Climate Task Force

Daily Forecast: Today’s Online Buzz on Environmental Issues

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reports that May and March to May are the warmest months on record for average land surface temperatures. Furthermore, ocean surface temperatures are the second hottest recorded during the same time period.

Obama’s First Oval Office Address

New York Times

A text of President Obama’s remarks on Tuesday on the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, as released by the White House: Good evening. As we speak, our nation faces a multitude of challenges. At home, our top priority is to recover and rebuild from a recession that has touched the lives of nearly every American. Abroad, our brave men and women in uniform are taking the fight to al Qaeda wherever it exists. And tonight, I’ve returned from a trip to the Gulf Coast to speak with you about the battle we’re waging against an oil spill that is assaulting our shores and our citizens. On April 20th, an explosion ripped through BP Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, about 40 miles off the coast of Louisiana. Eleven workers lost their lives. Seventeen others were injured. And soon, nearly a mile beneath the surface of the ocean, oil began spewing into the water.

Lake Michigan climate change studied


A robotic submarine is being deployed in Lake Michigan, along with other specialized tools, to determine how young fish might cope with future climate change. Purdue University scientists say they are correlating larval fish growth with various factors, including water temperatures near the lakeshore, where wind patterns might be altered by climate change and threaten fish populations. “These larval fish are very vulnerable because they are not fully developed and cannot swim well, so they are really at the mercy of their environment,” said Assistant Professor Tomas Hook, who is leading the research.

Obama Seeking New Ideas on Energy and Climate

Andrew Revkin – New York Times’ Dot Earth

President Obama kept the focus of his first Oval Office address on the prime issue at hand — restoring public confidence in his administration’s handling of an unfolding environmental calamity triggered by corporate malfeasance and bureaucratic negligence. He did a workmanlike job, touching all the beats needed in such a speech. He did not do what some environmental and energy campaigners had hoped — chart a concrete course to a new energy future. There were plenty of allusions to such a future, but — for the most part — he carefully avoided specifics. (To see specifics in an energy speech, have a look at the Oval Office address delivered by former President Jimmy Carter in 1979.)

Bonn Climate Talks Wrap Up, Some Progress Made

Tom Schueneman – Triple Pundit

The “Road to Cancun” moves haltingly forward with the conclusion last Friday of the United Nations climate talks in Bonn. According to a UN press release, the two-week negotiating session made “important progress towards concluding what was left incomplete at the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in 2009.” The Bonn talks were the first official negotiations since the end of the highly charged COP15 climate talks in Denmark last December, from which came the Copenhagen Accord, leaving almost everyone disappointed and dissatisfied.

2010 So Far Has Been Hottest Year on Record: NOAA

Matthew McDermott – Tree Hugger
Continuing the trend from the previous month, NOAA reports that May, the period from March to May, and from January to May all have had the hottest combined global land and ocean surface temperatures since records began in 1880. Temperature highlights for May 2010 include: May’s combined global land and ocean surface temperature was 0.69°C above the 20th century average of 14.8°C, with land temps being 1.04°C above the average. Ocean temperatures were the second warmest on record, coming in behind the 1998 record, with global ocean temps being 0.55°C above the average for the past century of 16.3°C.

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