June Environmental News Round-Up

June 28, 2013

Harmful Gas Emissions from a Factory

photo by Climate and Ecosystems Change Adaptation Research University Network | Flickr.com

Fracking Could be Compromising Water Quality

We’ve discussed the negative impacts of fracking (or hydraulic fracturing) on our blog before. Now, according to a study that was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, some of the homes in the vicinity of a fracking site in Pennsylvania have elevated levels of methane, ethane, and propane in their water.

BP Ends Oil Cleanup in Three States

Three years and two months after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, the largest marine oil spill in U.S. history, BP has officially ended its active cleanup operations in Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida. While ongoing efforts continue on the coast of Louisiana, BP reports that it has spent over $14 million on cleanup and recovery operations to date.

Los Angeles Bans Free Single-Use Plastic Grocery Bags

A 9-1 city council vote earlier this month made Los Angeles the largest city in the country to officially ban free plastic bags in grocery stores. In conjunction with the ban, 1 million reusable bags will be handed out in low-income areas. The ban takes effect for large stores on January 1, 2014, and small stores in June of the same year.

President Obama Outlines Plan to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions

President Obama has committed to a 17 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions (compared to 2005 levels) by 2020, and Ernest J. Moniz, the nation’s new energy secretary, recently examined the proposal and agreed that it is achievable. His broader goal of reaching 80 percent reduction compared to 1990 levels, however, will require more reductions on a larger scale in addition to support and action from Congress.

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