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Environment

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  • NEW YORK, Dec 19- There are plenty of delicate subjects during the holiday season, but one of the touchiest could be regifting. Susan Choi and Pete Wells have developed a different approach. Instead of whispering about regifting, the Brooklyn, New York City couple are shouting it from the rooftops.

  • Protection sought for scenic California region Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 7:13 AM ET

    WASHINGTON— A contingent of California environmental groups, business representatives and politicians will use a visit Friday from Interior Secretary Sally Jewell to push for permanent protection of some 350,000 acres of picturesque federal land near the state's famous wine country. Congress declined this session to pass legislation from Democratic...

  • Thousands respond to black rhino import request Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 7:07 AM ET

    Shire said the agency will examine the public comments "for substantive information" as it weighs whether the hunt in Namibia— where 1,800 of the remaining 4,880 black rhinos live— is a form of conservation. The hunter, Corey Knowlton, bid $350,000 at an auction last January that the Dallas Safari Club billed as a fundraising effort to save the species.

  • Environmental groups say the practice of storing coal ash in holding ponds supported by permeable, earthen dikes leads both to contamination of surrounding groundwater and the risk of catastrophe when those dikes fail, as happened in Tennessee and at a site in North Carolina earlier this year. The EPA has said contaminants such as arsenic, mercury and cadmium...

  • EPA sets first national standard for coal waste Friday, 19 Dec 2014 | 3:08 AM ET

    "The regulatory uncertainty that has impeded the beneficial use of coal ash for half a decade has finally come to an end," said Thomas H. Adams, the executive director of the American Coal Ash Association. "EPA's final decision to regulate coal ash as a' non-hazardous' material puts science ahead of politics and clears the way for beneficial use of ash to begin growing...

  • EPA to step in on fish consumption water rules Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 8:05 PM ET

    SEATTLE— The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday said it plans to come up with updated water quality standards for Washington partly tied to how much fish people eat— in case the state doesn't do it by next year. The federal process will run parallel to the state's own, which is currently underway, and ensures the EPA can propose a rule in a timely manner...

  • New York Fashion Week booted out of Lincoln Center Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 5:38 PM ET

    NEW YORK— C'est la vie, fashionistas. They objected to the onslaught of the fashion industry at Damrosch Park, a 2.4- acre stretch on the Upper West Side that is adjacent to and managed by Lincoln Center. "We're going to get flowers and benches and there's going to be a park again," said Olive Freud, president of the Committee for Environmentally Sound Development, one...

  • Chinese pollution, American profits Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 4:43 PM ET
    A man wearing a 3M mask in Beijing

    China's severe pollution problems have been a boon to at least one big American company.

  • Correction: Meningitis Outbreak story Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 2:46 PM ET

    BOSTON— In a story Dec. 17 about arrests in a deadly meningitis outbreak, The Associated Press erroneously reported Stuart Delery's title. BOSTON— Mold and bacteria were in the air and on workers' gloved fingertips. Federal prosecutors leveled those allegations in bringing charges Wednesday against 14 former owners or employees of a Massachusetts pharmacy in...

  • Group challenges timber producer's 'green' label Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 2:33 PM ET

    The complaint covers Plum Creek logging in Oregon's Coast Range, citing 11 civil citations over the past six years for violating state logging regulations, including four citations for exceeding the clear-cutting limit of 120 acres. The complaint includes Google Earth images showing landslides in areas stripped of trees by Plum Creek.

  • Cuomo gets kudos, scorn for New York fracking ban Thursday, 18 Dec 2014 | 10:59 AM ET

    ALBANY, N.Y.— New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is getting heaped with praise by environmentalists and scorn by business interests for a planned state ban on hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, even as he insists the decision wasn't his. Quinnipiac University Poll's Mickey Carroll said the political impact is likely to be limited and the decision was predictable.

  • "If people think this is just to raise the flag, it's not going to last long," said Christopher Flensborg, Head of Sustainable Products and Product Development for Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken AB, the Swedish bank that's the world's largest underwriter of green bonds. Green bonds used to come exclusively from AAA-rated organizations like the World Bank; the...

  • The indictment, made public on Wednesday, accused the company and its former president and officers of negligence and fraud in the discharge of a chemical pollutant into the Elk River near Charleston in alleged violation of the Clean Water Act, Refuse Act and in violation of an environmental permit. The indictment named former Freedom President Gary Southern,...

  • CALGARY, Alberta, Dec 17- Chevron Corp is putting a plan to drill for oil in the Beaufort Sea in Canada's Arctic on hold indefinitely because of what it called "economic uncertainty in the industry" as oil prices fall. In a letter to Canada's National Energy Board on Wednesday, the company withdrew from a hearing on Arctic drilling rules because it has walked away...

  • Frack ban coming to New York? Looks like it... Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 | 1:16 PM ET
    New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo

    NY will move to prohibit fracking in the state, citing unresolved health issues and dubious economic benefits of the widely used gas-drilling technique.

  • New York to ban fracking; environmentalists cheer Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 | 12:57 PM ET

    ALBANY, N.Y.— Handing environmentalists a breakthrough victory, New York plans to prohibit fracking for natural gas because of what regulators say are its unexplored health risks and dubious economic benefits. New York, which overlies part of the gas-rich Marcellus Shale formation that has led to a drilling boom in Pennsylvania and other nearby states, has...

  • EU lawmakers fail to approve tar sands oil veto Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 | 12:56 PM ET

    BRUSSELS, Dec 17- An attempt by some European politicians to veto the import of tar sands oil failed on Wednesday after a European Parliament vote, giving a boost to Canada but dismaying green campaigners. After years of lobbying from Canada, the European Commission published a new plan in October on reporting the greenhouse gas intensity of transport fuels.

  • AP Interview: McConnell wants to stop coal rules Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 | 12:10 PM ET

    WASHINGTON— Incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R- Ky., pledged on Wednesday to do all he can to stop President Barack Obama's coal plant regulations, saying a White House "crusade" has devastated his state's economy. McConnell takes over the Senate leadership and its new Republican majority in January. Asked if the Senate had any obligation to...

  • Indictments in West Virginia chemical spill case Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 | 12:07 PM ET

    A federal indictment unsealed Wednesday charged ex- Freedom Industries presidents Gary Southern and Dennis P. Farrell and two others with failing to ensure that the company operated in a reasonable and environmentally sound manner the steel tank that leaked the coal-cleaning chemical. Attorney General Eric Holder said in a statement that the tank...

  • Protections blocked, but sage grouse work goes on Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 | 11:21 AM ET

    BILLINGS, Mont.— U.S. wildlife officials will decide next year whether a wide-ranging Western bird species needs protections even though Congress has blocked such protections from taking effect, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said Wednesday. President Barack Obama signed a $1.1 trillion spending bill late Tuesday with a provision that barred money from...