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New report spotlights Erie Bayfront Parkway expansion among national highway boondoggles

Clean energy

New report spotlights Erie Bayfront Parkway expansion among national highway boondoggles

ERIE, Pa. -- On the heels of Labor Day weekend, one of the year’s busiest weekends on the roads, PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center, PennPIRG Education Fund and Frontier Group released a new report on Thursday that exposes highway boondoggles across the country that, if completed, would not only waste billions of dollars but also deepen our country’s harmful dependence on cars. The report includes the $100 million redesign of the already controversial Bayfront Parkway in Erie that would attract more speeding traffic to the city’s developing bayfront while failing to meet community demands for better pedestrian access from downtown and neighborhoods.

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PennEnvironment Statement: Inflation Reduction Act could be a ‘game changer’ for climate and clean energy

Global warming solutions

PennEnvironment Statement: Inflation Reduction Act could be a ‘game changer’ for climate and clean energy

PHILADELPHIA– Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia have reached a deal on a federal reconciliation bill that would represent the nation’s largest ever investment in clean energy and climate solutions. The Inflation Reduction Act includes nearly $370 billion in climate spending, designed to achieve a 40% emissions reduction by 2030. Already submitted to the Senate Parliamentarian, the bill could come up for a vote in the coming weeks.

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Biden promises action on climate change during event at former coal plant

Global warming solutions

Biden promises action on climate change during event at former coal plant

President Joe Biden took his campaign to slow down climate change and speed up our transition to clean energy to the site of the former Brayton Point coal-fired power plant on Wednesday. Brayton Point is now becoming a hub for the development and production of offshore wind technology. During the visit, he announced a new program to develop offshore wind power in the Gulf of Mexico for the first time and indicated that his administration would propose additional executive actions to tackle climate change in the coming days. 

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Report: Federal logging projects put 10 climate-saving forests on chopping block

Forests

Report: Federal logging projects put 10 climate-saving forests on chopping block

Federal agencies are targeting mature and old-growth forests for logging despite these trees’ extraordinary ability to curb climate change and President Joe Biden’s directive to preserve them, according to a new report spotlighting the 10 worst logging projects in federal forests across the country.

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PennEnvironment Statement: Supreme Court hamstrings EPA’s ability to tackle climate change

Global warming solutions

PennEnvironment Statement: Supreme Court hamstrings EPA’s ability to tackle climate change

WASHINGTON – The Supreme Court of the United States announced its decision on the West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) case Thursday, severely limiting the EPA’s authority to regulate climate pollution from power plants. Despite the fact that the Biden administration has yet to propose rules regulating greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, the Court issued a decision that severely limits the EPA’s authority to regulate carbon from power plants, holding that unless expressly delegated, that authority belongs to Congress.  A recently-released PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center fact sheet lists the Pennsylvania power plants that spew the most climate change-causing pollution into the air. ​​The fact sheet shows that climate emissions from Pennsylvania’s 10 dirtiest power plants totaled more than 37 million metric tons in 2020 -- equivalent to the annual emissions of over 8 million gas-powered cars. Electricity production is the second-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. In the dissenting opinion, Justice Elena Kagan wrote, “Today, the Court strips the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) of the power Congress gave it to respond to ‘the most pressing environmental challenge of our time.’”

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Logging mature and old trees threatens U.S. climate goals

Forests

Logging mature and old trees threatens U.S. climate goals

 Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Thursday signed a memorandum to clarify the U.S. Forest Service’s direction on climate policy. The memo, "Climate Resilience and Carbon Stewardship of America's National Forests and Grasslands," follows a recent White House executive order highlighting the importance of conserving mature and old-growth forests on federal lands as a climate solution. The memo, which lays out “actions to restore forests, improve resilience, and address the climate crisis”, falls short in meeting the ambition outlined in President Joe Biden’s order on old forests and trees. Secretary Vilsack acknowledges the role that older trees play in absorbing and storing carbon and supporting biodiversity. But he fails to outline a plan for his agency to protect mature and old-growth forests and trees from commercial logging. 

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