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Monday, July 20, 2015

Guest Post: Pope Francis' “Climate Change Encyclical” Could Change the Game

[Clean Air Watch periodically accepts guest posts that we think would be of interest to readers.  Today's guest post is from Beth Kelly.]

When Pope Francis issued his “environmental” encyclical document, entitled "Laudato Si", he undoubtedly sought to push world leaders towards meaningful action ahead of the Paris Climate Summit later this year. The central theme of Francis' powerful address is that humanity stands alone in its responsibility for past, present, and future climate-related issues facing the planet. 
Francis’ remarks call for nothing short of a "bold cultural revolution" in how humanity interacts with the environment. For him, this will begin with a radical shift in how we produce and consume energy. He continues in the piece however, condemning a myriad of other aspects of modern culture that he believes are contributing to climate change - including consumerism and an unhealthy obsession with new technology.

By going further than any prior Pope on the topic, Francis has invited controversy from those on either side of the “debate.” Even before it was released to the public many were aware of the fact that it contained contentious, even inflammatory, content. Francis reserved his harshest criticism for conservative economic principles that have played a role in preventing serious action to stop climate change. He dismissed free market solutions to the problem, called trickle-down economics "crude" and "naïve," and criticized the economic culture that prizes profits over human welfare. Francis also wagged his finger at big business and energy companies for their role in contributing to climate change, as well as the pollution of the earth's air and water.

Thursday, July 09, 2015

What Has to Happen Before Electric Cars Replace Standard Cars?

[Clean Air Watch periodically accepts guest posts that we find interesting.  Today's guest is Jaclyn Lambert]

The advances in battery and hybrid vehicle technology over the past two decades have been so amazing that it causes one to wonder if there could be a world where traditional cars with gasoline engines no longer exist. After all, cars powered entirely by electricity are no longer a far-fetched idea, with high performance supercars coming out now that are capable of reaching incredible speeds.

There are, however, still significant barriers that stand in the way of electric cars becoming the new standard for everyday transportation. Let’s take a look at the biggest ones.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Guest Post: Alternative Energy Vehicles and the Environment

[Clean Air Watch periodically accepts guest posts to this space. The attached piece from Nik Donovic -- which highlights the benefits of hybrid vehicles -- struck a particular cord. We hope you find it interesting.]

It’s not tough to make an argument on why alternative fuel vehicles are the right choice for the environment and the American people. Choosing the right car can help in reducing your carbon footprint, as well as serve to cut down on our reliance of foreign petroleum. Hybrid cars are a good middle ground if you are not fully ready to purchase an electric car. Hybrids run on two fuels or energy sources – the traditional gasoline engine, and an alternative fuel source such as hydrogen-run motors or an electric engine. Hybrids produce 80% less harmful pollutants and greenhouse gases, making them a great alternative for breathing cleaner air.

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Learn more about the Clean Air Act

The Clean Air Act is the law that defines EPA's responsibilities for protecting and improving the nation's air quality and the stratospheric ozone layer. The last major change in the law, the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990, was enacted by Congress in 1990. Legislation passed since then has made several minor changes.