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EXTRACTED: Daily News Clips 9/11/23

Mark Hefflinger, Bold Alliance (Photo: Bryon Houlgrave/Des Moines Register

By Mark Hefflinger

September 11, 2023



  • Associated Press: Future of controversial Dakota Access pipeline’s river crossing remains unclear

  • Common Dreams: ‘Furious’ at Army Corps, Tribe Calls for Public Support to Shut Down Dakota Access Pipeline

  • Press release: USACE seeks public comments on DAPL Draft Environmental Impact Statement

  • Guardian: US climate scientist risks felony by chaining herself to pipeline drill

  • Sioux Falls Argus Leader: Summit Carbon pushes back against PUC staff motion to deny company permit

  • South Dakota Searchlight: Commission staff files motion to deny Summit’s carbon pipeline permit

  • NBC News: Gov. Doug Burgum has heated exchange over CO2 pipelines

  • Physicians for Social Responsibility Iowa Chapter: Webinar: Carbon & Hydrogen Pipelines: Risks, Threats, & False Promises

  • KOAT: Crews respond to pipeline explosion in Eddy County

  • Press release: Enbridge announces the closing of CDN$4.6 billion common equity offering inclusive of underwriters’ over-allotment

  • The Tyee: RCMP Spent Record Amount to Protect CGL Pipeline Last Year

  • WZZM: Consumers releases 56 young turtles rescued from pipeline path


  • E&E News: As EPA drowns in CCS applications, oil states want to take control

  • E&E News: ‘I’m discouraged’: Permitting overhaul on life support

  • New York Times: Biden Approved a Big Oil Project. Now, He’s Cracking Down on Drilling.

  • The Hill: Why Trump’s tax law could limit Biden’s efforts to protect Arctic wildlife from drilling 

  • Upstream: Alaska Body Will Take US Government To Court Over Move To Annul Oil And Gas Leases 

  • E&E News: Groups seek EPA intervention on ‘Cancer Alley’ air pollution

  • Washington Post: Top Biden officials sound off on the promise and challenges of clean hydrogen

  • E&E News: Haaland Touts Biden Admin Work On Missing, Murdered Indigenous Women 

  • Washington Post: Turmoil over racial equity initiatives is roiling the nation’s largest green group


  • Their names appeared on letters urging fracking Ohio’s state parks. They don’t know how.

  • The Hill: Colorado Lawmakers Urge BLM To Conduct Full Review Of Plans To Expand Utah Oil Facility 

  • Carlsbad Current-Argus: Oil And Gas Is ‘Deforming’ New Mexico’s Land, Study Says, As Drilling Set To Grow


  • Associated Press: Group of 20 countries agree to increase clean energy but reach no deal on phasing out fossil fuels

  • Associated Press: Climate protester glues feet to floor at US Open, interrupts Coco Gauff’s semifinal win over Muchova

  • Reuters: Netherlands police use water cannon, detain 2,400 climate activists

  • The Hill: World Is Releasing Greenhouse Gases At Level Unprecedented In Geologic History, Scientist Says

  • Wall Street Journal: The Race to Drill America’s Longest Oil and Gas Wells



Associated Press: Future of controversial Dakota Access pipeline’s river crossing remains unclear

“Federal officials on Friday released a draft environmental review of the Dakota Access oil pipeline, but said they’re waiting for more input before deciding the future of the line’s controversial river crossing in North Dakota,” the Associated Press reports. “The draft was released over three years after a federal judge ordered the environmental review and revoked the permit for the Missouri River crossing, upstream of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s reservation. The tribe is concerned a pipeline oil spill could contaminate its water supply… “The draft environmental impact statement, which is dated in June but was made public Friday, noted that the Corps “has not selected a preferred alternative,” but will make a decision in its final review, after considering input from the public and other agencies. The draft details five options for the pipeline, including denying the easement for the crossing and removing or abandoning a 7,500-foot segment. Officials could also approve the easement with measures for “increased operational safety,” or grant the same easement with no changes. A fifth option is a 111-mile reroute of the pipeline to north of Bismarck, over 38 miles upstream from the current crossing. The reroute would require new permits from federal, state and local authorities and regulators, which could take at least two years. The exact path of such a reroute is unknown, according to the draft… “Thousands of people gathered and camped near the pipeline’s river crossing for protests that lasted months and sparked hundreds of arrests in 2016 and 2017. More than 830 criminal cases resulted from the protests. Standing Rock last year withdrew as a cooperating agency in the environmental review. The pipeline “is an ongoing trespass against the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe,” Tribal Chair Janet Alkire previously said. “Every day that the pipeline operates and transfers oil, trespass damages continually accrue.”

Common Dreams: ‘Furious’ at Army Corps, Tribe Calls for Public Support to Shut Down Dakota Access Pipeline

“Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairwoman Janet Alkire is leading a fresh demand that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers throw out an ongoing environmental review process of the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline and start again from scratch alongside a superseding call for the pipeline to be shuttered completely,” Common Dreams reports. “Following Friday’s release of a revised Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), ordered by a federal court, the tribe said the document reveals the entire process has been a failure and that the pipeline—currently operating across their land without consent in what they consider an “illegal” manner by the Energy Transfer company—should be shut down once and for all. “We’re furious that the Army Corps has addressed none of our major concerns during the review process,” Chairwoman Alkire said in a statement. “The pipeline is an imminent threat to the Missouri River, sensitive habitat, and sacred burial sites along the riverbank,” she continued. “The oil company’s emergency response plans are inadequate, its safety track record is horrendous, and there’s been a stunning lack of transparency with Standing Rock throughout the environmental review process, including inaccurate characterizations of tribal consultation.” “…The tribe said the draft EIS fails to “account for the existence of criminal charges and a host of fines and serious citations” from regulators faced by Energy Transfer. Alkire accused the Corps of “doing all it can to ignore the company’s poor safety record and the high risk” of the pipeline… “The release of the EIS triggers a 45-day public comment period and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe is now requesting public support in opposition of the project. “The Corps’ covering for the pipeline company’s outrageous safety record and the reviewer’s serious conflict of interest have now resulted in a failed effort,” said Alkire of the current process. “They need to start over with adult supervision.”

