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Energy and Environment

The latest updates on energy and environment news, analysis and opinion covering energy policy and its impact on resources and climate.

Sen. Mary L. Landrieu, Louisiana Democrat. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

New Democratic tilt in Louisiana is good news-bad news for Sen. Mary Landrieu: Gallup poll

By Tom Howell Jr. - The Washington Times

More Louisianans identify or lean Democratic than Republican, a shift away from the GOP's edge in the past three years, according to Gallup data that offers a potential boon to Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu as she tries to stave off an election challenge from Republican Rep. Bill Cassidy. Published September 30, 2014

Recent Stories

A sign informs visitors of prohibited items on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation Wednesday, July 9, 2014 near Richland, Wash. Officials said Wednesday that 12,000 air samples taken at Hanford this year after more than three dozen workers reported being sickened by chemical vapors have failed to find a cause for the problem. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Hanford watchdog criticizes deal

- Associated Press

A Hanford watchdog group is complaining that a new deal allows a nuclear waste storage tank to continue leaking for more than a year before its contents are pumped out.

Heitkamp: Facility provides rail disaster training

Associated Press

U.S. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp says more federal money is available to train firefighters and others who must respond to hazardous material emergencies, including oil train derailments.

This April 2, 2014, image provided by the  U.S. Department of Energy shows workers preparing to enter the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant facility in Carlsbad, N.M., for the first time since the Feb. 14 radiological release. The operators of this federal government's troubled nuclear waste dump are bracing for a scathing report Wednesday, April 23, 2014, on their response to a radiation release that contaminated 21 workers and shuttered the southeastern New Mexico facility two months ago. (AP Photo/U.S. Department of Energy)

Feds to unveil cleanup plan for nuke waste dump

- Associated Press

After nearly eight months, the U.S. Department of Energy has formalized a plan for cleaning up the federal government's troubled nuclear waste dump in southeastern New Mexico.

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock presents the Montana Department of Labor and Industry's Labor Day report released Friday, Aug. 29, 2014, in Helena, Mont., while Montana Labor and Industry Commissioner Pam Bucy, center, and Lt. Gov. Angela McLean listen. State officials say Montana ranks in the top five states for employment growth, but it faces slower growth in the future as an aging workforce retires.  (AP Photo/Lisa Baumann)

Climate plan's first test in Montana coal country

- Associated Press

Gov. Steve Bullock's assertion that Montana can meet the Obama administration's climate goals without shutting down power plants will get its first public test in the heart of coal country.

This April 2011 photo provided by Colorado Parks and Wildlife shows a male and female Gunnison Sage Grouse  near Gunnison, Colo. The federal government declares 800,000 acres of land in western Colorado and eastern Utah off-limits to energy exploration to protect the Gunnison sage grouse, a preview of the potential disruption that looms when it will have to protect another grouse species that roams across 11 western states. (AP Photo/Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Mike Danzenbaker)

Sagebrush habitat fuels $1B in recreation spending

- Associated Press

Visitors to federal rangelands with significant tracts of sagebrush pumped about $1 billion into the economy in 11 Western states last year, according to a study released Tuesday by advocates of protecting sage grouse across the region.

FILE - In this July 6, 2013 file photo, smoke rises from railway cars carrying crude oil after derailing in downtown Lac Megantic, Quebec. American Petroleum Institute President Jack Gerard said Tuesday that the oil and railroad industries are urging federal regulators to allow them as long as seven years to retrofit existing tank cars that transport highly volatile crude oil. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Paul Chiasson, File)

Oil, rail industries want 7 years to fix tank cars

- Associated Press

The oil and railroad industries are urging federal regulators to allow them as long as seven years to retrofit existing tank cars that transport highly volatile crude oil, a top oil industry official said Tuesday. The cars have ruptured and spilled oil during collisions, leading to intense fires.

Sen. Ron Wyden, Oregon Democrat, said the National Security Agency "has knowingly acquired tens of thousands of wholly domestic communications  even though this law was specifically written to prohibit the warrantless acquisition of wholly domestic communications." (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Senators ask for more oil train notifications

Associated Press

Four West Coast senators want the federal government to expand a recent order for railroads to notify state emergency responders about crude oil shipments from the Great Plains.

Natural gas wellhead huts, central delivery points and other infrastructure dot the Jonah Field on Monday, Sept. 8, 2014 near Pinedale, Wyo. Jonah Energy recently acquired Encana's natural gas assets in the area. (AP Photo/Casper Star-Tribune, Alan Rogers)

Encana buying Athlon Energy for $5.93 billion

Associated Press

Oil and natural gas company Encana is buying Athlon Energy Inc. for $5.93 billion in an effort to boost is oil production by tapping into Texas's booming Permian Basin.

FILE - This Nov. 9, 2009, file photo, shows the coal-fired San Juan Generating Station near Farmington, N.M. The Santa Fe-based group New Energy Economy is challenging the estimated costs of a plan by PNM to close two units at the power plant and replace the power with a mix of coal, nuclear and solar energy. The group contends PNM didn't include more than a half-billion dollars of ongoing capital expenditures in the calculations and failed to weigh the costs of environmental regulations and the disposal of coal ash waste generated by the power plant. (AP Photo/Susan Montoya Bryan, File)

EPA signs off of power plant proposal

Associated Press

Federal regulators have signed off on a settlement that calls for shutting down part of a coal-fired power plant in northwestern New Mexico that serves more than 2 million customers in the Southwest.

