Policy

Oil

Feds issue emergency order on crude oil trains

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Transportation Department issued an emergency order Wednesday requiring that railroads inform state emergency management officials about the movement of large shipments of crude oil through their states and urged shippers not to use older model tanks cars that are easily ruptured in accidents, even at slow speeds.

The emergency order requires that each railroad operating trains containing more than 1 million gallons of crude oil — the equivalent of about 35 tank cars — from the booming Bakken region of North Dakota, Montana and parts of Canada provide information on the trains' expected movement, including frequency and county-by-county routes, to the states they traverse. The order also requires that railroads disclose the volume of oil being transported and how emergency responders can contact "at least one responsible party" at the railroad.

Forest Service retirees want enforcement director removed

Source: 
E&E

Dozens of retirees from the U.S. Forest Service have written to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, urging him to move David Ferrell, currently Law Enforcement and Investigations Director for the Service, E&E reports.

Climate change report focus is local

Source: 
National Journal

The major federal report released Tuesday throws a spotlight on what states and local communities will have to do to cope with the effects of climate change, noting that prospects for national and international action are limited, National Journal reports.

Gas industry rallies at Pa. Capitol, teased by critics

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A rally promoting Pennsylvania's booming natural gas drilling industry on Tuesday filled the front steps of the state Capitol, where the industry has an ally in the governor's office, lobbying muscle to flex with lawmakers and campaign cash to flash.

The show of support also brought out a handful of protesters and an airplane overhead with the banner, "shale gas=dirty energy."

Analysis: Efficiency bill no match for election push

No one should be surprised that the energy efficiency bill and Keystone approval legislation have quickly run into trouble in the Senate. Look at the calendar.

With the mid-term elections looming, the efficiency bill by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., and Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, has quickly attracted enough partisan baggage to put its prospects in serious doubt.

Federal report: Warming disrupts Americans' lives

WASHINGTON (AP) — Global warming is rapidly turning America into a stormy and dangerous place, with rising seas and disasters upending lives from flood-stricken Florida to the wildfire-ravaged West, according to a new U.S. federal scientific report.

Climate change's assorted harms "are expected to become increasingly disruptive across the nation throughout this century and beyond," the National Climate Assessment concluded Tuesday. The report emphasizes that warming and all-too-wild weather are changing daily lives, using the phrase "climate disruption" as another way of saying global warming.

House Natural Resources hearing on electricity rights of way on federal lands

Washington, May 7, 2014, 10:00 am

House Natural Resources Committee hearing, "Keeping the Lights On and Reducing Catastrophic Forest Fire Risk: Proper Management of Electricity Rights of Way on Federal Lands." Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, Bonneville Power Administration officials to testify.

House Oversight hearing on EPA and Inspector General investigation

Washington, May 7, 2014, 9:30 am

House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing, "Is EPA Leadership Obstructing It’s Own Inspector General?" Deputy Administrator Bob Perciasepe, EPA Office of Inspector General officials to testify.

Center for American Progress Action Fund

Partisan friction puts energy bill, Keystone vote in doubt

Senators voted on Tuesday to begin debate of an energy efficiency bill, but partisan storm clouds gathered that dimmed the outlook for passage of the measure and a separate vote on the Keystone XL pipeline.

Talks between Senate leaders to clear the way for the bill to advance beyond general debate were at an effective standstill late in the day, with no indications that a deal was in the works. The breakdown also threw into doubt a vote on a Keystone approval bill by Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., and Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D.

White House urging US CEOs to avoid Russian forum

WASHINGTON (AP) — Top executives at major United States companies are reconsidering or withdrawing their participation in a Russian international economic forum amid requests from the Obama administration in the face of the growing crisis in Ukraine.

Some executives have been pressed to cancel their attendance direct appeals from officials such as Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew and Valerie Jarrett, a senior adviser to President Barack Obama.

The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, held this year from May 22-24, is an annual affair prized by Russian President Vladimir Putin as validation of his country's economic influence.

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