Fire Earth

Earth is fighting to stay alive. Mass dieoffs, triggered by anthropogenic assault and fallout of planetary defense systems offsetting the impact, could begin anytime!

Posts Tagged ‘EPA’

Mine Waste Ends in River—One Way or Another

Posted by feww on August 8, 2015

EPA spills 1 million gallons of mine waste into Animas River, Colorado 

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), together with the state Division of Reclamation, Mining and Safety, were reportedly investigating an abandoned mine on Wednesday when they “unexpectedly triggered a large release of mine waste water into the upper portions of Cement Creek [a tributary of the Animas River,]” said San Juan County health officials.

The waste spill from Gold King Mine turned water in the river bright orange.

cementcreek -
Massive waste spill caused by EPA investigators turns river in Colorado bright orange. Image source: Earth Justice

EPA has advised nearby residents to keep away from the contaminated river pending the results of official tests.

“The primary environmental concern is the pulse of contaminated water containing sediment and metals flowing as an orange-colored discharge downstream,” said EPA spokesman.

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Fracking Methane Emissions Hugely Underestimated by EPA: Study

Posted by feww on April 17, 2014

ENVIRONMENTAL HOLOCAUST
CRIMES AGAINST NATURE
.

Methane emissions 1,000 higher than EPA estimates

Using an airborne laboratory for atmospheric research, researchers identified and quantified large sources of methane emissions over southwestern Pennsylvania in June 2012. They discovered that emissions rates were up to 1,000 times higher than those estimated by the EPA during the same time period.

“We identified a significant regional flux of methane over a large area of shale gas wells in southwestern Pennsylvania in the Marcellus formation and further identified several pads with high methane emissions,” said the study others. “These shale gas pads were identified as in the drilling process, a preproduction stage not previously associated with high methane emissions.”

The original sampling area (OSA) encompasses all of Green County, PA, most of Washington County, PA, and parts of Fayette County, PA, Marshall County, WV, and Ohio County, WV, for a total area of 2,844 km², the authors reported.

The authors identified 57,673 wells (see gray dots in below diagram) across the counties of interest.

“It is particularly noteworthy that large emissions were measured for wells in the drilling phase, in some cases 100 to 1,000 times greater than the inventory estimates,” said one of the report authors. “This indicates that there are processes occurring—e.g. emissions from coal seams during the drilling process—that are not captured in the inventory development process. This is another example pointing to the idea that a large fraction of the total emissions is coming from a small fraction of shale gas production components that are in an anomalous condition.”

The comparative impact of methane on climate change is more than 20 times greater than carbon dioxide over a 100-year period, according to EPA.

Toward a better understanding and quantification of methane emissions from shale gas development

Dana R. Caulton, doi: 10.1073/pnas.131654611

Significance

We identified a significant regional flux of methane over a large area of shale gas wells in southwestern Pennsylvania in the Marcellus formation and further identified several pads with high methane emissions. These shale gas pads were identified as in the drilling process, a preproduction stage not previously associated with high methane emissions. This work emphasizes the need for top-down identification and component level and event driven measurements of methane leaks to properly inventory the combined methane emissions of natural gas extraction and combustion to better define the impacts of our nation’s increasing reliance on natural gas to meet our energy needs.

ch4 ppm
Regional enhancement of methane at ∼240 m above ground level (AGL) on the morning of June 21. The dashed orange box represents the original sampling area (OSA), and the gray dots show well locations. Credit: Caulton et al. http://www.pnas.org/cgi/content/short/1316546111

Abstract

The identification and quantification of methane emissions from natural gas production has become increasingly important owing to the increase in the natural gas component of the energy sector. An instrumented aircraft platform was used to identify large sources of methane and quantify emission rates in southwestern PA in June 2012. A large regional flux, 2.0–14 g CH4 s−1 km−2, was quantified for a ∼2,800-km2 area, which did not differ statistically from a bottom-up inventory, 2.3–4.6 g CH4 s−1 km−2. Large emissions averaging 34 g CH4/s per well were observed from seven well pads determined to be in the drilling phase, 2 to 3 orders of magnitude greater than US Environmental Protection Agency estimates for this operational phase. The emissions from these well pads, representing ∼1% of the total number of wells, account for 4–30% of the observed regional flux. More work is needed to determine all of the sources of methane emissions from natural gas production, to ascertain why these emissions occur and to evaluate their climate and atmospheric chemistry impacts.

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Global Disasters/ Significant Events – Nov 26, 2013

Posted by feww on November 26, 2013

​US releasing 50% more methane than EPA reported: Study

The United States has been releasing 50 percent more methane, a greenhouse gas, than previous EPA estimates, according to a new study released by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

The new study estimates the US released 49 million tons of methane into the air in 2008, or  more than the 32 million tons, which is 1.5 times higher than that estimated by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The figure is also 1.7 times higher than the estimate released by international Emissions Database for Global Atmospheric Research (EDGAR), a rubber-stamp outfit set up by the European Commission.

Methane is produced in a several ways including leaks during oil and gas exploration and refining, growing rice and livestock manure. Most of the U.S. methane is released in Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.

Methane is a potent greenhouse gas with about 21 times greater heat-trapping ability per molecule than carbon dioxide.

The atmospheric concentration of methane has more than doubled since preindustrial times, climbing from about 700ppb to 1,826 ppb in 2012.

Methane has a boiling point of −161°C (−257.8°F) at one atmosphere, and is flammable only in concentration range of 5–15% in air.

Greedy Amazon Working Employees to the Bone

An undercover employee had to walk 11 and collect orders every 33 seconds.

An expert said such working conditions could cause “mental and physical illness,” reported BBC.

“Amazon reported UK sales of £4.8 billion [$7.8] last year. It employs around 20,000 staff in the UK during the Christmas period. On the company’s busiest day in December last year, 3.5million items were ordered by customers.”

