Near $1M penalty for Vantage in Pa. over landslide

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

For illegal waste disposal and causing a landslide that diverted streams, shale gas driller Vantage Energy Appalachia LLC has been ordered to pay a penalty of $999,900 by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.

EPA coal ash standards a setback for environmental groups

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Six years ago, there was a massive spill of coal ash sludge in Tennessee. Three years later, tons of coal ash swept into Lake Michigan. Last February, there was another spill and gray sludge spewed into the Dan River in North Carolina.

With each disaster, environmentalists sounded alarms and called for the byproduct of burning coal to be treated as hazardous waste. On Friday, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released the first standards for the coal-burning waste, but they were hardly what environmental groups were hoping for.

The EPA ruled that the ash can be treated like regular garbage, meaning regulating the stuff will be left up to states and watchful citizens.

DC schools shut due to water contamination


Three schools in northwest Washington D.C. were shut down Thursday because the water in the area was contaminated with heavy motor oil, officials told WJLA.

EPA expected to treat coal ash waste like garbage

WASHINGTON (AP) — Environmentalists and industry experts widely expect the first federal standards for the waste generated from coal burned for electricity to treat the ash like household garbage, rather than a hazardous material.

The Obama administration is under court order to unveil the rule Friday, ending a six-year effort that began after a massive spill at a Tennessee power plant in 2008. Since then, the Environmental Protection Agency has documented coal ash waste sites tainting hundreds of waterways and underground aquifers in numerous states with heavy metals and other toxic contaminants.

EPA seeks comment on emissions rule for brick, clay

The Hill

The Environmental Protection Agency would limit the amount of mercury, dioxins, acid gas and other substances used in the process of making bricks and clay, under a prospective rule published in the Federal Register that is open for public comment for 60 days, The Hill reports.

House Science Democrats

McCabe touts ozone standard at hearing as GOP skips

The head of the Environmental Protection Agency's air pollution office on Wednesday defended the administration's new proposal to tighten limits on smog-forming ozone, at a post-adjournment Senate hearing boycotted by Republicans.

Janet McCabe, the EPA's acting assistant administrator for air and radiation, fielded friendly questions from the two lone Democrats to attend the hearing held by an Environment and Public Works Committee air and nuclear power panel.

Interior to regulate mine blasting releases

The Associated Press

Granting a petition from WildEarth Guardians, the Interior Department’s Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement says it will propose a rule on mine blasting that will protect the public from noxious fumes and gases – including nitrogen oxide -- that may be released, The Associated Press reports.

Senate Environment subcommittee hearing on EPA ozone proposal

Washington, December 17, 2014, 2:30 pm

Senate Environment and Public Works Clean Air and Nuclear Safety Subcommittee hearing, "EPA’s Proposed National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Ozone.” EPA Acting Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation Janet McCabe to testify. 

Study: 270,000 tons of plastic floating in oceans

HONOLULU (AP) — A new study estimates nearly 270,000 tons of plastic is floating in the world's oceans. That's enough to fill more than 38,500 garbage trucks.

The plastic is broken up into more than 5 trillion pieces, said the study published Wednesday in the scientific journal PLOS ONE.

Poll finds support for regulating methane emissions

The Hill

Nearly two-thirds of 1,000 voters surveyed in a poll commissioned by the American Lung Association back moves by the Environmental Protection Agency to reduce methane emissions, The Hill reports.


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