Environment Forum

Live video: Day 2 for BP, Transocean in Congress

Appearing for a second day, the presidents of BP America and Transocean are scheduled to recount for a Senate subcommittee what caused the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico that killed 11 workers. Watch live video here starting at 10 a.m.

Video: Dolphins swimming through crude

In this video blog posted by Regan Nelson, a senior oceans advocate with the Natural Resources Defence Council (NRDC), dolphins are shown swimming in the murky waters containing chemically-dispersed oil off the Gulf of Mexico.

BP engineers were using undersea robots on Friday to try to stem the continued leak of 5000 barrels of oil a day from the ruptured oil well about a mile underwater.

Wildlife rescue teams were on standby as potential calamity faces the region’s birds, sea turtles and marine mammals.

Time to get un-addicted to oil

rona

– Rona Fried, Ph.D., is CEO of SustainableBusiness.com, a news and networking site for green businesses: including a green jobs service and a green investing newsletter.  Any views expressed here are her own. —

Over the past 30 years, four U.S. presidents chose to continue down the fossil fuel path of least resistance instead of investing heavily in energy efficiency and renewable energy – the only long-term solutions that can avoid catastrophic oil spills like the one we are witnessing today.

We have all the technology to transition to a clean economy that gives us the energy we need without destroying biodiversity, ecosystems, human life and the economy.

Underwater footage: capping the first leak

This video was released by BP to show a remote operating vehicle (ROV) closing one of the three leaks that are spewing at least 5,000 barrels of oil a day into the waters off Gulf coastal states about a mile underwater.

“…The oil gushing out is quite incredible – you can see it at about the 2 minute 15 second mark of the video,” writes Kevin Grandia on Energyboom.com.

On Friday, BP engineers were expected to lower a massive metal containment chamber onto a ruptured oil well in the Gulf of Mexico in an effort to stem the widening slick before it reaches mainland.

Deepwater offshore development remains a vital enterprise

USA-RIG/LEAKS

— Dr. Lee Hunt is president of the International Association of Drilling Contractors located in Houston, Texas. Any views expressed here are his own. –

The Gulf of Mexico rig explosion and subsequent oil spill are regrettable in the extreme.

But the fact remains that offshore drilling and production has for more than four decades provided safe and reliable sources of energy vitally needed by our nation.

Clean energy conference shows efficiency means savings

USA-ECONOMY/

-Eileen Claussen is President of the Pew Center on Global Climate Change. The views expressed are her own.-

While policymakers in Washington debate the best path forward for dealing with climate change, a growing number of U.S. businesses have discovered a simple technique that can lower costs, increase productivity, and slash greenhouse gas emissions.  What’s more, it can work for any business no matter what they make – whether it’s potato chips or computer chips.

It’s called energy efficiency, and a growing number of U.S. businesses are starting to get it.

Burning tires is most definitely renewable

GM/

– Rich Trzupek is a chemist and principal consultant at Mostardi Platt Environmental. He also writes for bigjournalism.com and frontpagemag.com on science, the environment and politics. The views expressed here are his own. –

Thanks to federal and state incentive programs, renewable energy is more prized and more profitable than ever.

Wind and solar energy are the best known forms of renewable power, but they don’t wholly define this particular universe.

Can the U.S. compete with China in the green economy?

OBAMA/

Fred Krupp is president of the Environmental Defense Fund. The views expressed are his own.

It’s as though three mammoth challenges facing America are intertwined like the strands of a rope: reducing our dependence on Mideast oil; creating new American jobs from clean energy; and reducing pollution responsible for climate change.

Together, those strands are a lifeline to the future.

While the House of Representatives passed comprehensive energy and climate legislation last summer, polarization has created gridlock in Washington, paralyzing most major legislative initiatives, including clean energy.

from The Great Debate:

Obama, politics and nuclear waste

yucca

-Bernd Debusmann is a Reuters columnist. The opinions expressed are his own-

The project involved more than 2,500 scientists. It cost $ 10.5 billion between 1983 and 2009 and it included one of the most bizarre scientific tasks of all time: evaluate whether nuclear waste stored deep inside a Nevada desert mountain would be safe a million years into the future.

That was the safety standard set in September, 2008, by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a condition for allowing nuclear waste to be stored deep in the belly of the Yucca Mountain, 95 miles (155 km) from Las Vegas, long the subject of political debate and a fine example of nimbyism (not in my backyard).

The vastly complex computer models and simulations experts launched to figure out whether Yucca Mountain would be a safe environment in the year 1,000,000 and beyond ended before there was a scientific conclusion.

from UK News:

Are you losing faith in climate science?

climatechangeWhile attending a meeting of prominent climate sceptics during the U.N. Climate Conference in Copenhagen in December (an anti-COP15, if you will), I listened to each of the speakers put forward their theory on why conventional evidence on the primary causes of climate change should be dismissed as, for lack of a better phrase, complete hokum.

Among their denunciations of widely-accepted truths regarding global warming, greenhouse gases, melting glaciers and rising sea levels was the assertion that a change in attitude was afoot; the public may have been duped into believing the mainstream scientific assessment of climate change, but not for long.

There was something in the air, the sceptics said, and soon people would begin to question their trust in the majority view.

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