Tenn. ash spill larger than thought
January 2, 2009 08:09 AM - Boston.com

A coal ash spill that blanketed residential neighborhoods and contaminated nearby rivers in Roane County, Tenn., earlier this week is more than three times larger than initially estimated, the Tennessee Valley Authoritysaid. Coal ash, a byproduct of burning coal, contains toxic heavy metals like arsenic, lead, and selenium that can cause cancer and neurological problems.

Can aircraft trails affect climate?
January 1, 2009 09:48 AM - Nature News

Grounding planes after the 11 September attacks may not have caused unusual temperature effects. When all commercial air traffic in the United States was grounded after the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, scientists got an unexpected opportunity to test ideas about the climate effects of the condensation trails left behind by jets.

Beijing's New Year resolution: scrap polluting cars
December 31, 2008 09:09 AM - Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) - Beijing, beset by choking traffic and heavy air pollution, will take more than 350,000 high-polluting vehicles off inner city streets from Thursday, local media reported. China's capital has banned cars from the roads on one out of five weekdays based on the number of license plates as part of a six-month trial in the wake of broader restrictions during the Olympic Games in August that cleared skies and eased congestion.

Green Goal of 'Carbon Neutrality' Hits Limit
December 30, 2008 08:47 AM - The Wall Street Journal

ROUND ROCK, Texas -- Computer giant Dell Inc. said this summer that it has become "carbon neutral," the latest step in its quest to be "the greenest technology company on the planet." What that means, and what it doesn't, may surprise Dell customers and other consumers who have been bombarded with bold environmental promises from major corporations.

Federal appeals court backpedals on critical power plant standards
December 29, 2008 08:57 AM - Blog for Clean Air

This could prove a holiday gift to breathers. A federal appeals court is backpedaling on its earlier decision to vacate critical EPA rules designed to reduce power plant emissions – the so-called Clean Air Interstate Rule. (CAIR)

Responses to plastic pollution
December 29, 2008 08:54 AM - The New Nation

After seeing through the dreadful negative effects, movements have already been launched against plastic pollution. For instance, a United States law, implementing an international agreement called MARPOL Annex V, became effective on December 31, 1988. It prohibits the disposal of plastics into the marine environment and requires ports to provide reception facilities for ship-generated plastic wastes. More recently, in response to increasing public concern over environmental hazards caused by plastic, many countries are conducting various solid waste management programmes including plastic waste reduction by development of bio-degradable plastic materials.

Bush eyes oil reserves off California coast
December 29, 2008 08:26 AM - www.sfgate.com

The federal government is taking steps that may open California's fabled coast to oil drilling in as few as three years, an action that could place dozens of platforms off the Sonoma, Mendocino and Humboldt coasts, and raises the specter of spills, air pollution and increased ship traffic into San Francisco Bay. Millions of acres of oil deposits, mapped in the 1980s when then-Interior Secretary James Watt and Energy Secretary Donald Hodel pushed for California exploration, lie a few miles from the forested North Coast and near the mouth of the Russian River, as well as off Malibu, Santa Monica and La Jolla in Southern California.

New York creates statewide recycling program for plastic bags
December 29, 2008 08:12 AM - ASH Institute

The American Chemistry Council today applauded New York Governor David Paterson's decision to sign legislation (A.11725/S.8643-A) that expands consumers' access to recycle plastic bags and product wraps statewide. The new law requires all large grocers and retailers that offer plastic bags to their customers to provide collection bins for a wide variety of plastic bags and wraps, thereby dramatically increasing recycling opportunities across the state.

Now China is growing slower, can it grow cleaner?
December 24, 2008 09:08 AM - Reuters

China's dramatic economic slowdown is paying an environmental dividend, slashing emissions levels from the world's biggest greenhouse gas emitter as its highest-carbon industries begin to contract. The question Beijing will soon face is how it will manage to sustain those curbs once growth is restored. Some say it's moving in the right direction; others are far less certain, as the government, facing a threat to the economic miracle on which its credibility was built, rushes to pump growth up again.

Obama Could Miss the Bus on Raising Gas Tax
December 23, 2008 09:30 AM - Evan O'Neil , Policy Innovations

As supporters of Barack Obama celebrated around the world on November 4, climate activists were particularly moved to hear him declare that helping a "planet in peril" would be one of his administration's top priorities. Since then he has restated his commitment to renewing America's leadership in international climate negotiations, and he has pledged to pioneer a "hybrid economy" where protecting health and the environment is not at odds with prosperity.

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