User: flenvcenter Topic: Air and Climate-National
Category: Air :: Air Policy
Last updated: May 29 2015 22:37 IST RSS 2.0
 
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Electric Industry Created Their Own Air Pollution Permits, Held Private Meetings With Texas Regulators 29.5.2015 Truthout.com
Emails obtained and released by the Environmental Integrity Project show that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) worked behind closed doors with the state's electric power trade association and utility companies to weaken standards for air pollution control permits. The  emails  and  documents  reveal that  Association of Electric Companies of Texas  (AECT) and utility employees held private meetings with state regulators to discuss revisions to the permits and provided language that was incorporated verbatim by the regulations into the final text of the revised permits. The language ended up nullifying the federal Clean Air Act hourly limits on particulate pollution during the startup, shutdown, and maintenance periods (SSM) at the coal plants. These changes to the permits allowed electric utility companies in Texas to emit more particulate pollution than allowed by federal standards. In one case, for example, the coal plants are allowed to emit 30 times more pollution than the ...
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Employers Far From Showbiz Can Help Veterans By Copying Jon Stewart 29.5.2015 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
When Sgt. Sarah Serrano ended active duty with the U.S. Marines in 2009, she returned to Los Angeles to pursue her civilian dreams of acting and writing. Serrano threw herself into networking, but as she told The Huffington Post, "One year and zero professional connections later, I realized why so many burn out quickly." The military doesn't prepare veterans for an industry that trades in elbow-rubbing and name-dropping, while vets find themselves typecast -- as providers of security and law enforcement. "I cannot tell you how many times police departments have tried to recruit me," Serrano said. "It can be anything from mall security guard to Border Patrol, it’s hard to get employers to see outside the uniform." Veteran Sarah Serrano is a model, actress and writer who works with Veterans in Film and Television. (Photo courtesy of Sarah Serrano) What society doesn't see is the individual, Serrano observed. "We are usually seen as extreme cases of people in need of charity or acting with heroic valor, but ...
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The Climate Post: New Analyses on Clean Power Plan Examine State Compliance Options 29.5.2015 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Additional tools have been added to the resources intended to help states and regulators navigate compliance with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) proposed Clean Power Plan , for which the rule is projected to be finalized in August . As proposed last summer, the plan regulates carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants under the Clean Air Act, and gives states flexibility in how they can meet interim state-level emissions rate goals (2020-2030) and a final 2030 emissions rate limit. The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, this week, released a plan detailing how energy efficiency financing can help states meet Clean Power Plan goals. And the National Association of Clean Air Agencies (NACAA) released a "menu of options" for states to weigh emissions reductions strategies. Developed by former air and energy regulators at the Regulatory Assistance Project (RAP), the NACAA report considers the pros and cons of the 26 options it examines-- including cap-and-trade ...
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A Few Clarifications About Air Traffic Control Reform 28.5.2015 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
*Co-authored by Eno's Aviation Policy Expert, Dr. Rui Neiva Change can be frightening. Big changes, like restructuring U.S. air traffic control (ATC) governance, even more so. On April 5th, Kevin DeGood, Director of Infrastructure Policy at the Center for American Progress, a progressive think-tank, published an article titled "4 Essential Questions About Air Traffic Control Privatization." The article systematically went through potential fears some Americans may have if Congress were to take U.S. ATC governance out of direct Congressional control. While change can be frightening, it is probably not as scary as DeGood has suggested. Over the past two years Eno has convened the Eno NextGen Working Group , which brought together academics, former government officials, unions, and industry leaders representing airlines, airports, manufacturers, private operators, pilots, controllers, and the business community to discuss how to best accelerate modernization of U.S. ATC. Early working group discussions and ...
