Clean Air Watch

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Monday, September 29, 2014

That Was the Week That Was (TW3) for Clean Air


[With fond viewer memories of the late Ned Sherrin and David Frost]

It is so difficult in this breathless, breaking-news-tweet-every-moment era to put matters in perspective.
We are going to give this a shot in a brief look back at clean-air events during the week past.  This is not meant by any means to be all-encompassing, so please forgive any omissions.
Oops – carbon emissions have crept up!  Perhaps the best news for the White House in this Energy Department report was that it came out on Friday.  http://1.usa.gov/19IGPMM
Sure, it showed encouraging trends for renewable energy, but it also showed energy-related carbon emissions went up during the first six months of this year, the second year in a row, up 6% since 2012.  That’s not how the “narrative” is supposed to go! As The Washington Post put it, “The Obama administration appears to be losing ground in its efforts to cut U.S. emissions of greenhouse gases.”   http://wapo.st/1pBXkCb

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Eco-Friendly, Or... Four Major Contributions to Teen Accidents


[This guest post is from Holly Chavez, a frequent contributor to the Clean Air Watch blog]

Carpooling may be second nature to you. You may think nothing at all about picking up fellow co-workers or neighbors who need a ride to work each morning. In fact, you probably even take pride in your contribution to making the environment cleaner.
What may not be surprising, really, is that your newly licensed teenager may want to mimic your behavior by carpooling with his or her friends. But wait. Before you allow your teen to follow in your Eco-friendly footsteps, you should be aware and warn them about the following behaviors which contribute significantly to driving accidents among their peers in today’s world.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Then-EPA Chief Lisa Jackson Said Bush Smog Standard "Not Legally Defensible"

This letter from July 2011 by then-EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson is a good reminder as we await EPA's expected December 1 proposal on a new national standard for ozone, or smog.

As you are probably aware, industry groups and their political friends are urging EPA to keep the current smog standard of 75 parts per billion set in 2008.  This is pretty much the same pitch the polluters made in 2011. 

Then-EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson sent the following excellent letter to Senator Tom Carper (D-DE), noting her concern that the 2008 standard was "not legally defensible." (Jackson, as we know, was stopped by the White House because the President was running for re-election. Will EPA do the right thing this time?  Will it be able to measure up to Jackson?)

**
UNITED STATES ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20460

The Honorable Thomas R. Carper United States Senate
Washington, D.C.  20510


JUL 1 3 2011 
 
THE ADMINISTRATOR


 Dear Senator Carper:
 
Thank you for your letter of July 11, 2011, regarding the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's reconsideration of the 2008 National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone, which is commonly known as "smog." I appreciate the opportunity to clarify why the Agency is undertaking a reconsideration of the 2008 standard, which had been set by the previous Administration.

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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.