Archive for February, 2011

‘Shock Doctrine’ in Effect; Activist Faces Prison for Disrupting Oil Auction; US House Slashes EPA & ‘Climate Cranks’

February 25th, 2011

Corporations are using the panic and disorientation of budget crises to crush unions and environmental protections, that’s according to Shock Doctrine author Naomi Klein. In a conversation with host Daphne Wysham, Klein tells us how those in Wisconsin and other places are pushing back to catch corporate tax dodgers.

US Uncut actions are occurring across America.

The federal government must pass a budget within days – or all government services will screech to a halt. But Republicans in the US House passed a budget bill that strips the EPA of its power. Anna Aurilio, the DC director of Environment America, says the shortfalls could be filled by stopping the ‘free pass’ oil companies get on deep-water drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. They’re not paying $5 billion dollars a year on these oil leases.

Climate activist Tim DeChristopher faces federal felony charges for interrupting a federal auction of oil and gas leases – an auction held in the last few days of the Bush Administration in 2008. We’ll hear from Tim – ‘bidder number 70′ – who managed to ‘win’ a number of the leases before the auction was halted. Interview courtesy of Solve Climate.

Then, Mark Hertsgaard takes on ‘climate cranks’ in his new book Hot and with Earthbeat host Daphne Wysham on The Real News Network.

Music for this edition of Earthbeat includes Bucky Halker’s songs, Union Fights the Battle of Freedom, and Democratic Blues.

Image used courtesy USUncut.

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Wikileaks Says Saudi Oil Reserves May Be Vastly Overstated, Koch Brothers Push for Tar Sands Pipeline & Saving Social Security with a Carbon Tax

February 15th, 2011

Wikileaks documents show that a top Saudi Arabian geologist told US diplomats that Saudis were overestimating the country’s oil reserves by as much as 40 percent. These cables were discovered by the environmental reporter for The Guardian – John Vidal. John joins Earthbeat host Daphne Wysham to discuss these cables, the geologist’s attempts to retract or at least re-frame his comments, and what the whole affairs means for world oil prices and peak oil.

The Koch Brothers have made billions in the oil industry and it’s been uncovered that they plan to spend millions to defeat President Obama in the upcoming election – and yet they’re pushing the Obama Administration to approve a massive new pipeline that would bring oil from Canadian tar sands down to Texas refineries. Joe Smyth of Greenpeace joins us to discuss the Keystone Pipeline and the Koch Brother’s deep pockets and political maneuvers.

Elaine Kamarck is with the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She says that one way we could finance climate action is by having a carbon tax, and put the proceeds toward shoring up social security.

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World on the Edge – A Discussion with Author Lester Brown

February 10th, 2011

The world is facing a potentially devastating ‘Food Bubble,’ that according to pioneering environmentalist Lester Brown. in his new work – ‘World on the Edge’ – Lester seeks to reconcile dueling predictions of our future: The scientists who say climate change will cause incredible disruption in our food, water and energy sources; And the economists who continue to predict steadily increasing world growth.

Lester’s earlier book, ‘Plan B’ will be the subject of an upcoming PBS television special hosted by Matt Damon this Spring. Host Daphne Wysham sits down with the founder of the Earth Policy Institute – Lester Brown – for a look into the world’s future.

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High-Tech Theft of Carbon Trades, Defending the Clean Air Act & GE Alfalfa

February 1st, 2011

A high-tech heist of international carbon trading credits. Thieves steal millions of dollars worth of ‘vouchers’ for carbon emissions right out of the bank accounts of European traders. We’ll discuss how this daring theft underscores the weaknesses of cap and trade schemes with Jutta Kill, the climate change campaigner for FERN, an environmental and social justice group that focuses on the European Union and the EU’s impact on forests around the world.

Then, the EPA’s regulation of greenhouse gases comes under attack by Congress.  Some say the EPA is barreling ahead on regulations – others say it’s too little, too late. Joining us to discuss the EPA and its use of the Clean Air Act is Nathan Richardson, a lawyer at the non-partisan think-tank Resources for the Future and Kevin Bundy, a senior attorney for the the Center for Biological Diversity.

Then, Monsanto succeeds in pushing genetically engineered alfalfa on American consumers and organic farmers. Joining us to discuss the effects this GE crop may have on milk, beef and bees is Will Fantel, the co-director of the Cornucopia Institute and Patty Lovera, the assistant director of Food and Water Watch.

Image from Digital Monkey via Flickr, used via a Create Commons license.

If you’d like to hear this edition of Earthbeat – please send us an e-mail