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Obama Administration Blocks Prospects for Future Oil Drilling in the Arctic – October 16, 2015

Interior Department cancels two future offshore leases in Chukchi and Beaufort seas and will refuse requests from oil companies to renew existing leases

By Suzanne Goldenberg

Barack Obama blocked off the prospects for future oil drilling in the Arctic on Friday, imposing new lease conditions that make it practically impossible for companies to hunt for oil in the world’s last great wilderness.

Photo of Arctic DrillingPhoto by Coast Guard News Coast Guard crews escorting Blue Marlin to Port Angeles, Washington.

The Department of Interior said it was canceling two future auctions of Arctic offshore oil leases in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas, and turned down requests from Shell and other oil companies for more time on their existing leases.

The decision… more

by: The Guardian

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Marine Food Chains at Risk of Collapse,  Study of World’s Oceans Finds – October 13, 2015

Important ecosystems could be massively damaged by 2050 unless greenhouse gas emissions and localized pollution is drastically reduced, researchers say

The food chains of the world’s oceans are at risk of collapse due to the release of greenhouse gases, overfishing and localized pollution, a stark new analysis shows.

A study of 632 published experiments of the world’s oceans, from tropical to arctic waters, spanning coral reefs and the open seas, found that climate change is whittling away the diversity and abundance of marine species.

Staghorn Coral (with evidence of Coral bleaching :-( )photo by SarahDepper, on FlickrStaghorn Coral (with evidence of coral bleaching)

The paper, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy… more

by: The Guardian

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Shell Abandons Alaska Arctic Drilling – September 28, 2015

Oil giant’s US president says hugely controversial drilling operations off Alaska will stop for ‘foreseeable future’ as drilling finds little oil and gas

Shell has abandoned its controversial drilling operations in the Alaskan Arctic in the face of mounting opposition in what jubilant environmentalists described as “an unmitigated defeat” for big oil.

The Anglo-Dutch company had repeatedly stressed the enormous hydrocarbon potential of the far north region in public, but in private began to admit it had been surprised by the popular opposition it faced.

a semi-submersible drilling unitPhoto by Charles Conatzer & the sHellNo! Action CouncilKayaktivists from the sHellNo! Action Council greeted the Transocean Polar Pioneer, a semi-submersible drilling unit leased by Shell to explore Arctic deposits, as it entered Port Angeles, Washington in April.

Shell… more

by: The Guardian

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Pope’s Climate Change Appeal Boosts Hope for Bipartisan Action in Congress – September 24, 2015

Climate campaigners applaud pope’s bridging of environmental issues with moral obligation as way to force Republican party leaders to reconsider position

It just took one utterance from Pope Francis – “earth” – to rouse cheers from the climate campaigners who had gathered on the Mall to watch the pope’s historic speech to Congress.

The pope’s visit to what remains a fortress of climate denial among the Republican party leadership greatly boosted hopes among campaigners of elevating climate change from a narrow, partisan issue to a matter of broad public concern.

Pope Francis© Mazur/ Pope re-affirmed that human activity was driving climate change, and that political leaders needed to act.

As Francis appeared on the large screen, several thousand campaigners – some carrying quotes… more

by: The Guardian

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Obama’s Approval of Arctic Drilling ‘Undermines His Climate Message’ – September 1, 2015

US president’s call for action on climate change is at odds with letting Shell drill for oil in the Arctic, says Bill McKibben

Barack Obama has fatally undermined the message of his visit to the Arctic to highlight the dangers of climate change because his administration allowed Shell to drill there, a leading US environmentalist has said.

Bill McKibben, winner of the Right Livelihood prize in 2014, sometimes referred to as an alternative Nobel, and founder of, said that Obama’s actions were a “bad contradiction”.

polar bear standing amid arctic icePhoto by Eric Regehr/USFWSA male polar bear stands alert on the Arctic coast near Kaktovik, Alaska. On Saturday, Obama acknowledged criticism of the Shell decision, saying he shared concerns about Arctic drilling.

“It… more

by: The Guardian

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