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A Call for Environmental Justice: A Call for "Zero" 28.5.2015 Switchboard, from NRDC
Melissa Lin Perrella, Staff Attorney, Southern California Air Project, Santa Monica: I was proud to be part of a panel discussion last week where environmental justice advocates called for "zero"--zero diesel, zero pollution and zero asthma from our freight transportation system. The panel discussion occurred at a meeting of the U.S....
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10 Steps to Achieve the US Emissions-Reduction Target 27.5.2015 WRI Stories
The United States is the largest economy and the second-largest emitter of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, so the world can’t avoid the worst impacts of climate change without U.S. leadership. The Obama administration stepped up to this challenge by setting a goal to reduce U.S. emissions by 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. So is this target achievable? Our new study finds that it’s possible for the country to meet this target even without Congressional action, but only if it... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ...
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Federal Appeals Court Backs EPA Plan to Reduce Air Pollution from Power Plants in Kansas 27.5.2015 Main Feed - Environmental Defense
Federal Appeals Court Backs EPA Plan to Reduce Air Pollution from Power Plants in Kansas
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Environmental Democracy: An Essential Right for the 21st Century 26.5.2015 WRI Stories
This post originally appeared on Thomson Reuters Foundation. This post was co-authored by John Knox, U.N. Special Rapporteur on human rights and the environment. When BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil rig blew up in the Gulf of Mexico five years ago, polluting hundreds of miles of coastal wetlands, U.S. environmental laws mandated clean-up and compensation for damages. Despite those laws, information flowed haltingly, feeding widespread uncertainty about how much crude was gushing and how to make... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ...
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The Right Wing's Endless War on Environmental Regulation 26.5.2015 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Since it seems impossible to update our environmental laws in this era of partisan poison, the Obama Administration has been working to use existing laws to update old rules. Updates like these were anticipated by many of our environmental laws, which included provisions that assumed that technologies and economic practices would evolve over time and new rules would be needed. For example, greenhouse gases were recently defined as air pollutants and the Supreme Court required EPA to regulate them under the Clean Air Act. Now EPA has turned to an update of some of the rules issued under federal water pollution laws. According to Coral Davenport's report in last week's New York Times : The E.P.A. proposed the rule, known as Waters of the U.S., last March. The agency has held more than 400 meetings about it with outside groups and read more than one million public comments as it wrote the final language. The rule is being issued under the 1972 Clean Water Act, which gave the federal government broad ...
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Supreme Court to soon rule on 13 important cases 26.5.2015 Chicago Tribune: Nation
Supreme Court to soon rule on 13 important cases
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Supreme Court to soon rule on 13 important cases 26.5.2015 LA Times: Commentary
The Supreme Court is heading into the final month of its annual term.
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A cleaner coal 24.5.2015 Steamboat Pilot
A piece of Routt County’s coal industry is undergoing a major addition. Parts were trucked into the Hayden Station power plant, and it took more than a month to assemble a massive crane, the top of which is higher than the largest smoke stack. A state environmental official says new emissions controls at Colorado’s power plants will both reduce haze and improve public health. Michael Silverstein, with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, helped negotiate the plan with the state’s power plants aimed at reducing regional haze. “It was designed to be measurable by the human eye,” Silverstein said. Silverstein said Hayden Station was a “very key facility” during negotiations of the regional haze plan because of its proximity to national parks and wilderness areas. Craig Station, which generates 1,303 megawatts of electricity, was also part of the plan. Silverstein said the emissions controls will reduce both nitrogen oxide and sulphur dioxide, the two pollutants that contribute the most ...
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Big Oil: Masters of Deception and Inhumanity 23.5.2015 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Last week, the American Petroleum Institute -- the primary lobbying group for the oil and gas industry -- hit a new low in their use of deceptive advertising. The lobbyists launched a huge advertising campaign throughout the country aimed at stopping the U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from doing its job, which is protecting the public from unsafe levels of pollution. Right now, the EPA is considering setting a more protective ozone standard, which would limit the amount of ozone, a greenhouse gas, that states can allow into the air. This is not something the agency does because federal bureaucrats woke up and decided they wanted to write hundreds of pages of new regulations. Devising rules to protect public health is their job. The Clean Air Act requires the EPA to review up-to-date scientific and medical literature every five years to help determine what levels of ozone, also called smog, are unsafe. The problem: Big Oil sees that critical mission as a threat to their bottom line, despite ...
