EJToday: Top Headlines
EJToday is SEJ's selection of new and outstanding stories on environmental topics in print and on the air, updated every weekday. SEJ also offers a free e-mailed digest of the day's EJToday postings, called SEJ-beat. SEJ members are subscribed automatically, but may opt out here. Non-members may subscribe here. EJToday is also available via RSS feed. Please see Editorial Guidelines for EJToday content.
"The White House recently modified an Environmental Protection Agency proposal to limit soot emissions, according to documents obtained by The Washington Post, inviting public comment on a slightly weaker standard than the agency had originally sought."
"CALEXICO, CALIF. — As the relentless wind stirs up piles of dust and dirt and creates a gigantic funnel of haze in the vast, sweltering Imperial Valley, children like Marco Cisneros battle to breathe."
"Shell has asked the Environmental Protection Agency to loosen air pollution requirements for its Discoverer drill rig, which is planning to begin exploratory drilling operations off the North Slope of Alaska early next month."
"It's high season in the nation's national parks as millions of visitors come to see nature. If last year's visitor figures hold up -- and early indications suggest they will -- nine million visitors will see the Great Smoky Mountains, the most visited national park. Three other parks -- Grand Canyon (more than four million visitors in 2011) Yellowstone (about three million) and Acadia (more than two million) -- combined will attract roughly the same number."
"HOUSTON -- A Texas judge has ruled that the atmosphere and air must be protected for public use, just like water, which could help attorneys tasked with arguing climate change lawsuits designed to force states to cut emissions."
"For 80-year-old grandmother Espirita Lima Bautista, breathing while cooking over her kitchen hearth is like inhaling the second-hand soot of 400 cigarettes."
"The power industry is waiting for a federal appeals court to rule on proposed emissions controls for coal-fired power plants, a decision with implications for energy sectors ranging from natural gas to coal to tradeable pollution permits."
"Reports of infants and children dying in this summer's early heat wave have been documented in locales ranging from Kansas to Tennessee. And experts fear that increasingly frequent spikes in extreme high temperatures might bring such unwelcome news more often in the years ahead."
"WASHINGTON — A federal appeals court on Tuesday upheld a finding by the Environmental Protection Agency that heat-trapping gases from industry and vehicles endanger public health, dealing a decisive blow to companies and states that had sued to block agency rules."
"A Senate resolution seeking to reverse federal regulations limiting emissions of mercury and other toxic substances from coal-burning power plants failed to win passage on Wednesday. The resolution, introduced by Senator James M. Inhofe, an Oklahoma Republican, won support from 46 senators; 53 voted against it."
"The Obama administration proposed stricter standards to control harmful soot from heavy industry on Friday, a move expected to save lives but which drew criticism from Republicans and industry worried the costs of compliance will hurt the economy."
"Risking an election-year backlash from Republicans, the Obama administration is proposing new air quality standards to lower the amount of soot that can be released into the air.
The move, to be announced Friday, is likely to win support from environmental groups and public health advocates but exposes the president to potential criticism from congressional Republicans and industry officials that the rules are overly strict and could hurt economic growth and cause job losses in political swing states such as Ohio and Pennsylvania.
"Diesel engine fumes can cause lung cancer and belong in the same potentially deadly category as asbestos, arsenic and mustard gas, World Health Organisation (WHO) experts said on Tuesday."
"With the Obama administration facing a deadline this week to suggest any changes to the national air quality standards for soot, the pressure is building on all sides."
"RIO de JANEIRO -- The Rio+20 Secretary-General said today that the absence of such world leaders as U.S. President Barack Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and UK Prime Minister David Cameron will not undermine the sustainable development summit later this month."