EPA rules greenhouse gases threaten public health; winter storm pounds U.S.

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:03 PM GMT on December 08, 2009

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In a press release yesterday the EPA announced: "After a thorough examination of the scientific evidence and careful consideration of public comments, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that greenhouse gases (GHGs) threaten the public health and welfare of the American people. The ruling comes in response to the 2007 U.S. Supreme Court decision that GHGs fit within the Clean Air Act definition of air pollutants, and paves the way for the EPA to regulate CO2 as a pollutant. In the event Congress does not pass legislation to limit greenhouse gas emissions, the EPA now has the power to do that on its own. In the words of the press release, "President Obama and Administrator Jackson have publicly stated that they support a legislative solution to the problem of climate change and Congress. efforts to pass comprehensive climate legislation. However, climate change is threatening public health and welfare, and it is critical that EPA fulfill its obligation to respond to the 2007 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that determined that greenhouse gases fit within the Clean Air Act definition of air pollutants." The first EPA rule to limit CO2 would likely affect cars and light-duty trucks. Over 23% of U.S. greenhouse gases emissions are caused by on-road vehicles. Rules drafted on September 15, 2009, if imposed, would require vehicles sold between 2012 - 2016 to average 35.5 MPG.

Release of hacked emails had "organization and orchestration", UEA official says
Prof Trevor Davies, pro-vice chancellor at the University of East Angelina where the "climategate" hacked email controversy began, said in an interview yesterday: "A lot of people have remarked that it seems an unlikely co-incidence that this happened just before Copenhagen. There are indications that the people who stole this data and documents have had them for some time. They have clearly had the chance to go through them and we have had to check them ourselves. I think from the way that this has mushroomed and the very rapid responses on various blog sites, it seems to me that it has some organization and orchestration".

Meanwhile, in the U.S., the FBI is investigating death threats made against two U.S. climate scientists involved in the emails. Clearly, meteorologists involved in tornado and hurricane chasing are risking their lives in the cause of science, but who would have thought that meteorologists sitting behind a computer crunching numbers would be risking their lives? Crazy life!.

Other posts on the hacked climate change email affair
Don't shoot the messenger
Embattled UK climate scientist steps down
The Manufactured Doubt industry and the hacked email controversy
Is more CO2 beneficial for Earth's ecosystems?

Ricky Rood in Copenhagen
Our Climate Change expert, Dr. Ricky Rood, is in Copenhagen for the COP15 climate change summit. His post on the "climategate" affair is one of the more intelligent and diplomatic commentaries I've seen.

Major winter storm blasts the Plains and Western U.S.
Meanwhile, back in North America, it is winter. The season's first widespread heavy snow event is here, with a fierce winter storm that is the pounding the west. The storm will dump heavy snow along a wide swath across a large region of the country, from California to Michigan. The storm brought blizzard conditions and a foot of snow to northern Arizona today. Fierce thunderstorms with winds gusts up to 74 mph hit the Phoenix region, causing widespread tree damage and power outages for 250,000 people. California's Sierra Mountains recorded over 3 feet of snow, and 1 - 3 feet of snow is expected in the mountains of southern Utah and in Colorado. Up to a foot of snow is expected tonight through Wednesday across Kansas, Iowa, southern Minnesota, and southern Wisconsin, with blizzard conditions likely in Iowa.

Some snow amounts from the storm so far (with distances in miles from the city included, where appropriate):

...CALIFORNIA...
ALPINE MEADOWS 42.0
KIRKWOOD 40.0
CISCO 5 ENE 35.0
KINGVALE 1.3 WSW 29.0
HOMEWOOD 2 SE 27.0
PROSSER CREEK RESERVOIR 24.0
FAIR PLAY 2.8 ESE 17.0
PLACERVILLE 2.9 WNW 13.0
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE 13.0
VOLCANO 5.4 NE 12.5
GRASS VALLEY 5.5 ESE 11.5
COLFAX 3.1 SW 11.0
ALTA SIERRA 0.4 WSW 10.0
SUSANVILLE 3.2 SSW 8.8
LAKE OF THE PINES 8.0
NEVADA CITY 5.4 W 5.2
FOLSOM 3.4 ESE 0.5
CARMICHAEL 1.4 W 0.3
SACRAMENTO 8.0 NE 0.1

