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On World AIDS Day, New Mexico activists say more money is needed for prevention; ND farmers still navigate corporate land-ownership policy maze; Unpaid caregivers in ME receive limited financial grants.

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Secretary of State Antony Blinken urges Israel to protect civilians amid Gaza truce talks, New York Rep. George Santos defends himself as his expected expulsion looms and CDC director warns about respiratory illness as flu season begins.

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Congress has iced the Farm Bill, but farmer advocates argue some portions are urgent, the Hoosier State is reaping big rewards from wind and solar, and opponents react to a road through Alaska's Brooks Range, long a dream destination for hunters and anglers.

Montana Clean-Air Advocates Laud Court Decision on Clean Power Plan

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Friday, January 22, 2016   

HELENA, Mont. - Clean-air advocates are hailing a decision Wednesday by the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington to leave President Obama's Clean Power Plan in place while the suit against it goes forward.

The attorneys general from 27 states, including Montana, had asked the court for a stay to block the Environmental Protection Agency from implementing the plan to reduce carbon emissions from power plants, arguing it would cost jobs.

Michelle Uberuaga, field manager for the Montana chapter of the nonprofit Moms Clean Air Force, said she hopes the lawsuit ultimately fails. She added that she wants state leaders to formulate their own plan in the meantime, before the feds impose their version.

"The longer we wait, the fewer options we have," she said. "If the state works now, they can be proactive and be leaders rather than living in the past and dragging our feet. It's really frustrating. We need our leaders to step up."

The governor has said he supports the lawsuit but is nonetheless moving forward to establish a Montana-specific plan. The first monthly meeting of the Montana Clean Power Plan advisory council will be held at the end of February.

State Sen. Dick Barrett, D-Missoula, said the United States' international credibility is on the line in light of the agreement on climate change the United States negotiated in Paris in December.

"So if every country takes the attitude, 'Well, let others do it,' then nothing will get done," he said. "I think the position of the United States would be seriously impaired."

The states have until September to come up with their own plan or request an extension.

The court decision is online at edf.org.


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