Drama on Downing Street

19 February 2021 — DesSmogUK

  It’s the climate soap opera that’s gripped the nation in recent weeks, and it shows no signs of ending quite yet.

By now, you’ll be familiar with the main plot points. Campaigners have long opposed plans for a new coal mine in Whitehaven, West Cumbria, which if approved would release nine million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year into the atmosphere for the next quarter of a century, just as the UK tries to radically reduce its emissions to net zero by 2050.

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Suman Raghunathan on Muslim Ban Return, Bruce Stanley on Don Blankenship

22 December 2017 — FAIR

by CounterSpin

MP3 Link

Muslim Ban Protest (cc photo: Fibonacci Blue)

(cc photo: Fibonacci Blue)

This week on CounterSpin: The Supreme Court has OKed full implementation of Donald Trump’s Muslim travel ban—despite the fact that its constitutionality is still being challenged in lower courts. Despite the fact that even Department of Homeland Security reports show no relationship between the targeted countries and national security threats. Despite the fact that Trump gives the lie to the White House assertion that the ban isn’t anti-Muslim every time he opens his mouth. With so many facts being spited, you’d hope journalists would step up in defense of the immediately affected people and democratic process. We’ll talk about the Muslim ban with Suman Raghunathan, executive director of SAALT, South Asian Americans Leading Together.

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Trump and Climate Catastrophe By John Bellamy Foster

2 February 2017 — Monthly Review

This very expensive GLOBAL WARMING bullshit has got to stop. Our planet is freezing, record low temps, and our GW scientists are stuck in ice. —Donald Trump, January 2, 20141

The alarm bells are ringing. The climate-change denialism of the Trump administration, coupled with its goal of maximizing fossil-fuel extraction and consumption at all costs, constitutes, in the words of Noam Chomsky, “almost a death knell for the human species.” As noted climatologist Michael E. Mann has declared, “I fear that this may be game over for the climate.”2

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Enemies of the People: Georgina Rinehart By Branford Perry

8 August 2013 — Hipokrisy Monitor

Get to know your ruling class!

In the huge barrel of plutocratic arrogance rotten apples don’t come much bigger than Gina Rinehart, the cantankerous, cheap, and mean-spirited Australian mining heiress for whom Randian hyper individualism and the law of the jungle come as naturally as breathing.

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Death of Margaret Thatcher Reopens the Debate Over Her Cruel Legacy By Roger Annis

15 April 2013 — The Bullet • Socialist Project E-Bulletin No. 805

The death of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher on April 8 has renewed an intense political debate in Britain and internationally over her legacy. For her ruling class sycophants, Thatcher was a heroine, “one of the greatest” prime ministers Britain ever had. While she is falsely credited with lifting Britain out of a lasting economic slump during the 1970s, she did succeed in imposing a drastic and lasting shift in the balance of social and economic wealth between rich and poor, very much to the detriment of the latter. She was prime minister from 1979 to 1990.

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Media Lens: Climate Crisis – The Collapse In Corporate Media Coverage

16 December, 2011 — Media Lens

The latest round of UN climate talks has just begun in Durban, South Africa, but the world’s richest nations are already planning to prevent any new treaty from taking effect before 2020. Achim Steiner, head of the UN environment programme, has condemned the action as a ‘political choice’, rather than one based on science, calling it ‘very high risk’.

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The Industrial Revolution: A New History By Pat Hudson

12 July 2011 — New Left Project

For 200 years the British industrial revolution has been seen largely as a story of the triumph of British science, inventiveness and entrepreneurship, promoted by a progressive liberalisation of markets and the political economy of free trade. The idea that Britain precociously took off along a path to modern economic growth, providing a blueprint that other nations and regions of the globe would and should eventually follow has been, and continues to be, powerful.

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Video Trailer: Just Do It — A tale of modern-day outlaws

24 July 2011 — www.justdoitfilm.com

In cinemas across the UK starting July 15th, look here to find a screening near you http://JustDoItFilm.com/screenings

Emily James spent over a year embedded in activist groups such as Climate Camp and Plane Stupid to document their clandestine activities. With unprecedented access, Just do It takes you on an astonishing journey behind the scenes of a community of people who refuse to sit back and allow the destruction of their world.

Torpedoing the tired cliches of the environmental movement, Just Do It introduces you to a powerful cast of mischievous and inspiring characters who put their bodies in the way; they super-glue themselves to bank trading floors, blockade factories and attack coal power stations en-masse, despite the very real threat of arrest. Their adventures will entertain, illuminate and inspire.

