AGL IS ONE OF Australia’s largest energy companies with a marketing budget to match, so that money can be chucked at everything from sports teams to community festivals. But all of the spin and sponsorship hides a grim truth. In the villainous league of Australia’s worst coal-burning polluters, AGL is the number one offender — literally, the worst of the worst.AGL is leading the way in harmful coal pollution
The deaths of more than 174,000 people from the coronavirus could have been avoided if it weren’t for the harmful, man-made pollutants dirtying the air.
In refusing to introduce acceptable air pollution standards, Australia’s politicians are essentially saying our lives and health do not matter, writes David Ritter.Coal-fired air pollution: The invisible killer
The Government, of course, blamed the drought which they also claimed neither to be an extraordinary event nor a man made regulatory failure. (ODT)
The CSIRO told the ABC that this increased regulation of river water and restricted water flow from low rainfall have caused an increased number of algal blooms in recent years in the Murray-Darling Basin.
“We’re really angry about it because we know that this is not a natural disaster, this is a man-made disaster,” said McBride.
“We really want to make sure that we change the way the lakes are managed so that we never see this again because it’s just heartbreaking.”
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt announced a plan to revise existing tailpipe standards that were going to apply for model years 2022 to 2025, saying the current standards “are not appropriate” and were set “too high.” Pruitt also said the EPA is re-examining the state of California’s historic ability to adopt tailpipe standards that are more ambitious than the federal government’s.
By Sam Morgan | EURACTIV.com| – – A new study is the first to take into account all types of …
Every car sold in India will be powered by electricity by the year 2030, according to plans unveiled by the country’s energy minister. The move is intended to lower the cost of importing fuel and lower costs for running vehicles. “We are going to introduce electric vehicles in a very big way,” coal and mines minister Piyush Goyal said at the Confederation of Indian Industry Annual Session 2017 in New Delhi.
by Justin Rowlatt
Source: BBC News – India’s dying mother
When TransCanada announced at the start of the year that it that it was demanding compensation under North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) rules for the Obama administration’s decision to reject the Keystone XL pipeline, many observers saw it as a sign of things to come.
A freight train that derailed near the northeast Australian town of Julia Creek has reportedly leaked up to 31,500 liters of sulfuric acid, while Queensland Police have sharply revised the amount of toxic substance it was hauling upward.
According to some back-of-the-envelope estimates.
Humanity’s ongoing contribution to climate change didn’t get any worse last year, the International Energy Agency reports.
We did it!
Global carbon dioxide emissions from the energy sector stalled in 2014, the IEA found, news that the group’s Chief Economist Faith Birol called “both a very welcome surprise and a significant one.” The big news is that this was the first time in forty years that emissions have stalled while the economy grew 3 percent — suggesting, said Birol, that the two are “decoupling.”
And it means, the IEA said in a press release, that our efforts to mitigate our contribution to climate change may already be having more of an an effect than we thought. Among the possible reasons for the lack of growth, the agency cites OECD countries’ push for renewable energy and stricter energy efficienct standards and a shift, in China, from coal to renewables. Indeed, a Bloomberg New Energy Finance analysis of China’s emissions found that the fell, last year, for the first time since 2001.
The number we’ve stalled at –32.2 billion metric tons pouring into the atmosphere in both 2013 and 2014 — is, of course, still much too high if we’re to avoid risking the “severe, pervasive and irreversible” consequences of climate change; saying the problem hasn’t gotten worse is a far cry from the “drastic” action the IPCC says is needed. Better to say, then, that we’re in the process of doing it — and still need to ramp it up significantly.
According to Birol, this bit of positive news could provide some much-needed momentum for the global climate negotiations culminating at the end of this year in Paris, when the world will attempt to reach an agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The stakes, for that, continue to be high. Because otherwise, Birol told the Financial Times, 2014 will be but “a temporary bright point in an otherwise alarming trend.”
The 2014 Cruise Ship Report Card has sobering information about cruise ships and the environment
Environmental organization Friends of the Earth recently released their Cruise Ship Report Card for 2014 which compiles, among other things, the amount of poo cruise ships produce in a given year. The report used federal data to assess the environmental impact of 16 major cruise lines, and actually found that the companies are taking steps to be more environmentally friendly–except for when it comes to treating waste. Over 40 percent of all ships currently running use waste treatment systems that are over three decades old.
Think Progress’ Jeff Spross reports:
Federal law requires that cruise ships only dump treated wastewater if they are within three nautical miles of shore. But beyond that point, it’s essentially a free-for-all.
FOE also cites data from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which shows “an average cruise ship with 3,000 passengers and crew produces about 21,000 gallons of sewage a day — enough to fill 10 backyard swimming pools in a week. That adds up to more than one billion gallons a year for the industry.” FOE also acknowledges this is likely “a conservative estimate,” because newer ships can carry up to 8,000 passengers and crew members, and because their analysis does not cover all ships and fleets worldwide.
For what it’s worth, Disney Cruise Lines is the most environmentally friendly option, earning an A for sewage treatment, B- for air pollution reduction and an A for water quality compliance.
According to a press release, in past years, cruise lines have been willing to cooperate with the investigation. This year is the first year that all 16 lines refused to provide information about their practices, which led the FOE to introduce a new category: “Transparency.” Every line received an F
“By working to stifle the Cruise Ship Report Card, the industry attempted to shield itself from continued scrutiny of its environmental practices, and obscure data from conscientious consumers who would make different choices based on how a cruise ship or line performs on the report card,” said Marcie Keever, director of the Oceans and Vessels program at FOE. “It’s time for the cruise industry to stop trying to hide the dirty ships in its fleet.”
- theguardian.com, Wednesday 22 October
- Here are little known facts about coal: its use is responsible for 400,000 premature deaths per year globally, and many more illnesses. In India, coal contributes to between 80,000 to 115,000 premature deaths and 20m new asthma cases annually. It is also responsible for around 40% of the greenhouse gas emissions that are dramatically changing the world’s climate and impoverishing millions of people.
This, however, did not stop Tony Abbott from glossing over these costs when he declared recently that “coal is good for humanity”, nor did it stop environment minister Greg Hunt from saying that coal will lift millions in the developing world out of energy poverty.
But coal is not the solution to energy poverty. Local renewable energy is. India’s people are best served by renewable energy sources like wind, solar and small-scale hydropower. That’s why Indian giant Adani’s proposed Carmichael mine in Queensland’s Galilee Basin, one of the world’s largest, is such a backward idea – and why I have joined the fight to stop it.
scenario emphasising coal.
This difference is even starker when you take into account the costs of imported coal from Australia and Indonesia. Increases in imported Indonesian coal prices have made the massive Tata Mundra and Adani Mundra power projects in the Indian state of Gujarat uneconomical, leading to plant shutdowns.This price differential would be even greater for Australian coal. Recent analysis from the Institute of Energy Economics and Financial Analysis has shown that the cost of imported Galilee coal-fired power generation in India is double the current average wholesale cost of electricity. More than 300m Indians simply cannot afford Australian coal.
The coal from Carmichael, when burnt in Adani’s power stations in India, will damage the health of the Indian rural poor and the land and water on which they depend for their livelihoods. And they still won’t be able to afford the electricity generated.
Abbott said “coal has a big future as well as a big past.” He and the coal companies want us all to believe that coal is inevitable. Coal helped build the economies of developed countries and so it must be the right choice for the rest of us. Yet by that logic, the opium trade and slavery should also be reintroduced, since they also contributed to the enrichment of many countries.
All the pieces are in place now for developing countries to choose a clean energy path that is cheaper, faster and healthier than coal. It would be nice if the Australian government focused on this, rather than exporting dirty, outdated coal.