Washington Post- On Monday, the Post has learned, the Obama administration plans to release the finalized “Clean Power Plan,” the president’s flagship policy to combat global warming. The plan is aimed at the electricity sector, which generates the largest single slice of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions — 31 percent of them. The final rule, which officials say will be part of a major new climate push by the president, is likely to both thrill environmental groups and pique industry — it seeks to achieve even deeper cuts than the 2014 proposed plan, which itself was already controversial.
The Hill- The Obama administration on Sunday unveiled a tougher climate change rule for power plants, demanding that generators cut their carbon dioxide output 32 percent in the first ever limits on the pollutant.The historic regulation from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is the main pillar of President Obama’s climate agenda. It is the biggest piece of his drive to create a legacy and go down in history as the first United States president to take comprehensive action against climate change by cutting emissions of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide.
The Hill- Lawmakers are primed for a fight over the future of a critical environmental conservation program. A Senate panel approved a bill last week to reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), a $300 million federal program that pays for land acquisition and recreation projects on public lands around the country. The 50-year-old program is set to expire at the end of September, and its renewal traditionally garners bipartisan support in the Capitol. But on the House side, Natural Resources Chairman Rob Bishop (R-Utah) wants reforms before reauthorizing it this year.
The Hill- Top Republican candidates for president blasted the Obama administration’s landmark climate rule for power plants. Citing concerns like the science behind climate change or the economy, 2016 hopefuls said at a late Sunday event hosted by Freedom Partners that President Obama’s carbon limits will only hurt the country. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) said climate change simply isn’t happening, and the temperature data proves it. “Facts matter,” Cruz said at the event hosted by the Charles and David Koch-backed group.
The Hill- California residents cut their water use 27.3 percent in June, exceeding Gov. Jerry Brown’s (D) orders. It is the second month in a row in which California’s residential water use declined more than 25 percent compared with the same month in 2013, the San Jose Mercury News reported.It is especially impressive given that it was the hottest June on record for the state, which would usually cause an increase in water use. "The June numbers tell a story of conscious conservation," Felicia Marcus, chairwoman of the State Water Resources Control Board, told the Mercury News. "That's what we need.”
NY Times- THIS city always had a different rhythm. It was the opposite of New York: After a stevedore was overheard saying, “If you can’t make it in the Big Easy, you can’t make it anywhere,” the phrase “The Big Easy” made its way from the African-American community into Newsweek, and spread. For decades, the city’s ambitious young men and women loved it yet fled, while those who did move here found places for themselves in existing spaces, slipping into its crevices, embracing it.
The Oregonian- Weird things are happening off the Pacific Coast. And at the center of the action is a warm-water mass that scientists call "the blob." It's turning the coastal ecosystem on its head. Species are dying along Washington, Oregon and northern California: sea stars, marine birds and sardines, among them. It started in the fall of 2013 when the Gulf of Alaska's usual winter storms didn't show up to cool down the Pacific. That gave rise to an expanse of warmer water, according to Bill Peterson of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Cape Cod Times- A deal between the town and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to bolster Town Neck Beach with 150,000 cubic yards of dredge spoils from the Cape Cod Canal will have a burial at sea.Property owners on Bay Beach Lane and White Cap Path didn't sign required permanent easements by a deadline on Friday, which means the sand dredged from the canal will be deposited in the ocean instead.“As of close of business today, Friday 7/31/2015, the town has not received any additional signed easements beyond the three that we received at the beginning of July,” Assistant Town Manager Doug Lapp wrote in an email on Friday.
WFDD- It’s summertime and maybe you’re planning to head for the coast. Or maybe you’ve already been. After all, North Carolina is famous for its beautiful set of coastal barrier islands. But did you know that those islands are mobile? Around 14 thousand years ago, as the last ice age was coming to a close, sea level began to rise as water was released from the glaciers. The barrier islands formed up and down the east coast, either as sand spits that were cut off from land, or sand dunes along the coast, where the water flooded in behind. Back then, the coast and the newly formed barrier islands were about 40 miles further east than they are now which, at the time, was dry land. How did they get to where they are? To explain this, I spoke with Dr. Marlene McCauley, professor of Geology, Earth Science and Environmental Studies at Guilford College in Greensboro.
The Post and Courier- Some $2.4 million in federal funds has been authorized for dredging the Intracoastal Waterway between Ben Sawyer Bridge and the Isle of Palms Connector, officials said Thursday. The section at Breach Inlet between Isle of Palms and Sullivan’s Island is only two feet deep at low tide. “It’s bad. It’s definitely bad,” said Brian Berrigan, president of Isle of Palms Marina.Work to dredge the channel is expected to begin in October, said Sean McBride, spokesman for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Charleston District.