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.
"Perry fast-tracked new plants and made Texas even more polluted than it already was."
"In April 2006, a few days before Earth Day, Texas Gov. Rick Perry joined executives of TXU, the state's largest utility and biggest carbon dioxide emitter, in cheering plans to open a staggering 11 new coal-fired power plants throughout Texas. With rolling blackouts still fresh on many Texans' minds, Perry hailed TXU's rapid expansion as a path to energy security, not to mention a way to create jobs and potentially lower energy costs.
"The top two executives of a solar-energy company that filed for bankruptcy after getting $528 million in loan guarantees from the Obama administration said Tuesday that they will invoke their constitutional rights against compelled self-incrimination when they appear at a Congressional hearing."
"ARLINGTON, Va. -- A recently-formed judicial 'academy' funded by industry groups and conservative billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch is offering members of Congress and their staff free meals and trips in order to 'educate' the lawmakers on controversial pro-business reforms."
"President Obama’s decision early this month to side with anti-regulation business interests against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to stop a plan to tighten smog regulations comes during an election cycle in which Obama has received campaign donations from top polluters, and only weeks after his chief of staff met with anti-regulation industry trade associations.
"President Obama yesterday got nudged from his left to nix the Keystone XL pipeline, as seven Democratic National Committee (DNC) members signed on to a resolution urging rejection of the controversial Canada-to-U.S. project on environmental, economic and national security grounds."
"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency should move forward with tougher standards it has developed for ozone and toxic emissions because they will help protect Latinos’ health in Texas and other states, environmental and Latino groups said Tuesday."
"On the Senate floor and the television airwaves, Senator Mitch McConnell has lambasted the Obama administration over what he has described as its failed efforts to stimulate new jobs through clean-energy projects backed with billions of dollars in federal loans or other assistance." "But Mr. McConnell, of Kentucky, is one of several prominent Republicans who have worked to steer federal money to clean-energy projects in their homes states, Energy Department documents show."
"US President Barack Obama on Monday introduced a wide-ranging proposal to save the federal government $3 trillion over the next 10 years by cutting spending and raising taxes, including the repeal of a number of tax subsidies for the oil and gas industry." ...
"Tens of thousands of people marched in Tokyo on Monday in the biggest show of public opposition to nuclear power since the start of the Fukushima Daiichi crisis in March."
"Beijing -- Authorities ordered a solar-panel manufacturing plant in eastern China to close after four days of protests by hundreds of villagers who have accused the facility of causing air and water pollution, Chinese media reported Monday.
The decision is an indication of the growing power of environmental protesters to sway government policy in China. As many as 500 villagers participated in the protests near Haining, an industrial city of 640,000 in coastal Zhejiang province.
Republicans like Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) have pounced on solar panel-maker Solyndra's bankruptcy as proof that most renewable energy projects are wasteful. Yet Vitter and others energetically worked to bring federal dollars for renewables to their own districts.
"The Housing Authority of Baltimore City often cites a lack of funds to explain its refusal to pay nearly $12 million in court-ordered judgments to former public housing residents who suffered permanent lead-paint poisoning as children. But the city's public housing agency has paid private lawyers about $4 million since 2005 to defend against those lead-paint claims. In May and June alone it spent $228,000 on legal fees, a total that works out to more than $5,000 per day, including expenses."
Republicans in Congress are whipping up fear among Midwest farmers that EPA will burden them with tighter dust-control regulations. The only problem is that it isn't true.
"Arizona farmer Kevin Rogers has a new routine in the morning: Checking the wind. If it’s too high, he’s required to park his tractors and combines for the day to keep from kicking up dust that’s long been a major cause of air pollution in the Phoenix area.
"More Americans than last year believe the world is warming and the change is likely influenced by the Republican presidential debates, a Reuters/Ipsos poll said on Thursday.
The percentage of Americans who believe the Earth has been warming rose to 83 percent from 75 percent last year in the poll conducted Sept 8-12.
U.S. Republican presidential candidates, aside from Jon Huntsman, have mostly blasted the idea that emissions from burning fossil fuels and other human actions are warming the planet.
"The Environmental Protection Agency will miss an end-of-month target for proposing greenhouse gas regulations for power plants, the head of the EPA said on Wednesday."