The undercover reporter was employed as a “picker” collecting orders from 800,000 sq ft of storage. Because he worked night shifts his pay before tax rose from the daily rate of £6.50 [$10.53] per hour to £8.25 per hour.

 

This post will be updated throughout the day …

Posted in News Alert, Significant Event Imagery, significant events | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Monsanto Chemical Found in Euro Urine

Posted by feww on June 15, 2013

“Quantifiable levels” of Monsanto herbicide found in urine samples from 18 Euro countries

In a recent study by Medical Laboratory Bremen in Germany humane urine samples from 18 European countries showed residues of Glyphosate and the metabolite AMPA.

“On average 44 % and 36 % of the urine samples analyzed were found to contain quantifiable levels of Glyphosate and AMPA, respectively,” said the report.

  • The frequency of detection ranged from 10% to 90%.  The highest Glyphosate concentration was 1,8 μg/L  in Latvia, followed by Malta, UK and Germany, while the highest AMPA concentration was 2,6 μg/L  found in Croatia.
  • A total of 6.6% of  samples showed residues that “significantly exceeded the tentative reference value of 0,8 μg/L forGlyphosate,” the report said.

The report concludes; “The results give a first idea to which extent adults in 18 European countries are exposed to Glyphosate. The regional and individual variations are large. Diet seems to be the main sources of exposure. However, more scientific work is needed to distinguish between different exposure situations.”

Glyphosate was discovered to be a herbicide by a Monsanto chemist and was marketed in the 1970s under the trade name Roundup.

Aminomethylphosphonic acid (AMPA), an organic acid, is one of the primary degradation products of the herbicide glyphosate.

Both Glyphosate and AMPA are said to have low toxicity, with glyphosate being an EPA Toxicity Class III chemical (on a scale of I to IV, Class I is most toxic) for oral and inhalation exposure.

In 2007, Glyphosate was the most used herbicide in the United States, with about 100,000 tons applied  by the agricultural sector, government and home and garden users.

-oOo-

Other Global Disasters/ Significant Events

Black Forest Fire: Initial Home Assessment

Updated: June 15, 2013 at approximately 12:00 a.m. (DST) – El Paso County Sheriff’s office

The extent of damage caused by the Black Forest Fire to homes in the region is as follows:

  • Total Loss: 473
  • Partial Damage: 17

Note: This is a preliminary home assessment. Due to continuous and dynamic fire activity the information could change.

The blaze was reportedly 30 percent contained, as of posting.

Related Links

-oOo-

Another Toxic Weekend in Beijing

beijing air pollution
Beijing Air Pollution: Real-time Air Quality Index (AQI). Source: AQICN

Posted in Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2013 | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Flooding Displaces Thousands, Kills Scores of Nigerians

Posted by feww on September 28, 2012

DISASTER CALENDAR SYMBOLIC COUNTDOWN: 1,265 Days Left

[September 28, 2012] Mass die-offs resulting from human impact and the planetary response to the anthropogenic assault could occur by early 2016. 

  • SYMBOLIC COUNTDOWN: 1,265 Days Left to the ‘Worst Day’ in Human History

.

Global Disasters/ Significant Events

Central Nigeria’s worst ever flooding affects tens of thousands of people, displacing at least 10,000, killing many

At least 140 people have been killed and tens of thousands have been forced to flee their homes due to severe flooding in Central Nigeria since July, reports said.

Other Disasters/ Significant Events

  • United States. At least 30 U.S. states expect water shortages by 2013, the Environmental Protection Agency(EPA) has revealed.
  • Washington. The White House has declared a major disaster exists in the State of Washington following a severe storm, straight-line winds, and flooding on July 20, 2012.

Global Disasters: Links, Forecasts and Background

GLOBAL WARNING

Posted in global deluge, Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2012, global drought | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Disaster Alaska

Posted by feww on September 8, 2012

DISASTER CALENDAR SYMBOLIC COUNTDOWN: 1,285 Days Left

[September 8, 2012] Mass die-offs resulting from human impact and the planetary response to the anthropogenic assault could occur by early 2016. 

  • SYMBOLIC COUNTDOWN: 1,285 Days Left to the ‘Worst Day’ in Human History…

Shell to drill Chukchi Sea, violating air-quality standards

“EPA said it granted Shell a compliance order allowing the company’s fleet to emit pollutants at levels beyond limits set in a major permit issued to the company in January,” said a report.

That preliminary drilling is imminent, said Shell’s Alaska spokesman, Friday. “It’s likely to begin this weekend.”

Other Global Disasters/ Significant Events

China Earthquakes Update

  •  Eighty people are confirmed dead and at least 820 others injured after  two earthquakes struck SW China, according to official news.
  • An unspecified number of people are missing, and the death toll could climb.
  • The quakes struck a region near Yiliang county in Yunnan and Weining county in Guizhou Province on Friday.
  • “More than 200,000 people in Yunnan were relocated as more than 6,600 houses collapsed and another 430,000 damaged. Direct economic losses were estimated at 3.5 billion yuan (552 million U.S. dollars), according to the civil affairs department,” said a report.
  • More than 11,700 houses in Guizhou province have also been damaged.
  • At least 300 schools in the quake zone have also been damaged.

Global Disasters: Links, Forecasts and Background

GLOBAL WARNING

Posted in Global Disaster watch, global disasters, global disasters 2012, global ghg emissions | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

NY sanity questioned as state plan shale gas drilling

Posted by feww on January 2, 2010

The Test of Sanity: Clean Water or Shale Gas?

Never mind their door steps, 9,000,000 New Yorkers could have their drinking water fouled

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)  warns New Yorkers about the real threat to their drinking water if they drill for shale Gas.


‘Diarrhea water’
. A glass of water taken from a residential well after the start of natural gas drilling in Dimock, Pennsylvania, March 7, 2009. Dimock is one of hundreds of sites in Pennsylvania where energy companies are now racing to tap the massive Marcellus Shale natural gas formation. But some residents say the drilling has clouded their drinking water, sickened people and animals and made their wells flammable. REUTERS/Tim Shaffer. Image may be subject to copyright.

