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    PNS Daily News - December 19, 20140 


    Among the stories featured on our Friday rundown; President Obama reported to be ready to take executive actions concerning Cuba; North Carolina marks another year without an execution; and Congress makes it easier for people with disabilities to save.

Climate Change/Air Quality

PHOTO: New York Acting Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker and Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens presented Gov. Cuomo and his Cabinet with their reports recommending a continued ban on fracking for natural gas. Photo Credit: Office of the Governor.

ALBANY, N.Y. - In a long-awaited announcement, the administration of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday ruled the potential health and environmental risks of fracking for natural gas are too great and not enough is known about them to allow it in New York. In extending a de facto ban on using ...Read More

PHOTO: Rice growing in a field. The California Air Resources Board is considering the state's first agricultural protocol for the cap and trade program. It would allow rice farmers to generate offsets to sell in California’s carbon market, providing a new source of revenue for growers while contributing to the state’s clean-air goals. Photo credit: Matthew Grimm, Environmental Defense Fund.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Rice farming in California is entering a new era. The Air Resources Board is considering a proposal to allow rice farmers to generate offsets to sell in the state's cap-and-trade market. The program will allow rice farmers to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions while creating new r ...Read More

PHOTO: Most businesses in Kentucky support a statewide indoor smoke-free law, according to the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce. Lawmakers will hear testimony about property rights Wednesday. Photo credit: Greg Stotelmyer.

FRANKFORT, Ky. - Health advocates are targeting the 2015 session of the Kentucky General Assembly for passage of a comprehensive smoke-free law that would cover all indoor public places and workplaces. Lawmakers on the Health and Welfare Committee will explore the impact on property rights in Frank ...Read More

PHOTO: Mounds of coal ash are seen at a disposal site in Jefferson County, located near a residential area. Environmental and public health groups are anticipating first-ever EPA restrictions that classify coal ash as a hazardous substance. Photo credit: Thomas Pearce.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Federal rules about the storage and disposal of coal ash are expected from the Environmental Protection Agency this week. Kentucky is "in the center of the storm" about public health risks caused by coal ash, a toxic byproduct created when coal-fired power plants generate electric ...Read More

PHOTO: Macon County fifth- and sixth-grade students gain hands-on education in migration patterns and butterflies at the Tessentee Bottomland Preserve. Photo credit: Land Trust for the Little Tennessee.

FRANKLIN, N.C. - A group of students in one North Carolina community is 'a-flutter' about land conservation, thanks to a tiny winged species. For the past five years, fifth- and sixth-grade students in Macon County have collected data on butterflies at the Land Trust for the Little Tennessee's Tess ...Read More

PHOTO: Stopping fracking on public lands in Nevada is the purpose of a protest planned Tuesday in Reno at the Bureau of Land Management's (BLM) public auction of oil and gas leases. Photo credit: BLM.

RENO, Nev. - A protest is planned in Reno today at the Bureau of Land Management's (BLM) auction of oil and gas leases that could result in fracking on public lands in Nevada. Dan Patterson, an ecologist with the Center for Biological Diversity, is among those organizing the protest. He says fracki ...Read More

PHOTO: Environmental advocates are calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to make a resolution for 2015 and to get back to "established science" on climate change. Courtesy: governor.gov

NEW YORK - It's time to start thinking about New Year's resolutions, and local environmental advocates would like to see Governor Cuomo resolve to get back to science when it comes to climate change. Peter Iwanowitz, executive director with Environmental Advocates of New York, credits Cuomo with ta ...Read More

MAP: The boom in natural-gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale has meant more than 70 million man-hours for workers building post-production infrastructure, such as pipelines and compressor stations in six states, including West Virginia, since 2008. Map by West Virginia Geologic and Economic Survey.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The Marcellus boom has meant more than 70 million man-hours of work building support infrastructure in the past six years, according to a new report. The study looked at jobs not connected to the actual drilling of the wells in six states. Bob Bruno, a professor of labor and em ...Read More

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Climate Change/Air Quality by State