Press release: USACE seeks public comments on DAPL Draft Environmental Impact Statement

“The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – Omaha District is seeking public comments on the recently published Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Dakota Access, LLC’s request for an easement under the Mineral Leasing Act for the Dakota Access Pipeline. The Dakota Access Pipeline crosses the Corps-managed federal land at Lake Oahe, North Dakota. The DEIS is not a decision and does not authorize the easement. This milestone is the second step in the National Environmental Policy Act environmental review process and will be followed by a Final Environmental Impact Statement. The Final Environmental Impact Statement will include public comments that were received during the Draft Environmental Impact Statement public review period… “The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Omaha District is developing the Environmental Impact Statement to evaluate the Dakota Access Pipeline easement request to cross federally managed land at Lake Oahe under this Mineral Leasing Act authority. View the Draft Environmental Impact Statement online at:” 

Guardian: US climate scientist risks felony by chaining herself to pipeline drill
Emma Pattee, 9/8/23

“Two women climbed in the dark down the banks of the Greenbrier River in West Virginia on Thursday morning and locked themselves to a massive drill, stopping work on a controversial oil pipeline project,” the Guardian reports. “One of the women, Rose Abramoff, is a climate scientist and by participating in temporarily shutting down the pipeline construction she is believed to be the first American climate scientist to risk a felony in an act of climate protest against fossil fuel projects. “The stakes are so high,” Abramoff told the Guardian. “We cannot build this pipeline and meet our climate goals.” “…According to Scientist Rebellion, a coalition of scientists who are actively protesting against climate change, over two dozen work stoppages such as lockdowns, rallies and walk-ons have taken place at the Mountain Valley pipeline construction site in the past two months. On Tuesday, two protesters who attached themselves to construction vehicles were arrested and charged with trespassing, obstruction of justice and interfering with property rights. “Pipeline activists in West Virginia have already been issued felony charges,” Peter Kalmus, a fellow climate scientist and member of Scientist Rebellion, who was on site at the protest in West Virginia this week, told the Guardian “we have a sense that police are escalating their response.” Abramoff was arrested on Thursday morning along with the other activist, and four other activists who were sitting in rocking chairs with their legs locked in concrete barrels, blocking an access road to the construction site. Abramoff said that while she was chained to the drill, the police were threatening the activists with felonies and domestic terrorism charges… “For Abramoff, the risk of going to prison is scary, but the alternative is unthinkable: “We can’t keep expanding fossil fuels. It just can’t happen.”

Sioux Falls Argus Leader: Summit Carbon pushes back against PUC staff motion to deny company permit
Dominik Dausch, 9/8/23

“Summit Carbon Solutions, a carbon capture company applying for a permit to build part of a $5.5 billion pipeline in South Dakota, has filed an official response to a state regulatory attorney’s motion to deny their application,” the Sioux Falls Argus Leader reports. “Summit Carbon responded late Friday after South Dakota Public Utilities Commission staff attorney Kristen Edwards requested an order from commissioners to nix the company’s permit hearing earlier that day. The PUC staff motion was made after the Nebraska-based company’s requested on Thursday to withdraw a motion to preempt local county ordinances. Brett Koenecke, Summit Carbon’s attorney, asked the commission to deny staff’s motion in the company’s response letter and have the hearings proceed as scheduled… “As a consequence of withdrawing their preemption motion, however, PUC staff requested an order from the commission to deny Summit Carbon’s permit on the grounds the company now admits its current pipeline route would not comply with setback distances in Brown, McPherson, Minnehaha and Spink counties based on South Dakota statute. Also Friday evening, Brian Jorde, an attorney with Nebraska-based Domina Law Group, submitted on the behalf of intervening landowners a joinder supporting PUC staff’s motion to deny Summit Carbon’s permit for similar reasons. “Landowners do have evidence on hand of Summit’s use of the legal process to circumvent good faith negotiations with Landowners,” Jorde wrote. “Landowners request the PUC take judicial notice of the over 107 condemnation lawsuits against landowners that Summit filed months before now.” In their response, Summit Carbon said it continues to believe these county ordinances have the “intended or unintended effect of hampering [carbon sequestration] projects.” “Despite that continued belief, SCS heard this Commission loud and clear on Wednesday, September 6 when it ruled unanimously that it will not preempt local county ordinances for CO2 pipelines,” Koenecke wrote. “For that reason, SCS has withdrawn its motion for preemption.” “…Summit Carbon is legally able to refile their permit to the commission under South Dakota law, but it would have to adhere to the county ordinances adopted by counties or obtain waivers from landowners going forward. “Currently, it appears the momentum is against them in even receiving the permit,” Jensen told the Argus Leader. “They can always drop a new route and come back to the PUC, but this time they’ll have to treat people with respect…Why are we going to waste three weeks of our time and taxpayer dollars going through hearings process when it is just a matter of fact — absolute fact — they are not in compliance and cannot comply with the current route that they have.” “…Navigator Heartland Greenway, a competing carbon sequestration company, saw its own permit application be unanimously denied on Wednesday… “This set the stage for Summit Carbon, who Jensen told the Argus Leader had employees observe Navigator’s final permit proceedings, to try to adapt their strategy ahead of the start of their own evidentiary hearing on Monday. “When Summit watched Navigator lose on this false argument that counties can’t regulate land use in their jurisdiction, they basically were forced to decide, ‘Do we … continue this false argument after it’s been proven wrong, or do we get it up knowing that it was the reason Navigator was rejected …and then take our chances moving forward,'” Jensen told the Argus Leader. “I don’t think that they expected that the staff would come back so quick so hard against them. But it was like the hand that they had was certainly a losing hand, and so they had to fold and hope the next hand worked.”

South Dakota Searchlight: Commission staff files motion to deny Summit’s carbon pipeline permit

“The South Dakota Public Utilities Commission’s staff has filed a motion to denySummit Carbon Solution’s application to construct a carbon dioxide pipeline, citing non-compliance with ordinances in Brown, McPherson, Minnehaha and Spink counties,” the South Dakota Searchlight reports. “The news comes after Summit withdrew its request to have the commission overrule county ordinances. Another company trying to build a carbon pipeline – Navigator CO2 – failed earlier this week to convince the commission to preempt county ordinances that impose minimum distances between pipelines, homes and other places. The commission also denied Navigator’s permit application. The PUC staff argues in its new motion that if the county ordinances are allowed to stay in effect, Summit’s proposed route would inherently violate county setback requirements. In other words, Summit would be asking the commission to approve a project that is not in compliance with county laws. According to the motion signed by Staff Attorney Kristen Edwards, despite Summit’s claims that it would comply with local regulations, evidence has yet to be presented that it has secured necessary waivers or county permits. Given the noncompliance and the application’s potential legal complications, the commission’s staff recommends the application be denied while allowing Summit to reapply in the future. The motion will be heard by the three elected public utilities commissioners on Monday at the Casey Tibbs Rodeo Center in Fort Pierre, at the beginning of what is intended to be a three-week hearing on Summit’s application… “Chase Jensen of Dakota Rural Action, which has been working with opponent landowners, is applauding the motion in South Dakota. “To proceed with three weeks of hearings would only serve to waste even more time, money and energy that our elected officials and citizens have already had to sacrifice,” Jensen told Searchlight. Ed Fischbach is a landowner from northern Spink County with land that would be crossed by the Summit project. “We have felt for a long time that it’s time for both Navigator and Summit to move on, pull the plug and leave us alone,” he told Searchlight… “Summit has not yet commented in response to South Dakota Searchlight’s questions about the PUC staff motion. The company has an opportunity to file a response arguing against the motion.”

