Climate & Energy

Under pressure

E.U. considers pollution charges on imports from U.S. and other climate scofflaws

U.S. failure to enact limits on global warming emissions could cost American companies that export to the European Union. E.U. President Jose Manuel Barroso on Sunday said the European Commission is considering a charge on importers from nations without carbon limits. Companies from those countries may be required to buy carbon emissions allowances on exports into the E.U. This is intended to level the playing field with European companies who are already part of the European Emissions Trading System instituted to meet E.U. obligations under the Kyoto climate treaty. Barroso said the Commission could "require importers to obtain allowances (emissions permits) alongside European competitors ... There would be no point in pushing EU companies to cut emissions if the only result is that production and indeed pollution shifts to countries with no carbon disciplines at all."

Global warming will reduce U.S. hurricane landfall, says controversial new research

The argument over whether climate change is real has largely subsided — and, as nature abhors a vacuum, another tiff has risen to fill its …

Peeling away the covers

Boxer releases notes on secret EPA material

This just in: Sen. Barbara Boxer today released notes her staff took on some of the materials the Bush administration has tried to suppress regarding the decision to reject California's effort to enforce its greenhouse-gas standards for vehicles. These documents back up published reports that EPA chief Steve Johnson rejected the advice of his staff. More here.

Leap year

Climate legislation may be easier next year, but it won’t be easy

I argued the other day (and Chris Mooney argued here) that we’d be better off waiting until 2009 to push for climate legislation, since anything …

Testing the limits of coverup and privilege

More shenanigans from the EPA on the Cali waiver

Thurday will be an interesting test of the ability of Congress to crack a Bush administration coverup of a rotten and likely illegal action: its decision to reject California's effort to enforce its greenhouse-gas standards for motor vehicles. Sen. Barbara Boxer will put EPA Administrator Steve Johnson in the box to explore not only his indefensible decision, but his efforts to withhold information from Congress and cover up the truth about his pro-car company action. You will recall that right before Christmas, Johnson nixed the California request in a hastily called news conference where he tried, dishonestly, to spin his way out of a looming Washington Post exclusive. The lies continued last week as the EPA -- on the Friday of a holiday weekend, in an effort to minimize attention -- sent Boxer a letter and portions of various materials she sought. Boxer noted much of the relevant information was "whited out," as EPA Associate Administrator Christopher Bliley literally invoked the Nixon Watergate coverup as justification.

European Union unveils detailed plans to cut GHG emissions

European Union leaders today unveiled detailed draft plans to reduce E.U.-wide emissions 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2020. The plans would require utilities to …

This is a very big deal

Israel to build national electric car infrastructure

Photo: iStockphoto Project Better Place, in partnership with Renault/Nissan and the Israeli government, will build a national electric car infrastructure. A major manufacturer developing new electric vehicles with swappable batteries, and a plan to develop 500,000 battery recharging sites across the country? It's still January, and I'm ready to call this the most important environmental news story of 2008. I'm going to write more about this later, but do yourself a favor and read all about it here. This, friends, is the road to Middle-East peace. And it was announced on MLK day. How appropriate.

China will close thousands of small coal mines

China plans to close more than 5,000 small coal mines, accounting for about 8 percent of the country’s coal output, for safety reasons. Some 4,750 …

Now he tells us

All the sudden, Pete Domenici supports renewable energy

Wow. You don’t see gall this unmitigated every day. Here’s Pete Domenici, with a “Statement on Renewable Energy Tax Credits in Economic Stimulus Package”: Over …

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