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European Cities Curb Drivers

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Traffic planners restrain cars in favor of walking and public transit

While American cities tend to bend over backwards to accommodate vehicle traffic, cities in Europe are going the opposite direction, making planning changes that make it prohibitively annoying and expensive (if not downright illegal) to drive cars in the inner city. NYT environment reporter Elizabeth Rosenthal discusses the traffic-tormenting situation in Europe: Cities including......read more

GOP Pushes for Environmental Deregulation at State Level

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Republican governors working to ease environmental rules.

Around the United States, Republican-controlled states are mounting an all-out assault on environmental regulations. In Florida, Gov. Rick Scott wants to cut two-thirds of the state funding allocated to Everglades restoration. David Guest, a lawyer with the Florida office of Earthjustice, said Scott has delivered "the most radical anti-environmental budget" of the past two......read more

Ken Salazar Opens Up Public Lands to Coal Mining

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A major expansion of coal mining is planned for Wyoming's Powder River Basin.

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar just announced that vast coal reserves on federal land in the Powder River Basin in Wyoming will be put up for auction over the next five months. This will lead to approximately 758 tons of coal being excavated. With the abundance of alternative energy sources available, and the Obama administration's stated commitment to move the country toward a cleaner......read more

The Spill and the American Psyche

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The leak is plugged. But is it too late to restore public confidence?

In the Gulf of Mexico, where tens of millions of barrels of oil have spewed into the sea, a ray of hope has come in the shape of a cap fitted onto the blown wellhead. The successful attempt to stop the gusher marks the end of nearly three months of futility. Around America, you can almost hear a collective sigh of relief. Almost. In the Week in Review in Sunday's New York Times, Peter......read more

Senators Discuss Potential Energy Bill

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Democrats announce willingness to scale back bill for Republican support.

A group of bi-partisan group of senators met with President Obama on Tuesday to discuss the proposed climate bill. After the meeting, Senators John Kerry and Joe Lieberman said that they were prepared to scale back the bill to in exchange for Republican support. While the exact details of the bill were not divulged, the shift in position includes a middle of the road compromise on how carbon will......read more

Dark Days on Capitol Hill

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As Congress stagnates on climate change legislation (and everything else), public approval ratings bottom out.

Of all the adjectives being applied to Congress right now, efficient isn’t one of them; two weeks ago, Senator Jim Bunning (R-KY) paralyzed DC in order to prevent an extension of unemployment benefits; hundreds of bills, already passed by the House, currently stagnate in the logjammed senate; and, after a year of debate, health care reform is uncertain as ever. And yet Congress routinely......read more

James Hetfield Makes Public Land Donation

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Metallica frontman gives 330 acres to California county in exchange for more privacy

In California, the Marin County Board of Supervisors unanimously accepted a donation of 330 acres of Lucas Valley farmland from Metallica's James Hetfield. The land, which sits around the singer's property, is to be preserved as open space. It follows an earlier gift by Hetfield of 400 acres. County officials say they are close to a deal with Hetfield that would reroute a hiking trail......read more

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