Enviro Links: Gibbs Keeps Climate Hope Alive, BP Seeks $10 Billion Tax Deduction, and More


Today in climate news:

At yesterday’s press conference, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs offered a little bit of hope that climate legislation could make a comeback this year. “I don’t think the bill is essentially dead for the year,” said Gibbs. “The House passed a very strong and very comprehensive energy bill last year. The Senate is going to take up a version that is more scaled down but still has some important aspects, particularly dealing with how we deal with oil spills in the future. But I don’t think that closes the door—once a bill passes, each House doesn’t close the door to having some sort of conference.”

Nate Silver also argues that cap and trade legislation might be revived, but as a deficit-reduction measure.

Even if a federal cap and trade program faces an uncertain future, regional programs are trudging forward. On Tuesday, the Western Climate Initiative, a group of seven states and four Canadian provinces, rolled out a blueprint for its regional program, slated to begin in 2012.

And in oil disaster news:

This will go over well: BP wants a $10 billion tax deduction on what the company spends on oil spill clean up. The company said yesterday that it has set aside $32.2 billion to deal with the Gulf disaster.

A team of federal investigators—”the BP squad”—is focusing their Gulf probe on BP, Transocean, and Halliburton, as well as the relationship the companies had with regulators.

The Senate Foreign Relations hearing on BP’s role in the freeing of the Lockerbie bomber scheduled for Wednesday had to be postponed because none of the current or former British and Scottish officials or the BP executives asked to testify would agree to show up.

Louisiana can’t catch a break. On Tuesday morning, a tugboat hit a well head near Mud Lake, causing oil and natural gas to spew 100 feet into the air.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) is continuing his crusade to build barriers that are harmful to the long-term health of the Gulf Coast but good for his political career.

More MotherJones reporting on Climate Desk

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.