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Shading Out Solar: State Policies In Ohio Valley D...

When Jennie and Brian Kahly decided to move to a 150-acre family farm in West Virginia’s Preston County, they thought a lot about what type of farmers they wanted to be. “We went ahead and made a list of values, and one of those values was to minimize our fossil fuel use,” Jennie said. “That doesn’t mean we don’t use fossil fuels. It means we make a conscious effort to minimize them.” Installing solar panels was high on...

Solar’s future brightens in southern Ohio

CHILLICOTHE – If it seems like the sun is shining more brightly on the future of solar farm development in southern Ohio than elsewhere in the state, that’s because it is, both literally and figuratively. “There was a knowledge from our past work that it wasn’t just the best place to build solar for social and economic reasons, it was also the best place to build solar because of the solar...

West Virginia’s Natural Gas Industry Keeps Pushing...

Companies are deducting “post-production” costs or creating shell companies to reduce royalty payments. The firms say they have done nothing wrong. This article was produced in partnership with the Charleston Gazette-Mail, which is a member of the ProPublica Local Reporting Network. For decades, Arnold and Mary Richards collected monthly royalty checks — most recently from $1,000 to $1,500 — for the natural gas sucked up...

Ice Sheets in Greenland, Antarctica Could Reach Ca...

Scientists just gave us another terrifying reason to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels: If temperatures push much beyond that point, both Greenland and Antarctica‘s ice sheets could reach a point where nothing can stop them from melting. An international team of researchers published this chilling finding in Nature Climate Change Monday. The researchers set out to study how the ice...

General Motors’ EV Plan May Sound Good, But it’s B...

General Motors has proposed what it’s calling a “National Zero Emission Vehicle (NZEV) program” that would require automakers to sell a minimum volume of plug-in or fuel cell vehicles in the US. While this may sound like an innovative idea, it could dramatically undercut existing programs in states including California that are showing real leadership in cutting vehicle emissions. The GM proposal calls for a 50-state ZEV...

Questionable Economics Threaten The Keystone XL Pi...

Now that a federal judge has squelched the Keystone XL Pipeline, the question facing its owner, TransCanada Corp., is whether the oil economics justify its completion. Not only is the price of oil still relatively low and falling but, competing pipelines are coming out of Canada and into this country. While the price of a barrel of oil has risen from $50 in recent years to $75 in recent months, it is now down to about $60....

Wind turbines coming to Erie and Huron counties (O...

Bellvue, Ohio – Apex Clean Energy, which has an office in Bellevue, plans to invest millions into Erie and Huron counties over a 30-year period through the Emerson Creek Wind Project. “Wind turbines pay property tax — with 70 percent going to the school districts — so you’re going to see a major increase in the tax base in the area,” project developer Sarah Moser said. “That’s probably the biggest economic benefit, is...

‘It’s a ghost page’: EPA site...

Material that said humans were warming the planet was taken down last year for an ‘update’ More than a year after the US Environmental Protection Agency took down information on climate change from its website for an “update”, it now seems uncertain whether it will ever reappear. In April last year, the EPA replaced its online climate change section with a holding page that said the content was being updated to “reflect the...

Why Plans to Turn America’s Rust Belt into a New P...

The petrochemical industry anticipates spending a total of over $200 billion on factories, pipelines, and other infrastructure in the U.S. that will rely on shale gas, the American Chemistry Council announced in September. Construction is already underway at many sites. This building spree would dramatically expand the Gulf Coast’s petrochemical corridor (known locally as “Cancer Alley”) — and establish a new plastics and...

How Can You Talk to Kids About Factory Farming? Th...

By Reynard Loki Many children play with toys that evoke the bucolic life on a farm. And many will likely visit a small local farm, where animals have space and access to sunlight and the outdoors. But most kids are probably not aware that, for the vast majority of farmed animals, life is anything but happy. Consider the life of a chicken trapped on a factory farm. If she is one of the 9 billion chickens who suffer and die on...

