Carl Sagan and Government_ Charlie Rose

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Amid Climate Crisis, Big Business Keeps Eye on Prize: Profit

From Common Dreams:  http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/12/05-0

Investors and fossil fuel companies are slowly coming to acknowledge the reality of planetary climate change, but don’t expect solutions from their quarter

Jon Queally

Though the politicians continue to deny its possibility, some of the world’s largest corporations (many of them also its biggest polluters) are already planning for the likelihood of a carbon tax or other financial penalty for industry-generated emissions that are leading the globe towards climate catastrophe.

As the New York Times reports on Thursday:

A new report by the environmental data company CDP has found that at least 29 companies, some with close ties to Republicans, including ExxonMobil, Walmart and American Electric Power, are incorporating a price on carbon into their long-term financial plans.

Both supporters and opponents of action to fight global warming say the development is significant because businesses that chart a financial course to make money in a carbon-constrained future could be more inclined to support policies that address climate change.

In a related but separate development, Inside Climate News reported earlier this week how Bloomberg financial services has introduced a new tool for professional analysts and traders who are already calculating how “companies might fare in the carbon-constrained economy” if and when some of the world’s largest energy companies are forced to leave untapped fossil fuels reserves in the ground.

As ICN’s Elizabeth Douglass reported:

In a move that underscores Wall Street’s growing unease over the business-as-usual strategy of the world’s fossil fuel companies, Bloomberg L.P. unveiled a tool last week that helps investors quantify for the first time how climate policies and related risks might batter the earnings and stock prices of individual oil, coal and natural gas companies.

The company’s new Carbon Risk Valuation Tool is available to more than 300,000 high-end traders, analysts and others who regularly pore over the stream of information that’s available through Bloomberg’s financial data and analysis service. The move significantly broadens and elevates the discussion of “stranded” or “unburnable” carbon reserves—expanding it beyond climate groups and sustainability investors to the desks of the world’s most active and influential investors and traders.

“It demonstrates that there’s demand for the information—more and more investors are interested in these issues,” said Ryan Salmon, senior manager of the oil and gas program at Ceres, a nonprofit that organizes businesses, investors and public interest groups interested in climate change and other issues.

Continue reading at:  http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/12/05-0

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The Education of Bill McKibben: How the Unlikely Activist Learned to Break the Rules

From Yes Magazine:  http://www.yesmagazine.org/issues/how-to-eat-like-our-lives-depend-on-it/bill-mckibben-book-review

“Sometime in the course of the past decade I figured out that I needed to do more than write—if this fight was about power, then we who wanted change had to assemble some.”

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Arctic 30 told they can’t leave Russia

From Salon:  http://www.salon.com/2013/12/13/arctic_30_told_they_cant_leave_russia/

The Greenpeace activists say they’re being held in the country in defiance of an international order


Friday, Dec 13, 2013

Despite an international court ruling and the best efforts of Paul McCartney, Russia won’t allow the foreign activists facing trial for boarding an Arctic oil drilling platform, Greenpeace said Friday.

The Arctic 30, consisting of 28 activists and two journalists, face up to seven years in prison on charges of hooliganism. They were released on bail by St. Petersburg courts last month, and on November 22, the U.N. maritime tribunal ruled that the  26 foreign activists must be allowed to leave Russia pending trial.

But the federal Investigative Committee rejected a request for one of the activists’ exit visa, and lawyers for Greenpeace expect that the rest of the non-Russian defendants will be treated similarly. The lawyers had also requested that the defendants be given one month’s notice before the Committee sought to interview them, so that they’d have time to get back to Russia without breaking their bail conditions — a request that was also denied.

Peter Willcox, captain of the ship that was seized during the protest, expressed his frustration in a statement released by Greenpeace:

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Friday Night Fun and Culture: New Lost City Ramblers

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