...NEVADA...
HEAVENLY VALLEY 24.0
MT ROSE SKI AREA 23.0
CARSON CITY 1.3 NW 18.0
DAYTON 1.7 SW 13.0
RENO 7.1 N 12.0

...ARIZONA...
FLAGSTAFF 11.6
WILLIAMS 8.0
BELLEMONT 7.2
GRAND CANYON ARPT 3.0

...COLORADO...
DELTA 10.2

...UTAH...
VERDURE 8 WNW 25.0

Next post
My next post will be Wednesday.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting charlottefl:
Oh, that was cold. They're in a rebuilding year :)



Is that what we are calling it now? I have season tickets and can't even give them away.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AwakeInMaryland:
I didn't fall for Tampa Bay or '72. You guys are pretty funny though!
Joe Montana - Dan Marino
Ahhhhh when quarterbacks were Hunky...

Dogs... Chili
(No, NOT dogs IN Chili!)
Hi AIM, I have only two beautiful words about the 72 football season---undefeated baby,,, Weather is gettin bad quick here in middle TN.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Maat:


I should repeat what I said about the Saints for the Colts too. They too came back on Miami to win the tough Monday night game. These teams are destined to meet eachother at the end. Its like Archie Manning's dream come true.


I think they both are the elite this year for sure, and obviously the Colts have been elite for most of the decade, I hope the Saints can maintain this level for awhile
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301
#330 - we too (S WI) are under a Blizzard Warning. We've had light snow since 6AM. Hard to believe the low is still in the OK region!
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Quoting Maat:


After watching the Aints come back against the Dolphins in roaring fashion this year, I would have to agree with you. The Saints find ways to win the tough games. Teams that do that usually win it all, except for the Patricheats against the Gmen a few years ago..



The Colt's had 5 straight 4th quarter comebacks, how's that for finding ways to win?
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301
I didn't fall for Tampa Bay or '72. You guys are pretty funny though!
Joe Montana - Dan Marino
Ahhhhh when quarterbacks were Hunky...

Dogs... Chili
(No, NOT dogs IN Chili!)
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
"They certainly never had problems growing it so I don't know why you say our climate here is marginal at best because it didn't seem that way. "

http://www.thebioenergysite.com/articles/69/production-of-biofuel-crops-in-florida-sugarcane-energy cane

Production Challenges

The major challenge to producing sugarcane for bioenergy in Florida will be expansion to growing areas north of Lake Okeechobee. The limited cold tolerance of current sugarcane varieties will result in considerably lower yields, decreased persistence, and higher production costs in areas that are subject to below freezing temperatures. Although, sugarcane breeders continually strive to select varieties with greater cold tolerance, limited progress has been made.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting CaneWarning:


Not really. They haven't played football in a while.


True, I'm glad I have my Colt's. 7 straight years with 12 or more wins. certainly impressive. and 21 regular season wins in a row.
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301
Quoting hurricanejunky:


Watch the movie:"Who Killed The Electric Car?"
You'll see GM HAD the technology then and I'm sure they still do. WARNING: might make blood boil! Watch with caution!


And Chrysler had released the electric minivan (1993 to 1995 and sold primarily to electric utilities throughout the United States.) Used either nickel-iron or nickel-cadmium batteries. Some still on the road (look for the TEVan).

So the technology is there.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Oh, that was cold. They're in a rebuilding year :)

Quoting CaneWarning:


Not really. They haven't played football in a while.
Member Since: December 18, 2006 Posts: 7 Comments: 2686
Quoting CaneWarning:


Didn't the state of Florida buy the sugar land for conservation recently?


I think so but it had been there for so long and it was really an integral part of Clewiston. It is probably part of the Everglades restoration project, which is a VERY good thing.
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Quoting tornadodude:


Tampa does though


Not really. They haven't played football in a while.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
man.. i got off work, boy was it foggy.. i thought we might get sum storms but might some showers/thunderstorm later.. visibility was less than qtr of an mile.. I see ppl driving with no lights, freakin crazy ppl.. no wonder y we get alot of accidents due no common sense.. but anyways can anyone post any gfs models or any other models that run into next week.. b/c ive been hearing theres a chance that the south could get another wacky storm... thanks for sum1 that does..
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Iowa under Blizzard Warning expecting 45+mph winds? WOW!! I feel for them! 82 here and partly cloudy with a mild breeze. Anyone on here in Iowa and expecting those conditions?
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Quoting CaneWarning:


Tampa Bay doesn't have a football team.


Tampa does though
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301
Quoting Maat:


I think you mean Tampa Bay.