NBC News: Gov. Doug Burgum has heated exchange over CO2 pipelines
Jillian Frankel and Alex Tabet, 9/9/23

“North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum, a GOP presidential candidate, had a tense exchange with crowd members at an event Saturday over the use of eminent domain to install carbon capture pipelines,” NBC News reports. “At the Fourth Congressional district’s presidential rally in Nevada, Iowa, a man accused Burgum of being a “huge supporter” of eminent domain, which allows the government to seize private land for public projects, for the installation of carbon-capture pipelines.  “What’s going on with the pipeline is you’re taking private property rights away from our landowners that don’t want this,” the man said. “But eminent domain is meant to take private property for public use. There is no public value in here.” “…You stated that I was a huge supporter of eminent domain and that’s just completely false. I’m a farm owner, rancher. I support private property rights,” Burgum said, later adding, “You made a blatantly false statement about me and I have to just tell you that that’s not true.” Burgum said he thinks there’s a demand to kill liquid fuels, but carbon sequestration can help make the fossil fuel industry more sustainable. “We have to figure out a way like we’re doing in North Dakota, to use CO2 to reduce or have a net-negative gas in your car or diesel, then everybody can keep driving your pickup trucks like the one that I’ve got,” he said.  A woman in the crowd told Burgum she disagreed with him. “I think as farmers, we all know the effects of ethanol. I think there’s other things that we can do with that CO2 from those ethanol plants. We don’t need pipelines,” the woman said, adding that she has safety concerns, too. Burgum sympathized with her rights as a landowner, but said there’s never been a hospitalization or death in America from a CO2 pipeline. A Mississippi CO2 pipeline ruptured in February 2020, sending more than 40 people to the hospital. Burgum told the crowd that landowners affected by the pipelines’ projected paths could simply turn the companies down. “Just say no and they’ll move it to your neighbor and your neighbor can get the big check,” Burgum said. “Because that’s what’s happening in North Dakota. It’s been moved a thousand times.” But some Iowans say that rhetoric is dismissive of possible dangers associated with the carbon pipelines and some say they don’t have the option to say no. “I’m concerned about my neighbors and children,” said Marvin Johnson, a 74-year-old retired agronomy salesman from Kanawha, Iowa. Johnson says he lives just a couple of miles away from a proposed pipeline. Sheryl, from Ames, Iowa, who preferred not to share her last name, is afraid about a pipeline bursting below her brother’s farmland. “One of the pipelines is going through some of my brother’s land so it’s got to be stopped,” she said. “I am scared for every farmer.” Both Johnson and Sheryl opted to raise signs in protest during remarks Saturday by Iowa’s overwhelmingly popular Gov. Kim Reynolds, a Republican… “Sheryl told NBC Reynold’s silence on the issue of eminent domain is deafening.   “She’s silent. She’s not saying anything,” Sheryl told NBC. “As governor, you have an obligation to the farmers.”

Physicians for Social Responsibility Iowa Chapter: Webinar: Carbon & Hydrogen Pipelines: Risks, Threats, & False Promises

“From the Gulf Coast to the Midwest to California, carbon & hydrogen pipelines, supercharged by federal subsidies, threaten communities,” according to Physicians for Social Responsibility Iowa Chapter. “Please consider joining this Zoom Webinar organized by PSR Los Angeles on the national consequences of CO2 and Hydrogen pipelines in the U.S. What you need to know about the risks and the grassroots push back. Date & Time: Sep 13, 2023, 7:30 PM CT.”

KOAT: Crews respond to pipeline explosion in Eddy County
Vince Rodriguez, 9/9/23

“Fire crews and sheriff’s deputies with Eddy County are responding to a pipeline explosion west of Carlsbad,” KOAT reports. “According to the Eddy County Sheriff’s Office, officials were first called to an explosion just after 12:30 p.m. on Saturday. Officials with Eddy County Fire and Rescue reported a large fire at the location of the gas line blowout. Crews are working to shut down the gas lines to contain the fire. Sheriff’s officials told KOAT the incident is isolated and there is no need for an evacuation.”

Press release: Enbridge announces the closing of CDN$4.6 billion common equity offering inclusive of underwriters’ over-allotment

“Enbridge Inc. today announced it has closed its previously announced public offering (the Offering) of common shares by a syndicate of underwriters led by RBC Capital Markets and Morgan Stanley, together with BMO Capital Markets, CIBC Capital Markets, National Bank Financial Markets, Scotiabank, TD Securities as joint bookrunners. Enbridge issued 102,913,500 common shares inclusive of 13,423,500 common shares issued pursuant to the full exercise of the underwriters’ over-allotment option. Gross proceeds from the Offering are approximately CDN$4.6 billion. Enbridge intends to use the net proceeds from the Offering to finance a portion of the aggregate cash consideration payable for the purchase of local distribution company gas utilities in the United States from Dominion Energy, Inc. (the Acquisitions), the details of which were announced in a news release issued by Enbridge on September 5, 2023.”

The Tyee: RCMP Spent Record Amount to Protect CGL Pipeline Last Year
Amanda Follett Hosgood, 9/11/23

“The RCMP’s costs for patrolling a remote resource road on Wet’suwet’en territory to protect a pipeline project rose almost 60 per cent last year to $11 million, despite no significant police actions in the area,” The Tyee reports. “Documents obtained by The Tyee through access to information laws show that spending to police the Morice Forest Service Road south of Houston, B.C., where Coastal GasLink is building part of its 670-kilometre gas pipeline, jumped from $7 million in the previous fiscal year ending March 31. It’s the most the RCMP has spent on the Morice in a single year since Wet’suwet’en opposition to the pipeline first boiled over in January 2019, and it brings total costs of policing the conflict to almost $37 million in just over four years. Since early 2019, RCMP have conducted several raids under a BC Supreme Court injunction that bars anyone from blocking access roads or worksites used for pipeline construction. While Crown prosecutors chose not to pursue charges following arrests in 2019 and 2020, nearly 20 people arrested in November 2021 face criminal contempt charges… “Despite no large-scale police action in nearly two years, RCMP officers have continued to patrol the Morice road, including entering camps established by the Wet’suwet’en, and maintain a presence in nearby communities. Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chief Na’Moks told the Tyee the RCMP’s big spending facilitates the ongoing “monitoring and intimidation” of Wet’suwet’en people on their traditional territory. “This is not in the public interest, it’s a private interest,” Na’Moks, who also goes by John Ridsdale, told the Tyee, noting the policing served CGL in advancing the $15-billion project, which is expected to be completed later this year. “The money itself is setting the template for what they can do for all projects in this country, in particular ones on unceded lands.”