EPA is temporarily halting the drive by energy companies to drill for gas in the state’s Marcellus Shale formation, said to contain enough natural gas to satisfy U.S. demand for at least 10 years, Reuters reported.

“We have concerns regarding potential impacts to human health and the environment that we believe warrant further scientific and regulatory analysis,” reported John Filippelli, chief of the agency’s Strategic Planning and Programs Branch on Wednesday.

“EPA has serious reservations about whether gas drilling in the New York City watershed is consistent with the vision of high-quality unfiltered water supply,” he wrote in .

New York City asked the state to ban shale gas drilling in the city’s watershed last week.

You can’t have your clean water and drill for gas near it, too!

Shale gas extraction known as hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” uses toxic chemicals that are known to pollute drinking water wells near the drill sites. AMAZINGLY, fracking is NOT covered by the U.S. Clean Water Act.

Despite the natural gas industry’s denials that drilling poses no risk to drinking water, EPA has previously admitted that  fracking chemicals are in fact contaminating drinking water. According to many reports “private wells near gas installations having water that is discolored, foul tasting, or even flammable because of methane that has escaped from drilling operations.”

“Theo Colborn, a researcher with the Endocrine Disruption Exchange who has drawn links between fracturing chemicals and a range of illnesses including cancer, said the EPA report indicates the agency was taking a new look at fracturing in light of growing public concern and media coverage.” Reuters said.

“The natural gas industry can’t keep saying it’s clean,” she said.

An environmental impact statement issued in September by the New York state Department of Environmental Conservation recommended  that energy companies be permitted to drill in New York’s Marcellus Shale formation.

“We’re pleased to see that the EPA recognizes what the state so far has not, that gas drilling is entirely inappropriate with in the drinking supply for 9 million people,” said James Simpson, a staff attorney for Riverkeeper, a New York environmental group.

New York City officials have warned the city could be forced to build a $10 billion filtration system if shale gas drilling is allowed.

Background:

EPA admits water contaminated near gas-drilling sites

FEWW wrote:

Now, for the first time ever, EPA scientists have revealed that drinking water wells  near natural gas [and oil] drilling operations contain chemical contaminants. They found dangerous chemicals in the water from 11 of 39 wells tested near the Wyoming town of Pavillion in March and May 2009.  Unfortunately, their report  falls shy of concluding what causes the contamination, though it admits the gas drilling is a potential source.

‘Diarrhea water’

In Dimock, Pennsylvania, drilling for natural gas has clouded the drinking water, sickened people and animals and made their wells flammable.

Isn’t it remarkable that two distant communities, one in Dimock, Pennsylvania, and the other in Pavillion, Wyoming, some 2,668 km (1,658 miles) apart, share a common fate by way of their contaminated drinking water, where the only common denominator between them is gas-drilling activities.

Related Links:

Posted in Dimock, fracking, Marcellus Shale formation, NY state, U.S. Clean Water Act | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

Glyphosate Unsafe —Researcher

Posted by feww on May 8, 2009

Potential health dangers of glyphosate

An environmental group recently filed a suit in Argentina’s Supreme Court, seeking a ban on glyphosate, a herbicide commonly used with soybeans, citing a local scientist’s unpublished research.

The study by Andres Carrasco, an embryology professor and researcher, who also holds a post at the Defense Ministry, reports on potential health dangers of the herbicide.

The U.S. National Pesticide Information Center, which is sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, says glyphosate has low toxicity levels.


Soybeans are a major source of biofuel.
Image source: NYLCV. Image may be subject to copyright.

“Argentina’s large and powerful farming industry, which has been locked in a year-long tax battle with the government, sounded alarm bells, saying the defense ministry ban was the latest sign of the government’s anti-soy campaign.” Reuters reported.

“It’s more politics than anything else,” said Ulises Forte, vice president of the Argentine Agrarian Federation, a major farm industry group.

“With the farm industry up in arms, Science and Technology Minister Lino Baranao moved to distance the government from the study. He told local media the study was not commissioned by the government and had not been reviewed by scientific peers.” The report said.

The environmental group says its suit is not political.

“The only thing we are looking for is to defend people’s health and the environment, which we understand is polluted. especially in the way that agrochemicals (are applied) in this country, very close to towns,” said Mariano Aguilar, of the Environmentalist Lawyers Association of Argentina.

SOY Facts:

  • Argentina is the third biggest world exporter of whole soybeans.
  • Soy exports were worth $16.5 billion last year.
  • 50 percent of all Argentina’s agricultural land (about 17 million acres) is planted with soy.

“Argentina consumes an estimated 53 million gallons (200 million liters) a year of glyphosate, including the Roundup brand, produced by Missouri-based agricultural company Monsanto Co and Power Plus and other products of Argentina’s Atanor, owned by Iowa-based Albaugh chemicals company.” The report said.

Carrasco says his research confirms other studies that have shown glyphosate can harm development of amphibian embryos.

“The most notable thing are alterations in cranial bones and cartilage,” he said.

The Supreme Court does not have a deadline for taking action on the suit.

“A glyphosate ban would hit not only farming income as soy yields come down, but also the government budget, which is heavily dependent on grains taxes.” Reuters reported.

Posted in Argentine Agrarian Federation, embryology, farming industry, Mariano Aguilar, soybeans | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Google the Unethical, Google the Hypocrite!

Posted by feww on May 7, 2009

submitted by a reader

Google says their motto is “Do No Evil!” yet most of their immoral earnings come from predatory advertising, and their corporate practice is suppression of information!

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, is investigating the release of refrigerant at a Google data center, as well the accuracy of their statements and records concerning the incident, the Web advertising Goliath  said on Wednesday.

