Friday, April 18, 2014

WIMS Environmental HotSheet 4/18/14

 National / International News


<> Report Challenges EIA's Renewable Energy Projections - New research released by the SUN DAY Campaign challenges the U.S. Energy Information Administration's (EIA) assertion that only 16 percent of U.S. electrical generation in 2040 will come from renewable sources of energy.

<> IPCC seeks comment on the Synthesis Report of its Fifth Assessment - April 17. The expert and government review of the first order draft of the Synthesis Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) starts on Monday, April 21. The Synthesis Report is the final product of the Fifth Assessment cycle. It will integrate key messages from the three recent working group reports: the physical science basis (September 2013), climate change impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability (March 2014), and mitigation (April 2014).

<> Corporate-wide Settlement with Lowe's Protects Public from Lead Pollution During Home Renovations - Lowe's agreed to implement a comprehensive, corporate-wide compliance program at its over 1,700 stores nationwide to ensure that the contractors it hires to perform work minimize lead dust from home renovation activities. . . will also pay a $500,000 civil penalty, which is the largest ever for violations of the Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting Rule

<> APGA Files Motion to Intervene in Sabine Pass LNG Export Application - On April 14, American Public Gas Association filed a motion to intervene in an application filed by Sabine Pass Liquefaction to export approximately 314 Bcf/year of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to non-free trade agreement (FTA) countries from the Sabine Pass LNG Terminal in Cameron Parish, LA. In its filing, APGA states that the export application is inconsistent with the public interest and should be denied. . .

<> Mercury in Fishes from 21 National Parks in the Western United States - USGS report finds that Mercury (Hg) is a global contaminant and human activities have increased atmospheric Hg concentrations 3- to 5-fold during the past 150 years.

<> EPA Announces Winner of Annual Energy Star National Building Competition - an elementary school in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, has won the annual Energy Star National Building Competition by cutting its energy use nearly in half.

<> A Broad Coalition To Support the Global Environment - The Global Environment Facility (GEF), announced that 30 donor countries pledged US$ 4.43 billion for the GEF to support developing countries' efforts over the next four years to prevent degradation of the global environment.

<> VA Supreme Court Protects Climate Scientists' Private Emails - The University of Virginia (UVA) doesn't have to release the private emails of climate scientists like Michael Mann -- university was correct in defining deliberative records as "proprietary."

<> FERC Staff Issues Energy Infrastructure Update for March 2014

<> CITES Trade Database Breaks New Ground with Open-Source Technology - Access to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) Trade Database - which contains some 14 million records on the international trade in CITES-listed species - is now easier and more reliable, thanks to cutting-edge, open source technologies

<> EPA's new Human Health Risk Assessment (HHRA) framework a step in the right direction - The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is offering new guidance for risk analysts who conduct important human health assessments on behalf of the Agency.

<> Enviros Claim Gulf Spill Impacts to Wildlife and Habitat Still Unaddressed - "Four years after the worst oil spill in U.S. history, Gulf recovery remains elusive. We must hope for a measure of justice for communities, wildlife and habitats. However, the urgent need for restoration is still unfulfilled."


<> What America is Thinking on Energy Issues – Poll: Large majorities support U.S. investments in oil and natural gas - April 17, 2014 ─ Strong bipartisan majorities of voters support increased investment in energy infrastructure, according to a new poll American Petroleum Institute is unveiling as part of a recess campaign highlighting the voices of Americans.

<> NC Gov. McCrory Outlines Comprehensive Coal Ash Action Plan - NC Governor Pat McCrory announced a plan that would address coal ash ponds and strengthen environmental and health regulations. The initiative would result in the conversion or closure of all the state's coal ash ponds, close loopholes in state law to strengthen the state's ability to regulate coal ash ponds, eliminate special exemptions. . .

<> Report Finds Top Banks Moving Away From Coal - Rainforest Action Network (RAN), Sierra Club and BankTrack report that Citigroup and Barclays Seen as Laggards; JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo End Financing for mountaintop removal


Federal Register Highlights 

The following is an alert of Environmental Federal Register announcements that may be of interest for: Friday, April 18, 2014.  (Click here to access today's complete Federal Register index with links to complete announcements).


1. Nothing We're Tracking Today (click for the complete Energy & EPA announcements)