Bill Maher interviews teenage environmental activist Xiuhtezcatl Martinez about his advocacy work and lawsuit against the federal government for inaction on climate change.

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Through his music, acclaimed Italian composer and pianist Ludovico Einaudi has added his voice to those of eight million people from across the world demanding protection for the Arctic. Einaudi performed one of his own compositions on a floating platform in the middle of the Ocean, against the backdrop of the Wahlenbergbreen glacier (in Svalbard, Norway).

https://www.savethearctic.org/voices/

Above, 8 second snip from a Fox News report showing typical anti-renewable energy propaganda.
I show this as comic relief in my presentations, and it’s always good for a laugh..
(full clip here if you’re interested)

A quick look Fox reporter  Shibani Joshi’s wikipedia entry shows that she is married to Joshi Rahul Advani, “a principal at Energy Capital Partners”, a firm that,  according to its website,focuses on investing in the power generation, midstream oil and gas, electric transmission, environmental infrastructure and energy services”.
Wow, who could have imagined that?

Since we haven’t been at war with Germany in 60 years, many Americans, especially Fox News viewers, don’t know where it is, so in my presentations,  I always put up a map to show that Germany is a small, cloudy, northern European country at about the same latitude as Labrador, Canada.

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Since Germany bashing continues to be a staple for the anti-science brigade, here’s the latest update.

Energy Transition:

Some of the positive Energiewende reporting leaves the reader with the impression as if Germany was a lonely leader on a path to decarbonization of power production through the usage of distributed renewables. But of course, Germany is not going alone. The country has many ambitious allies around the globe like Denmark or California, which have even more ambitious goals than my home country of Germany.

However, the international Energiewende reporting makes me want to rub my eyes. If one is to believe those reports, industry is fleeing because energy costs are going through the roof. Since Germany’s supposed panic reaction to Fukushima and the shutdown of nuclear reactors in 2011, the country is allegedly increasingly dependent on power imports, and its grid is less stable than before. And those are just a few of the unfounded claims:

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Fact-checking reveals that the above statements are myths. Readers of this blog know that the Energiewende is neither an irrational reaction to Fukushima, nor unique in its ambitions. Nonetheless, these myths keep circulating through the international press. How can this divergent discourse be explained?

Four different factors help explain this divergence between the German and international understanding of the Energiewende:

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Tesla: It Floats!

June 19, 2016

Preppers take note.
With increased coastal flooding and extreme precip, might be a good sales point.

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Joe Romm at ClimateProgress:

Low-cost, high-performance electric batteries are a game changer for the two key clean energy sectors: power generation and transportation. They enable much greater adoption and penetration of both renewable energy and electric vehicles — not just electric cars but electric buses and electric planes.

Since lithium-ion batteries have only just crossed the key price point for enabling widespread usage in both sectors — $300 per kilowatt-hour — we are really just at the beginning of the battery-driven clean energy revolution.

Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) projects that over the next 25 years, small-scale battery storage will become a $250 billion market. They “expect total behind-the-meter energy storage to rise dramatically from around 400 MWh in today to nearly 760 GWh in 2040″ — nearly a 2,000-fold increase!

BNEF makes the case we’ve crossed a similar tipping point for electric car batteries in this new chart, above.

BNEF projects that in 2040 over one third of all cars sold will be electric. That’s more than 40 million electric vehicles (EVs), almost a hundred times larger than the 2015 EV market. Battery prices are coming down so fast that within a decade or so, EVs will actually compete with gasoline-powered cars directly on sticker price — while having vastly lower monthly fuel and maintenance costs.

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Conclusions from an early 80s vintage Exxon Briefing on Climate Change

Masslive:

ExxonMobil has sued Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey over her investigation into whether the energy giant lied about climate change to mislead its shareholders and the public.

Exxon’s complaint was filed Wednesday in federal district court in Fort Worth, Texas. Healey’s office has subpoenaed millions of documents from the company going back four decades, and Exxon claims Healey is “abusing the power of government to silence a speaker she disfavors.”

The complaint argues that Healey’s investigation violates the First and Fourth amendments of the U.S. Constitution, which protect free speech and prohibit unreasonable searches; that the investigation violates Massachusetts’ four-year statute of limitations; and that the company does not do business in the state.

Cyndi Roy Gonzalez, a spokesperson for Healey’s office, said the First Amendment “does not protect false and misleading statements in the marketplace” and that “Exxon’s assertion that we cannot investigate it because the company has not engaged in business here in Massachusetts is completely preposterous.”

Charlie Pierce in Esquire:

The legal war on decades of disinformation is being waged on many fronts. Here in the Commonwealth (God save it!), attorney general Maura Healey is being sued by poor little embattled Exxon for trying to “intimidate” the company through her demand for the documents proving that the struggling small business had been lying about its complicity in demolishing the planet. We are flirting dangerously close to the classic law-school definition of “chutzpah” here. Per DeSmog:

In its 33-page filing against Massachusetts AG Healey, Exxon lays out what it sees as the “facts” about the efforts of Attorneys General to prudently investigate the company’s historical relationship with climate science.

The first of the “Facts” that ExxonMobil lays out in making its case is that 20 Attorneys General, led by New York AG Eric Schneiderman, held a press conference in New York City dubbed “AGs United for Clean Power.”

The horrors! Yes, this is in fact… a fact. Twenty courageous AGs bravely stepped in front of cameras and microphones — a press conference! — to rail against Washington gridlock on climate policy and announce their leadership efforts to find ways to hold the oil industry accountable for its insidious work to block climate policy action at the federal and state levels over the past several decades.

So Exxon’s first “fact” oddly confirms the legitimate and ordinary efforts of state AGs to work together to get things done in the absence of Washington leadership. In short, to identify and hold accountable those who have encouraged doubt and distraction in order to delay action on the most pressing issue of our time.

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Over the ensuing five pages of its Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief, Exxon proceeds to list 34 more “facts” that rehash the details of the March 29, 2016 press conference. Seriously, five pages of quotes and ‘facts’ pulled from a very public, YouTubed press conference… imagine the hourly rate these Exxon attorneys earned for transcribing cherry-picked quotes?

So let’s sum this up – here we have a frivolous SLAPP-like lawsuit filed by a massive multinational oil company in an industry-friendly Texas jurisdiction seeking the court’s heavy-handed smackdown of a totally reasonable investigation (known in legal parlance as a Civil Investigative Demand or CID) launched by the attorneys general of 17 states. Read the rest of this entry »

Reuters:

A Republican-led congressional committee sought on Friday to assert oversight over inquiries that about 20 states are making into Exxon Mobil and climate change, reiterating demands to know more about state attorneys general’s consultations with environmental groups.

In a letter, some 17 members of Congress and ranking members of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee said they have broad jurisdiction that allows them to review investigations carried out by states. The committee was pushing back against state officials who have said they are not subject to federal oversight.

The standoff is the latest in a high-stakes battle between the world’s largest publicly traded oil company and a coalition of state attorneys general who have said they would go after Exxon in a bid to force congressional action to tackle climate change.

About 20 state officials jointly said in March they would participate in inquiries into whether Exxon executives misled the public by contradicting research from company scientists that spelled out the threats of climate change.

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