WZZM: Consumers releases 56 young turtles rescued from pipeline path

“Consumers Energy announced they released 56 turtle hatchlings Sept. 7 back into natural wetland habitats. The young turtles were rescued as eggs along the path of the Mid-Michigan Pipeline Project,” WZZM reports. “The mothers of the turtles were safely removed from the pipeline path throughout the course of the summer. The turtle eggs were incubated and nurtured by Herpetological Resource and Management (HRM). “At Consumers Energy we believe in leaving our communities better than we found them, and that is why years of careful planning with environmental partners at the local, state and federal levels went into the execution of the first phase of this pipeline project,” Chris Fultz, Consumers Energy’s vice president of gas operations, told WZZM. “This work is not just about following the permit requirements, it is about doing what is best for the wildlife in the area, and we continue to be grateful for partners that help us do that.”


E&E News: As EPA drowns in CCS applications, oil states want to take control
Jean Chemnick, 9/8/23

“EPA is buried under a mountain of permit applications from companies that want to store carbon dioxide underground,” E&E News reports. “In little more than a year, the list of permit applications from would-be project developers seeking to inject carbon dioxide into rock formations for permanent storage has ballooned from 14 to 119, driven by generous new federal tax incentives, the fear of future regulation and corporate climate commitments… “But the agency has only approved two permits that have led to projects — both at Archer-Daniels-Midland Co.’s Decatur, Ill., ethanol plant. Two draft permits have been issued for sites in Vigo County, Ind., but aren’t yet final. The slow pace of permitting has frustrated project developers, lawmakers and carbon capture proponents. The way to clear the backlog, they argue, is for EPA to hand off its Safe Drinking Water Act permitting authority to a growing list of states that are willing to administer the permits themselves. Many have enacted state laws that they say would offer federal-like environmental protections as the carbon sequestration industry matures… “EPA has so far granted primary permitting authority — also known as primacy — for permanent carbon storage to two states: North Dakota and Wyoming. In May, the agency proposed approving Louisiana’s application for primacy, and a final decision is expected later this year. Three other states — Arizona, Texas and West Virginia — are in the process of submitting applications of their own, with more expected in the years to come… “Proponents of state primacy say faster approval for sequestration wouldn’t come at a cost to groundwater or the environment. Harrell blamed EPA’s long approval timelines on the Biden administration’s reluctance to do anything that might anger environmental justice groups on his left — which are generally against the technology. “Direct community engagement shouldn’t be 100 percent consensus,” he told E&E. “Nothing in this world happens at 100 percent consensus.” But other experts, including some who support carbon capture, tell E&E EPA’s process is taking as long as it should given the complexities of ensuring that carbon stays in the ground forever. Handing off responsibility to states that have long been beholden to the fossil fuel sector risks inviting accidents that could harm local communities and damage carbon capture’s social license to operate, they tell E&E. “I think that this is a really critical juncture,” Derek Sylvan, strategic director at the Institute for Policy Integrity at New York University, told E&E. “There aren’t many sequestration projects that exist yet. So, it’s especially important for the next wave of projects to get extra scrutiny until all the necessary safety precautions are well understood.” Those concerns are sometimes causing internal divisions within states, with some lawmakers opposing their states’ primacy bids.

E&E News: ‘I’m discouraged’: Permitting overhaul on life support
Kelsey Brugger, 9/7/23

“Leaders on permitting overhaul in the Senate sounded less than optimistic about the prospects for any type of reform legislation in the near term,” E&E News reports. “In interviews on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, some lawmakers told E&E they were discouraged and sensed a lack of will among various factions. “A lot of people are asking about it,” Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) told E&E. “There’s a total appetite by energy developers, by grid energy producers. But I’m not getting a sense there is an appetite at the committee level or at the presidential level to go any farther.” “…But in July, she acknowledged, “The wind is sort of out of the sails.” The lack of momentum comes after a June debt ceiling deal that had some changes to the National Environmental Policy Act, a key Republican ask in permitting talks. It also included approval of the Mountain Valley pipeline a key ask for Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.).”

New York Times: Biden Approved a Big Oil Project. Now, He’s Cracking Down on Drilling.
Lisa Friedman, 9/7/23

“President Biden’s decision on Wednesday to block drilling on millions of acres of Alaskan tundra was the latest in a series of aggressive actions recently taken by the administration to curtail fossil fuel extraction on public land and in federal waters,” the New York Times reports. “Over the past several months, the administration has moved to bar drilling on 1.8 million acres of sagebrush steppe in Wyoming and on more than a million acres of public land in Colorado… “But several people close to the administration told the Times Mr. Biden was personally stung by the outraged response in March from climate voters, particularly young environmentalists, after he approved the enormous Willow oil project in Alaska and that he is eager to win them back. Energy analysts told the Times they saw the new policies as an attempt to mend fences with young voters and as a sign of willingness to openly confront the oil industry. “I see President Biden trying to reestablish green credentials ahead of the next election,” Kevin Book, managing director of ClearView Energy Partners, a Washington-based research firm, told the Times. Mr. Book told the Times there has been a clear pivot in the administration’s posture from the days after Russia invaded Ukraine, when gas prices spiked and Mr. Biden urged oil companies to drill more. “Now what they’re doing is, they are leasing less, and they are offering less when they lease. And they are doing it with higher royalty rates,” Mr. Book told the Times. “It’s got an awful lot to do with the Willow decision.”

The Hill: Why Trump’s tax law could limit Biden’s efforts to protect Arctic wildlife from drilling 

“The Biden administration’s efforts to protect wildlife in the Arctic from oil and gas drilling is on a collision course with a Trump-era law requiring oil and gas leasing there,” The Hill reports. “When President Biden was on the campaign trail he called for “permanently protecting” the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from drilling. And this past week, his administration canceled oil and gas rights issued there under the Trump administration… “But a 2017 tax law also required at least one drilling rights sale to be held by the end of 2021, and another to be held by the end of next year — meaning the Biden administration is expected to have to auction off some land in the refuge for oil and gas development. The latest action is also expected to face a court challenge, with Alaska’s governor indicating he will sue the Biden administration… “However, a document released alongside the decision indicates that the administration, bound by the 2017 law, will still lease land for drilling in the area — even if it successfully fends off the legal challenge to its latest move from Alaska’s government. The document says the Bureau of Land Management will have to decide “which tracts of land to offer for lease” as well as what conditions to put on those leases. Mark Squillace, a professor at the University of Colorado Law School, told The Hill the Biden administration’s move presents “some risk from a litigation perspective.” “I think there is a violation of the obligation to do a couple of leases there,” he told The Hill, but he added that they didn’t necessarily have to be the same leases issued by the Trump administration. He also told The Hill he doesn’t know if there’s “any significant remedy” that a court could issue.”

