VIDEO: Today's Headline News from Associated Press

WARMING 'EXTREMELY LIKELY' MAN-MADE

 

STOCKHOLM (AP) -- Scientists now believe it's "extremely likely" that human activity is the dominant cause of global warming, a long-term trend that is clear despite a recent plateau in the temperatures, an international climate panel said Friday.

 

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change used its strongest language yet in a report on the causes of climate change, prompting calls for global action to control emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases.

 

"If this isn't an alarm bell, then I don't know what one is. If ever there were an issue that demanded greater cooperation, partnership, and committed diplomacy, this is it," said U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.

 

The IPCC, which has 195 member countries, adopted the report Friday after all-night talks at a meeting in Stockholm.

 

In its previous assessment, in 2007, the U.N.-sponsored panel said it was "very likely" that global warming was due to human activity, particularly the CO2 emissions resulting from the burning of coal, oil and gas.

 

The change means that scientists have moved from being 90 percent sure to 95 percent - about the same degree of certainty they have that smoking kills.

 

The IPCC assessments are important because they form the scientific basis of U.N. negotiations on a new climate deal. Governments are supposed to finish that agreement in 2015, but it's unclear whether they will commit to the emissions cuts that scientists say will be necessary to keep the temperature below a limit at which the worst effects of climate change can be avoided.

 

 

 

EX-EPA OFFICIAL PLEADS GUILTY TO THEFT

 

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A former high-ranking official with the Environmental Protection Agency pleaded guilty Friday to stealing nearly $900,000 from the agency over 13 years by failing to show up for work while falsely claiming to be working for the CIA and for filing bogus expenses.

 

John C. Beale, 64, a former deputy assistant administrator in the Office of Air and Radiation, accepted a plea agreement with the government at a court hearing. U.S. Magistrate Judge John M. Facciola read the evidence against Beale and asked if it were true.

 

In a flat, emotionless voice, Beale answered, "Yes it is, your honor."

 

Under the plea deal with prosecutors, Beale faces 30 to 37 months in prison. The deal also calls for Beale to pay restitution of $886,000, forfeit an additional $507,000 and pay a fine of up to $60,000. The final decision will be made by the sentencing judge in the case, Ellen Segal Huvelle. No sentencing date has been set.

 

Beale, wearing glasses and a gray suit without a tie, managed a slight, grim smile after the proceedings. He was released on personal recognizance and will return to Manhattan, where he now lives.

 

"John Beale stole from the government for more than a decade by telling lies of outlandish proportions," Ronald Machen, the U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, said in a statement.

 

The agency's inspector general, Arthur A. Elkins Jr., said that Beale was able to get away with the fraud for so long because of "an absence of even basic internal controls at the EPA."

 

The EPA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

 

ALBUQUERQUE SET TO SAY GOODBYE TO 'BREAKING BAD'

 

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) -- The Emmy-award winning series "Breaking Bad" is set to air its last show Sunday and the city where it was filmed is preparing for the end.

 

Albuquerque will celebrate the AMC series finale with watch parties and red carpet casting events in a city still benefiting from a tourism boost due to the drama's popularity.

 

Tourism officials say despite the show's dark themes of drug trafficking and violence, "Breaking Bad" highlighted areas around the city and gave viewers a sense of Albuquerque.

 

Albuquerque businesses also have taken advantage by selling "Breaking Bad" theme products like "blue meth" candy and character-related clothing.

 

"Breaking Bad," follows former high school teacher Walter White, played by Bryan Cranston, producing and selling methamphetamine with a former student, Jesse Pinkman, played by Aaron Paul.

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