RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Duke Energy agreed Tuesday to pay North Carolina regulators $7 million to settle allegations of groundwater pollution at its coal ash pits and to perform accelerated cleanups costing millions of dollars at four sites.
The agreement came as lawyers for the country's largest electric company and the state were preparing courtroom arguments regarding a $25 million fine over groundwater pollution at a Wilmington plant, the state's largest-ever penalty for environmental damage.
WASHINGTON (AP) — In stock car racing, there's an old adage: If you ain't cheatin', you ain't tryin'. You could say the same sometimes for auto makers up against stricter environmental rules.
Volkswagen is far from the first company to stand accused of trying to game required emissions tests. Almost since the passage of the Clean Air Act in 1970, major manufacturers of cars, trucks and heavy equipment have been busted for using what regulators call "defeat devices" — typically programing a vehicle's on-board computer to boost horsepower or fuel mileage by belching out dirtier exhaust than allowed.
Researchers and health experts tell The New York Times that Volkswagen’s deception over diesel emissions testing contributed to air pollution, which could be estimated to have contributed to more than 100 deaths.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Facing a court-ordered deadline, the Obama administration is preparing to finalize stricter emissions limits on smog-forming pollution linked to asthma and respiratory illness.
The move fulfills a long-delayed campaign promise by President Barack Obama, but sets up a fresh confrontation with Republicans already angry about the administration's plans to curb carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants and to regulate small streams and wetlands.
BERLIN (AP) — German prosecutors on Monday opened an investigation against former Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn to establish what his role was in the emissions-rigging scandal that has shaken the world's largest automaker.
The investigation will concentrate on the suspicion of fraud committed through the sale of vehicles with manipulated emissions data, and aims to determine who was responsible, prosecutors in Braunschweig said in a statement.
STOCKHOLM (AP) — Brazil on Sunday became the first major developing country to pledge an absolute reduction in greenhouse gas emissions for an envisioned global pact against climate change.
The world's seventh biggest greenhouse gas polluter said it would cut its emissions by 37 percent by 2025 from 2005 levels by reducing deforestation and boosting the share of renewable sources in its energy mix. It also indicated an "intended reduction" of 43 percent by 2030.
PARIS (AP) — Guidebooks rarely mention it, but Paris is one of the most polluted cities in the rich world. The Eiffel Tower is periodically shrouded in smog, and there's one key culprit: France's disproportionately heavy reliance on diesel fuel.
Critics are increasingly questioning the need for diesel vehicles, especially after last week's discovery that Volkswagen tricked drivers worldwide into thinking their diesel engines were much cleaner than they really are.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Who knew about the deception, when did they know it and who directed it?
Those are among questions that state and federal investigators want answered as they plunge into the emissions scandal at Volkswagen that has cost the chief executive his job, caused stock prices to plummet and could result in billions of dollars in fines.
BERLIN (AP) — Volkswagen's board appointed the head of its Porsche unit as CEO on Friday, handing longtime company insider Matthias Mueller the task of trying to lead the world's top-selling automaker past a growing emissions scandal.
The company also said it was suspending some employees and would reorganize its North America operations after admitting it used a piece of engine software to cheat on diesel car emissions tests in the U.S.
According to an analysis from Bloomberg New Energy Finance, the cost of onshore wind energy is reaching a par with gas-fired generation in the Americas, and going forward the cost of renewables is dropping while electricity produced from fossil fuel is getting more expensive, The Washington Post reports.
Methane emissions in the oil and gas industry dropped to 73 million metric tons in 2013, the third straight year of decline according to data from the Environmental Protection Agency, which also showed carbon dioxide emissions climbing, E&E reports.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s bureaucracy “has grown beyond the size needed to accomplish the mission," Sen. James Inhofe, Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, told NRC board members at a hearing Wednesday, The Hill reports.
Critics worried about safety are promising legal action as they slam the decision by the California Coastal Commission to allow the closed San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station to store its nuclear waste in concrete casks to be constructed at its existing beach-front site, The Orange County Register reports.
The latest Short-Term Energy Outlook from the Energy Information Administration predicts the U.S. power sector will use an estimated 781.4 million short tons of coal this year, a drop of 8.2 percent from 2014, Platts reports.
In a compromise offer to Pennsylvania lawmakers to try to break the impasse over the state budget, Gov. Tom Wolf is proposing to make cuts in several of his tax proposals, including the one for a gas extraction tax, The Associated Press reports.