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EPA plans to scale back federal protection of waterways

EPA to scale back protection of waterwaysThe Environmental Protection Agency plans to scale back the number of U.S waterways that receive federal protection, pleasing farmers but upsetting ecology-focused groups.

The changes would come from proposed revisions to the EPA's Water of the United States rule, released late last week. That rule identifies the types of waterways over which the federal government has regulatory control.

The EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers are seeking public comment on the revamped rule before it can be adopted. But the battle lines already are well-drawn, with farm and industry groups celebrating the new plan and environmentalists condemning it.


Earth just experienced one of the warmest years on record

Global warming 2018Last year was the fourth-hottest year ever recorded, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA, which means that the past five years have been the five warmest years in the modern record.

NOAA and NASA discussed 2018's global temperature and climate in a joint news conference Wednesday; both agencies maintain independent data that goes back to 1880 to monitor temperatures around the globe. The announcement was delayed several weeks due to the government shutdown that resulted in many NOAA and NASA employees being furloughed.

If it seems like you've heard this before, you have: Eighteen of the hottest 19 years have occurred since 2001.


Senators call on EPA to restrict key drinking water contaminants

Senators ask for clean waterA  bipartisan group of 20 senators has called on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate allowable drinking water levels of two chemicals linked to various health problems.

The letter was sent Friday by Sens. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) and others, days after Politico reported that the EPA is expected to decide against setting drinking water limits for perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) as part of an upcoming national strategy for dealing with the class of chemicals known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).


Erin Brockovich slams Trump administration over plan to stop regulating toxic chemicals

Erin Brockovich

Environmental activist and consumer advocate Erin Brockovich is slamming the Trump administration over reports that it has decided not to regulate two toxic chemicals commonly found in the public water supply.

“I think it’s absolutely foolish that the administration does not take water quality seriously,” Brockovich told Hill.TV’s Krystal Ball during an interview Thursday that aired on “Rising.”

Politico reported Monday that the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) is looking to no longer enforce utility companies to test or remove the chemicals PFOA and PFOS from their water supply under the Clean Water Act.

Brockovich warns that the two chemicals in question are not only dangerous, but also heavily prevalent throughout the water system across the country.


'Life-threatening' Arctic blast to freeze nearly 200 million as Polar Vortex attacks U.S.

Polar VortexThough a fierce blast of cold air froze the central U.S. Friday, what's coming next week will be even worse:

Using words such as "life-threatening," "dangerous," "brutal," and "unprecedented," the National Weather Service is preparing us for the extreme cold that's forecast to roar into the U.S. next week.


Yellowstone's forests could be grassland in just a few decades

Yellowstone could be grassland in a few decades The combination of warming, drought and wildfire could turn Yellowstone's forests into grassland by the middle of the century, scientists warn.

Wildfires are a normal occurrence in most forests in the American West. Large fires are less common. In Yellowstone, big blazes rip through the park once every 100 to 300 years. Flora and fauna in Yellowstone are adapted to periodic large fires, but they need time to recover and regenerate.

But according to a new study, large fires are becoming more common, and hotter, drier conditions are making it more difficult for plant and animal species to repopulate ecosystems scorched by wildfire.

As prolonged droughts, extreme heatwaves and bigger fires become the new norm, scientists worry Yellowstone's forests will be grassland in just a few decades.



Ocean temperatures rising faster than thought in 'delayed response' to global warming: scientists

Ocean temperatures rising

The world’s oceans are rising in temperature faster than previously believed as they absorb most of the world’s growing climate-changing emissions, scientists said Thursday.

Ocean heat — recorded by thousands of floating robots — has been setting records repeatedly over the last decade, with 2018 expected to be the hottest year yet, displacing the 2017 record, according to an analysis by the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

That is driving rising sea levels as oceans warm and expand and is helping fuel more intense hurricanes and other extreme weather, scientists warn.

TVNL Comment: Hey, Donald....THIS is the real crisis that you have personally contributed to by leaving the Paris Accord.  Shame.



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