Pollution

New auto standards: the start of Obama’s green revolution

President Obama’s announcement on tailpipe emissions Tuesday reaffirmed a commitment that goes beyond regulation of the auto industry. The move is part of a broader White House strategy to confront the risk of global warming while making green-collar jobs a centerpiece of the economy. For ordinary Americans, the resulting changes could be far-reaching. Lighter-weight vehicles appear likely to become more popular. More tax dollars are being tabbed for clean-energy technology. And for years to come, college students might find that some of the hottest job opportunities lie in helping to keep the planet cool.

Environmental Edge for Concrete Rail Ties Over Wooden Ones
May 20, 2009 09:58 AM - Henry Fountain, New York Times

Observant commuters may notice that in some rail systems, traditional wooden ties are being replaced with those made from reinforced concrete. Concrete ties may be stronger and more durable than wooden ones, but are they environmentally friendlier?

EPA-led Committee to Expand Help with Chesapeake Cleanup
May 20, 2009 09:23 AM - Water & Wastewater News

President Barack Obama last week signed an executive order creating a Federal Leadership Committee for the Chesapeake Bay to be chaired by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The executive order calls for EPA and six other federal agencies to coordinate and expand federal tools and resources to help speed cleanup of the nation’s largest estuary.

The first evidence of pre-industrial mercury pollution in the Andes
May 19, 2009 09:56 AM - University of Alberta

The study of ancient lake sediment from high altitude lakes in the Andes has revealed for the first time that mercury pollution occurred long before the start of the Industrial Revolution.

Obama to Tighten Fuel-Economy Standards
May 19, 2009 06:07 AM - Bryan Walsh, TIME

In a landmark decision on climate change and energy, President Barack Obama will announce tough new vehicle gas-mileage standards on Tuesday, the first ever national limits on greenhouse-gas emissions. The new policy, which was worked out between Washington, state governments and the auto industry, will require automakers to meet a minimum fuel-efficiency standard of 35.5 miles a gallon by model year 2016 — four years earlier than Congress currently requires.

Dredging of Hudson River Finally Begins
May 16, 2009 10:45 AM - Editor, ENN

After years of studies and negotiation, the dredging of PCB contaminated sediments has begun in the Hudson River. The Hudson River PCBs Site encompasses a nearly 200-mile stretch of the Hudson River in eastern New York State from Hudson Falls, New York to the Battery in New York City and includes communities in fourteen New York counties and two counties in New Jersey.

Climate Bill CO2 Allocations Strategy
May 16, 2009 10:37 AM - Reuters

The climate change bill moving through the U.S. Congress would initially give away the majority of permits to emit greenhouse gases to entities like electricity distributors and big energy users, such as steel and cement plants, in a cap and trade program.

Global Warming Inadvertently Curbed In Past By Lead Pollution, Scientists Find
May 14, 2009 09:53 AM - ScienceDaily

A team of scientists from the USA, Germany and Switzerland has found that particles containing lead are excellent seeds for the formation of ice crystals in clouds. This not only has a bearing on the formation of rain and other forms of precipitation but may also have an influence on the global climate.

Chemical Treaty Covers Additional Toxins
May 13, 2009 09:47 AM - Ben Block, Worldwatch Institute

An international treaty designed to eradicate the world's most harmful chemicals was expanded this past week to include nine additional pollutants.

Document Is Critical of E.P.A. on Clean Air
May 13, 2009 08:56 AM - John M. Broder, New York Times

An internal government memorandum that came to light on Tuesday challenged the scientific and economic basis of a proposed Environmental Protection Agency finding that climate-altering gases are a threat to human health and welfare.

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