April 15, 2014 |
Greenhouse gas emissions in the United States dropped by 3.4% in 2012, federal environmental regulators reported Tuesday. The decline over the previous year was driven mostly by power plant operators switching from coal to natural gas, improvements in fuel efficiency for transportation and a warmer winter that cut demand for heating, according to an inventory released by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The analysis shows the nation released the equivalent of 6,526 million metric tons of carbon dioxide in 2012, the lowest level since 1994.
April 14, 2014 |
Drilling operations at several natural gas wells in southwestern Pennsylvania released methane into the atmosphere at rates that were 100 to 1,000 times greater than federal regulators had estimated, new research shows. Using a plane that was specially equipped to measure greenhouse gas emissions in the air, scientists found that drilling activities at seven well pads in the booming Marcellus shale formation emitted 34 grams of methane per second, on average. The Environmental Protection Agency has estimated that such drilling releases between 0.04 grams and 0.30 grams of methane per second.
April 12, 2014
Re "A crude energy puzzle," April 7 Regarding all the happy talk about the oil trove trapped in the Monterey Shale formation, perhaps there really are billions of barrels in recoverable fossil fuel underneath California. But if we burn the stuff, where exactly should we put the carbon dioxide? Last I heard, the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide was greater than 400 parts per million. This is a big science experiment because that is an increase from 270 parts per million before the widespread burning of fossil fuels began.
March 16, 2014 |
DE KALB, Miss. - Looming like a spaceship over pine and sweet-gum forest, the high-tech power plant under construction in rural Kemper County is a $5-billion wager on an energy future that includes coal. The Kemper plant is scheduled to open this year as the first in the United States to ramp up technology to remove carbon dioxide emissions on a large scale. If it works as planned, up to 65% of the plant's potential carbon dioxide emissions would be removed. But if its progress is any indication, building a coal plant that can sharply reduce greenhouse gas pollution is a white-knuckle ride.
February 24, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court, in a hearing Monday, sounded ready to reject a set of disputed permitting rules designed by the Obama administration to restrict carbon emissions from plants and factories. But a majority of justices also agreed that the Environmental Protection Agency has broad authority to reduce greenhouse gases coming from cars, trucks and power plants. The probable split outcome was reflected in the justices' questions and comments during oral arguments, suggesting their final decision later this year could yield a setback for the EPA rules, but not a far-reaching defeat for the agency's climate-change policy.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 19, 2014 |
A group of California scientists Wednesday urged state lawmakers to adopt a steeper target for cutting greenhouse gas emissions after 2020. "California's leadership is needed now more than ever to address the risks of a dangerously warming climate," the Union of Concerned Scientists said in a letter signed by more than 100 scientists, researchers and economists and sent to Gov. Jerry Brown and state legislators. The state is on track to meet its obligation to cut carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases to 1990 levels by 2020, according to the California Air Resources Board.