Montana governor highlights efficiency, clean coal goals at conference

Independent Record

At a conference marking the tenth anniversary of Montana's renewable portfolio standard, Gov. Steve Bullock said the focus in the future should be on promoting energy efficiency and clean coal technology, the Independent Record reports.

Obama's trade agenda clears key Senate hurdle

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama's trade agenda cleared a key Senate hurdle and advanced toward likely passage on Thursday despite opposition from most Democrats.

The 62-38 vote capped a long, tense roll call on a measure that would allow Obama to negotiate trade deals that Congress can accept or reject, but not change. If opponents had garnered three more votes, they would have been able to block the legislation with a procedural move.

Texan who paid $350K kills endangered black rhino in Africa

DALLAS (AP) — A Texan who bid $350,000 to hunt a black rhinoceros in Africa in what was billed as a conservation fundraiser has killed one of the endangered animals.

The Dallas Safari Club confirmed Thursday that Corey Knowlton killed a black rhino this week in Namibia. Executive director Ben Carter says Knowlton shot a mature black rhino bull, who was older and identified as detrimental to the herd.


A look at how California spill compares with 1969 disaster

GOLETA, Calif. (AP) — An oil slick stretched across 9 miles of coastal waters Thursday after a pipeline rupture spilled thousands of gallons of sticky, stinking crude just north of Santa Barbara. Crews are working around the clock to rake, skim and vacuum it up.

The coastline was the scene of a much larger spill in 1969 — the largest in U.S. waters at the time. Here are some things to know about the two spills:

UN climate fund passes financing threshold with Japan deal

RIGA, Latvia (AP) — The U.N.'s fund for climate aid to developing countries says it now has enough cash to kick off projects before a key climate summit in Paris.

Green Climate Fund officials said a Japanese commitment Thursday of $1.5 billion pushed the fund's resources beyond the threshold at which they can start financing projects in developing countries.

States reluctant to help BLM enforce fracking rules


Wyoming and Utah have refused a request by the Bureau of Land Management to help it enforce its plan to regulate fracking on federal land, while North Dakota has expressed uncertainty, E&E reports.

Oil, gas auction in Mexico pitched at smaller targets


Last week’s auction of onshore oil and gas leases in Mexico was aimed at smaller producers, FuelFix reports.

House passes bill to make research tax break permanent

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House voted Wednesday to make permanent a generous tax credit that rewards businesses for investing in research and development, setting the stage for another showdown over taxes.

The tax credit is part of a package of more than 50 temporary tax breaks that routinely expires every year or two, only to be renewed by Congress.

Obama's trade allies scramble to line up 60 Senate votes

WASHINGTON (AP) — Supporters of President Barack Obama's trade agenda are scrambling to keep Senate foes from killing it Thursday before a full-blown debate even begins.

They need 60 votes in the 100-member Senate to keep a mostly Democratic-driven filibuster from blocking further action.

California water cuts move to those with century-old rights

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California farmers who hold rights to water that date as far back as the Gold Rush are bracing for their first state-ordered conservation in decades, as a record drought prompts some of the deepest cuts yet in the country's most productive agricultural state.

After telling cities and towns to slash use by 25 percent and curtailing water deliveries to some farmers and others, state officials said Wednesday they would start mandatory cuts this week to the state's oldest rights holders, historically spared from water restrictions.


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