Independent gubernatorial candidate Bill Walker speaks during a debate with Republican Gov. Sean Parnell, seated at left, on Monday, Sept. 29, 2014, in Juneau, Alaska. Walker and Parnell clashed on state spending and a gas line project. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)

Parnell, Walker clash on spending, gas line

- Associated Press

Republican Gov. Sean Parnell clashed with his major rival, independent Bill Walker, on state spending and a gas-line project during a debate in Juneau on Monday.

This photo taken June 12, 2014 shows Dominion Energy's Cove Point LNG Terminal in Lusby, Md. Richmond, Virginia-based Dominion wants to build the $3.8 billion project at its existing Cove Point liquefied natural gas terminal on the bay, which the company used for years to import natural gas. Now, thanks to a boom in natural gas fueled by hydraulic fracturing, Dominion has contracts to export natural gas to Japan and India, where gas prices are higher than in the U.S.  (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Dominion natural gas exports plan gets federal OK

- Associated Press

Dominion Energy received federal approval late Monday to export liquefied natural gas from its Cove Point terminal on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland.

Willie Nelson and Neil Young perform at the Harvest the Hope concert in Neligh, Neb. on Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014. The concert in northeast Nebraska was organized to raise money for efforts opposing the Keystone petroleum pipeline. (AP Photo/Dave Weaver)

Thousands attend anti-pipeline concert in Nebraska

Associated Press

Roughly 8,000 people filled a northeast Nebraska farm Saturday to hear Willie Nelson and Neil Young perform at a concert organized by opponents of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

FILE - In this Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014, file photo, protesters gather and hold signs before a hearing on proposed rules for hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, oil and gas drilling, in Raleigh, N.C. Tens of thousands of people will have weighed in on hydraulic fracturing in North Carolina by the time a public comment period on rules for the drilling method wraps up the last week of September 2014. Public meetings on the issue have illustrated the strong feelings on both sides of the issue, with protests, chanting and even anti-fracking songs. (AP Photo/Jonathan Drew, File)

Fracking rule-makers sort thousands of comments

- Associated Press

A member of the North Carolina commission that's developing fracking regulations says the panel has received dozens of public comments that have caused them "to really go back and do our homework," but thousands of others offer unusable input such as: "Don't Frack NC."

FILE - In this June 25, 2012 file photo, a crew works on a gas drilling rig at a well site for shale based natural gas in Zelienople, Pa. The Republican-controlled House is considering three energy bills aimed at speeding up drilling for oil and natural gas. Bills expected to win approval Wednesday would restrict the Interior Department from enforcing proposed rules to regulate hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, on public lands and set strict deadlines for federal approval of oil and gas permits. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)

Gas drillers draw less water, but concerns linger

- Associated Press

The gas drilling industry in Pennsylvania is recycling more and more water and one river basin commission now reports drillers there are drawing less freshwater than in the past.

Recent Opinion Columns

Illustration on climate, environmentalism and fuel supply by Mark Weber/Tribune Content Agency

Obama's faulty climate-change solutions

President Obama boasted to the United Nations General Assembly last week that America is working hard to deal with what he called the "one issue that will define the contours of this century more dramatically than any other."

FILE - This March 25, 2014 file photo shows perforating tools, used to create fractures in the rock, lowered into one of six wells during a roughly two-week hydraulic fracturing operation at an Encana Corp. well pad near Mead, Colo. The energy boom is scrambling national politics. Democrats are split between environmentalists and business and labor groups. Some deeply-conservative areas are allying with conservationists against fracking, the technique largely responsible for the surge.  (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)

Fracking is the answer to global warming

President Obama raised a lot of eyebrows here and abroad when he declared in his United Nations climate-change speech: "Over the past eight years, the United States has reduced our total carbon pollution by more than any other nation on Earth."

Illustration on the EPA's harming of the low-income, minority and elderly by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Phony 'environmental justice' at EPA

Secretary of State John F. Kerry recently called climate change "the world's most fearsome weapon of mass destruction." The Environmental Protection Agency says it is "happening right now."

President Obama will be the eco-president when he addresses the U.N. climate summit, but he will reprise his commander role 24 hours later when he gives an address before the U.N. Security Council. (Associated Press)

Obama: war hawk, eco-president

- The Washington Times

Issue du jour? Piece of cake. Two weeks after he stepped before the nation as the hawkish protector of the homeland, President Obama now greets a global audience as the wonkish protector of the planet, showcased Tuesday at the United Nations Climate Summit.

Former Vice President Al Gore will speak to the United Nations on climate change.

Brace for the climate change mega-storm

- The Washington Times

One thing is for sure about Al Gore: It never rains on his global warming parade. The former vice president is not about to let go of his climate change zeal, and he takes to the Internet at high noon Tuesday for a lengthy demonstration. Mr. Gore's "24 Hours of Reality" online broadcast is the kickoff for a series of events with hurricane-force winds leading up to the massive United Nations-led climate change summit in New York City next week. So batten down the hatches, folks, for alarmism is on it way.

Illustration on the climate change debate by Nancy Ohanian/Tribune Content Agency

Climate science in 'Jeopardy'

Scientific practice is a bit off these days. It seems as if the promoters of man-made climate change only want one answer for the cause of every climate phenomenon.

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