Sunday, November 26, 2006

Hard Rain Journal 11-26-06: Climate Crisis Update -- NSTA and State of Texas Exhibit Wanton Disregard for the Public Good

Image: Woods Hole Research Center

In the past year alone, according to its Web site, Exxon Mobil's foundation gave $42 million to key organizations that influence the way children learn about science, from kindergarten until they graduate from high school. Laurie David, Washington Post, 11-26-06

The world can't get its act together without the United States, and the US can't do it without Texas. The world may have ten years, but Texas only has six months to stop TXU from turning our climate to toast. Kelpie Wilson, Truthout, 11-22-06

Hard Rain Journal 11-26-06: Climate Crisis Update -- NSTA and State of Texas Exhibit Wanton Disregard for the Public Good

By Richard Power

Two stories from recent days highlight the profoundly disturbing disconnect from reality on the part of the US political establishment, the US mainstream news media and even the US educational system.

In a Washington Post op-ed piece, Laurie David, producer of "An Inconvenient Truth," Natural Resources Defense Council trustee and founder of, exposes the cravenness of the National Science Teachers Association (NTSA). David offered 50,000 free Inconvenient Truth DVDs to the NTSA, but the offer was rejected.


"In their e-mail rejection, they expressed concern that other "special interests" might ask to distribute materials, too; they said they didn't want to offer "political" endorsement of the film; and they saw "little, if any, benefit to NSTA or its members" in accepting the free DVDs. Accepting the DVDs, they wrote, would place "unnecessary risk upon the [NSTA] capital campaign, especially certain targeted supporters." One of those supporters, it turns out, is the Exxon Mobil Corp....NSTA's list of corporate donors also includes Shell Oil and the American Petroleum Institute (API), which funds NSTA's Web site on the science of energy. There, students can find a section called "Running on Oil" and read a page that touts the industry's environmental track record -- citing improvements mostly attributable to laws that the companies fought tooth and nail, by the way -- but makes only vague references to spills or pollution. NSTA has distributed a video produced by API called "You Can't Be Cool Without Fuel," a shameless pitch for oil dependence. Laurie David, Science a la Joe Camel, 11-26-06

The NTSA story is about an organization that presents itself as a teachers association, willing to accept corporatist influence warfare materials accompanied by big donations from the energy industry, but unwilling to accept public service materials offered for free and grounded in irrefutable science.

It is scandalous, but it is, of course, an information-based scandal.

The other outrage I want to draw your attention to is, well, murderous (to the citizens of Texas and to the environment of the planet as a whole) in its implications.

And Kelpie Wilson, Truthout environmental editor, writes about the state of Texas and its giant power company, TXU. Although Texas is "already the number one CO2 polluter in the United States, which is the number one CO2 polluter in the world," TXU is rushing to build "eleven new giant coal power plants."

Wilson writes: "Coal is cheap. Cheaper than natural gas and a whole lot dirtier. With Governor Perry's order in hand, TXU applied for permits for eleven new giant coal power plants. Several other power companies and utilities put projects in the pipeline too, but TXU's plants are way ahead in the process. That might have something to do with its generous campaign contributions to the Governor. The Dallas Morning News reported in October 2006 that since Perry signed the executive order, TXU and its associates had contributed $87,000. Coal may be cheap to TXU, but it's not cheap for people or the planet. According to the Environmental Defense Fund, TXU's eleven proposed plants, totaling more than 9,000 megawatts, will produce about 78 million tons of CO2 per year. EDF says that's equivalent to the annual emissions of 10 million Cadillacs and more than the annual emissions of the entire country of Denmark." Kelpie Wilson, Power Companies Order Up Texas Toast, Truthout, 11-22-06

Want to participate in the effort to mitigate the impact of global warming? Download "Ten Things You Can Do"

There is a powerful magic in personal commitment.


Hard Rain Journal 11-17-06: Climate Crisis Update -- Three Big Questions for Your Elected Representatives
Hard Rain Journal 11-16-06: Climate Crisis Update -- Annan and Stiglitz Urge Leaders to Face Risk
Hard Rain Journal 11-12-06: Climate Crisis Update -- Greatest Challenge is Overcoming Denial and Greed that Cloud Minds and Close Hearts
Hard Rain Journal 11-02-06: Climate Crisis Update -- What Bush, Cheney, Bork & Starr Don't Want the US Electorate to Know About Global Warming
Hard Rain Journal 10-27-06: Climate Crisis & Sustainability Update -- The Economic Cost of Continued Denial
Hard Rain Journal 10-25-06: Climate Crisis & Sustainability Update -- Are You Ready for Global Eco-System Collapse by 2050?
Hard Rain Journal 10-21-06: Climate Crisis Update -- Bad News from Armenia, Good News from Germany & Oregon, & More Proof for Those who Still Doubt
Hard Rain Journal 10-16-06: Climate Crisis Update - The Cost of NOT Coping with the Challenges of Global Warming
GS(3) Thunderbolt 10-11-06: Climate Crisis Update -- How Bad It Is, and What To Do About It
Hard Rain Journal 10-1-06: Climate Crisis Update -- Xangsane and The Elephant in the Dark
Hard Rain Journal 9-26-06: Climate Crisis Update -- Global Warming & The Nuclear Option, A Convergence of National Security Issues
Hard Rain Journal (9-24-06): Climate Crisis Update -- News on Farmers, Home Builders and Small Business Owners from Costa Rica and the UK
Hard Rain Journal 9-19-06: Climate Crisis Update – Gore Articulates The Profit in Prophecy and The Return on Reality
Hard Rain Journal 9-15-06: Climate Crisis Update – If You Have Children, or Care About the Future for Any Reason, You Should Read These Five News Items
Hard Rain Journal 8-28-06: Six Ways for the US to Fight Global Warming
Hard Rain Journal 8-17-06: Typhoon Season Intensifies, Canada Starts to Slide into Denial, New Study Offers Insight on Global Warming Impact
Hard Rain Journal 8-2-06: North Korean flood toll thought to be 10,000, Agence France Press reports
Hard Rain Journal 7-27-06: Killer Heat Waves, Massive Blackouts -- You Were Warned 3 Years Ago
Hard Rain Journal 7-26-06: NRDC Reports on Global Warming's Direct Threat to 12 National Parks in Western USA
Hard Rain Journal 7-24-06: Five Stories about the Reality of Global Warming, Is Continued Denial Criminally Insane?
Hard Rain Journal 7-21-06: Heat Waves in Europe & US are Direct Consequences of Global Warming
Words of Power #25: Lost Symbols, Part II -- The Rainbow Serpent Hisses, Lessons about Sustainability & Survival from Darfur, Senegal and Ecuador
Hard Rain Journal 6-27-06: Global Warming, Bush's Alleged "Incompetence," and the So-Called "Conservative" Agenda
Words of Power #20: Cusco, Kyoto and The Yellow Sand Storm
Words of Power #7: Global Warming Is A Security Threat To Your Family & Your Business
Words of Power #1: Truths Salvaged from Post-Katrina Debacle

, , , , , , , , , , , , ,, , , ,,,