Pollution

Beijing introduces cleaner fuel standards
January 1, 2008 08:36 PM - Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - China has introduced cleaner fuel standards in its capital Beijing, its latest effort to curb the city's notorious pollution ahead of the Olympic Games in August. Under the new standards, retailers will be required to supply gasoline and diesel equivalent to the Euro IV standard, a move that will cut emissions of acid rain-causing sulphur dioxide by 1,840 tonnes, the China Daily said on Wednesday, citing Beijing's Environmental Protection Bureau.

Chile's Llaima volcano erupts, no injuries reported
January 1, 2008 07:27 PM - Reuters

SANTIAGO (Reuters) - The Llaima volcano in southern Chile erupted on Tuesday, sending a huge plume of smoke into the air, but there were no reports of damages or injuries, emergency officials said. Local television images showed a column of smoke visible from many miles away.

China to crack down on unlicensed production, sale of food
December 31, 2007 11:11 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

Beijing - China will launch another nationwide campaign on Jan. 1 next year to crack down on unlicensed production and sale of food, in a fresh effort to ensure food safety, the country's top quality inspection watchdog said.

Nobel Expert: Car Industry Can Reach, Exceed New Standards
December 31, 2007 10:54 PM - UC Davis, Newswire

Davis California - UC Davis auto fuels authority Daniel Sperling says that despite years of automakers "kicking and screaming" about the new mileage standards that Congress set this week, the industry should be able to reach -- even exceed -- 35 mpg by 2020.

Utilities Remind Customers: Protect Home From Carbon Monoxide
December 31, 2007 10:07 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

SAN FRANCISCO - Many customers are turning gas furnaces on to stay warm as cold winter weather arrives in force. The west coast utility Pacific Gas and Electric Company reminds customers nationwide to make sure all gas furnaces and appliances inside the home are in proper working order. Gas appliances that do not burn properly can produce unsafe concentrations of carbon monoxide, a colorless, tasteless and odorless gas that can cause serious illness and even death if not detected.

U.S. Organic Cotton Production Gains Ground
December 31, 2007 10:00 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

GREENFIELD, Mass. - U.S. acreage planted to organic cotton in 2006 increased 14% from that planted the previous year, according to a 2007 survey conducted by the Organic Trade Association (OTA) and funded by a grant from Cotton Incorporated.

No More Free Ride: Global Warming Pollution from Ships Must be Regulated
December 31, 2007 11:24 AM - , Oceana

Despite their impact on the global climate, greenhouse gases and other global warming pollution from ships remain unregulated by the U.S. Government. These emissions also have not been limited by the Kyoto Protocol or any other international treaty. However, ships are a major source of global warming pollutants, including carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide and black carbon.

Taking on the E-Waste Problem
December 31, 2007 11:11 AM - Andrew Burger, Triple Pundit

Ongoing growth in volumes and disposal rates of electronic waste and scrap pose consumers, governments and industry with a growing threat to environmental health and safety. In its 2002 report “Exporting Harm,” the Seattle arm of the Basel Action Network revealed that about 80 percent of electronic waste brought to recyclers in the US is in fact not recycled here but exported to Asia, most likely China, where “it is melted down in primitive, environmentally damaging conditions including the cooking and melting of computer circuit boards in vast quantity.”

Smokers butt out in Germany and France
December 31, 2007 09:15 AM - Reuters

BERLIN/PARIS (Reuters) - For years, anyone needing a nicotine fix in a German pub or French cafe didn't even have to light up -- the air was already so full of smoke that they only had to open their mouth and inhale. But that all changes on Tuesday when strict new bans take effect in two of Western Europe's final bastions for smokers, Germany and France. There was long and fierce resistance to the prohibitions on tobacco that other countries imposed.

“The Story Of Stuff ” Challenges American Consumerism
December 30, 2007 10:57 AM - www.storyofstuff.com

Throughout the 20-minute film, activist Annie Leonard, the film’s narrator and an expert on the materials economy, examines the social, environmental and global costs of extraction, production, distribution, consumption and disposal. Her illustration of a culture driven by stuff allows her to isolate the moment in history where she says the trend of consumption mania began. The “Story of Stuff” examines how economic policies of the post-World War II era ushered in notions of consumerism — and how those notions are still driving much of the U.S. and global economies today.

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