Friday, October 13, 2017

Desmog Blog Exposes Climate Deniers and Trump's Oil Profiteers

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What do you get when you bring together some of Australia's most fervent climate science deniers with anti-Islam activists, fledgling right-wing political groups, and an American "free market" Libertarian?
The answer, apparently, is the one-day conference titled LibertyFest scheduled for Brisbane this Saturday.
Two mainstays of Australia's "fever swamp" of climate science denial, Professor Ian Plimer and Jennifer Marohasy, are set to kick-off the proceedings on Friday evening. Read more.
A newly appointed federal regulator charged with overseeing pipeline safety personally profits from oil spill responses, a DeSmog investigation has found.
Drue Pearce is the acting administrator for the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), an agency in the Department of Transportation responsible for ensuring oil and gas pipeline integrity. However, she is also associated with a company specializing in the sale of oil spill equipment. Read more.
As Bloomberg put it recently, today "crude oil gushes out of the U.S. like never before." U.S. exports of crude oil just hit a new record: nearly two million barrels per day. And while at DeSmog we predicted that "lifting the oil export ban will result in large increases in fracking for oil in the U.S.," most industry experts at the time were making very different claims.
"It's universally agreed in the short term that we won't see a flood of ships leaving for foreign ports because the economics aren't right," Sandy Fielden, director of energy analytics at respected consulting firm RBN Energy, said in December 2015, just before the ban on crude oil export lifted. Fielden was explaining why lifting that ban wouldn't result in a sizable and ongoing rush to export American crude. Read more.
Australian climate scientists have hit back at their former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, describing his speech to a London think tank as being laced with distortions, falsehoods, misrepresentations, and misdirection.
Abbott told the contrarian Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF) that rising carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel burning could be "beneficial" and compared acceptance of human-caused climate change to religion.
The GWPF, founded by former Thatcher government treasurer Lord Nigel Lawson, consistently pushes positions on climate change that fall well outside the established science. Read more.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is permitting a contractor with a known conflict of interest to monitor Enbridge's Atlantic Bride natural gas project. This decision joins a growing list of apparent conflicts of interest involved in the project, as DeSmog has extensively reported.
In an internal FERC memorandum sent this week, FERC's ethics officer authorized the commission's Office of Energy Projects to continue using a third-party contractor, Environmental Resources Management (ERM), that had produced the project's environmental assessment. While the work of such contractors is paid for by the pipeline company, they are considered independent reviewers laboring under the supervision of FERC staff who must vet for possible conflicts of interest. Read more.



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