Ben Werschkul and Tom Zeller, Jr., “The Fight for a Mountaintop”

18 August, 2010 — MRZine

“Someday coal’s gonna run out. And we’re going to have to have jobs, we’re going to have to have energy, when that happens. So, why not start now?” — Lorelei Scarbro, Coal River Mountain Wind Project


Produced by the New York Times. See, also, Tom Zeller, Jr., “A Battle in Mining Country Pits Coal against Wind” (New York Times, 14 August 2010). Visit iLoveMountains.org and Appalachian Voices.

The Bank Loan That Could Break South Africa's Back By Patrick Bond

13 April, 2010 — MRZine/Monthly Review

Just how dangerous is the World Bank and its neo-conservative president, Robert Zoellick, to South Africa and the global climate?

Notwithstanding South Africa’s existing $75 billion foreign debt, last Thursday the bank added a $3.75bn loan to Eskom for the primary purpose of building the world’s fourth-largest coal-fired power plant, at Medupi, which will spew 25 million tons of the climate pollutant carbon dioxide each year.

SA Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan repeatedly said that this is the bank’s “first” post-apartheid loan, yet its 1999 and 2008 Country Assistance Strategy documents show conclusively that Medupi is the 15th credit since 1994.

Gordhan also claimed the loan will now help South Africa “build a relationship” with the bank. He forgets the bank co-authored the 1996 Growth Employment and Redistribution (Gear) programme, which led us to overtake Brazil as the world’s most unequal major country, as black incomes fell below 1994 levels and white incomes grew by 24 percent, according to official statistics.

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TVA Coal Ash Spill + 2.6 Million Cubic Yards of Toxic Coal Ash Slurry Released in TN Dike Burst



23 December, 2008

TVA spills over 500 million gallons of toxic coal waste into the Tennessee River

2.6 Million Cubic Yards of Toxic Coal Ash Slurry Released in Tennessee Dike Burst

By Matthew McDermott


December 25, 2008

An environmental disaster of epic proportions has occurred in Tennessee. Monday night, 2.6 million cubic yards (the equivalent of 525.2 million gallons, 48 times more than the Exxon Valdez spill by volume) of coal ash sludge broke through a dike of a 40-acre holding pond at TVA’s Kingston coal-fired power plant covering 400 acres up to six feet deep, damaging 12 homes and wrecking a train.

According to the EPA the cleanup will take at least several weeks, but could take years. Officials also said that the magnitude of this spill is such that the entire area could be declared a federal superfund site.

Toxic Sludge Got Into Tributary of Chattanooga Water Supply

Apart from the immediate physical damage, the issue is what toxic substances are in that sludge: Mercury, arsenic, lead, beryllium, cadmium. Though officials said the amounts of these poisons in the sludge could not be determined on Monday, they could (at the mild end) irritate skin or trigger allergies or (longer term) cause cancer or neurological problems.

This toxic sludge got into the Emory River, a tributary of the Clinch and Tennessee Rivers: The water supply for Chattanooga, Tennessee as well as millions of people living downstream in Alabama, Tennessee and Kentucky. TVA says that as yet the spill (which they are characterizing as a mudslide or landslide, but frankly it’s still toxic…) has not affected the water quality in the Emory River.[…]

via Treehugger

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Media Lens: Hawking The Technofix – Business As Usual And The Ultimate Genocide

MEDIA LENS: Correcting for the distorted vision of the corporate media

September 9, 2008

Last month, a senior UK government adviser warned of the real risk of a devastating rise in global temperatures of 4 degrees Celsius. Professor Bob Watson, the chief scientific adviser to the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), said:

“There is no doubt that we should aim to limit changes in the global mean surface temperature to 2C above pre-industrial [levels].

“But given this is an ambitious target, and we don’t know in detail how to limit greenhouse gas emissions to realise a 2 degree target, we should be prepared to adapt to 4C.” (James Randerson, ‘Prepare for global temperature rise of 4C, warns top scientist’, Guardian, August 7, 2008

But what would a 4C rise mean for the planet? According to the 2006 Stern review on the economics of climate change, up to 300 million people would be affected by coastal flooding annually. Water availability in Southern Africa and the Mediterranean could drop by half, and agricultural yields in Africa may be cut by up to 35%, with devastating consequences for millions at risk of starvation, malnutrition and disease. Half of all animal and plant species could face extinction.

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