy Ann Murray.
Ed Begley Jr. was also honored with top prize at EMA Awards for Life With Ed Tv Series.                                    Photo courtesy Ann Photo Courtesy Ann Murray.

By: Ann Murray

The green carpet rolled out for The Environmental Media Association’s EMA Awards this Saturday at the Warner Bros. movie lot, which was hosted by Olivia Munn and Jason Ritter. The event, which was completely plastic water bottle free, honored environmental films and television series, tackled topics such as alternative fuel sources and even featured a live Native American Dance troupe.

Celebrity guests included the brilliant James Cameron and his beautiful and green conscious wife, Suzy Amis Cameron (famous for her own green fashion choices). They were both on hand when Avatar snagged the night’s award for Feature Film. On the green carpet, Cameron explained the significance of how his film was shot and its overall environmental impact.

“Let’s look at the big picture,” he said. “Avatar was a film that took place in an enormous rain forest. Can’t shoot big battle scenes in a rain forest. It was 100 percent CGI. There were a few people playing multiple roles so the footprint compared to the visual impact was very tiny. But ultimately it’s a multi-hundred million dollar movie, there are a lot of people working on computers, and those computers are absorbing energy. There’s no way you can say this movie was made with one watt of power. But you have to weigh the value of the film with the environmental impact in the public consciousness.” – James Cameron,  on making Avatar

 

Rosario Dawson is all for Greening Hollywood. At EMA Awards Oct. 16th, Warner Bros. lot. Photo courtesy Ann Murray.

Warner Bros. backlot just before EMA Awards Oct. 16, 2010. Photo courtesy Ann Murray.

 

EMA Awards Oct. 16, 2010. Warner Bros. Photo Courtesy Ann Murray.

Other stars gave us the scoop on how their television sets are enviro-friendly and waste-free. Sarah Drew from Grey’s Anatomy took tips from a fellow star on the set: “I was very inspired by Sandra Oh, because she never uses paper products on set,” she told us on the red carpet. “She uses her own mugs that say “Oh” on it, and she has her own plates. I went out and bought a reusable mug that looks like one of those coffee cups. I also bring my water bottle to set every day.”

Katrina Bowden took us inside 30 Rock’s very serious green policies;  “Our show is green, we have done away with all plastic bottles,” she said. “At the beginning of the season we get our own mugs with our names on it, there’s recycling bins everywhere, efficient light bulbs everywhere. The same thing I am doing at home too.”

Native American dancing at EMA Awards, Oct. 16, 2010. Photo courtesy Ann Murray.

Mark Paul Gosselaar, on the other hand, told us it hasn’t always been easy to keep a set’s waste and energy consumption down, but that now being green on set is the norm. “So much so that when they gave my character a car, I asked that they made it a Prius” he told us about his time on ‘Raising the Bar’. “They said “we’ll get you a Prius!” but I don’t think that would have happened years ago.”

 

EMA Awards Silent Auction. Film Production and Eco Travel, a Natural Fit. Photo courtesy Ann Murray.

But if a film or TV series still finds it difficult to keep their carbon footprint in check, they might want to follow green guru Ed Begley Jr.’s guidance. “Contact EMA and get that green checklist for production,” he told us. “It’s simple things like recycling on the set, not printing scripts – if you have to print them, do so on recycled paper. Use pdf files. As an actor, I like to use pdfs. Shuttling people around, get a low mileage vehicle and more fuel efficient shuttles, buy green energy, have efficient lighting in the production office. Really it’s as easy as checking out the EMA list.”

In addition to “Avatar,” “30 Rock,” the documentary “Gasland” and Begley’s “Living With Ed” took home top honors of the night.

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