Uncertain of federal jurisdiction in the matter, the White House last year decided to leave to North Dakota the task of regulating the explosive gas content of crude being shipped by rail, administration officials have told Reuters.
Household products that contain environmentally safe ingredients will bear a “Safer Choice” label in the future, under a revamped Environmental Protection Agency program that Administrator Gina McCarthy is promoting with a blog and a video, The Hill reports.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Some of the world's largest airlines are banning bulk shipments of rechargeable batteries in the face of mounting evidence of their potential to cause catastrophic in-flight fires.
Citing safety concerns, United Airlines on Monday became the second major U.S. airline to announce it will no longer accept bulk shipments of rechargeable batteries, also called lithium-ion batteries, which are used to power everything from smartphones to laptops to power tools.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Fiery wrecks of trains hauling crude oil have intensified pressure on the Obama administration to approve tougher standards for railroads and tank cars despite industry complaints that it could cost billions and slow freight deliveries.
On Feb. 5, the Transportation Department sent the White House draft rules that would require oil trains to use stronger tank cars and make other safety improvements.
TORONTO (AP) — A fiery oil train derailment in Ontario this month suggests new safety requirements for tank cars carrying flammable liquids are inadequate, Canada's transport safety board announced Monday.
The Canadian Transportation Safety Board said the tank cars involved in the Feb. 14 train derailment met upgraded standards that started to be instituted in Canada last year for new tank cars carrying crude and other flammable liquids. But it said the Class 111, 1232 standard cars still "performed similarly" to those involved in the derailment in Lac Megantic, Quebec that killed 47 people two years ago. That accident predated the changes.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The federal government predicts that trains hauling crude oil or ethanol will derail an average of 10 times a year over the next two decades, causing more than $4 billion in damage and possibly killing hundreds of people if an accident happens in a densely populated part of the U.S.
The projection comes from a previously unreported analysis by the Department of Transportation that reviewed the risks of moving vast quantities of both fuels across the nation and through major cities. The study completed last July took on new relevance this week after a train loaded with crude derailed in West Virginia, sparked a spectacular fire and forced the evacuation of hundreds of families.
BOOMER, W.Va. (AP) — A full-scale federal investigation of an oil train derailment in southern West Virginia has begun as work continues to remove the overturned tank cars from the site, federal officials said Sunday.
A fire sparked by the Feb. 16 derailment in Mount Carbon prevented investigators from gaining full access to the crash scene until this weekend. Foul winter weather also has hampered the investigation. As of Sunday, some cars had been removed from the site but many remained.
Several Republican candidates who’ve voted to end ethanol subsidies and oppose the renewable fuel standard are set to speak to an agriculture industry gathering in Iowa this weekend, risking a backlash from America’s Renewable Future, the group that is promoting ethanol interests in the 2016 presidential campaign, The Wall Street Journal reports.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s inspector general has issued a report questioning EPA’s decision to use Title 42 authority to pay 23 employees salaries above the normal cap of $201,700 a year, The Hill reports.
House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rob Bishop, R-Utah, is slamming the Interior Department’s “same old, same old” $13.2 billion budget request while ranking member Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz., praised the agency for bringing in more money than it spends through its energy leasing policies, The Hill reports.
Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., told a hearing Thursday on the Torrance refinery explosion that he would ask the U.S. Chemical Safety Board to investigate the accident, while outside the hearing refinery workers issued warnings about safety practices, KCLA reports.
Concerns about attacks on oil facilities in Libya and Iraq pushed oil prices higher early Friday. U.S. benchmark crude increased 10 cents to $50.86 a barrel, while London Brent was 50 cents higher at $60.98, Reuters reports.
The circumstances surrounding New Jersey’s $250 million dollar settlement with Exxon Mobil over industrial pollution should be examined by a federal prosecutor, according to state Senate President Stephen Sweeney, who is skeptical about the motives of GOP Gov. Chris Christie's staff, NJ Advance Media reports.
Republican Aric Nesbitt, chairman of the Michigan House Committee on Energy Policy, has proposed ending the state's 15 years of electricity market competition, but his plan was immediately greeted by a chorus of criticism, The Associated Press reports.
Calling a truce with longtime critic ForestEthics, 3M Co. is promising to trace the source of the paper and pulp it buys and refuse purchases of material from threatened forests, the Star Tribune reports.