Google, which falsely portrays itself as a champion of the environment, said in its quarterly stock exchange filing that it had learned of EPA investigations 3 months ago. It said the incident occurred at one of its data facilities.

dumped by google-

“We spend a lot of time and effort at Google being conscious [sic] of our environmental footprint and so you can imagine how disturbed we were to learn of possible environmental issues affecting one of our smaller data centers,” Reuters reported spokesman Andrew Pederson as saying.

[Is lying through your teeth a prerequisite for employment at Google?]

“We are already working, on our own and with the federal government, to understand what went on in this legacy facility, inherited as part of the DoubleClick purchase,” he said.

[Yah, blame it on the grateful dead!]

If Google was so “conscious [sic] of [their] environmental footprint,” they would denounce predatory advertising as their main source of income.

Google lies and half truths give a new spin to their preposterous “Do No Evil” corporate mantra.

The only good [sic] Google, is a highly fragmented g-o-o-o-…!

Related Links:

Posted in chemical dumping, Google Conspiracy, Google pollution, predatory advertising, web censorship | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Regulating GHG: Too Little, Too Late!

Posted by feww on April 18, 2009

It’s too bad the planet couldn’t wait

Cap and Trade All You Want, Nature Isn’t Interested!

We’ve had our chances and have blown every single one of them. Our masters won’t allow us to change  our lifestyles. Dealing with greenhouse gasses as if we’re doing Earth a favor won’t change a thing.

Every step of the way, we are reinforcing a discourse which is destroying the planet’s ability to protect us. Nature isn’t “market based,” and doesn’t recognize “market-based solutions.” It  has finite limits. You don’t “combat climate change;” you remove the causes for the climate change catastrophe.

The main stream human culture have proven unequivocally that it does not have what it takes to enter the next phase—it lacks the intelligence and is void of the will to live.


A mock grave stone declaring ‘Climate change-a matter of life or death’ outside the ruins of Coventry Cathedral on March 19, 2009 in Coventry, England. The symbolic head stone was the first stage of a climate change campaign action day. Organizers Christian Aid, CAFOD and others later took part in a New Orleans style funeral through the streets of Coventry. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images Europe). Image may be subject to copyright.

The following news is meant to be not only celebratory, but conciliatory:

U.S. clears way to regulate greenhouse gases

http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSN1732459820090417

By Deborah Zabarenko and Tom Doggett

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration opened the way to regulating U.S. greenhouse gas emissions on Friday by declaring climate-warming pollution a danger to human health and welfare, in a sharp policy shift from the Bush administration.

Environmental activists and their supporters in Congress were jubilant and industry groups were wary at the news of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s move. The White House said President Barack Obama would prefer legislation over administrative action to curb greenhouse emissions.

Congress is already considering a bill to cut emissions of carbon dioxide, which is emitted by cars, coal-fired power plants and oil refineries, among other sources.

EPA’s declaration was seen as a strong signal to the international community that the United States intends to seriously combat climate change.

In its announcement, the EPA said, “greenhouse gases in the atmosphere endanger the public health and welfare of current and future generations” and human activities spur global warming.

“This finding confirms that greenhouse gas pollution is a serious problem now and for future generations,” said EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson. “Fortunately, it follows President Obama’s call for a low carbon economy and strong leadership in Congress on clean energy and climate legislation,”

“The president has made clear his strong preference that Congress act to pass comprehensive legislation rather than address the climate challenge through administrative action,” a White House official said, noting that Obama has repeatedly called for “a bill to provide for market-based solutions to reduce carbon pollution.”

The EPA’s endangerment finding said high atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases “are the unambiguous result of human emissions, and are very likely the cause of the observed increase in average temperatures and other climatic changes.” The document is available online at http://www.epa.gov.

The EPA’s finding is essential for the U.S. government to regulate climate-warming emissions like carbon dioxide under the Clean Air Act. Regulation is not automatically triggered by the finding — there will be a 60-day comment period.

But as that period proceeds, legislation is moving through Congress aimed at cutting carbon dioxide emissions with a cap-and-trade system, which would let those companies that emit more than the limit buy credits from those that emit less.

MAJOR SHIFT FROM BUSH

EPA scientists last year offered evidence of the health hazards of greenhouse emissions, but the Bush administration took no action. It opposed across-the-board mandatory regulation of climate-warming pollution, saying this would hurt the U.S. economy.

Senator Barbara Boxer, a California Democrat who shepherded climate legislation to the Senate floor last year, called the EPA’s finding “long overdue.”

“We have lost eight years in this fight,” Boxer said in a statement. “… The best and most flexible way to deal with this serious problem is to enact a market-based cap-and-trade system which will help us make the transition to clean energy and will bring us innovation and strong economic growth.”

“At long last, EPA is officially recognizing that carbon pollution is leading to killer heat waves, stronger hurricanes, higher smog levels and many other threats to human health,” said David Doniger at the Natural Resources Defense Council.

But the National Association of Manufacturers said trying to regulate greenhouse emissions with the Clean Air Act would “further burden an ailing economy while doing little or nothing to improve the environment.”

“This proposal will cost jobs. It is the worst possible time to be proposing rules that will drive up the cost of energy to no valid purpose,” NAM President John Engler said.

Steve Seidel of the Pew Center on Global Climate Change said the EPA announcement is an important message to the international community, which is set to meet in Copenhagen in December to craft a follow-up agreement to the carbon-capping Kyoto Protocol.

“This decision sends a strong signal to the international community that the United States is moving forward to regulate greenhouse gas emissions,” Seidel said by telephone.

However, he said this move alone is no guarantee of success in Copenhagen. Participants in that meeting will also look for progress in the U.S. Congress, and for movement from other developed and developing countries.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled two years ago that the EPA has the authority to make these regulations if human health is threatened by global warming pollution, but no regulations went forward during the Bush administration.

