Saturday, January 14, 2017

Guest Post: Why Clean Energy Matters More Now Than Ever

(Clean Air Watch is pleased to present this timely guest post by Gemma Hunt)



During the election campaign process, President-elect Donald Trump was very vocal about his desire to repel many of the clean energy policies put in place by President Obama. He has threatened to abolish the Clean Power Plan, completely remove all federal funding for clean energy schemes and solutions, and opening up large areas previously unopened to them for oil, coal and gas markets. This will put significant pressure on individual states to continue to fund green energy schemes, block the arrival of big energy companies in their territories, and continue to fulfil the vision of the Clean Power Plan independently. This is something that many states will have neither the desire nor the budget to do, and is the reason why an individual commitment to the use of clean energy matters now more than ever.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

GUILTY! Volkswagen Pays Massive Fine in Cheater Scandal; Company Officials Indicted



[from the U.S. Department of Justice]



  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Volkswagen AG Agrees to Plead Guilty and Pay $4.3 Billion in Criminal and Civil Penalties; Six Volkswagen Executives and Employees are Indicted in Connection with Conspiracy to Cheat U.S. Emissions Tests


VW to Pay $2.8 Billion Criminal Fine in Guilty Plea and $1.5 Billion Settlement of Civil Environmental, Customs and Financial Violations; Monitor to Be Appointed to Oversee the Parent Company 
Volkswagen AG (VW) has agreed to plead guilty to three criminal felony counts and pay a $2.8 billion criminal penalty as a result of the company’s long-running scheme to sell approximately 590,000 diesel vehicles in the U.S. by using a defeat device to cheat on emissions tests mandated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB), and lying and obstructing justice to further the scheme, the Justice Department announced today.
In separate civil resolutions of environmental, customs and financial claims, VW has agreed to pay $1.5 billion. This includes EPA’s claim for civil penalties against VW in connection with VW’s importation and sale of these cars, as well as U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) claims for customs fraud. In addition, the EPA agreement requires injunctive relief to prevent future violations. The agreements also resolve alleged violations of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA).