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Green News Roundup: Week of July 26, 2013

26 Jul 2013  |   Amanda Giddon

Climate change has become a defining issue for young voters.  LCV’s youth poll released this week, surveying U.S. voters under 35, showed overwhelming support for the President’s climate agenda, and little patience for climate deniers. The Guardian said in covering the poll that legislators who deny climate science “could soon be reduced to political fossils.” [The Guardian]

Safeguarding public health and habitats through reducing CO2 has another silver lining – it could save trillions of dollars. Researches have estimated that if the Artic continues to melt a 50-gigaton methane reservoir currently concealed beneath the permafrost will be released, costing between $37 trillion and $60 trillion dollars of damage. [Grist] 

Need to see it to believe it? Check out this Now This News time lapse of the North Pole melting. Buzzfeed calls it “A Beautiful Sign Of Our Impending Doom.” Beautiful – yes. Impending – maybe. Climate action could help keep the ice caps icy. [Buzzfeed]

Sounds like the environment could use some protecting. Unfortunately, the Appropriations Interior and Environment subcommittee voted to cut the EPA’s budget by 34% this week. This legislation undermines EPA’s authority under the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and Safe Drinking Water Act to implement safeguards that defend public health and protect the environment. [Politico]

Ever wonder what the Jefferson Memorial would look like under 25 feet of water? Hopefully this graphic in the Washington Post will be the only way to find out. Experts on sea-level rise estimated that Maryland’s coastal waters could rise 6 feet in the next 100 years. And Maryland is not alone - Virginia, Delaware, Louisiana and Florida are also particularly vulnerable to sea level rise. [Washington Post]

Louisiana ecosystems face an additional environmental threat – eroding wetlands. These wetlands, which serve as a natural buffer against flooding and improve water quality, have been depleted by destructive saltwater from a network of oil and gas access and pipeline canals. Not only do dirty energy projects accelerate climate change, they devastate natural features that could help mitigate climate change’s effects. [Huffington Post]

Dirty energy is also risky business. There was an explosion on another drilling rig out in the Gulf on Wednesday. Luckily, no one was hurt, but according to Grist, "With the number of deep-sea rigs tapping the Gulf of Mexico for oil expected to nearly double in the next few years, the chances of more such disasters could yet grow." [Grist]

If that’s not bad enough, there’s an oil leak in Cold Lake, Alberta, that has been going on for 9 weeks…with no sign of slowing. A scientist who has visited the site reports that no one understands why it started, and more alarmingly, no one knows how to stop it. 26,000 barrels of tar and 60,000 pounds of polluted vegetation have been removed from the site. [Mother Jones]

(Photo courtesy of KEENPRESS Flickr Page



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