The new climate denial

COP27 limps to a close . . . fracking crimes . . . insufferable dweebs


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COP27 LIMPS TO A CLOSE: A glimmer of hope on methane pollution: “China’s climate envoy Xie Zhenhua unexpectedly dropped in on a COP27 ministerial meeting led by the US and the EU” on methane, touting his friendship with US envoy John Kerry, but “stopped short of joining an international deal to cut emissions of the powerful greenhouse gas by 30% by 2030.”

Not much hope though in the agreement expected to come out of Sharm el-Sheikh, as the US team, led by Kerry and the indefatigable Sue Biniaz, hold up any deal on help for countries ravaged by the climate pollution that built US wealth, or any call for an end to the burning of oil and gas.

“Climate negotiators on Friday were mulling a European Union proposal aimed at resolving an impasse over financing for countries hit by climate-fueled [sic] disasters and pushing the U.N. climate summit in Egypt closer to a final deal,” Kate Abnett wrote. As Jean Chemnick explains, “The United States is now seen as the biggest obstacle to what poor countries want most out of these talks — a new fund dedicated to help them bounce back from climate disasters.”

The U.S. delegation has refused to say plainly what its position is on the creation of a so-called loss and damage facility, which is a top ask for 134 of the 197 countries gathered at this meeting. Instead, the U.S. has asked for more time to study the idea and has suggested that disaster recovery should be handled through existing channels with missions like cutting pollution and preventing climate damage in advance. And while the U.S. allowed loss and damage finance to be added to the meeting’s formal agenda for the first time, it took the unusual step of demanding that a footnote be included to exclude the ideas of liability for historic emitters or compensation for countries affected by that pollution.

SPEAKING OF METHANE: A fracked gas leak in an underground storage site in Western Pennsylvania that began nearly two weeks ago has finally been brought under control, though Equitrans Midstream comms executive Natalie Cox admitted the company has no real idea how much methane was spewed into the atmosphere.

An environmental-justice coalition represented by EarthJustice has filed a petition with the Environmental Protection Agency to seize control of fracking waste wells in Ohio, Nick Cunningham reports. “These groups are asking the federal government to take control of the state’s oil and gas wastewater injection well program, arguing that Ohio has failed to effectively protect underground sources of drinking water.”

DEPARTMENT OF DWEEBS: As garbage dweeb Elon Musk burns down Twitter, John McCracken takes a look at the good dweebs on #ClimateMastodon, from @[email protected] to @[email protected]. I’m @[email protected].

Jeet Heer has a few thoughts on Sam Bankman-Fried, right-wing populism, 1990s nostalgia, Kirsten Gillibrand, Eric Adams, Matt Yglesias and the socialism of fools.

Kate Aronoff one-ups Jeet with a broadside on SBF and the insufferable dweebs William MacAskill, Sean McElwee, and David Shor, who share a “profoundly anti-democratic project: to let rich people continue to make as much money as possible, whatever the cost to people and the planet.”

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Posts on the new Democratic leaders in the House, led by Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.), are coming this weekend.

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