A climate scientist who decided not to fly

I’m a climate scientist who doesn’t fly. I try to avoid burning fossil fuels, because it’s clear that doing so causes real harm to humans and to nonhumans, today and far into the future. I don’t like harming others, so I don’t fly. Back in 2010, though, I was awash in cognitive dissonance. My awareness of global warming had risen to a fever pitch, but I hadn’t yet made real changes to my daily life. This disconnect made me...

It’s Time to Stop Paying for Pesticides With...

A groundbreaking new study in the prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association reveals that you can cut your cancer risk by eating an organic diet. The findings are dramatic. In a study that followed nearly 70,000 people, those who ate the most organic food lowered their overall risk of developing cancer by 25 percent. The relationship was strongest for two types of cancer: participants who frequently ate organic...

GMO Potato Creator Now Fears Its Impact on Human H...

Of all the genetic engineers who have renounced the technology—Arpad Pusztai, Belinda Martineau, Thierry Vrain, John Fagan and Michael Antoniou, among others—because of its shortsighted approach and ability to produce unintended and potentially toxic consequences, Caius Rommens’ story may be the most compelling. Rommens was director of research at Simplot Plant Sciences from 2000 to 2013 where he led development of the...

The Best and Worst Midterm Results for the Environ...

Results from the U.S. midterm election are mostly in, and, when it comes to what they mean for the environment, they’re a real mixed bag. On the plus side, the Democrats took the House of Representatives, which, as BBC News pointed out, means that President Donald Trump can’t pass any more major legislation without their approval. Since big legislative pushes in the Republican controlled House over the past two...

Sorting Through America’s Mixed Bag of Elect...

Up late last night? We were, too, on the climate desk, sorting through America’s mixed bag of election results on climate change. In the most direct rejection Tuesday of a plan to tame greenhouse gas emissions, voters in Washington state defeated a proposed tax on carbon. The vote was a critical state-level test of whether carbon pricing can win broader support at the national level. It’s not at all clear, however, that a...

State Climate Office of Ohio Statement on IPCC Spe...

The State Climate Office of Ohio encourages decision makers in the private, public, and non-profit communities in Ohio to review the recently released report, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report on the Impacts of Global Warming of 1.5°C, and utilize the report’s findings to inform climate mitigation and adaptation efforts. This report discusses various greenhouse gas emission pathways, the impact of...

Even most Americans in coal-reliant states prefer ...

A large majority of Americans in coal-heavy states favor increasing renewable energy use. Most would also be willing to buy solar panels for their own use, and a plurality would be willing to pay an additional $5 a month to get energy from fully renewable sources, according to a survey from Consumer Reports. The consumer advocacy group spoke with 1,200 Americans, including 400 residents of coal-reliant states: Illinois,...

Trump’s EPA concludes communities don’t have the r...

Industry supporters describe potentially toxic emissions as “normal odors” from animal waste. What factory farm owners portray as “normal odors” from animal waste can cause serious harm to farmers and the residents who live near these large industrial operations. The Trump administration, like it has with many important health and safety rules, is siding with industry and ignoring how animal waste can have...

Unknowingly on edge of a climate ‘precipice&...

Scientists are keeping an eye on the prospects for abrupt climate change, with some findings prompting increasing concerns. On September 17, a short paper in the journal Nature Climate Change caught the attention of Penn State University glaciologist Richard Alley. The article compared satellite observations of the Antarctic ice sheet between 2007 and 2017 with projections for the same period published in 2013 by the...

U.S. solar production increases 25.4% in first hal...

Non-hydro renewable energy sources (biofuels, biomass, geothermal, solar, wind) set new U.S. records for both production and consumption in the first half of 2018, according to a SUN DAY Campaign analysis of data just released by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). EIA’s latest “Monthly Energy Review” (with summary statistics for the first six months of  2018) reveals that output by non-hydro renewables...