Upstream: Alaska Body Will Take US Government To Court Over Move To Annul Oil And Gas Leases 
Vladimir Afanasiev, 9/7/23

“A public corporation of the US state of Alaska will contest a recent decision of the country’s Interior Department to cancel remaining oil and gas leases in a federal wildlife refuge,” Upstream reports. “The move reflects an ongoing battle between fossil fuel advocates and anti-oil and gas groups in the oil and gas rich state. Yesterday, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland authorised the cancellation of seven oil and gas leases issued by the previous administration of president Donald Trump. The leases had been suspended since June 2021 pending a supplemental environmental impact review. The Interior Department described the annulment as a “bold action to protect the Arctic region build on President (Joe) Biden’s historic conservation and climate agenda which already includes protecting more than 21 million acres of public lands and waters across the nation, and securing the Inflation Reduction Act, the largest investment in climate action in history.”

E&E News: Groups seek EPA intervention on ‘Cancer Alley’ air pollution
Sean Reilly, 9/6/23

“Following EPA’s abrupt decision this summer to end a civil rights investigation of Louisiana’s environmental agency, advocacy groups are calling for direct federal intervention by way of beefed-up air monitoring and revocation of some existing air permits,” E&E News reports. “Those measures mark “concrete steps” EPA could take to address “the disproportionate burden of air pollution faced by the residents of Louisiana’s environmental justice communities,” staffers at the Tulane Environmental Law Clinic wrote in a Wednesday letter to Lilian Dorka, the agency’s deputy assistant administrator for external civil rights. Among them: added monitoring in areas across the state that are potentially flunking EPA’s ambient air quality standards for soot, ozone and four other common pollutants and rescission of all state-issued permits that relied on a contested regulatory shortcut known as “significant impact levels.” That kind of federal involvement would be highly unusual; EPA is reviewing the letter, spokesperson Khanya Brann told E&E.

Washington Post: Top Biden officials sound off on the promise and challenges of clean hydrogen
Maxine Joselow, 9/11/23

“The Biden administration is making a big bet on “clean” hydrogen, a fuel that can be used to power ships and factories without any planet-warming emissions,” the Washington Post reports. “The Inflation Reduction Act offers lucrative tax credits for businesses that produce clean hydrogen. At the same time, the bipartisan infrastructure law provides $7 billion for the creation of six to 10 “hydrogen hubs,” or regional clusters of facilities for hydrogen production, distribution, storage and use. Together, the two laws are catalyzing America’s unprecedented experiment with clean hydrogen, one unmatched by Europe’s investment in the fuel. If the experiment goes right, it could turbocharge the nation’s clean-energy transition, while if it goes wrong, it could create a political liability for President Biden as he runs for reelection. To better understand the administration’s approach, The Climate 202 spoke last week with the leaders of the Interagency Hydrogen Task Force, which launched in August to coordinate a whole-of-government strategy for the fuel… “The Inflation Reduction Act and the bipartisan infrastructure law both seek to increase the supply of clean hydrogen. But it’s unclear whether there will be matching demand. Some experts worry the United States could end up with a glut of clean hydrogen on the market… “The process requires an enormous amount of water — a challenge for drought-stricken areas… “Under the Inflation Reduction Act, the Treasury Department was supposed to issue guidance on the hydrogen tax credits in August. But the agency blew past this deadline and may not publish the rules until October at the earliest. In the meantime, environmentalists and businesses are waging unprecedented campaigns aimed at influencing the guidance. Green groups are urging Treasury to impose strict requirements on what counts as “clean” hydrogen, while industry groups are pushing for looser restrictions.”

E&E News: Haaland Touts Biden Admin Work On Missing, Murdered Indigenous Women 
Jennifer Yachnin, 9/8/23

“Interior Secretary Deb Haaland underscored the Biden administration’s efforts to address the plight of missing and murdered Indigenous women in remarks in Ottawa, Ontario, this week,” E&E News reports “Haaland appeared at the Trilateral Working Group on Violence Against Indigenous Women and Girls, along with Assistant Secretary for Insular and International Affairs Carmen Cantor and Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs Bryan Newland. The meeting, which marked the fifth session organized by the U.S., Canada and Mexico, is focused on high rates of violence against Indigenous women and girls. “Our work on behalf of Indigenous communities is expansive, but our enduring success depends on our international partnerships,” Haaland said in a statement. “The Biden-Harris administration, in collaboration with our colleagues in Canada and Mexico, is putting the full weight of the federal government into pursuing justice for missing or murdered Indigenous peoples so that that current and future generations of Native communities can enjoy a future free from the violence that has plagued our countries for too long.”

Washington Post: Turmoil over racial equity initiatives is roiling the nation’s largest green group
Maxine Joselow, 9/8/23

“When Ben Jealous became the first person of color to lead the Sierra Club, the prominent civil rights leader promised to create more inclusive working conditions at the nation’s oldest environmental group,” the Washington Post reports.  “We have to deal with all of the equity issues inside the Sierra Club,” he said in January. “Those include, absolutely, issues of gender, as well as racial equity and also pay equity.” But today, the 131-year-old group is in turmoil over its approach to diversity, equity and environmental justice, according to interviews with 12 current and former staffers, most of whom spoke to The Washington Post on the condition of anonymity for fear of facing retaliation or otherwise harming their job prospects. The tumult intensified in April and May, when the group’s new leadership laid off more than two dozen employees, many of whom were people of color, as part of what Jealous has called a broader “restructuring.” According to the Progressive Workers Union, which represented about 400 Sierra Club staffers before the layoffs, more than 30 of its members lost their jobs. The leadership laid off the entire staff of the equity team, which was tasked with improving the workplace culture around diversity and inclusion, and several members of the environmental justice division, which had fought to block polluting projects in communities of color and low-income neighborhoods. Jealous also shortened the name of the People, Culture and Equity Department — which includes the equity team and the human resources team — to the People Department and hired a vocal critic of its past work to lead it… “The layoffs had “disproportionate impacts” on Black workers, Indigenous workers and other staffers of color, the union wrote in a Thursday letter obtained by The Post to the Sierra Club board. “We do not present this information to accuse Sierra Club management of targeting these groups, but rather to illustrate the effects of layoffs that run counter to the Sierra Club’s and the Union’s shared goals and vision.”