Carbon dioxide, one of several greenhouse gases that spur global warming, is emitted by natural and industrial sources, including fossil-fueled vehicles, coal-fired power plants and oil refineries.

(Additional reporting by Tim Gardner and Ayesha Rascoe; Editing by Eric Walsh)

Related Links:

Posted in carbon-capping, Clean Air Act, climate legislation, Kyoto Protocol, Obama administration | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Dreaming of a Flat Earth

Posted by feww on December 5, 2008

Blast off my mountaintops, bury my streams!

More black coal for less green earth!

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, has encouraged more mountaintop-removal mining by removing the last legal hurdle, a 25-year-old law that prohibited surface coal mining activities within 100 feet of flowing streams.

mountaintop removal fly-over-19
Once green mountains teeming with wildlife, Appalachian mountaintops are ruthlessly blasted off for coal.  Photo courtesy:  Stop Mountaintop Removal. See source for copyright information.

The U.S. surface coal mining is done by blasting off mountaintops and dumping the debris in the adjoining valleys in Appalachia, across Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia and Virginia.

About 10 percent of U.S. coal production, nearly 127  million tons of coal, came from U.S. mountaintop mining in 2007, according to the National Mining Association.

“The EPA’s decision is a slap in the face of Appalachian communities, which have already endured enough injustice from mountaintop removal … My home and thousands of others are now in greater jeopardy.” Said Vernon Haltom of Coal River Mountain Watch.

Mining debris from about 411 mountaintops that were blasted off have buried about 1,200 miles of mountain streams have been buried under mining debris.

Alpha Natural Resources, International Coal Group, Massey Energy Co., and Patriot Coal Corp are among Appalachian surface mine owners.

Related Links:

Other Related Links:

Posted in Appalachian communities, coal industry, marsification, Office of Surface Mining, Wildlife | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

“Don’t worry, boss, I know what to say!”

Posted by terres on October 3, 2008

Image of the Day: Sworn to Destroy!


Boss, I know it’s none of my business, but don’t you think the smirk might give the game away?

Original caption: U.S. President George W. Bush stands by [with a smirk on his face] as the new Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Stephen Johnson is sworn in at EPA headquarters in Washington, May 23, 2005. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque. Image may be subject to copyright.

Related Links:

Posted in Climate Change, energy, environment, health, politics | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Unfit for human consumption

Posted by feww on September 11, 2008

Is the EPA selling you anything unfit for human consumption?

EPA and the Dumping of Sewage Sludge on US Farmland

Consumer groups are pressing Congress to regulate against the practice of dumping of toxic sewage sludge on our farmland. “Farmers, scientists and victims of sludge poisoning will go before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on Thursday to investigate the Environmental Protections Agency’s role in the sludge dumped on farms and other lands.” (Source)

“We have enough problems with toxic food as it is without having our food grown in toxic soil and derived from animals who have been sickened, often almost to death, because of these toxins,” said Andrew Kimbrell, the executive director of the Center for Food Safety.

What is so toxic about the sewage sludge?

A lot of toxins are found in sewage sludge including:

  • E. coli
  • Prions (the ones that cause mad cow disease)
  • Highly toxic carcinogens used in flame retardants

Are there any victims?

Yes many! Sludge poisoning has caused serious illness, even death. Victims have reported headaches, fainting spells and nose bleeds. “Contact with sewage sludge can also cause asthma, respiratory problems and tumors. There have been several instances of death linked to exposure to the sludge.”

“It’s a very pernicious cycle here of taking the poisons out of the water but putting it back into our land, and therefore back into our food and water supply,” Kimbrell said. Dumping sludge on farmland is practiced widely because it is legal under EPA rules. About 3 million tons of sewage sludge is dumped on US farmlands each year, some 50 percent of the total production.

What About the EPA?

Citing “insufficient scientific evidence to any harmful effects” EPA nixed a petition in 1983 filed by 73 food and consumer groups asking for a moratorium on sludge dumping until the health, food and environmental impacts of the practice could be assessed.

What about the Department of Agriculture, Aren’t they also responsible?

Yes, they are. Andy McElmurray whose farm was contaminated from sewage sludge successfully sued the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The court ruled that the EPA’s “purposely manipulated data to squash scientific dissent,” and therefore their data was unreliable.

“Bad science and bad policy has to stop, and I think Congress has had it,” Kimbrell said. “There’s a mood for change now, and here’s where we can begin to see real change.”

Let’s hope Kimbrell would not be disappointed!

Posted in Climate Change, energy, environment, food, Global Warming, health, politics | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Shameful EPA slammed with yet another lawsuit

Posted by feww on August 26, 2008

Mr Johnson, Americans Need Clean Air, Despite Your Misplaced Loyalties!

12 states, NY city and District of Columbia are suing Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, the federal environmental regulators, over greenhouse gas emissions from oil refineries in the US.

The suit is led by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, who “charges that EPA violated the federal Clean Air Act by refusing to issue standards, known as new source performance standards, for controlling global warming pollution emissions from oil refineries.” Reuters reported.


Anacortes Refinery (Tesoro Corp), on the north end of March Point southeast of Anacortes, Washington. Image credit:Walter Siegmund. Via Wikimedia Commons.

Licensed under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation license, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts.

“The EPA’s refusal to control pollution from oil refineries is the latest example of the Bush Administration’s do-nothing policy on global warming,” Cuomo said in a release. “Oil refineries contribute substantially to global warming, posing grave threats to New York’s environment, health, and economy.”

Stephen Johnson, the EPA head has insisted that it is the responsibility of Congress to regulate emissions of greenhouse gases that are heating the planet, despite the US Supreme Court ruling in 2007 that EPA has the authority to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.

Additionally, other coalition of states have sued the EPA demanding that it should set standards for GHG pollution from power plants, and and to uphold the right of states to regulate pollution emissions from automobiles, as well as to require stronger reporting on toxic chemicals.

