Climate

Protests, Heavy Security, Bush Arrives Australia For Asia-Pacific Summit
September 4, 2007 03:53 PM - Michael Perry and Caren Bohan, Reuters

SYDNEY - After a lightning visit to Iraq where he hinted at possible U.S. troop cuts, President George W. Bush arrived in Australia on Tuesday for an Asia-Pacific leaders' meeting amid heavy security and anti-war protests. Trade and climate change will top the agenda at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit, and Bush wants the forum's 21 economies to agree to a strongly worded pledge to reinvigorate the Doha round of world trade talks.

WWF Says Asia-Pacific Coal Rush Worsens Global Warming
September 4, 2007 08:11 AM - Reuters

Growing dependence on cheap coal to power rapid economic growth in the Asia-Pacific could undermine efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that is blamed for harmful changes in the world's climate, experts said on Tuesday. Between 2001 and 2006, coal use around the world grew by an unprecedented 30 percent. Asia, led by China, accounted for almost 90 percent of the growth, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) said at the launch of a climate change report in Sydney.

4 Dead, Felix Hits Central America
September 4, 2007 07:57 AM - Jimmy Sanchez- Associated Press

PUERTO CABEZAS, Nicaragua - The highly dangerous Hurricane Felix ripped into Central America on Tuesday, smashing up a port on Nicaragua's Caribbean coast and threatening deadly mudslides in Honduras and Guatemala. Two people were reported dead in Puerto Cabezas port in northern Nicaragua, where howling winds tore the roofs off homes and badly damaged a church. "The situation is chaotic. Puerto Cabezas is being totally destroyed," said Antonio Joya, a regional government official. "I'm sure it is going to be a total disaster." Uprooted trees flew through the air as thousands took shelter in two schools in the port, home to some 30,000 mostly Miskito Indians. Ambulances with sirens blaring raced through the streets.

4 Dead, Killer Heat In Southern California
September 4, 2007 07:18 AM - Reuters

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - The week-long heat wave in Southern California has claimed four lives and caused power outages to more than half a million customers, utility and local officials said on Tuesday. Triple-digit temperatures lingered over some of Southern California for the seventh straight day on Tuesday, while most cities in the region saw temperatures in the mid-to-high 90s. The heatwave is expected to break by Wednesday.

Chicago: Nation's Largest School Bus Company Switches Entire Fleet To Bio-Fuel
September 3, 2007 08:04 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

CHICAGO - The nation's largest independent school bus company, the Cook Illinois Corporation in Chicago, is switching its entire fleet of school buses to burn bio diesel fuel. Biodiesel is a cleaner-burning diesel fuel made from natural, renewable sources such as vegetable oils. In addition, company officials will kick off a new Clean Air Club for kids and a new website that teaches kids about the importance of reducing air pollution. Cook-Illinois is now the largest school bus fleet in Illinois and the largest independently owned bus company in the country to use this new fuel.

Agreement reached on greenhouse gas curb
September 3, 2007 09:05 AM - Willia, J. Kole -Associated Press

Negotiators from 158 countries reached basic agreement Friday on rough targets aimed at getting some of the world's biggest polluters to reduce emissions of the greenhouse gases blamed for global warming. A weeklong U.N. climate conference concluded that industrialized countries should strive to cut emissions by 25 percent to 40 percent of their 1990 levels by 2020. Experts said that target would serve as a loose guide for a major international climate summit to be held in December in Bali, Indonesia. "We have reached broad agreement on the main issues," said Leon Charles, a negotiator from Grenada who helped oversee the Vienna talks.

Talks on climate change impact in Africa
September 3, 2007 09:02 AM - DOUG MELLGREN -Associated Press

Climate change could worsen Africa's struggle to feed itself, but simple steps - a cistern to catch rainwater, a solar panel, or hardier seeds for crops - could help the continent's subsistence farms, specialists and activists said Friday. About 250 researchers, donors, and officials met in Oslo this week for the Second Green Africa Revolution Conference, which follows up a 2004 challenge from former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan to revolutionize African farming.

Power Outage From California Heat Wave
September 3, 2007 08:19 AM - Associated Press

Dozens of cooling centers opened across California as a scorching heat wave strained the state's electrical grid and left many residents without power. Nearly 14,000 customers were without power late Sunday, largely because of increased demand on air conditioners. Highs reached 109 degrees in Woodland Hills in the San Fernando Valley and more than 100 degrees in other parts of the state.

Thousands Flee Hurricane Felix
September 3, 2007 08:06 AM - Gustavo Palencia, Reuters

TEGUCIGALPA - Tens of thousands of people, including Miskito Indians and foreign tourists, began fleeing low-lying coastal areas on Central America's Caribbean coast on Monday to escape the approaching Hurricane Felix. The highly dangerous Category 4 storm charged toward Nicaragua and Honduras with top sustained winds of 145 mph, provoking fears of a repeat of Hurricane Mitch, which killed some 10,000 people in Central America in 1998. "We are faced with a very serious threat to lives and property. The most important thing is that people pay heed to the call for evacuation so that we don't have to count bodies later," said Marco Burgos, head of Honduras' civil protection agency.

U.S. Oil Companies Monitor Felix, Output Unharmed
September 3, 2007 08:04 AM - Reuters

U.S. Gulf of Mexico oil and natural gas producers were monitoring powerful Hurricane Felix as it churned through the Caribbean Sea on Sunday, but none had reported reduced offshore production or evacuated workers to onshore locations.

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