Environment

Norfolk Southern railroad 1Q profit falls 18 pct

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Norfolk Southern's first-quarter profit fell 18 percent as severe winter weather slowed the railroad's shipments and coal revenue dropped 15 percent.

The Norfolk, Virginia, railroad earned $368 million, or $1.17 per share, during the January-March period. That's down from $450 million, or $1.41 per share, a year ago.

Last year's results were helped by a one-time $60 million real estate gain that boosted profits by 19 cents per share.

Radford leaving Greenpeace USA

Source: 
National Journal

Phil Radford, who became the youngest person to head the American operation for Greenpeace, is departing after four years of working on broadening the environmental group’s reach, National Journal reports.

China says quality of its groundwater has worsened

BEIJING (AP) — Nearly 60 percent of the groundwater at sites monitored throughout China is of poor or extremely poor quality, with excessive amounts of pollutants, according to an annual report by the Ministry of Land and Resources.

Tests at 4,778 monitoring sites across China showed a slight increase in polluted sites over last year, from 57.4 percent to 59.6 percent, according to the report, released late Tuesday.

Beijing has been responding to public demands for transparency in environmental data. Last week, the government released a summary of a years-long survey that shows nearly one-fifth of the country's farmland is contaminated, most of it with toxic metals.

Southwest drought becomes battlefield over endangered minnow

Source: 
The Wall Street Journal

Southwestern state officials' plans to manage scarce water resources during an ongoing drought may face legal action from an environmental group that says water siphoning has further threatened the endangered Rio Grande silvery minnow, The Wall Street Journal reports.

6 NY communities certified 'Climate Smart'

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The cities of Albany and Kingston are among the first six municipalities to achieve certification under the state's Climate Smart program, which is designed to support efforts to meet the challenges posed by climate change.

The other winners announced Tuesday were Orange County, the city of Watervliet in Albany County, and Cortlandt and Dobbs Ferry in Westchester County.

Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens said the Climate Smart program helps communities increase energy efficiency, promote recycling, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and become more resilient against storms and flooding.

Canada looks to limit whale protection as it weighs pipeline

Source: 
Reuters

Canada's Department of the Environment recommended removing humpback whales from its list of "threatened" species months before the government will rule on a pipeline permit that would boost oil shipments through the whales' habitat, Reuters reports.

Cowboy and Indian rally draws Keystone protesters to D.C.

Source: 
The Wall Street Journal

An all-week rally against the Keystone XL pipeline, organized by the Cowboy and Indian Alliance and green groups, drew nearly 200 protesters to the National Mall in Washington on Tuesday, The Wall Street Journal reports.

American Security Project forum on weather and national security

Washington, April 23, 2014, 12:30 pm

American Security Project forum, "Weather, Climate & National Security." Brig. Gen. Stephen A. Cheney, USMC (Ret). of ASP, Weather Channel's Bryan Norcross to speak.

South Fla. officials want more fed help to adapt coast to climate change

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) — South Florida officials testified Tuesday before a U.S. Senate subcommittee that they're already shouldering the burdens of rising sea levels and they need state and federal partners to do more to help adapt their coastline to the effects of climate change.

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., was the only member of the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation's subcommittee on science and space to make the trip to Miami Beach City Hall.

Man-made wetlands filter storm water at Ga. port

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Land once used to bury garbage near the Port of Savannah has been converted to a man-made ecosystem of marsh grasses and microbes, bugs and birds aimed at cleaning pollutants from rainwater before it reaches the Savannah River.

Georgia Ports Authority officials said Monday they spent $4 million installing 14 acres of artificial wetlands that meander for about a mile along the busy highway trucks travel to carry cargo to and from Savannah's docks. The work was finished about six months ago, but the port authority put off any public announcement until Earth Day.

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