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PNS Daily Newscast _ March 31, 2020 


Treasury and IRS say economic impact checks for COVID-19 to begin in next three weeks. And states deal with collision of coronavirus and homelessness.

2020Talks - March 31, 2020 


During the new coronavirus pandemic, many are advocating more mail-in ballots. Some say restricting voting by mail is one method of suppressing the vote.

Public News Service - WV: Toxics

A legal push is underway to force the EPA to close a sizable loophole in the regulation of hazardous waste from oil and gas drilling. Credit: Bill Hughes/Earthworks.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The EPA has largely failed to regulate waste from oil and gas drilling, even though the agency admitted the hazardous nature of the waste decades ago. National and state-based groups are pushing for the agency to at last close the gap. Twenty-seven years ago, the EPA decla

Charleston City Council member Karan Ireland says the water system that serves the city and surrounding counties should be run by a public utility, not a for-profit corporation. Credit: Dan Heyman

CHARLESTON, W. Va. – West Virginia American Water continues to slight consumers and their safety, according to critics calling for a public takeover of the water system. A year-and-a-half ago, the Elk River chemical spill contaminated drinking water the corporation supplies to more than 300,0

The use of coal by Chinese power plants fell by as much as 3.5% last year and looks likely to continue falling. Observers say the government there wants to clean its nortoriously dirty air. Photo by Tobias Brox/Wikimedia.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – China's use of coal fell last year and looks likely to keep falling. The U.S. coal lobby argues any reduction in American carbon pollution will be swallowed up by more CO2 from China. But after decades of explosive growth, Chinese coal use fell by as much as 3.5 percent

The Obama administration plan to cut emissions at coal-fired power plants would affect 11 plants in West Virginia. Conservationists are hailing the move, while the coal industry and its allies are threatening legal challenges. Photo credit: Greg Stotelmyer.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – President Obama has finalized plans to reduce carbon emissions from existing power plants by 32 percent by 2030. Conservationists say the EPA's Clean Power Plan, which targets older, coal-fired plants, will have immense health benefits and boost clean energy efforts in the

PHOTO: Public health advocates, environmental groups and chemical workers' unions say an industry-backed bill, S 697, changing the way the federal government regulates dangerous chemicals, would do nothing to prevent chemical spills such as the one that brought protesters to the State Capitol last year. Photo credit: Dan Heyman.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - An industry-backed bill changing the way the federal government regulates dangerous chemicals wouldn't do enough to protect West Virginia families, watchdogs say. The Vitter-Udall bill now being considered by a Senate committee is drawing criticism from public health advocates,

PHOTO: A watchdog group says the state's largest water utility may want rate payers to bare the cost of mistakes it made during last year's Elk River chemical spill, and for the companies failing to maintain its network of water mains. Photo by Dan Heyman.

CHARLESTON, W. Va. - Watchdogs say West Virginia American Water might stick ratepayers with the cost of its mistakes in the Elk River Chemical spill, plus a backlog of water main repairs. Last week the utility notified the Public Service Commission that it intends to ask for a rate hike. It has n

PHOTO: The state of West Virginia says it now will consider the findings of numerous studies that have linked mountaintop-removal mining to a large number of serious health problems. Photo credit: SouthWings/Vivian Stockman.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - In what could mark a significant shift, the state of West Virginia says it will now take into account studies showing health impacts tied to mountaintop-removal mining. For years, regulators have resisted considering studies showing elevated coalfield health problems, but this w

PHOTO: A witness who had to flee Monday's huge train derailment and explosion in West Virginia says it has changed how he looks at rail shipment of crude oil. Photo courtesy Office of Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin.

CHARLESTON, W. Va. — A witness who fled Monday's train derailment and massive fire says he can't help but wonder now if he and his neighbors are safe from trains carrying crude oil. Iraq War veteran Brandon Truman lives in Boomer, W. Va., directly across the river from where the tanker cars e

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