Nah just kiddin'. Sorry Bucs fans.

:(


Tampa Bay doesn't have a football team.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AwakeInMaryland:
I'll be rooting for the Cowpokes in that one

Oh, no, Junky, you're starting blog wars again (j/k). Still beats CC/AGW by many football fields!

(Note to self: double the order of switches and coal...)

Say, I overheard someone say there was a better team even though the Colts and Saints were undefeated...anyone know who they were talking about, was it the Vikings? I really don't know anything about football, or why they would say that.


No, it was the 72 Dolphins. Just kidding. The Vikes? They got killed by the Cards Sunday night. I think it safe to say the Saints are the best team in the NFL followed closely by Indy (1A and 1B). The Vikings look (sans last game) like the best of the rest.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting hurricanejunky:


Yeah, I think I mentioned previously the fact that Big Sugar was 60 miles down the road from me and I grew up here in Florida so I'm familiar with sugar cane producers. They certainly never had problems growing it so I don't know why you say our climate here is marginal at best because it didn't seem that way.

I haven't heard of Brazil cutting down forest for sugar cane production but I have heard of forest being cut down to raise cattle, produce soy and harvest hearts of palm. If they were to cut down forests and replace it with sugar cane fields at least there would be some type of reforestation going on and almost all of their vehicles run on an alternative fuel source.


Didn't the state of Florida buy the sugar land for conservation recently?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
317. Great, I LOVE the food in Lancaster County, PA (Amish country). Good thing I don't live there, would be HUGE.

Really gray here now. BBL.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
Quoting AGWcreationists:
"What's wrong with Taco Bell?"

The potentcy of methane as a global warming gas...one Chalupa equals the warming from two Ford Expeditions...


So the climate's WMD would be a tour bus parked outside a Taco Bell?
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Quoting tornadodude:


The entire state of Iowa has a blizzard warning


What a colorful map. I'm in one of the few white areas on it.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AwakeInMaryland:
That totally sucks for Iowa.
They're still recovering from historic floods a couple of years ago.


It's not going to melt anytime soon, in fact, here is the extended forecast:

Thursday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 12. West wind between 11 and 15 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph.

Thursday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 3.

Friday: Partly sunny, with a high near 20.

Friday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 8.

Saturday: Partly sunny, with a high near 28.

Saturday Night: Mostly cloudy, with a low around 4.

Sunday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 19.

Sunday Night: Mostly cloudy, with a low around 6.

Monday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 18.
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301
Quoting AwakeInMaryland:

Great movie!
I'm signed up with Nissan to receive updates on "Leaf." Still doesn't seem to be as great as EV that was killed, but I still have hope.


I know, it's amazing how good of a car that was. And it was FAST too!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
That totally sucks for Iowa.
They're still recovering from historic floods a couple of years ago.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
It's all clear to me now.
-Grow a beard
-Remove the zippers from my all black clothing
-Wear a wide brimmed hat
-Let my wife hoe the garden barefoot in summer
-Get a horse
-Ride a bike in the snow
-Run an extension cord from the neighbors house to the barn to watch TV
-Heat with wood
-Keep food with ice from the pond
-Light from kerosene
The technology exists today!!!!!
Silly us, we passed it by in the 30's and 40's.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AGWcreationists:
"For some reason, I haven't heard one word about using sugar cane ethanol in this country"

Sugar is a crop of the tropics and subtropics. The US climate, even in the far southern areas, is marginal at best for sugar production.

A bit of sugar is grown in the US in South Florida and in Lousiana, Texas and Hawaii, but it is heavily subsidized.

http://www.ppionline.org/ppi_ci.cfm?knlgAreaID=108&subsecID=900003&contentID=253294

PPI | Trade Fact of the Week | April 20, 2005
U.S. Sugar Subsidies: $1.2 Billion a Year

--------

Also, there is a lot of concern about the amount of forest Brazil has cleared to drive its sugar ethanol program.




Yeah, I think I mentioned previously the fact that Big Sugar was 60 miles down the road from me and I grew up here in Florida so I'm familiar with sugar cane producers. They certainly never had problems growing it so I don't know why you say our climate here is marginal at best because it didn't seem that way.

I haven't heard of Brazil cutting down forest for sugar cane production but I have heard of forest being cut down to raise cattle, produce soy and harvest hearts of palm. If they were to cut down forests and replace it with sugar cane fields at least there would be some type of reforestation going on and almost all of their vehicles run on an alternative fuel source.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
...WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 9 PM CST THIS
EVENING...
...BLIZZARD WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 9 PM THIS EVENING TO
6 PM CST WEDNESDAY...

