A coalition of automakers is suing President Obama's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), hoping to overturn that agency's decision to allow the sale of E15, a blend of 15 percent ethanol added to gasoline, for cars and light trucks manufactured since 2007. The Engine Products Group (EPG) filed suit on Monday with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
The U.S. Justice Department is suing nine companies including BP for billions of dollars in damages related to the Gulf of Mexico oil leak. Attorney General Eric Holder announced the lawsuit seeks civil penalties under the Clean Water Act. It also contends eight of the nine defendants should be liable without limitation for all removal costs and damages under the Oil Pollution Act.
A huge ice island is floating free in Arctic waters after splitting from the Petermann Glacier in northwest Greenland. University of Delaware researcher Andreas Muenchow announced the calving took place in the early morning of August 5 and amounts to the largest ice chunk lost in the Arctic since 1962. It measures 100 square miles and 625 feet thick. The National Ice Center provides a satellite image and map here.
Obama Administration officials have this week announced new estimates of total oil leaked from the BP offshore well, capped on July 15, fewer than three months after an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig claimed the lives of 11 employees.
The Gulf of Mexico oil leak began on April 20 when an explosion on the oil rig Deepwater Horizon tragically claimed the lives of 11 BP America employees. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) determined that within a month, the volume of the leak surpassed 1989’s Exxon Valdez disaster of 11 million gallons spilled off the coast of Alaska. USGS estimated the leak rate to be as much as five times BP’s claim of 5,000 barrels per day.
Industry and government officials continue their desperate efforts to contain an oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico that began on April 20 with an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, claiming 11 lives. Representatives from the three major companies involved in the accident — Transocean Ltd., BP America, and Global Business Lines — testified earlier this week before the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Transocean built the rig, BP was its leaseholder and operator, and Global Business Lines supplied the cement used to encase and seal the oil well. Each company blamed the others for failure to follow appropriate procedures and safety precautions.
Three weeks after the oil rig Deepwater Horizon exploded, the response team is still working to contain three leaks spewing oil into the Gulf of Mexico. The rig was owned by the offshore drilling contractor Transocean, Ltd., and the oil company BP leased and operated it. Both companies are working with nearly a dozen federal agencies as part of the Deepwater Horizon Response Unified Command. So far containment efforts have been fruitless because of the depth and extent of the leaks.
Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are scrambling to parlay the tragic Gulf of Mexico oil rig explosion and ongoing leak into a significant increase of federal regulatory power.
Several organizations are petitioning Obama's EPA to reconsider its December 2009 endangerment finding regarding greenhouse gases. The finding permits EPA to regulate carbon dioxide and other allegedly dangerous emissions under the Clean Air Act. But recent disclosures have revealed the UN data on which EPA based its decision was fraudulently manipulated and therefore completely unreliable. The source document, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2007 Fourth Assessment Report (AR4), has been under harsh scrutiny over the past weeks for a number of blunders, including the Climategate scandal, bogus claims about Himalayan glacier melt, false assertions The Netherlands are drowning, deceptive hysteria over conditions in the Amazon, exaggerations of vanishing polar ice caps, and fraudulent cover-up of Chinese temperature data.
As much as the scientists at the center of Climategate wish it would just fade away, new evidence keeps surfacing to fan the flames of controversy. The latest item regards weather monitoring stations situated in remote parts of rural China.