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New EPA Rules Will Aim To Cut Methane Emissions By 40 Percent

EPA rules limit methanehe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will propose regulations on Tuesday aimed at cutting methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 40 to 45 percent over the next decade from 2012 levels, a source familiar with the issue said on Monday.

The regulations on methane are one part of the Obama administration's strategy to curb greenhouse gases and combat climate change.

The targets in Tuesday's proposal are in line with a January announcement by the Obama administration that it wanted to reduce oil and gas industry methane emissions by up to 45 percent from 2012 levels by 2025, the source said.


How Dick Cheney Kicked off an Era of Cancer Clusters and Eco-Disasters from Fracking

Dick cheneyThis past Saturday, marked a notable 10th anniversary. But it was certainly nothing to celebrate. Ten years ago, President George W. Bush signed the Energy Policy Act of 2005. The giant energy bill included massive giveaways for the fossil fuel, nuclear and ethanol industries and provided only token incentives for renewables and improved energy efficiency.

But the most infamous piece of the law was what is now commonly known as the “Halliburton Loophole,” an egregious regulatory exemption that ushered in the disastrous era of widespread oil and gas fracking that currently grips our nation.


Feds allow Shell to drill for oil in Arctic Ocean off Alaska

Shell Allowed to Drill off AlaskaThe federal government on Monday gave Royal Dutch Shell the final permit it needs to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean off Alaska’s northwest coast for the first time in more than two decades.

The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement announced that it approved the permit to drill below the ocean floor after the oil giant brought in a required piece of equipment to stop a possible well blowout.


Air pollution increases allergenicity of ragweed pollen

Pollution increases allergensExposure to nitrous oxide exhaust gases in the environment makes the common ragweed pollen more allergenic, according to new research.

Pollen allergies affect about 50 million people in the United States, and are the main cause of hay fever and other allergies.

"After studies have already shown that Ambrosia growing along highways is clearly more allergenic than Ambrosia plants growing away from road traffic, we could provide a reason for this," said Dr. Ulrike Frank, a researcher at the German Research Center for Environmental Health at Helmholtz Zentrum München, in a press release. "Since in nature and along roads hundreds of parameters could play a role, until now the situation was not entirely clear."


China Air Pollution Kills 1.6M Annually

China air pollutionAir pollution kills more than 4,400 people a day in China, a new study by Berkeley Earth claims, with a yearly total of more than 1.6 million deaths.

Using World Health Organization estimates, the authors estimate that pollution is responsible for as much as 17 percent of annual deaths in China.


Colorado mine spill threatens Lake Powell

Lake PowellA Colorado mine waste spill that has polluted rivers in three western states with 3 million gallons of toxic slurry could make its way to Lake Powell, a key reservoir and tourist draw for the region, the National Park Service warned Thursday.

The mustard-colored sludge, released accidentally by the Environmental Protection Agency during efforts to clean up Colorado’s Gold King mine, contains lead, arsenic, cadmium and other heavy metals — substances that can poison humans if ingested.


Federal Experts: Current El Niño Could Be Historically Strong

Godzilla El Nino possibleFederal meteorologists say the current El Niño is already the second strongest on record for this time of year and could be one of the most potent weather changers of the past 65 years.

The National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration recorded unusual warmth in the Pacific Ocean in the last three months. El Niño is a heating of the equatorial Pacific that changes weather worldwide, mostly affecting the United States in winter.


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