According to the latest suit, filed yesterday in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, “about 15 percent of U.S. industrial emissions of carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas, come from crude refineries, which burn some oil as they make products like gasoline and jet fuel.”

The other plaintiff states and cities in the suit are California, Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington, as well as the District of Columbia and the City of New York, representing nearly one third (29%)of the entire US population.

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Stars-and-Stripes-Draped Carson Refinery (owned by the patriotic British Petroleum), Carson, California. Capacity: 260,000 bbl/d (41,000 m³/d). Image Credit: USATODAY. Image may be subject to copyright.

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California Sues EPA

Posted by feww on July 31, 2008

California state Attorney General Jerry Brown is suing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for “wantonly” ignoring its duty to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.

See Main Entry:

California Sues EPA on GHG Emissions

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Are You Allowed to Live Free of Toxic Pollution?

Posted by feww on July 25, 2008

The Right to Live Free of Toxic Pollution Must Be Made A Fundamental Human Right!

Of nearly 90,000 chemical compounds in use, the majority of which have never been tested for health effects, only a fraction are registered and of those only a handful have been banned by EPA in the last thirty years. Meanwhile, about 2,000 new chemicals are introduced each year.

See Main Entry: The Right to Live Free of Toxic Pollution

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Arnie Knows the Score!

Posted by feww on July 14, 2008

Bush climate action claims “Bogus”: Schwarzenegger

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger: The Bush administration did not believe in doing anything about global warming. Any last-minute action before they leave office would lack sincerity and would be “bogus.”

“If they would have done something this year, I would have thought it was bogus anyway,” he said. “You don’t really have an effect by doing something six months before you leave office … it doesn’t sound to me believable at all. The sincerity is not there.”


California Governor-Elect Arnold Schwarzenegger meets with George W. Bush in Riverside, Calif., Oct. 16, 2003. White House photo by Eric Draper.

Environmental Protection Agency boss, Stephen Johnson, refused on Friday to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under existing pollution laws, despite the U.S. Supreme Court ruling last year that his agency, EPA, had the authority to do so.

Schwarzenegger said EPA Chief’s decision “really means basically this administration did not believe in global warming, or they did not believe that they should do anything about it since China is not doing anything about it and since India is not willing to do the same thing, so why should we do the same thing?”

The Bush administration blocked efforts by California and 16 other states Wednesday to limit greenhouse gas emissions from cars and trucks, setting up a political and legal fight over whether states can take a lead role in combating global warming.

Stephen Johnson rejected in December 2007 California’s push for a waiver from the federal government to impose its own high standards for tailpipe emissions, regulations which the other states would have followed had California’s bid succeeded.

Should the fate of an entire nation rest on the decision of one person who is acting with malice aforethought?

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EPA Plays Piggy In the Middle

Posted by feww on July 12, 2008

Submitted by a Member

EPA Joins the Supreme Court and Congress to Play Piggy In the Middle

Note: Piggy in the Middle, also called Monkey in the Middle, Pickle in a Dish, Pickle in the Middle, or Keep Away is a children’s game played primarily in North American politics. Three or more players pass the responsibility for keeping the air clean and saving lives to one another, while the player in the middle (called it, the monkey, the piggy , the pickle, or simply we the people,) attempts to pinpoint the accountability.


Piggies on the run. REUTERS/Gary Hershorn (UNITED STATES). Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice

US Supreme Court: Carbon dioxide is an air pollutant, and the existing Clean Air Act gives EPA the authority to regulate it.

EPA Administrator Stephen [disgrace] Johnson: “If the nation is serious about regulating greenhouse gases the Clean Air Act is the wrong tool for the job and it’s really at the feet of Congress to come up with good legislation that cuts through what will likely be decades of regulation and litigation.”

The US Congress: Didn’t the Supreme Court clarify the position on this in 2007 in MASSACHUSETTS ET AL. v. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY ET AL.? [Argued November 29, 2006—Decided April 2, 2007]

They said: “Based on respected scientific opinion that a well-documented rise in global temperatures and attendant climatological and environmental changes have resulted from a significant increase in the atmospheric concentration of “greenhouse gases,” a group of private organizations petitioned the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to begin regulating the emissions of four such gases, including carbon dioxide, under §202(a)(1) of the Clean Air Act, which requires that the EPA“shall by regulation prescribe . . . standards applicable to the emission of any air pollutant from any class . . . of new motor vehicles . . . which in [the EPA Administrator’s] judgment cause[s], or contribute[s] to, air pollution . . . reasonably . . . anticipated to endanger public health or welfare,” 42 U. S. C. §7521(a)(1). The Act defines “air pollutant” to include “any air pollution agent . . . , including any physical, chemical . . . substance . . . emitted into . . . the ambient air.” §7602(g). EPA ultimately denied the petition, reasoning that (1) the Act does not authorize it to issue mandatory regulations to address global climate change, and (2) even if it had the authority to set greenhouse gas emission standards, it would have been unwise to do so at that time because a causal link between greenhouse gases and the increase in global surface air temperatures was not unequivocally established. The agency further characterized any EPA regulation of motor-vehicle emissions as a piecemeal approach to climate change that would conflict with the President’s comprehensive approach involving additional support for technological innovation,the creation of non regulatory programs to encourage voluntary private-sector reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, and further re-search on climate change, and might hamper the President’s ability to persuade key developing nations to reduce emissions. Petitioners, now joined by intervenor Massachusetts and other state and local governments, sought review in the D. C. Circuit. Al-though each of the three judges on the panel wrote separately, two of them agreed that the EPA Administrator properly exercised his discretion in denying the rule making petition. One judge concluded that the Administrator’s exercise of “judgment” as to whether a pollutant could “reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare,” §7521(a)(1), could be based on scientific uncertainty as well as other factors, including the concern that unilateral U. S. regulation of motor-vehicle emissions could weaken efforts to reduce other countries’ greenhouse gas emissions. The second judge opined that petitioners had failed to demonstrate the particularized injury to them that is necessary to establish standing under Article III, but accepted the contrary view as the law of the case and joined the judgment on the merits as the closest to that which he preferred. The court there-fore denied review. …”

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The White House of Horror!!

