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Open Thread: Guess who's on the naughty list
Sounds like: Coal Mansion. On the nice list: Jorts!
PRESENTED BY HOT BUTTERED JORTS
I may have some end-of-the-year posts coming, but this is probably the last regular Hill Heat roundup of the year. The Senate is back in session on January 3, so we’ll be getting right back to it in 2022. Make sure to subscribe!
All kids deserve Green New Deals in their stockings
Dharna Noor, having moved from Earther to be the Boston Globe’s climate producer, reports that newly elected Mayor Michelle Wu has announced lower and cleaner electricity rates for the city of Boston.
By an overwhelming 40-7 vote, the New York City Council approved a ban on natural gas hookups in new buildings.1 From Maxine Jaselow: ExxonMobil lied on Facebook to try to stop the deal.
Yesterday, Kamala Harris announced the White House Lead Pipe and Paint Action Plan, a coordinated campaign involving EPA, Treasury, Labor, HUD, USDA, the CDC, Interior, Education, HHS, and other departments to replace the nation’s lead pipes. More than half of U.S. children have detectable lead levels in their blood, so this is a good idea.2
Despite the sinking of S.S. Saule Omarova, the acting Comptroller of the Currency Michael Hsu is pushing forward with the first-ever federal climate guidance for banks, “an important, concrete step towards ensuring the safety and soundness of large banks in the face of increasing risks from climate change.”
And now, Grinch time!
Children everywhere are getting the most coal ever in their stockings, by which I mean that global coal burning is up nearly 10 percent from last year. Totally-not-a-Republican-climate-denier Joe Manchin took a break from stapling antlers onto mice to give children the Christmas gift of no child tax credit and more offshore drilling.
California needs to be moving faster to meet its stated climate goals. So, California may kill off the growth of solar energy in the state in order to protect PG&E’s profits. (Wait, what?) On Monday, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) issued a proposed decision to charge rooftop solar users a fee of about $57 a month and slash the credit solar users get for sharing surplus solar energy with the grid by 80 percent. The Solar Rights Alliance is flooding Gov. Gavin Newsom’s phone lines. The Save California Solar coalition has a petition and more detailed information.
Emily Pontecorvo has a great look at California’s messy climate politics in Grist.
Connor Gibson gives the gift every bad PR company deserves: bad PR. In Heated, he exposes how the PR giant Edelman is breaking its climate promise by creating glowing campaigns for anti-climate lobbying groups.
The EPA has a national toxic pollution database that isn’t very good, Ava Kofman writes:
“Our story was no longer that Boeing appeared to be poisoning Portland; it was that Boeing had said it was poisoning Portland four years in a row — and the EPA had ignored it.”
Crypto miners are working to accelerate the end of humanity.
Occupy Biden: Occupy Biden. @OccupyBiden. occupybiden@. occupybiden! Occupy Biden? Occupy! Biden! From noon on Christmas to noon on New Year’s Day, climate activists with Beyond Extreme Energy “will be boldly and peacefully occupying public space near President Biden’s Wilmington neighborhood.” Occupy Biden!
Hug your family, be kind to your neighbors, and please, don’t butter your Jorts. Share in the open thread: What’s been your big accomplishment of 2021?
Tempering expectations with the details: no gas hookups in new buildings under seven stories high in 2024, none in new buildings over seven stories in 2027, with exceptions for manufacturing, hospitals, commercial kitchens and laundromats. In other words, this is very moderate policy—except that it blows up the myth that natural gas is okay for the climate, which is making the fossil-fuel industry shudder.
Tempering expectations, again: About $60 billion is needed to replace all the lead pipes in the nation; Biden requested $45 billion in funding; the House put $15 billion over five years in the bipartisan infrastructure bill (which passed) and $9 billion in Build Back Better (which has not). So the White House is asking communities to pull from the $350 billion in non-directed local funding passed in the American Rescue Plan.