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Category Archives: Environmental Law

U.S. Chemical Safety Board Releases Final Investigative Report on 2010 Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

‘The Deepwater Horizon spill that took place on April 20, 2010 in the Macondo Prospect oil field has been described as “one of the largest environmental disasters in U.S. history.” The explosion and subsequent spill took the lives of 11 workers, seriously injured 17, and leaked a reported 5 million barrels of oil into the GulfContinue Reading

New Mapping Tool from EPA

Via e360Digest: “The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) recently launched a mapping system that allows users to explore the landscape of energy sources and power plant distribution across the nation. Among the most striking visualizations is this map showing the widespread distribution of natural gas power plants, marking the fossil fuel’s growing use as an energy source.Continue Reading

NOAA Annual Greenhouse Gas Index

NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory, James.H.Butler; Stephen.A.Montzka; Updated Spring 2014. “The Annual Green House Gas Index (AGGI) is a measure of the warming influence of long-lived trace gases and how that influence is changing each year. The index was designed to enhance the connection between scientists and society by providing a normalized standard that can be easily understoodContinue Reading

U.S. Rail Transportation of Crude Oil: Background and Issues for Congress

CRS - U.S. Rail Transportation of Crude Oil: Background and Issues for Congress, May 5, 2014 “North America is experiencing a boom in crude oil supply, primarily due to the growth of heavy crude production in the Canadian oil sands1and the recent expansion of shale oil production in North Dakota, Montana, and Texas. North American productionContinue Reading

Transparency and accountability key for Bay restoration success

Milestone Analysis: Pollution Reduced, Agriculture and Urban Runoff Reductions Falling Short: “An analysis of selected milestones, conducted by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) and the Choose Clean Water Coalition (CCWC), found that pollution is being reduced. However many jurisdictions fell short in implementing practices that reduce pollution from agricultural sources and urban and suburban pollutedContinue Reading

Report: Actions to Improve Chemical Facility Safety and Security – A Shared Commitment

Via EPA – On August 1, 2013, the president issued Executive Order (EO) 13650 – Improving Chemical Facility Safety and Security - to improve the safety and security of chemical facilities and reduce the risks of hazardous chemicals to facility workers and operators, communities, and responders. Chemicals and the facilities that manufacture, store, distribute and use them are essentialContinue Reading

EPA Clean Power Plan Proposed Rule

“On June 2, 2014, EPA proposed a commonsense plan to cut carbon pollution from power plants. States, cities and businesses across the country are already taking action to address the risks of climate change. EPA’s proposal builds on those actions and is flexible – reflecting that different states have a different mix of sources andContinue Reading

New Carbon Pollution Standards Can Save Americans $37.4 billion on Electric Bills

“The first-ever limits on carbon pollution from power plants can save American households and business customers $37.4 billion on their electric bills in 2020 while creating more than 274,000 jobs, a Natural Resources Defense Council analysis shows. Those are among the tangible potential benefits of the anticipated limits on carbon pollution spewing from the nation’s coal-Continue Reading

New Technologies Making It Easier To Protect Threatened Species

“Human actions have pushed extinction rates to 1,000 times faster than the natural rate, but a new Duke University-led study finds that emerging technologies could give scientists and policymakers a more efficient way to identify the species at greatest risk and take steps to protect them before it’s too late. “Online databases, smartphone apps, crowd-sourcing andContinue Reading

GEF Countries Meet with a Strong Mandate for Environmental Action

“The Global Environment Facility (GEF) Operations Council and Assembly meet this week with a new record level of pledges to support developing countries in their work to prevent environmental degradation. A new publication, When Foundational Acts Generate Significant Impacts, looks at GEF projects channeled through the World Bank Group, from support for low-carbon cities and renewable energy sources toContinue Reading

The Cost of Air Pollution: Health Impacts of Road Transport

OECD – May 21, 2014: “Outdoor air pollution kills more than 3 million people across the world every year, and causes health problems from asthma to heart disease for many more. This is costing societies very large amounts in terms of the value of lives lost and ill health. Based on extensive new epidemiological evidenceContinue Reading

New GAO Reports – Federal Software Licenses, Foster Children, Freshwater

FEDERAL SOFTWARE LICENSES: Better Management Needed to Achieve Significant Savings Government-Wide, GAO-14-413: Published: May 22, 2014. Publicly Released: May 22, 2014: “The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the vast majority of agencies that GAO reviewed do not have adequate policies for managing software licenses. While OMB has a policy on a broader information technology (IT) managementContinue Reading