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Meaningful action” on climate change would be to show up to the UN climate talks every year and commit to a treaty. 1) Executive Orders can and have been reversed by any president. In fact, Obama reversed some of George Bush’s orders in 2008. 2) Obama has reneged on his very own Executive Orders.

I wrote about Obama’s Executive Order 13514. EO 13514 ordered all Federal Agencies to be more sustainable, consider climate in decision making, switch to more renewable energy, reduce emissions, among several other climate change measures. It’s unclear what, if any, of the effects his EO has had on the Federal Government.


Obama Proposes ‘Meaningful Action’ on Climate Change

President Barack Obama called for “meaningful progress” on tackling climate change in his State of the Union speech in Washington, DC on Tuesday night. While acknowledging that “no single event makes a trend,” the President noted that the United States had been buffeted by extreme weather events that in many cases encapsulated the predictions of climate scientists. Read more

Asker newsfromthe Asks:
I've been following you on tumblr for some time. Consistently impressed. Your take on Zolli - spot on. Sometimes I think if you string enough big words together you can fool most of the people a lot of the time. And considering the speaking fee dollars involved, it seems to be a trick a lot of people are willing to try.
climateadaptation climateadaptation Said:

Hi newsfromthe!

Thanks for your nice note of support. You’re referring to this post, where I briefly describe how one tech guru, Andrew Zolli, is exploiting the science of adaptation, resilience, and adaptation for short-term profit. He “wrote” a messy, jargon filled op-ed in today’s NYTimes.

To my mind, Zolli is on the path to perfecting greenwashing. I agree with the idea that my field needs more exposure. But, I believe that tech gurus like Zolli are doing a disservice by monetizing, synergizing, and other popular “izings” the serious science and policy responses needed to conserve, preserve, manage, and live with our dwindling natural environment.

Environmentalists need to take note.



Romney busted for faking hurricane relief event:

the night before the event, campaign aides went to a local Wal-Mart and spent $5,000 on granola bars, canned food, and diapers to put on display while they waited for donations to come in, according to one staffer.

"You need a donation to get in line!" Empty-handed supporters pled for entrance, with one woman asking, "What if we dropped off our donations up front?" The volunteer gestured toward a pile of groceries conveniently stacked near the candidate. "Just grab something," he said. Two teenage boys retrieved a jar of peanut butter each, and got in line. When it was their turn, they handed their "donations" to Romney.

Full ridic, here

As our nation faces a $15.5 trillion debt that grows by over $4 billion every day, the two agencies appearing today are responsible for managing national fish and wildlife and marine resources and are requesting a combined total of over $200 million more than together they received last year — including for more Endangered Species Act (ESA) listings and regulations. Regrettably, the sizable portion of these agencies’ budgets that already goes to managing endangered species programs focuses less on prioritizing and recovering species than on paying costly attorneys’ fees, avoiding and defending procedural lawsuits, meeting court deadlines, and responding to court orders stemming from the agencies’ own poorly drafted rules and regulations.
Natural Resources Chairman Doc Hastings’ (R-WA), bloviating at a congressional hearing on gutting the Endangered Species Act.
We as a society need to glorify those who make a profit.

Senator Rand Paul defending oil companies on the Senate floor yesterday. The Senate is debating ending billions of dollars in tax subsidies to oil companies. Paul claims that oil companies deserve tax breaks because love money/hate Obama let’s have a tea partayyy.

Paul’s top campaign contributors? Oil, coal, and hedge funds.

I’m just back from Chicago where I helped run a workshop on adaptation. One of our speakers was Karen Weigert, the Chief Sustainability Officer of the City of Chicago. She spoke mostly about the benefits of greening the city.

After her talk, I asked her about all the sponsors of Millennium Park. Specifically, how does the City square the concept of sustainability with a park that is sponsored by large companies like AT&T, Boeing, BP, and McDonald’s? After all, they could leave at anytime or at the end of their contract. She responded that the value of land and condos in surrounding neighborhoods were rising. She was nice, and the exchange was cordial, but with all due respect I still don’t understand how the park can be exemplified as “sustainable.”

In any case, I’m glad to see Utne taking up this issue of cities depending on sponsors. What happens in 10 years when the sponsor leaves?

Cash-strapped state parks are forging partnerships with corporations to close their budget gaps:

In New York, for example, Nestle’s Juicy Juice contributed $350,000 to build playgrounds in seven state parks. In California, Coca-Cola and Stater Bros. Markets have raised about $1.9 million to support reforestation and other state park preservation efforts. And in Georgia, Verizon Wireless contributed $5,000 to cover the cost of park passes for the state’s annual Free Day at the park. Most of these efforts come with recognition—on a playground sign, on a park pass—of the corporation’s contribution.

The trend has already spawned the creation of a new breed of middleman: A California firm called Government Solutions Group has brokered about $7.5 million in such deal since 2004. Chief executive Shari Boyer tells Governing that this is not philanthropy but business: “These are partnerships. The corporation has to get something out of it.”

Keep reading …

Charts of the day. We’re getting hosed man.