A WINTER STORM WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 9 PM CST THIS
EVENING. A BLIZZARD WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 9 PM THIS
EVENING TO 6 PM CST WEDNESDAY.

* SHORT TERM TRENDS: A BAND OF MODERATE SNOW WILL AFFECT CENTRAL
IOWA FROM INTERSTATE 80 TO HIGHWAY 20 THROUGH THE REST OF THE
AFTERNOON. THE SNOWFALL INTENSITY WILL RANGE FROM 1 TO 2 INCHES
PER HOUR DURING THE REMAINDER OF THE AFTERNOON THROUGH TONIGHT.
AN ADDITIONAL 3 TO 5 INCHES OF NEW SNOW IS EXPECTED THROUGH
SUNSET TONIGHT ACROSS MUCH OF THE AREA. VISIBILITY WILL DROP TO
LESS THAN A ONE HALF MILE AT TIMES THIS AFTERNOON AND TONIGHT. A
MIX OF SLEET...SNOW AND FREEZING RAIN IS EXPECTED ACROSS THE
FAR SOUTHEAST PORTIONS OF THE WARNING AREA THROUGH THE REMAINDER
OF THE AFTERNOON HOURS.

* STORM TOTAL ACCUMULATIONS: SNOW ACCUMULATIONS OF 10 TO 15 INCHES
ARE ANTICIPATED FOR MUCH OF CENTRAL IOWA. THE BEST THREAT FOR
RECEIVING OVER A FOOT OF SNOW IS GENERALLY SOUTH OF HIGHWAY 20.
ISOLATED AMOUNTS UP TO 16 INCHES ARE FORECAST BETWEEN HIGHWAY 34
AND HIGHWAY 30 BY WEDNESDAY MORNING.

* WINDS/VISIBILITY: EAST TO NORTHEAST WINDS AT 15 TO 25 MPH ARE
EXPECTED THROUGH THE EVENING HOURS BEFORE SHIFTING NORTH TO
NORTHWEST AND INCREASING BY LATE THIS EVENING. LOOK FOR
VISIBILITY TO BE REDUCED TO LESS THAN A ONE HALF MILE AT TIMES
THIS AFTERNOON AND TONIGHT. NORTH TO NORTHWEST OF 25 TO 35
MPH...WITH GUSTS GREATER THAN 50 MPH ARE EXPECTED OVERNIGHT
TONIGHT INTO WEDNESDAY...PRODUCING VISIBILITY LESS THAN ONE
QUARTER OF A MILE WITH WHITE OUT CONDITIONS AT TIMES.

* IMPACTS: SIGNIFICANT TRAVEL CONCERNS ARE EXPECTED WITH THIS
DANGEROUS WINTER STORM...ESPECIALLY DURING THE AFTERNOON HOURS
AND TOWARDS RUSH HOUR TONIGHT. IN ADDITION TO THE HEAVY SNOW
ACCUMULATING ON ROADWAYS...VERY STRONG NORTH TO NORTHWEST
WINDS WILL CAUSE SIGNIFICANT BLOWING AND DRIFTING OF SNOW AND
WHITEOUT CONDITIONS LATE TONIGHT INTO WEDNESDAY...LEADING TO
THE POTENTIAL FOR MAJOR TRAVEL IMPACTS AND ROAD CLOSURES. SNOW
DRIFTS OF 8 TO 15 FEET ARE POSSIBLE BY WEDNESDAY. THE
POTENTIAL FOR POWER OUTAGES EXIST AS WELL WITH THE VERY STRONG
WINDS. WIND CHILL READINGS ON WEDNESDAY WILL RANGE FROM 10 TO
20 BELOW ZERO.
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301


The entire state of Iowa has a blizzard warning
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301
I'll be rooting for the Cowpokes in that one

Oh, no, Junky, you're starting blog wars again (j/k). Still beats CC/AGW by many football fields!

(Note to self: double the order of switches and coal...)

Say, I overheard someone say there was a better team even though the Colts and Saints were undefeated...anyone know who they were talking about, was it the Vikings? I really don't know anything about football, or why they would say that.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
Quoting atmoaggie:

And air bags were invented 30 years before they were included in every vehicle. Not every good idea goes right to production. Cost is the normal driver of this.