STATE UPDATES Their names appeared on letters urging fracking Ohio’s state parks. They don’t know how.
Jake Zuckerman, 9/10/23

“The letter from Briella Keep to her state government was simple – Ohio should for the first time allow “responsible” oil and gas exploration under state parks like Salt Fork,” reports. “But there was one problem. Briella Keep was 9 years old on July 5, the day the letter was sent to the Oil and Gas Land Management Commission (OGLMC), and there’s no way she could have written it, according to her mother, Brittany Keep. Briella likes trees, nature, clothes, and dolls, like many girls her age. She doesn’t know anything about oil and gas exploration. She lives about 130 miles away from Salt Fork. Neither Briella nor her mother have ever visited. Brittany Keep has no clue how her phone number, her daughter’s email address, or their home address, wound up on a letter touting “opportunities for economic development and the creation of family-sustaining jobs” in Ohio. “This is not OK,” Brittany Keep told “She definitely did not submit that draft.” “…The Keeps are among the dozens of Ohioans who say they believe their names were used without permission in a flood of public comments urging the newly formed commission to allow fracking for oil and natural gas in Salt Fork and other state parks and protected lands, an investigation from and The Plain Dealer has found. Thousands of pro-fracking comments barraged the inbox of the commission, which will decide in the coming months whether to free mineral rights under state lands for leasing and bidding from oil and gas drillers. One set of those form letters traces back to an entity that advocates for the natural gas industry. The nonprofit Consumer Energy Alliance has previously been accused of using citizens’ names on government petitions and public comments without their permission in Wisconsin in 2014, in Ohio in 2016, and in South Carolina in 2018… “ and The Plain Dealer have interviewed 35 citizens who say they didn’t write, send, or even know about letters sent in their name urging the state to allow for drilling at state parks. Several said they didn’t know what fracking means – the process of freeing methane from shale thousands of feet underground using water, sand and chemicals at high pressure, technically known as hydraulic fracturing. Others were appalled by the letters written using their names. Three other people wrote to the commission in early August, in emails obtained by public records request, to say their names were used without consent and asking staff to remove them from the record. “Wow, that’s sad to hear,” Justin Watkins, of Columbus, told after he was told about a pro-fracking comment from the Consumer Energy Alliance sent in his name. “I am not in support of fracking and have never pledged to be.” “…In an interview, Consumer Energy Alliance spokesman Bryson Hull tol his agency did not use names without permission… “The alliance cross checks names, IP addresses, user locations, and other data points to determine within “a reasonable degree of certainty” that people are who they say they are… ““If she can’t see, chances are it wasn’t her. I wouldn’t disagree with you,” he told “What I’m saying is somebody who put that email in, that IP address tracks back to a location that is listed as that woman’s address. So within a reasonable degree of certainty, those are the right people… “Hull told those who disputed that they authorized the letters could have forgotten, or perhaps shied away from telling a reporter about a controversial opinion… “He said the Alliance works with a vendor and “funnels” people from different websites, which he provided. The sites ask for information with offers to provide guaranteed credit card approvals, to help find money from class-action lawsuits, to enter sweepstakes for cash, to provide $40,000 cash loans or access to “the newest” $1,400 stimulus checks. Hull told CEA’s vendor places ads on those websites, which ask users for their names, addresses and contact details. Anyone who enters those details is filtered to receive information specific to their location. When they reached the form letter, Hull told, users were asked to verify biographical details again and given a chance to personalize the letter before clicking send… “Hull repeatedly accused “the other side” – referring to Save Ohio Parks – of using similar advocacy tactics as the Consumer Energy Alliance. Indeed, Save Ohio Parks encourages Ohioans to comment to the commission via an online submission that offers “sample text.” But and The Plain Dealer reached 27 authors of those letters. Most were unique and didn’t rely on the provided sample text. Every author who responded to inquiries confirmed that they wrote their letter, and many went on to press their case against fracking in state parks.”

The Hill: Colorado Lawmakers Urge BLM To Conduct Full Review Of Plans To Expand Utah Oil Facility 
Sharon Udasin, 9/7/23

“Two Colorado legislators are demanding a full environmental review of a proposal to expand a Utah oil transport facility — plans they believe could endanger their state’s residents across the border,” The Hill reports. “Because the potential expansion of the Wildcat Loadout is located on federal land, Sen. Michael Bennet (D) and Rep. Joe Neguse (D) appealed to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in a letter on Thursday, requesting a “full and robust environmental impact statement (EIS) that takes into account all the risks posed to Colorado.” The proposed Wildcat Loadout expansion would increase the facility’s capacity to ship waxy crude oil from Utah’s Uinta Basin on a route that would run for more than 100 miles alongside the headwaters of the Colorado River, the lawmakers argued. The Colorado River, they stressed, provides water to more than 40 million Americans across seven states and 30 tribal nations, while irrigating millions of acres of agricultural land.”

Carlsbad Current-Argus: Oil And Gas Is ‘Deforming’ New Mexico’s Land, Study Says, As Drilling Set To Grow

“Fossil fuels in New Mexico for years drew concerns for potential air and water pollution, but recent research also pointed to the impacts drilling for oil and gas could have on the landscape of the Permian Basin,” the Carlsbad Current-Argus reports. “The region, spanning southeast New Mexico and West Texas, is the busiest onshore oil and gas field in the U.S. producing about 5.8 million barrels per day, almost half of the U.S. total output of crude oil. But producing all that energy requires thousands of wells, pumpjacks, tank batteries and other infrastructure that can deform the land on the surface, according to a recent study by scientists with Southern Methodist University in Dallas… “In the meantime, the growing oil and gas operations could mean worsening environmental impacts like surface disturbance detailed in the report, and air pollution, argued an Aug. 9 study from the Center for Western Priorities. This research documented several areas known for heavy methane air pollution, including the Permian Basin in southeast New Mexico. In 2022, the report said oil and gas producers lost about 21.6 million cubic feet of methane, a greenhouse gas, through venting releases and the burning off of gas, also known as flaring. While the state recently enacted regulations to limit methane releases, the Center argued New Mexico struggled to enforce such measures with only 14 inspector positions funded for the entire state.”


