Pollution

House members seek to block EPA carbon limits
February 27, 2010 10:06 AM - Reuters

Two senior Democrats in the U.S. House filed a resolution to block the Obama administration from regulating greenhouse gases on its own if a climate change bill fails to pass Congress soon. The resolution of disapproval, filed on Thursday, is identical to a controversial resolution by Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski. Both resolutions offer a fairly quick way to overturn Environmental Protection Agency proposals to regulate emissions of carbon dioxide and other gases blamed for global warming.

Environmental disaster looms from River Po oil spill
February 26, 2010 07:05 AM - Agence France-Presse, The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD)

A giant oil slick threatened wildlife, fishing grounds and tourist spots Thursday as it moved down the Po, Italy's longest river, towards the sea, defying all efforts to stem its progress. Environment Minister Stefania Prestigiacomo called the spill, blamed on saboteurs who broke into a disused refinery and opened valves, "a true attack on the environment and on citizens' health," the ANSA news agency reported. Several kilometers (miles) long, the slick was halfway between the cities of Cremona and Mantua late Thursday, having covered about 200 kilometres (125 miles) since it was released into a tributary of the Po early Tuesday.

Lobsters are dying in Bay of Fundy
February 19, 2010 09:29 AM - sync.sympatico, CBC

Fishermen are furious a pesticide normally used for agriculture ended up in the Bay of Fundy and may have contributed to the death of hundreds of lobsters. Dead lobsters first appeared last November in Grand Manan's Seal Cove, and five days later a fisherman 50 kilometres away in Pocologan found more dead lobsters in his traps. Soon after that discovery, another 816 kilograms of weak or dead lobster were discovered in Deer Island's Fairhaven Harbour.

DDT found in children from Mexico and Central America
February 18, 2010 03:37 PM - Lucina Melesio, SciDevNet

Children from several Latin American countries have traces of the pesticide DDT in their blood, according to a study coordinated by the Pan American Health Organization. The children studied belong to 11 rural communities in Mesoamerica (Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama). In all but Guatemala, the researchers found exposure to DDT.

Engine Emissions
February 18, 2010 01:40 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

Most people are familiar with automobile air emissions. Perhaps one day there will only be electric cars and no car air emissions. But there are many on other engines in use by commercial and industrial operations that may cause air emissions. In general these are called reciprocating internal combustion engines (RICE). On February 17, 2010, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule that will further reduce emissions of toxic air pollutants from existing diesel powered stationary reciprocating internal combustion engines.

Reflections on Copenhagen: The Economics of Green
February 16, 2010 06:30 AM - Dennis Salazar, Triple Pundit

Last year's disappointing climate summit in Copenhagen demonstrated if not proved two important things about "saving the earth": 1. Sustainability is a very emotional topic for some 2. Sustainability is a financial topic for most Unfortunately, what transpired in Copenhagen is probably the rule, rather than the exception. It was disheartening to realize the events probably represent and reflect the domestic and world population's perspective on saving the environment. Perhaps due to decades of protesting, a wide array of real or perceived injustices, unruly public demonstrations have for the most part become unproductive. Even the nightly news has lost interest in well meaning protesters being hauled away by force. I recall the first time I saw an eco activist chained to a tree in the seventies, and thinking "how cool is that." It did not matter what the cause was, I really admired the commitment.

Forecast on Climate Change Legislation Cloudy
February 15, 2010 06:39 AM - Richard Matthews, Global Warming is Real

The President remains committed to advancing his stalled legislative agenda. Addressing the Democratic National Committee in Washington last Saturday, Obama insisted he is not going to let go of his aspirations for America. "I'm not going to walk away from the American people," he said. "I'm not going to walk away on any challenge." However, Senators from Red States, Coal States, and Rust Belt States are concerned about job losses and increased costs associated with a climate bill. Many lawmakers are also concerned about controlling the emissions of rapidly developing nations like India and China.

How Ground Water Contamination Spreads
February 12, 2010 11:23 AM - Andy Soos, ENN

Why are some wells contaminated and some are not? All wells are not equally vulnerable to contamination because of differences in three factors: the general aquifer chemistry, groundwater age, and paths within aquifer systems that allow water and contaminants to reach a well. More than 100 million people in the United States receive their drinking water from public groundwater systems, which can be vulnerable to naturally occurring contaminants such as radon, uranium, arsenic, and man made compounds, including fertilizers, septic-tank leachate, solvents and gasoline hydrocarbons.

SOLAR-TERRESTRIAL ATMOSPHERIC INTERACTIONS: A FRESH, SPARKY LOOK
February 10, 2010 08:25 PM - Themis Chronis, for ENN

We live in a strongly climate-oriented era, where each one of us is called to choose between sides; are we among the "believers" or the "infidels" of the "Global Warming?". Two decades ago, a part of the scientific community started engaging in intense discussions around the "unusual" temperature trends which, for the northern hemisphere, had been going undoubtedly uphill. The first serious counter arguments regarding the validity of these findings targeted the inherited errors that all observational tools possess. New observations and improved algorithms started to appear fairly quickly, a fact that partially appeased debates and concerns. Skeptics of the global warming theory try to find other kinds of evidence to second-guess the mainstream CO2 increase and steer away from anthropocentric related theories. And suddenly, along came a cloud...

Biodiesel as an Alternate Fuel
February 10, 2010 09:18 AM - Andy Soos, ENN

Biodiesel refers to a vegetable oil or animal fat based diesel fuel consisting of long chain alkyl is typically made by chemically these oils with an alcohol. Biodiesel is meant to be used in standard diesel engines and is thus distinct from the vegetable and waste oils used to fuel converted diesel engines. Biodiesel can be used alone, or blended with petrodiesel. There was a recent White House’s announcement calling for expanded production of biofuels (36 billion gallons by 2022 to be exact). But more biofuels is only part of the equation when it comes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and our reliance on petroleum carbon based fuels. Vehicles must be ready and sometimes converted to this usage. Enterprise Holdings just announced that it will convert its entire fleet of Alamo Rent A Car, Enterprise Rent-A-Car and National Car Rental airport shuttle buses to biodiesel by spring of this year. That’s more than 600 buses throughout more than 50 North American markets.

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