Posted by feww on July 9, 2008

Horrors of Dracula and the White House Vampires

Origin of the name “Dracula”

King Sigismund of Hungary, who became the Holy Roman Emperor in 1410, founded a secret fraternal order of knights called the Order of the Dragon to uphold Christianity and defend the Empire against the Iraqis …

Vlad II Dracul, father of Vlad III, was admitted to the order around 1431 because of his bravery in fighting the Iraqis and was dubbed Dracul (dragon) thus his son became Dracula (son of the dragon). From 1431 onward …

The Nation, Blood and CO2

Here’s the story in a nutshell about the WH, EPA,  Sen Barbara Boxer, Dr. Julie Gerberding, Director of CDC, Jason Burnett [EPA’s former associate deputy administrator who resigned because, he says, White House wanted him to retract a statement about the dangers of CO2] and tons of CO2 as well as spinning yarn of politics:

Press Conference on White House Interference in Addressing the Dangers of Global Warming

Statement of Senator Barbara Boxer (Remarks as prepared for delivery)

You have heard me say many times that this Administration has downplayed the dangers posed by global warming. They have used every excuse to avoid taking action, even hiding behind China and India.

Now, thanks to a very brave former EPA official, Jason Burnett, who has responded to an inquiry from this committee, who is here today, we know that the Administration’s efforts have been about covering up the real dangers of global warming and hiding the facts from the public.

This cover-up is being directed from the White House and the Office of the Vice President. (Continued…)

WHITE HOUSE DELETION OF LARGE SECTIONS OF TESTIMONY ON PUBLIC HEALTH IMPACTS OF GLOBAL WARMING BY THE DIRECTOR OF THE CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION (CDC)

On Tuesday October 23, 2007 Dr. Julie Gerberding, Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) testified before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works regarding the public health implications of global warming. Dr. Gerberding’s written testimony was heavily edited during the review process coordinated by the White House’s Office of Management and Budget, to remove most of the specific information about the health impacts of global warming.

At a White House press briefing the following day, White House Press Secretary Dana Perino asserted that the reason for the edits was that the CDC testimony was inconsistent with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report on the same topic. According to the White House briefing transcript, Ms. Perino answered a question on this issue as follows: (Continued…)

What Does All This Mean?

EPA: “greenhouse gases may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public welfare” [December 2007]

Supreme Court: Clean Air Act expressly authorizes the EPA to regulate carbon dioxide emissions. [April 2007]

White House spokesman Tony Fratto: “Jason Burnett is not the EPA administrator,” EPA chief Stephen Johnson should oversee environmental policy.

Dr. Julie Gerberding, Director of CDC: “Climate Change is a Public Health Concern. In the United States, climate change is likely to have a significant impact on health, through links with the following outcomes:

  • Direct effects of heat,
  • Health effects related to extreme weather events,
  • Air pollution-related health effects,
  • Allergic diseases,
  • Water- and food-borne infectious diseases,
  • Vector-borne and zoonotic diseases,
  • Food and water scarcity, at least for some populations,
  • Mental health problems, and
  • Long-term impacts of chronic diseases and other health effects”

Sen. Barbara Boxer: There is a “cover-up” aimed at stopping EPA from tackling greenhouse emissions. “This cover-up is being directed from the White House and the office of the vice president”.

Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid, on the administration’s actions: “I don’t know if that is criminal. I doubt it. OK. But I know it is immoral.”

White House spokeswoman Dana Perino: Gerberding’s draft testimony to Congress “did not comport” with science contained in the IPCC report on Climate Change, and “a number of agencies had some concerns with the draft.”

Sen. Boxer: Gerberding’s planned testimony and the IPCC report “matched identically.”

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NO More Coal-fired Power Plants Here!

Posted by edro on July 1, 2008

Submitted by a CASF Member:

Too Little, Too Late?

Longleaf Energy Resources Leaves Court with a Red-Coal Face

A Georgia state court invalidated a permit to build a 1,200-megawatt coal-fired power plant in Early county, citing the developers’ failure to limit emissions of carbon dioxide. A Fulton County Superior Court Judge, Thelma Wyatt Cummings Moore [kudos to judge Moore], reversed a right to pollute permit [aka, air permit] issued earlier this year by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources to Longleaf Energy Resources.

POLITICS-US-USA-ENERGY-LEGISLATION
Southern Company’s Plant Bowen in Cartersville, Georgia is seen in this aerial photograph in Cartersville in this file photo taken September 4, 2007. One of the biggest coal-fired plants in the country, it generates about 3,300 megawatts of electricity from four coal-fired boilers. (Chris Baltimore/Reuters; caption: abc News. Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice!

The judge citied a 2007 U.S. Thelma Wyatt Cummings Moore decision in which carbon dioxide was ruled to be a pollutant under the existing Clean Air Act and that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has the authority to regulate carbon dioxide emissions.

Anthracite Coal. Credit USGS

How much coal would it take to light a 100W light bulb for one year?

A 100-Watt light bulb consumes about 876 kWh of electricity in one year (100 W × 24 h/day × 365 days = 876,000 Wh = 876 kWh).

Energy density

The energy density of coal, expressed in kilowatt-hours per kilogram, is about 6.67 kWh/kg. The typical thermodynamic efficiency of coal power plants is about 30%. That means only 30% of the coal burned up turns into electricity, with the rest is normally wasted as heat. Coal power plants generate approximately 2.0 kWh per kg of burned coal.

876 kWh ÷ 2kWh/kg = 438 kg of coal

However, the above amount does not take into account a further 5–10% transmission and distribution losses caused by resistance and heating in the power lines AND the initial energy used to mine the coal and ship it to the power plant, which could be equivalent to 10-15% of the total coal consumed.