Associated Press: Group of 20 countries agree to increase clean energy but reach no deal on phasing out fossil fuels
Sibi Arasu, 9/9/23

“Group of 20 leaders agreed Saturday to triple renewable energy and try to increase the funds for climate change-related disasters but maintained the status quo with regards to phasing out carbon spewing coal,” the Associated Press reports. “At a news conference shortly after the G20 leaders — whose countries also emit 80% of all planet-warming gases — announced the agreement, Amitabh Kant, a senior Indian government official leading some of the G20 negotiations, called it “probably the most vibrant, dynamic and ambitious document on climate action.” While most climate and energy experts were not as ebullient, they agreed that the G20 leaders had put out a strong message on climate action, even as the world is seeing increasingly frequent natural disasters such as extreme heat… “Some climate activists said more could be done. “While the G20’s commitment to renewable energy targets is commendable, it sidesteps the root cause — our global dependency on fossil fuels,” Harjeet Singh of Climate Action Network International told AP… “This G20 has seen many firsts,” Madhura Joshi, a Mumbai-based energy analyst with the climate think tank E3G, told AP. “However, it’s disappointing that the G20 could not agree on phasing down fossil fuels…Increasing renewables and reducing fossil fuels need to necessarily happen together – we need stronger bolder action from leaders on both. All eyes now on COP28 – can the leaders deliver?” 

Associated Press: Climate protester glues feet to floor at US Open, interrupts Coco Gauff’s semifinal win over Muchova

“Coco Gauff’s U.S. Open semifinal victory over Karolina Muchova was delayed by 50 minutes because of a disruption by four environmental activists in the Arthur Ashe Stadium stands Thursday night. One protester glued his bare feet to the concrete floor,” the Associated Press reports. “I always speak about preaching about what you feel and what you believe in. It was done in a peaceful way, so I can’t get too mad at it. Obviously I don’t want it to happen when I’m winning up 6-4, 1-0, and I wanted the momentum to keep going,” Gauff, a 19-year-old from Florida, told AP. “But hey, if that’s what they felt they needed to do to get their voices heard, I can’t really get upset at it.” Security guards and, later, more than a half-dozen police officers went over to confront the protesters, who were wearing shirts that read, “End Fossil Fuels.” The U.S. Tennis Association told AP three of the protesters were escorted out of the stadium without further incident, but it took longer to remove the person who stuck his feet to the ground… “A group called Extinction Rebellion said it was responsible for the protest. One of the protesters, who identified himself only as Ian, told AP  the group believes the U.S. Open has sponsorship deals with corporations whose policies are contributing to global warming. “We are not trying to harm the athletes in any way. We have nothing against the sport,” he told AP. “But we are really trying to draw attention to an issue here that there will be no tennis left for anybody in the world to enjoy.”

Reuters: Netherlands police use water cannon, detain 2,400 climate activists

“Police deployed water cannon to disperse thousands of climate activists protesting on a highway in the Netherlands on Saturday to demand an end to government subsidies for the fossil fuel industry,” Reuters repots. “More than 10,000 people marched along the A12 highway into The Hague, ignoring warnings from authorities not to block the major traffic artery into the Dutch seat of government. The police said in a statement they detained 2,400 protesters, including minors. There were no reports of injuries. Extinction Rebellion, which organised the event, has said it will continue to hold protests until the government of the Netherlands stops using public funds to subsidise the oil and gas industry.”

The Hill: World Is Releasing Greenhouse Gases At Level Unprecedented In Geologic History, Scientist Says
Saul Elbein, 9/8/23

“Human civilization came to be thanks to the comparatively stable climate of the past 10,000 years. But the unchecked burning of fossil fuels is undermining that foundation, according to a leading climate scientist,” The Hill reports. “There is no analog in the past for the rapid warming” we are seeing today, Penn State climate scientist Michael Mann argued. In a speech Thursday at the ‘The Good, The Bad and the Wicked’ climate conference, presented by the Meadows Center for Water and the Environment at Texas State University, Mann argued climate is the hidden factor in the history of life — and its many devastating extinctions.”

InsideClimate News: As Climate-Fueled Weather Disasters Hit More U.S. Farms, the Costs of Insuring Agriculture Have Skyrocketed
Georgina Gustin, 9/7/23

“The country’s farmers took in a record $19 billion in insurance payments in 2022, many because of weather-related disasters, according to a new analysis that suggests climate change could stoke the cost of insuring the nation’s farmers and ranchers to unsustainable levels,” InsideClimate News reports. “The Environmental Working Group, which has for decades critically scrutinized the Federal Crop Insurance Program, published new research Thursday, finding that the cost of the program has soared from just under $3 billion in 2002 to just over $19 billion last year… “The crop insurance program has become increasingly popular with farmers over the past 20 years as a way to protect themselves from drops in prices and weather-related disasters. Taxpayers subsidize about 60 percent of the premiums; farmers cover about 40 percent and pay deductibles on smaller losses… “EWG also analyzed who received the bulk of the payments, confirming previous research showing that most of them are going to large, wealthy farms that grow one or two crops. Roughly 80 percent of subsidies go to the largest 20 percent of farms. That’s in part because they produce most of the crops, but also because smaller farmers have a more difficult time qualifying for the programs. This, critics tell ICN, encourages the growth of large farms that use production methods that are more fuel and carbon intensive… “Critics of the program worry that it will incentivize more carbon-intensive farming. Already U.S. farms are responsible for 11 percent of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions. A recent analysis suggests that percentage could rise to about 30 percent of the total by 2050—more than any other sectors of the economy—if farms and ranches don’t shrink their carbon impact.” 

Wall Street Journal: The Race to Drill America’s Longest Oil and Gas Wells
David Ubert, 9/10/23

“Elite runners long chased the 4-minute mile. Major-league sluggers competed for decades to beat Babe Ruth’s 60 home runs. For Dennis Degner, the next milestone is 25,000 feet,” the reports. “Oil and gas wells stretched just a fraction of that length laterally underground in 2010, when the now-chief executive of Range Resources joined the natural-gas producer. Back then, innovations in horizontal drilling and fracking were just beginning to transform global energy markets. Now, with the end of the shale boom in sight, Wall Street is pressuring companies to cut spending and pony up returns to boost their share prices. Growth at all costs is out. The slow grind of achieving efficiency—alongside the office downgrades and recruiting struggles that come with it—is in.  The maturing market has pushed oil and gas producers to idle drilling rigs and bore fewer—but longer—wells. In Pennsylvania, a nearly 22,000-foot Range Resources gas well has put Degner’s target within striking distance.  As Wall Street becomes more skeptical of the U.S. shale patch’s growth prospects, executives are trying to win over stock pickers and potential acquirers by trumpeting the contiguous property leases and operational prowess needed to drill longer wells.  Improvements that range from souped-up drilling rigs to specialized drill bits to technologies that provide better underground steering have helped firms recently pump out better-than-expected production—and dividends and buybacks for shareholders. The energy sector has been the S&P 500’s best performer over the past three months, outpacing even the information-technology and communications-services industries. But some producers are boring so far underground with each lateral well that analysts say they are nearing the point of diminishing financial returns. Longer term, energy experts warn that the technological advance won’t be enough to reverse a structural decline in U.S. shale output in the coming years.” 