There is a reason Walmart is busy. Our general public is not interested in spending a little extra for better quality [insert better item here], and I don't blame them. (And agree with them on many of these choices...not auto safety, consumer goods, or food quality, though)


Have you watched the movie? If you did you might agree with me for once. The cars were perfectly fine. They had electric charging stations all over California. The movement was starting to take off and every single owner begged GM to keep the car. It wouldn't have hurt anyone but the oil companies. Instead GM felt it better to destroy them. Unbelievable.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting hurricanejunky:


I'll be rooting for the Cowpokes in that one but I still like the Saints. I'm glad they're doing so well. That city DESERVES something good!


Exactly, if the Cowboys win, then awesome, but if the Saints win, then it is still awesome
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301
Quoting tornadodude:


LOL hey, I'm not standing up for the Cowboys in this one. they have all the talent they need to win, they just need a leader. The Saints have an amazing leader in Drew Brees (Purdue Graduate) and I will root for him any day, just hoping that the Cowboys provide a little competition.


I'll be rooting for the Cowpokes in that one but I still like the Saints. I'm glad they're doing so well. That city DESERVES something good!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting hurricanejunky:


Watch the movie:"Who Killed The Electric Car?"
You'll see GM HAD the technology then and I'm sure they still do. WARNING: might make blood boil! Watch with caution!

Great movie!
I'm signed up with Nissan to receive updates on "Leaf." Still doesn't seem to be as great as EV that was killed, but I still have hope.
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
Quoting hurricanejunky:


Watch the movie:"Who Killed The Electric Car?"
You'll see GM HAD the technology then and I'm sure they still do. WARNING: might make blood boil! Watch with caution!

And air bags were invented 30 years before they were included in every vehicle. Not every good idea goes right to production. Cost is the normal driver of this.

There is a reason Walmart is busy. Our general public is not interested in spending a little extra for better quality [insert better item here], and I don't blame them. (And agree with them on many of these choices...not auto safety, consumer goods, or food quality, though)
Member Since: August 16, 2007 Posts: 6 Comments: 12461
Quoting eyesontheweather:
Thank you and you are right the political system of this country does appear to be run by big money


Unfortunately, yes. If we were faced with extinction or change tomorrow we'd all be gone. That's the appalling reality of it. "The Day The Earth Stood Still" (with Keanu Reeves) is a good reference to what I'm trying to convey. I don't think we'd fare as well as they did in the movie though.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AwakeInMaryland:

Okey dokey.
Patrap and I will be watching that NO-Dallas game -- what did you call it, Pat, Cowboy Stew?



LOL hey, I'm not standing up for the Cowboys in this one. they have all the talent they need to win, they just need a leader. The Saints have an amazing leader in Drew Brees (Purdue Graduate) and I will root for him any day, just hoping that the Cowboys provide a little competition.
Member Since: June 28, 2006 Posts: 25 Comments: 8301
Quoting hurricanejunky:


No stocking? You of all people should have appreciated my sarcastic post office jab! Was I right about the hubby?

Oh yeah, switches... he's not the type to enjoy that...pain is not his bag. The cattail ones, right, not the electric type? Those he'd play with and would enjoy entirely too much!
Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918
Quoting hurricanejunky:


Watch the movie:"Who Killed The Electric Car?"
You'll see GM HAD the technology then and I'm sure they still do. WARNING: might make blood boil! Watch with caution!


I'm sure they do, but then the question becomes, where do you get the electricity for the electric car? A coal power plant? LOL
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
"For some reason, I haven't heard one word about using sugar cane ethanol in this country"

Sugar is a crop of the tropics and subtropics. The US climate, even in the far southern areas, is marginal at best for sugar production.

A bit of sugar is grown in the US in South Florida and in Lousiana, Texas and Hawaii, but it is heavily subsidized.

http://www.ppionline.org/ppi_ci.cfm?knlgAreaID=108&subsecID=900003&contentID=253294

PPI | Trade Fact of the Week | April 20, 2005
U.S. Sugar Subsidies: $1.2 Billion a Year

--------

Also, there is a lot of concern about the amount of forest Brazil has cleared to drive its sugar ethanol program.


Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting tornadodude:


haha who knows :) you had it coming to ya! LOL jk

Okey dokey.
Patrap and I will be watching that NO-Dallas game -- what did you call it, Pat, Cowboy Stew?

Member Since: August 19, 2008 Posts: 32 Comments: 1918

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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