“It’s a New Day in Texas” exclaimed new Lt. Governor Dan Patrick this week. It’s a new year too, which gives wind and solar power another chance to break more records. According to recent reports from the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), the grid operator for most of the state, wind power broke a few of their own records in 2014, and solar is gaining ground. But what’s coming down the line in 2015 and beyond?
[Original post: Robert Rivard, Rivard Report, Jan. 21, 2015]
Three years ago, the undeclared Edwards Aquifer water war came to an end after a half century of regional conflict that pitted San Antonio and dozens of regional entities against one another in a feud that divided generations of neighbors. For decades, San Antonio, as the largest user of aquifer water, was the most resented in a world of self-serving rivalries among the region’s agricultural interests, small towns and area counties, river authorities and water districts, downstream users, and environmentalists.
[Original post: Bill Dawson, Texas Climate Report, Jan. 17, 2015]
A year ago, with a persistently dipping jet stream blanketing much of the U.S. in polar temperatures, climate-change mockers were trying to score some polemical points. “Al Gore told me this wouldn’t happen,” Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz joked to reporters in frigid Washington. Twelve months later, climate scientists at a pair of federal agencies, echoing a recent report by Japanese experts, have just announced that even with 2014’s painfully cold start in much of this nation, the year ended as the world’s warmest since record-keeping started in 1880.
- Last night, President Obama gave his 2015 State of the Union address. Michael Brune, Sierra Club Executive Director, issued the follow statement in response:“When it comes to the climate crisis, the President knows the stakes, and tonight, he underscored the urgency of the problem and his commitment to climate action for our children’s future. To meet the greatest challenge of our generation, we can and we must end our dependence not just on foreign oil, but all fossil fuels. We can indeed set our sights higher than a single oil pipeline.
Today marks the beginning of the 84th Legislature - a body that has a lot of new faces and a lot of competing agendas. While this isn't our first rodeo, we always feel enthusiastic about this time of (every other) year. There are several issues we will focus on for the next 140 days under the pink dome. We'll be talking about them a lot and we'll need your help fighting to protect Texas' environment and people, so stay tuned! To get you started, here are our legislative priorities.
An innovative and thought provoking play that shows the effects of climate change on distinct environments around the globe. Before your eyes, puppeteers transform miniature landscapes to demonstrate the effects of drought, flood and melting ice caps on the earth’s human and animal inhabitants. The tiny characters are driven to find solutions to these challenges — as population centers shift, they must rebuild, rethink and re-imagine cultural mindsets about how we live on Earth. The production is created by Caroline Reck for Glass Half Full Theatre and presented by ZACH.
[The following is attributable to Texas Forward] Today the new Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts Glenn Hegar issued a revenue estimate of $113 billion in general revenue for the 2016-2017 biennium. Lawmakers will have enough available General Revenue to fund a "current services" budget that takes into account cost growth and make overdue increases in education and other areas, but only by placing the needs of Texans first in the coming budget and tax debate. The Steering Committee of the Texas Forward coalition issued the following statement.