MACKAY, Australia (AP) — The Australian mining boom built over a decade on Chinese hunger for energy and raw materials is turning into bust for many business owners as China's cooling growth reverberates through a country accustomed to winning from the rise of an Asian economic giant.
BEIJING (AP) — Voracious demand for wood to feed factories for exports and satisfy wealthier consumers at home has turned China into a magnet for the illegal timber trade, causing other countries to strip their forests as Beijing does little to discourage the practices, an environmental group said in a report released Thursday.
The Australian government pushed a new 30 percent tax on big mining companies through Parliament on Monday but faces an uphill battle to reduce the tax burden on struggling companies outside the booming commodities sector.
The Senate passed the legislation 38 votes to 32, allowing the government to take a bigger slice of profits from a mining boom driven by Chinese and Indian demand for raw materials.
After suing Exxon Mobil for $8.9 billion in damages for wetland contamination in northern New Jersey, the state has suddenly settled the case for $250 million shortly before a judge was expected to issue a ruling for damages, The New York Times reports.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s rules to limit power plant carbon emissions and clarify its jurisdiction over bodies of water are top of the hit list for lawmakers like Rep. Bill Flores, R-Fla., attending the Conservative Political Action Conference, McClatchy reports.
The American Meteorological Society has sent a letter to Rep. Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz., saying that his investigation into the funding behind climate studies “sends a chilling message to all academic researchers,” National Journal reports.
The Forest Service needs to increase harvesting in the Tongass National Forest or timber mills in Alaska’s southeast will start to go bust, Energy and Natural Resources chair Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, told its chief Tom Tidwell at a hearing Thursday, E&E reports.
Fleet cards issued by the U.S. General Services Administration have been illegally used to pay for $2.4 million worth of gasoline by government workers filling up their own personal cars, News4 Washington reports.
The California state senate has announced it will hold three days of public hearings to examine the operations of the Public Utilities Commission, already in the spotlight for its closeness with the companies it regulates, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Members of the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East will decide Monday whether to appeal a judge’s dismissal of their coastal erosion lawsuit against major oil and gas companies, The Associated Press reports.