438 kg ÷ 80% = 547.5 kg of coal {Total amount of coal consumed to light a 100W bulb for one full year!}

How Much Carbon Dioxide?

Carbon dioxide (CO2) forms during coal combustion when one atom of carbon (C) combines with two atoms of oxygen (O2). Carbon has an atomic weight of is 12, and oxygen 16, making the atomic weight of carbon dioxide 44. A kg of coal with a carbon content of 78 percent and a heating value of 32 MJ/kg emits about 2.86 of carbon dioxide. (Source: Carbon Dioxide Emission Factors for Coal)

547.5 kg of coal x 2.86 = 1,566 kg of CO2 {The total amount of CO2 produced.}

[Note: other nasty byproducts include sulfur, which reacts with oxygen to produce SO2, which then combines with moisture in the air to produce acid rain, nitrogen oxides, NOx, and mercury, all of which are extremely harmful to air, water, soil, trees, marine animals and humans.]

Meanwhile, back in Crawford ranch …

White House officials, congressional staff revealed, refused to open e-mail from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, that said climate-warming greenhouse emissions threaten public health and welfare!

The EPA has also told members of Congress that the Defense Department is defying orders over cleaning up toxic pollution at three military bases at Fort Meade in Maryland, McGuire Air Force Base in New Jersey and Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida.

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EPA official resigns citing Dow Chemical

Posted by feww on May 9, 2008

Update: Mary Gade Story – CREW Files FOIA Requests With EPA concerning Mary Gade Resignation

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) filed two Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) concerning the resignation of EPA Region 5 administrator, Mary Gade, May 7, 2008.

See below for CREW’s original report and their FOIA requests to the EPA.

EPA official no match for Dow

After years of fighting over dioxin contamination by Dow Chemicals, a top EPA administrator was forced to quit as head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Midwest office, based in Chicago.


Mary Gade, regional administrator of U.S. EPA Region 5, center, and Stephen A. Elbert, vice chairman of BP America, right, listen as Sadhu Johnston, chief environmental officer of the City of Chicago, talks to the media following a summit on the BP Whiting refinery. (Tribune photo by Zbigniew Bzdak / August 15, 2007. Text Tribune ) Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice.

Gade said two of the EPA chief Stephen Johnson’s lieutenants had removed her powers as regional administrator and told her to quit or be fired by June 1.

“There is no question this is about Dow,” Gade said. “I stand behind what I did and what my staff did. I’m proud of what we did.” Full report

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The Eight Steps that Help Kill More of Our Fish

Posted by feww on May 7, 2008

How Your Car’s Exhaust Emissions Helps Create Dead Zones and Kill Our Fish

Step One: You fill up the tank (gasoline is a processed fossil fuel product).


REUTERS/Sergio Moraes (Image may be subject to copyright!)

Step Two: As you drive around, your car burns the fossil fuel and produces greenhouse gases and other harmful pollutants, which are spewed out through the exhaust pipe.


Houston Evacuation – Hurricane Rita

Step three: Sunlight interacts with greenhouse gases emitted from your car, producing ground-level ozone.


Only about 12.6 percent of the gas your car consumes is used for driving!


Step Four: High ozone levels damage crops such as corn, wheat, and soybeans, reducing growth rates and crop yields, as well as making the crops less resistant to insects and pests. (In 1995, ground-level ozone caused $2.7 billion in crop damage nationwide, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.) Current estimates for the crop damages caused by ground-level ozone stand at about $3 billion each year in the US alone.

ozone-plant-damage
(L) Ozone-damaged plant; (R) normal plant. Photo courtesy of Gene Daniels/U.S. EPA.

Step Five: To increase growth rates, boost crop yields and fight pests, farmer use increasingly larger amounts of chemical fertilizers and pesticides.


Applying Chemical Fertilizers. Photo AVRCD. (Image may be subject to copyright!)

Step Six: Nutrient-rich chemical runoffs (pollution) from agricultural fields are washed by rain into streams, storm sewers and rivers and end up into our oceans, seas and other water bodies.


Summer rains wash nutrients, dissolved organic matter and sediment out of the mouths of rivers, into the sea, sparking large phytoplankton blooms. South America presents two excellent examples of river outlets where phytoplankton tends to thrive. Along the northern part of the continent the mouth of the Orinoco River opens into the Caribbean. Along the Eastern side of South America, the mighty Amazon exits its thousand mile journey. (Text NASA)

Step Seven: Dead Zones that cover tens of thousands of square kilometers of waterways are created by pollution-fed algae, which deprive fish and other marine life of oxygen.


Gulf of Mexico: sediment filled water meets the ocean.

Step Eight: Deprived of oxygen, fish and other marine life die.


Dead fish are seen on a basket of a fish farm off a coast of Menidi village in the Amvrakikos Gulf, some 350Km northeast of Athens February 28, 2008. Local marine biologist Vangelis Dimitriou said that up to 800 tonnes of fish including sea bass and sea bream died from a lack of oxygen [hypoxia], after swimming through a large pocket of water where the temperatures suddenly dropped at a drastic rate. REUTERS/Yiorgos Karahalis (GREECE). Image may be subject to copyright. See FEWW Fair Use Notice!

But it doesn’t have to be that way!

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Arctic Melting FAST!

Posted by feww on April 24, 2008

Rocket Science: Ice + Heat = Water


Arctic summer sea ice. Image taken by NASA satellite September 16, 2007.

News Reports:

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EPA Sued Over GHG Pollution

Posted by feww on April 3, 2008

The states of Massachusetts, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington sued the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) yesterday for failing to limit greenhouse gas emissions from new cars and trucks. The lawsuit came one year after the Supreme Court ruled that the agency had the power to do so.

Main Entry: 18 States Sue EPA Over GHG Pollution
Original Report: 18 states sue EPA over greenhouse gas pollution

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