Thursday, March 25, 2004
::: Bush = Environmental Disaster :::
It just boggles the mind ...
The Four Threats
Forest Service Will Self-Certify Compliance Under New "Streamline" Plan
Washington, DC — The U.S. Forest Service is moving to eliminate any reviews of its actions by outside agencies for compliance with endangered species, clean water, and historical preservation laws, according to a planning memo released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER).
Citing what Forest Service Chief Dale Bosworth has identified as "the Four Threats" (fire risk, invasive species, un-managed recreation and loss of open space), the agency plans to jettison any consultation or other "process" it deems unrelated to "the Four Threats." Consequently, the Forest Service will end —
"The Forest Service fails to grasp the difference between streamlining and steamrolling," stated PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch, arguing that ending inter-agency consultation eliminates checks on Forest Service abuses and leads to more litigation because lawsuits would become the only avenue for securing agency compliance with resource protection laws. "The Forest Service's track record makes a powerful case for more outside review not less."
Why are we NOT surprised!
Other really tacky Environmental Policies ala BUSH & Co.
GOP Memo on how to counter charges the
Republicans anti-environment stance and policies.
WASHINGTON -- Republican House leaders are warning their members that "Democrats will hit us hard on the environment" this election year.
Their advice? Tell voters that global warming has not been proved, that there are no clear links between air pollution and childhood asthma and that America’s rivers and lakes aren’t nearly as polluted as the Environmental Protection Agency says they are.
Vermont Sen. Jim Jeffords, who left the Republican Party in 2001 to become an independent partly because he didn’t think the GOP was pro-environment, called the memo "outlandish" and an attempt to deceive voters. He said he hopes moderate Republicans will help thwart the conservatives’ strategy.
Among the memo’s assertions: "Global warming is not a fact," "links between air quality and asthma in children remain cloudy" and the EPA is exaggerating when it says at least 40 percent of U.S. streams, rivers and lakes are too polluted for drinking, fishing or swimming.
But Jeffords -- the ranking member on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee -- said the memo distorts reality.
"It’s so incredible that they have this denial of any responsibility for the serious situation we have in this country as far as the environment goes," Jeffords said. "They have a head-in-the-sand approach to it. They’re just sloughing off the human health impacts -- the premature deaths and asthma attacks caused by power plant pollution."
Also included in this article from Gannett News Service are
counterpoint excerpts excerpts from The Memo. Here is
one on Global Warming.
Memo: Global warming is not a fact. "There is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane or other greenhouse gasses is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of the Earth’s climate." (Source: Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Richard Lindzen)
EPA: According to the National Academy of Sciences, the Earth’s surface temperature has risen by about 1 degree Fahrenheit in the past century, with accelerated warming during the past two decades. There is new and stronger evidence that most of the warming over the last 50 years is attributable to human activities.
(Over the next 50 to 100 years), evaporation will increase as the climate warms, which will increase average global precipitation. Soil moisture is likely to decline in many regions, and intense rainstorms are likely to become more frequent. Sea level is likely to rise two feet along most of the U.S. coast.
Other subjects address are:
Air Quality and Asthma
and Water Quality.
Peering into Oil's Future
Mounting evidence suggests that an important turning point may be close. According to several studies, oil production is expected to begin a permanent decline within a few years, prompting social and economic upheaval across the globe.
Or maybe not. A rival school of thought says that oil's imminent demise is exaggerated and that crude will be plentiful into the near future.
The ebb and flow of oil production is known as the "Hubbert's Peak," after M. King Hubbert, a Shell geologist. He gained fame for correctly predicting in 1956 that U.S. production would peak in the early 1970s and then decline.
Hubbert's theory is that oil production, when plotted on a chart, is a bell curve. Production rises quickly as big, cheap-to-operate fields open. It flattens out as those fields become depleted. New, smaller, more costly fields can't offset the loss, leading to the curve's inevitable decline.
Today's generation of oil researchers is applying Hubbert's principles to global production. They agree that pumping will eventually peak worldwide, but they differ widely on exactly when.
Colin Campbell, a retired geologist in Ireland who has worked throughout the oil industry, including Texaco, BP and Amoco, says the peak will come before 2010. It may be already happening, he said, given that global oil production has declined slightly since 2000.
Some researchers say the drop is a temporary and deliberate response by oil producers to cut back because of the bad economy and lower demand. Campbell, however, believes that virtually all nations are pumping at full capacity.
"I think we may live to see that 2000 may have been the peak," Campbell said. "We're hitting capacity again now -- oil prices are surging. It's reasonable to think that by 2010, you will have a volatile period of recession, oil spikes and price shocks."
The U.S. Energy Information Administration paints a different picture. The agency, part of the Department of Energy, pegged the peak at anywhere between 2021 and 2112.
The above is the proverbial TIP of the iceberg ....
which is what the Earth may become if we do not
stop blocking scientific discovery for new energy
technologies. The destruction of this Earth's climate
is being hidden for the corporate dollar.
Shame on us for not noticing.
For a real eye-opener goto:
TruthOut's Environmental Section