The Fence Post: Carbon pipelines heavily scrutinized
Rona Johnson, 9/8/23

“I wish I had studied harder in science classes so I could figure out if carbon dioxide pipelines are necessary, safe and worth taking away farmers and rancher’s land,” Rona Johnson writes for The Fence Post. “…So, as usual, I try to read as much as I can about the topic as I can because many landowners in the path of these pipelines have been worried that companies will use eminent domain to build these pipelines… “The problem is that many people believe that carbon pipelines are false climate solutions, others are worried about the dangers these pipelines could havoc should they rupture or leak. According to an article on the Sierra Club website, an accident in Satartia, Miss., proved the risk involved in carbon capture and storage… “This incident occurred in February of 2020 and didn’t cause any deaths, but 50 residents were hospitalized. Residents in the path of these pipelines also worry that the carbon dioxide stored underground could seep into and contaminate groundwater. I also believe pipeline fatigue among landowners is also at work here. Landowners are bombarded with companies wanting to build pipelines across their land. They are also tired of companies threatening them with eminent domain. As I said earlier, I am not an expert but if I were a landowner, I would definitely bone up on carbon capture pipelines and the rules regarding the building and maintaining these pipelines. And I would hire an attorney if I were confronted by one of these pipeline companies.”

TIME: Can Climate Policy Survive a Future GOP Administration?

“In the year since the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) became law, I’ve heard versions of the same question keep coming up on the road from people interested in taking advantage of the law’s programs: will the incentives last if Republicans take over?” Justin Worland writes for TIME. “It’s a good question. The law received zero Republican support in Congress, and, in the past, Republicans have made overturning influential Democratic policies a centerpiece of their agenda, a trend underscored at last week’s Republican presidential debate where leading GOP presidential candidates trashed the Biden Administration’s climate agenda. Entrepreneur-turned-politician Vivek Ramaswamy called the climate agenda the “wet blanket on our economy” and promised a “war” on “toxic regulations.” Former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley said clean technology subsidies just help China. Trump, who wasn’t on stage, made undoing climate rules a priority his first four years in office—and there’s no reason to think his perspective on this issue has changed. But, despite that fervent opposition, the path to actually wholly undo Biden’s climate agenda would be challenging… “To undo the IRA, a future Republican president would need to pass a new law through Congress, presumably requiring GOP control of both the House and Senate. And, even if Republicans controlled the federal government, many in the party might judge that reversing the law is too politically risky. Companies have already invested hundreds of billions of dollars—including in right-leaning communities—on the assumption that they will receive IRA-related incentives. Reversing the law would disrupt investments that constituents can see. Indeed, earlier this year, many Republican representatives with clean technology investments in their districts balked at their colleagues’ attempt to nix IRA subsidies as part of negotiations over the debt ceiling… “Indeed, any attempt to undo the law would likely drag out for months or years, which is another reason to be skeptical of the success of such a move… “The result of all this investment is that the economy is transforming around us—regardless of Republican talking points. No matter what happens in a future administration, that transformation will not be reversed.”

Wall Street Journal: Editorial: Biden Freezes U.S. Arctic Oil 
Editorial Board, 9/8/23

“Oil prices have climbed this week after Saudi Arabia and Russia extended their production cuts. The Biden Administration’s response? Restrict U.S. oil and gas development,” the Wall Street Journal Editorial Board writes. “The Interior Department on Wednesday canceled seven oil and gas leases in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and moved to limit development on 13 million acres in the state’s National Petroleum Reserve. “President Biden is delivering on the most ambitious climate and conservation agenda in history,” Secretary Deb Haaland boasted. Its climate agenda is also the most lawless and economically destructive in history… “Mr. Biden on his first day in office imposed a leasing moratorium in ANWR. Now Ms. Haaland is revoking seven ANWR leases issued by the Trump Administration in January 2021. She claims to have “the authority to cancel or suspend oil and gas leases issued in violation of a statute or regulation,” and that the ANWR leases include “fundamental legal deficiencies.” “…The Biden re-election campaign ran an ad during Thursday’s NFL kickoff touting the President’s economic agenda, including his supposed success in making the U.S. more “energy independent.” Yet his Administration’s relentless war on fossil fuels has left Americans more vulnerable to Mr. Putin’s tender mercies and dependent on China for green energy. U.S. gasoline prices have risen 60 cents a gallon this year as Saudi Arabia and Russia command the oil market. The Administration flogs jobs created by its green-energy subsidies, but how many more are its climate policies destroying? Employment in oil and gas extraction is 15% lower than before the pandemic. Sorry, Mr. President, unemployed roustabouts in Alaska aren’t going to be installing solar panels in the tundra.”

San Jose Mercury News: Opinion: California needs companies to fully disclose climate risks
Colin le Duc is a board member of Ocean Conservancy and a founding partner at Generation Investment Management. Janis Searles Jones is CEO of Ocean Conservancy, 9/8/23

“Sustainable investing has faced a barrage of criticism from both the left and right. This attention, alongside government efforts to crack down on greenwashing, makes one thing clear: investors are demanding transparency about corporate behavior. Investors – and this includes every Californian with a retirement account – have the right to know about the climate risks companies face and their plans for managing them,” Colin le Duc and Janis Searles Jones write for the San Jose Mercury News. “…To do this work in a rapidly changing world, our actions must be grounded in reliable data about climate risks. And it’s the same for the financial community as a whole. Voluntary company disclosures are not enough. The current system fails to provide consistent information on either the risks of climate disasters, or those related to the clean energy transition. Companies are left struggling with a patchwork of disclosure guidelines that produce irregular and incomplete information, far short of what investors need. That’s why we welcome California’s leadership on climate risk reporting (SB 253 and SB 261) for large companies operating in the state. SB 253 requires a company to report its emissions of climate-damaging greenhouse gasses in regulatory filings. It would be the first in the nation to require reporting on emissions from a company’s entire value chain – suppliers, clients, or customers – in producing and using its products or services. This is critical: these “Scope 3” emissions represent the lion’s share of greenhouse gas pollution for large companies. SB 261 mandates reporting on climate-related financial risks, such as physical threats like extreme weather, or transition risks like changing policies. By requiring transparency about how companies and asset managers are making decisions that affect the future of their businesses and the planet, California is leading the way.”

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