The head of the United Nations climate group on Sunday praised the Obama administration's plan to curb U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, in advance of talks next year that are to yield a new post-2020 international climate change accord.
Christiana Figueres, the executive secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, pointed to the Environmental Protection Agency's planned regulations on carbon emissions from existing power plants as a positive step.
"They're actually doing quite well," she said of the administration on the weekly Platts Energy Week television program. Noting the power plant limits, she added, "the U.S. is doing a very good job in preparing what all of the other countries are currently preparing," in terms of national commitments toward a new deal.
EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy on Friday praised the new European Union carbon reduction target, calling it an indication that the Obama administration's climate plan is prompting more ambitious international action on climate change.
Still, she gave no hint about whether the U.S. will make a similarly aggressive pledge in the run-up to a planned new global climate pact next year.
A microbe that eats carbon and releases methane in its place – Methanoflorens stordalenmirensis – is multiplying in the Arctic melt and accelerating the global warming process, according to scientists writing in the journal Nature this week, The Washington Post reports.
Last year's frigid winter blast worsened propane shortages and threatened the electricity grid. Now it has the distinction of driving up U.S. energy-related carbon emissions for only the fourth time since 1990.
The Energy Department on Tuesday said greater heating demand boosted energy-related carbon emissions by 2.5 percent in 2013, to just under 5.4 billion metric tons.
The big contributor to those extra carbon emissions was coal, according to an annual report by the department's data wing, the Energy Information Administration.
Businesses like IKEA and Microsoft tell Reuters they plan to forge their own paths on green energy and greenhouse gas emissions reductions without domestic or international laws, citing a lack of certainty in next year's UN summit and new economic opportunities.
The environmental movement responded cautiously Wednesday to State Department envoy Todd Stern's roadmap for clinching a new United Nations climate deal that would avoid binding carbon reduction targets in favor of voluntary limits.
Representatives from two environmental groups stressed Stern's approach was expected and may succeed in securing a deal in Paris late next year. But they questioned whether enough will be done after 2020 by the international community to reduce emissions and avoid catastrophic global warming.
The U.S. wants a new United Nations climate deal next year that allows countries to set their own climate emissions cuts, State Department climate envoy Todd Stern said Tuesday, in his most expansive comments yet on the upcoming negotiations.
Stern's speech at Yale University largely confirmed reports that the Obama administration will back the so-called "name and shame" plan suggested by New Zealand that stresses voluntary commitments, combined with mandatory reporting and transparency.
Such a plan would also take the administration off the hook to submit a final deal to the Senate, where it would face substantial opposition.
WASHINGTON (AP) — People are changing Earth so much, warming and polluting it, that many scientists are turning to a new way to describe the time we live in. They're calling it the Anthropocene — the age of humans.
Though most non-experts don't realize it, science calls the past 12,000 years the Holocene, Greek for "entirely recent." But the way humans and their industries are altering the planet, especially its climate, has caused an increasing number of scientists to use the word Anthropocene to better describe when and where we are.
KENOSHA, Wis. (AP) — The planet has faced climate change forever and humans' pollution might not be to blame for shifts, Republican U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan said Monday during a debate against his Democratic challenger.
Ryan, favored to win re-election to his seat representing GOP-leaning southern Wisconsin, faced off against businessman Rob Zerban for an hourlong forum that touched on world events, domestic politics and the economy. One of the sharpest differences came when the moderator asked each candidate if he thought human activity is to blame for changes to the planet's climate.
The Obama administration may be backing away from its insistence that future coal-burning power plants use carbon capture technology, settling instead on a requirement for ultra-supercritical technology in the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Power Plan, E&E reports.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers argued that the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Water Rule lacks a sound scientific basis in memos made public by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Thursday, The Hill reports.
The Department of Energy has agreed to rework its proposed efficiency standards for walk-in freezers and coolers, according to the Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute, which says it has reached a settlement with the DOE over the issue, The Hill reports.
Sen. Martin Heinrich, D-N.M. says some other Democrats may be willing to go along with him and Sen. Angus King, I-Me., in a willingness to support legislation lifting the ban on U.S. crude exports if it also backs renewable energy such as wind and solar, E&E reports.
Despite data from the Energy Information Administration showing that U.S. crude production peaked at almost 9.7 million barrels a day in March, news of an increase in oil rig count this week piled more pressure on prices. U.S. benchmark crude slumped $1.40, or 2.9 percent, to settle at $47.12 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London, Brent dropped $1.10 to $52.26, its lowest settlement since January, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Chevron is getting nearly a third more oil and gas from its wells in the Permian Basin, and is paying less for oilfield services as well—but even so, its second quarter profits dove 90 percent on lower crude prices, FuelFix reports.
Hess has increased its production forecast for its Bakken Shale operations to up to 110,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, despite the company dropping the number of rigs it’s operating in the play, Platts reports.
Many witnesses testifying at the first Interior Department hearing on the future of the federal coal program—which was attended by Secretary Sally Jewell—said they wanted to see higher royalty rates to raise more money for U.S. taxpayers, High Country News reports.
Senior creditors for Alpha Natural Resources Inc. will loan money to the beleaguered Virginia-based coal company to help it get through bankruptcy, a filing for which could come as early as Monday, Bloomberg reports.
Although Thursday’s peak demand of 67,624 megawatts didn’t break the all-time record as the Electric Reliability Council of Texas had feared, it's been a huge week for demand, and the grid operator expects high usage throughout the summer, FuelFix reports.