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New York Requires Full Environmental Study on Tar Sands Oil Transport by Rail to Albany Via Adirondacks, Lake Champlain 23.5.2015 Commondreams.org Newswire
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Sierra Club Celebrates Environmental Justice Victory with Closure of Major Polluter Loopholes 23.5.2015 Commondreams.org Newswire
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A Victory in the Decades-Long Fight for Environmental Justice in the Gulf and Beyond 23.5.2015 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Suzie Canales never planned on going back home. But, when she saw what was happening to her family, her friends and her neighbors in her community, she could not stay away. In 1999, Suzie visited Corpus Christi from Illinois at a time of tragedy. Her sister, Diana had passed away at the age of 42 due to breast cancer, and she was back in Texas for the funeral. As she explained to CleanHouston.org , it was there that she heard people repeatedly tell her that many others in the area around her sister's age also faced cancer, prompting Canales to begin to question whether or not, in a community home to industrial facilities like refineries and power plants, something in the local environment could have contributed to her sister's death and the deaths of so many others. From there, she started organizing in her community, co-founding Citizens for Environmental Justice (CFEJ) to dig into exactly what was getting into the local air and water. Over the years, Canales and CFEJ mobilized around some of the more ...
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CLEAN AIR Force wins EPA Community Action Award 22.5.2015 Main Feed - Environmental Defense
By Elena Craft, PhD Congratulations to the CLEAN AIR Force of Central Texas Clean Air Partners Program! They received the 2015 Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Air Excellence Award in the Community Action category. The Clean Air Excellence Awards Program recognizes and honors outstanding innovative efforts to help make progress in achieving cleaner air. Awards are given to programs that directly or indirectly reduce pollutant emissions, demonstrate innovation, offer sustainable outcomes, and provide a model for others to follow. The CLEAN AIR Force of Central Texas developed the Clean Air Partners Program in 2001 after learning most pollutants that create harmful ground-level ozone come from on-road vehicles. The program is open to all employers in the 5-county Central Texas region, and is open to any type of employer. Today there are 40 Partners representing 100,000 employees. By becoming a Partner, employers volunteer to implement clean business practices and reduce emissions that contribute to ...
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The 'Taliban' in Our Midst 22.5.2015 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
Military officers who wear their religion on their sleeve are a danger to our country at any time, but especially after the terrorists attacks of September 11, 2001. Whether it's US Army Lieutenant General William G. Boykin telling his audience that "My God is bigger than his" in the close aftermath of that tragedy, or the more recent example of US Air Force Major General Craig Olson saying in uniform and in public -- and speaking in tones far more like a preacher than a military officer -- "I am a redeemed believer in Christ," these are dangerous men, making dangerous displays of religion. Moreover, such displays occur in an environment where they are strictly prohibited by secular rules. These rules -- and in the case of the US Air Force, written regulations -- are in place for a reason. First, they protect the Constitutional separation of church and state. No government representative should be seen advocating for any religion, period. We officers, when we take the oath of office, surrender for the ...
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Korean Air 'Nut Rage' Executive Freed From Jail 22.5.2015 NPR News
An appeals court reduced the sentence of former Korean Air executive Heather Cho. She demanded a plane return to the gate because her macadamia nuts weren't served in a manner to her liking.
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Court suspends prison term for ex-Korean Air exec in 'nut rage' case 22.5.2015 L.A. Times - World News
A South Korean court Friday suspended the prison term of the former Korean Air executive whose onboard “nut rage” delayed a flight last year, setting the stage for her release from prison.
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