Laws & Regulations

Top Weather Service Official Fired for Talking to Press

According to the Washington Post, the National Weather Service is firing William Proenza, who once headed the National Hurricane Center, for revealing to the Post that looming budget cuts would harm forecasting effectiveness (something that can affect public safety and the profits of business).

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Does New Interior Draft Put Fracking Data Under Industry Thumb?

A leaked draft of the replacement rule suggested Interior would leave handling of fracking data to the industry-run "FracFocus" project, which has come under criticism by environmental and watchdog groups for being hard to use and incomplete.

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"Report Outlines Climate Change Options for Obama Administration"

"The United States will struggle to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to promised levels by 2020, a report from a prominent think tank warned this week, but the federal government, states and industry already have the means at their disposal to achieve such goals."

Source: McClatchy, 02/07/2013

Group Sues California over Enforcement of Fracking Disclosure

The Arizona-based Center for Biological Diversity filed suit in Alameda County Superior Court charging that the California Department of Conservation's Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources was not following the state's own law.

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"Judge Accepts BP’s $4 Billion Criminal Settlement Over Gulf Oil Spill"

"HOUSTON -- A federal judge in New Orleans on Tuesday approved an agreement between BP and the Justice Department for the company to plead guilty to 14 criminal charges and pay $4 billion in penalties for the 2010 oil well blowout and spill in the Gulf of Mexico that left 11 workers dead and fouled hundreds of miles of shoreline."

Source: NY Times, 01/30/2013

"Democratic Senators Pass Torch to EPA on Climate Change"

President Obama's vow to address climate change in his second Inaugural Address January 21 could actually prove more than bold words. Despite the failure of the 111th and 112th Congresses to pass a cap-and-trade bill or any other major climate change legislation, Obama clearly has the power to limit greenhouse gas emissions himself, using his Supreme Court-tested executive authority under the Clean Air Act and other powers. Key Congressional Democrats are urging him on.

Source: National Journal, 01/23/2013
January 25, 2013

The Year Ahead in Environment and Energy: Stories to Watch in 2013

A panel of veteran journalists, hosted by SEJ and the Wilson Center's Environmental Change & Security Program, will offer their thoughts on what will be the biggest environment and energy stories in the U.S. and around the world on January 25th, 3-5 p.m. in Washington, DC (also available via webcast). Bloomberg BNA's Director of Environmental News John Sullivan will kick off the discussion with an overview of the key legislative, regulatory, and legal developments expected in 2013. Margie Kriz Hobson of E&E Publishing's EnergyWire will moderate the panel.

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