July 31st - August 4th

ENN rounds up the most important and compelling environmental news stories of the week. In the news July 31st - August 4th: Hot summer nights, abandoned pets, offshore drilling, a solar laundromat, and much more.

Top Ten Articles of the Week

In the news July 31st - August 4th: Hot summer nights, abandoned pets, offshore drilling, a solar laundromat, and much more.

1. Major World Cities Team Up to Fight Global Warming
Launched by former President Bill Clinton's foundation, a new initiative will allow cities to pool their purchasing power and lower the price of energy-saving products and provide technical assistance to help them become more energy efficient.

2. Summer Nights Heating Up, Scientists Say
America in recent years has been sweltering through three times more than its normal share of extra-hot summer nights, government weather records show. And that is a particularly dangerous trend.

3. Israelis Work to Save Pets Abandoned Because of Hezbollah Attacks
When the fighting between Israel and Hezbollah guerrillas erupted more than three weeks ago, at least 300,000 of the 1 million Israelis living in the north fled the region, sometimes leaving their pets behind.

4. Experts Think DNA Technique May Save Whales
Australian researchers said Thursday that analyzing the skin flakes of some whales could help determine their age, a development that could invalidate one argument for killing them.

5. Oil Plant Leak Damages Third of Lebanon's Coast
Leaking oil from a bombed power station in Lebanon has damaged about a third of the country's coastline, the world's top maritime body said on Wednesday.

6. Federal Court Weighs Legality of Bush's Forest Service Road Plan
The Bush administration had the right to overturn a ban on road construction in untouched parts of national forests, but may have needed to weigh possible environmental effects at the same time, a federal judge said Tuesday.

7. Foul Water Put U.S. Swimmers' Health at Risk, Group Says
Foul water forced U.S. officials to issue health warnings or close beaches for more days than ever last year, an environmental group that is suing the government over water safety standards said Thursday.

8. Senate Approves More Offshore Drilling in Gulf, Sets up Confrontation with House
The Senate voted Tuesday to open 8.3 million acres of federal waters in the central Gulf of Mexico to oil and gas drilling, setting up a confrontation with the House which wants even more drilling in waters now off-limits.

9. Energy Department to Spend $250 Million on Fuel Study
The federal government will spend $250 million to help create two research centers that will focus on finding more efficient ways to produce cellulosic ethanol and other biofuels.

10. Fuel Costs Drive Coin Laundry into Sun-Energy Vanguard
Perched atop the hangar-sized laundry facility in this working class Chicago suburb, of Berwyn, Ill. is one of the largest, most cost-effective solar systems in the country.

Photo: Kennedy Space Center, Florida -- The striated reflection of a roseate spoonbill is the only sign of the water it stands in. The bird was spotted on Blackpoint Wildlife Drive in the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, northwest of NASA Kennedy Space Center. Credit: NASA.

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