Environmental Policy

Electric vehicle market predictions
December 25, 2013 08:39 AM - BOB SHETH, Electric Forum

While there is no doubt that the electric vehicle market has performed admirably during 2013, what does the future hold for the electric vehicle industry in 2014? As we come to the end of 2013 all eyes are now moving towards next year when many experts believe we will see developments which could change the whole landscape of the electric vehicle market. There are a number of initiatives under the surface, perhaps not grabbing the headlines as you might expect, which could come into play in 2014 and indeed we will be one year nearer an affordable electric vehicle priced around $30,000. There are very few people who would have guessed that 2013 would be so successful for the worldwide electric vehicle market especially as the year began on a fairly downward note. Not only did we have a number of setbacks for the industry, with regards to government investments, but the spat between Tesla and the New York Times did nobody any favours.

Environmentally a year in review
December 24, 2013 11:53 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

Environmentally 2013 is a remarkable year. A year in review marks the good and the bad. While impossible to be complete in limited space, below are some highlights in various areas.

A little less coal for China
December 24, 2013 09:02 AM - Kieran Cooke, Ecologist

Coal mining companies in Australia have been enjoying the good life in recent years, making millions of dollars from feeding the seemingly insatiable energy appetites of Asia's tiger economies - particularly that of China. But a new report by the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment (SSEE) at Oxford in the UK warns that Australia's coal mining party could be coming to an end.

Out with the old and in with the new--light bulbs that is!
December 23, 2013 09:25 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

As of January 1, 2014, 60 and 40 watt incandescent bulbs will no longer be manufactured or sold in the United States. Retailers will sell out what is on their shelves and not restock incandescents. George W. Bush signed the phase-out, which was called for by The Energy Independence and National Security Act, in 2007. The bill also includes improvements in energy efficiency for lighting and appliances many of which have been in stores for several years.

Los Angeles IS cool! Even the roofs!
December 23, 2013 07:24 AM - Gina-Marie Cheeseman, Triple Pundit

Los Angeles, the second most populous city in the U.S., has made history by becoming the first major city to require all new and refurbished homes have a "cool roof." On December 17, 2013 the Los Angeles City Council unanimously passed an update to its Municipal Building Code. A cool roof is one that "reflects and emits the sun's heat back to the sky instead of transferring it to the building below," according to the Cool Roof Rating Council.

Turkey constructing undersea water pipeline to Cyprus
December 22, 2013 10:09 AM - Karin Kloosterman, GreenProphet

Turkey has started constructing what will be the world’s longest undersea water pipeline. The 107 kilometer pipe will draw water from the Dragon River and unite the Turkish mainland with northern Cyprus in the Mediterranean Sea. Proponents are hoping it will unify the island, divided for the past 39 years. The suspended pipeline, moored to the floor of the seabed and well lower than where submarines can go, will carry freshwater from Turkish sources as much as 280 meters (919 feet) under water, Bloomberg is reporting. The first kilometer of pipe has been laid, in what will be a $484 million project. The divided island is one of the most water-stressed places on Earth, and Turkey and Turkish Cypriots in the north have bickered with Cyprus over offshore natural gas discoveries recently.

Climate change and livestock
December 21, 2013 07:46 AM - Roger Greenway, ENN

Climate change, and man's role in it is being extensively studied by universities and government agencies around the world. The impact of ruminant livestock has been studied, but the effects of livestock emissions may have been underestimated. A team of international scientists, including Oregon State University Professor William Ripple concludes that while climate change negotiators struggle to agree on ways to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, they have paid inadequate attention to other greenhouse gases associated with livestock, according to an analysis by an international research team. A reduction in non-CO2 greenhouse gases will be required to abate climate change, the researchers said. Cutting releases of methane and nitrous oxide, two gases that pound-for-pound trap more heat than does CO2, should be considered alongside the challenge of reducing fossil fuel use.

Brown trout crowding out native brook trout
December 20, 2013 08:50 AM - Editor, ENN

Native brook trout, Salvelinus fontinalis, populations could be at risk as a result of the introduction of Brown trout, Salmo trutta, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey study. Both species are valuable sport fish that coexist in many parts of the world due to stocking introductions.

Top conservation threats and opportunities
December 20, 2013 08:00 AM - Tamera Jones, Planet Earth Online

Governments being forced to choose between preventing climate change or averting a financial crisis, carbon solar cells as an alternative source of energy and accelerated loss of rhinos and elephants are among 15 conservation issues scientists say may become significant in 2014. Other threats and opportunities include emerging snake fungal disease, exploitation of Antarctica by nations such as China and Russia, and using synthetic biology to resurrect extinct species.

GMO Labeling Law in Connecticut
December 20, 2013 07:33 AM - Jan Lee, Triple Pundit

Connecticut's new GMO-labeling law is a first – in more than one way. With ceremonious flourish last week, Governor Dannel Malloy signed into law a bill that would require labeling on all products meant for human consumption that contain genetically modified ingredients (GMO). The legislation was passed by voters in June and actually received the governor's formal endorsement at that time.

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