Green Power Generated Almost All New Electric Capacity In 2017

Wind Energy

There is some good news in regards to widespread renewable power in the United States. In 2017, 94.7 percent of new electric capacity generated in the country is from renewable energy sources, Engadget reports. On the surface this seems like good news, but it’s actually a mixed bag. While renewable energy appears to be on the rise, it is in large part due to the decline of coal.

According to Electrek, renewable energy sources provided 15.8GW out of 16.7GW of U.S. generating capacity, but the amount of energy created by utility scale fossil fuel production fell by 11.8GW as coal plants closed. 

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Men Resist Green Behavior as “Unmanly”

Women have long surpassed men in the arena of environmental action; across age groups and countries, females tend to live a more eco-friendly lifestyle. Compared to men, women litter less, recycle more, and leave a smaller carbon footprint. Some researchers have suggested that personality differences, such as women’s prioritization of altruism, may help to explain this gender gap in green behavior.

Our own research suggests an additional possibility: men may shun eco-friendly behavior because of what it conveys about their masculinity. It’s not that men don’t care about the environment. But they also tend to want to feel macho, and they worry that eco-friendly behaviors might brand them as feminine.

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Jess Phoenix on Why We Need More Scientists in Congress

Jess Phoenix Congress

Jess Phoenix is a geologist who studies volcanoes. She also happens to be running in the 2018 election to represent the people of the 25th Congressional District in California. On December 28, she shared a post on her Facebook page that explained why she thinks more scientists belong in Congress. We at Women of Green couldn’t agree more. Read her post below:

“One question I hear a lot is “why should we send a scientist to Congress since you don’t know anything about making laws?” Our soundbite century shows its flaws here for 2 reasons. 
1) Scientists would kick ass at making laws, 
2) I’m much more than “just a scientist.”

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Why We Should Be Concerned About Ocean Pollution

Why We Should Be Concerned About Ocean Pollution

Every year we use massive amounts of plastic is another year that much of that plastic ends up in the oceans. Some estimates claim that over eight metric tons of plastic enter the oceans every year and others put it significantly higher. That constant influx of ever-increasing amounts of plastic can have some pretty devastating effects on both marine and terrestrial life, including people.

The oceans help protect our environment and maintain our world the way it is. As famed explorer Sylvia Earle likes to say, “No water, no life. No blue, no green.” This means the oceans are what allows life to flourish on our planet. The more polluted they become, the harder it is for our oceans to thrive. While we aren’t in danger of seeing them evaporate, we may be seeing another mass extinction event, and that would mean the seas could become essentially lifeless.

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“Simply Shameful”: New Tax Bill Allows Drilling in the Arctic

Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Oil Drilling

A major conservation group is blasting the newly passed Senate GOP tax bill for allowing oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), calling the bill “simply shameful.” “Opening the Arctic to drilling as part of this tax plan is simply shameful. The Arctic Refuge isn’t a bank—drilling there won’t pay for the tax cuts the Senate just passed,” National Audubon Society President and CEO David Yarnold said in a statement Saturday. “The American people don’t support drilling in the Arctic and it’s up to the House to reject this flawed bill.” The Republican tax bill included a provision to open up a section of ANWR to oil drilling for the first time.

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Puerto Rico Needs Our Help! Maria Exposed Ongoing Environmental Crises

Puerto Rico Environmental Disaster

Natural disasters have a nasty habit of compounding previous, semi-manageable problems. We saw this with the Fukushima nuclear meltdown in Japan following a massive tsunami. Now we’re seeing it again, this time with Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. On top of food and medical shortages, experts are worried about several environmental issues exacerbated by the storm. While many of these issues — from poor industrial quality control to a general lack of clean, contained drinking water — already plagued Puerto Rico, the devastation of Maria has complicated matters. In many cases, it has made them a great deal worse.

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Skip the Rake for a Healthier Yard

Skip the Rake for a Healthier Yard

If you grew up in a neighborhood with lots of trees, chances are you had to put in plenty of hours each fall raking them all together, bagging them up, and then sending them off somewhere, most likely to the landfill. And you were probably told that the reason for this was not only so that the yard would look ‘tidier’ but also so that the leaves wouldn’t kill the grass. This myth has probably sold more rakes and bags than anything else, and while raking may have enriched the pockets of neighborhood kids (assuming you got paid to rake leaves), the practice actually removes important nutrients from the yard, which homeowners then usually repurchase, in another format, in a bag or jug of fertilizer from the local garden center.

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Gulf Coast Oil Spill May Be Largest Since 2010 BP Disaster

Gulf Coast Oil Spill May Be Largest Since 2010 BP Disaster

An oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico last week may be the largest in the U.S. since the 2010 blowout at BP Plc’s Macondo well that sank the Deepwater Horizon rig and killed 11 people. LLOG Exploration Co. reported 7,950 to 9,350 barrels of oil were released Oct. 11 to Oct. 12 from subsea infrastructure about 40 miles (64 kilometers) southeast of Venice, Louisiana, according to the company and the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. That would make it the largest spill in more than seven years, BSEE data show, even though it’s a fraction of the millions of barrels ejected in the 2010 incident.An oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico last week may be the largest in the U.S. since the 2010 blowout at BP Plc’s Macondo well that sank the Deepwater Horizon rig and killed 11 people. LLOG Exploration Co. reported 7,950 to 9,350 barrels of oil were released Oct. 11 to Oct. 12 from subsea infrastructure about 40 miles (64 kilometers) southeast of Venice, Louisiana, according to the company and the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement. That would make it the largest spill in more than seven years, BSEE data show, even though it’s a fraction of the millions of barrels ejected in the 2010 incident.

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How NASA Tracks Carbon Emissions from Space

How NASA Tracks Carbon Emissions from Space

Fires, drought and warmer temperatures were to blame for excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere during the 2015-2016 El Niño, scientists with NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 say. The findings, part of five papers published in the journal Science, shed light on the mechanisms through which Earth “breathes” carbon dioxide, a potent greenhouse gas, and reveal how those mechanisms affect climate change. Global temperatures have been on the rise, thanks largely to the human-driven increase in greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide. But not all of the carbon dioxide produced each year ends up in the atmosphere. Some of it gets trapped in the ocean, or locked on land thanks to plants that use the gas during photosynthesis.

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Simulating the Bodily Pain of Future Climate Change

Simulating the Bodily Pain of Future Climate Change

Why is it easy to imagine sights, sounds and smells in vivid detail, but so much harder to conjure up the suffering you’d feel in intense heat? Blame your brain wiring.
Your ability to sense things just by thinking about them, which neuroscientists call simulation, requires vast networks of interconnected neurons.This neural limitation, I suggest, is a key reason why more people aren’t terrified by climate change. Most of us can easily imagine the sight of polar ice caps melting, and we might feel distressed as we think about coastal cities flooding. But thanks to our brain wiring, few of us can simulate the feeling of blasting heat or the awfulness of other disasters we’d face every day in a warming world.

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