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Tim Wheeler | January 17, 2014
Maryland and eight other Northeast states are moving to crank down on climate-altering emissions from power plants, aiming to lock in and continue reductions that have already occurred over the past several years as a result of coal-burning plants switching to natural gas, a weak economy and improved energy efficiency. The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, in which Maryland is a participant, announced this week it is lowering its overall cap on power plants' carbon-dioxide releases by 45 percent, to 91 million tons.  The multi-state compact also plans to keep reducing the cap by 2.5 percent a year until 2020, by which time it projects emissions to be half what they were in 2005.
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FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | January 3, 2014
The Environmental Protection Agency moved Friday to reduce harmful air pollution from woodstoves and heaters, proposing to phase in tighter emission standards for new units. The announcement was welcomed by Maryland environmental officials, who had joined in October with their counterparts in New York and five other states to sue the agency for failing to adequately protect the public from emissions from residential wood heaters. "Enough was enough," said Angelo Bianca, deputy air management director for the Maryland Department of the Environment .  EPA had not updated regulations for wood heaters since 1988, he noted.
NEWS
December 10, 2013
I was astonished by Diane Leopold's recent commentary citing a Dominion executive who downplayed the need for an environmental impact statement regarding a proposed liquid natural gas plant near Cove Point residential neighborhoods ( "Dominion Transmission: Cove Point LNG project environmentally sound," Dec. 4). Ms. Leopold blithely proclaims that Dominion will "clean the air of other smog-producing emissions by paying companies for their reduced emissions of pollution, as permitted by federal and state law. " Her logic is as twisted as it is offensive to residents of Cove Point, who are going to end up on the smoggy end of this deal.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | December 9, 2013
Maryland joined seven other Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states Monday in asking for federal help to curb air pollution from outside their borders, saying emissions from the Midwest and South are hurting their residents' health and their economies. The eight states petitioned the Environmental Protection Agency to require nine "upwind" states - Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, North Caroline, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia - to join an interstate commission that over the past two decades has yielded ozone pollution reductions in Maryland and other Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states.
NEWS
By Diane Leopold | December 4, 2013
The liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility at the Dominion Cove Point Terminal has long been a model of industrial and environmental cooperation. More than 1,000 acres of pristine beach, forest and marsh lands in southern Maryland are conserved, while at the same time the Chesapeake Bay is unharmed. Dominion is proud of its award-winning role as an environmental steward at Cove Point and has designed its proposed LNG export project to continue that commitment. The Baltimore Sun's Sunday editorial calling for greater scrutiny of the project fails to take these facts and many more into account.
NEWS
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | November 24, 2013
Solar power is going everywhere these days — homes, businesses, schools, even sewage plants. Howard County is beginning work this week installing about 740 photovoltaic panels at its Little Patuxent Water Reclamation Plant in Savage. The $1.5 million project will generate a fraction of the power needed by Maryland's fifth largest wastewater treatment plant. Its chief purpose, however, according to County Executive Ken Ulman, is to offset carbon emissions from big new diesel generators being installed to prevent sewage spills like the massive one triggered by Superstorm Sandy last year.
NEWS
November 17, 2013
James McGarry contends that Dominion Resources' plan to export liquefied natural gas would "damage" the environment and "threaten the economy" ( "Exporting natural gas is a bad deal for Maryland" Dec. 4). Both these claims are unequivocally false. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, natural gas produces about half the CO2 emissions as coal. Inexpensive natural gas is the chief reason why energy-related CO2 emissions have been plummeting in the United States. Making it easier for other coal-using countries to shift to natural gas would have a very positive impact on the environment.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | November 6, 2013
Reducing air pollution has given an unexpectedly big boost to long-running efforts to clean up the Chesapeake Bay, a new study finds. Resarchers at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science determined that nitrogen pollution in nine mostly forested rivers and streams in the Appalachian reaches of the bay watershed has declined in tandem with government-mandated air pollution reductions for power plants and motor vehicles....
NEWS
September 23, 2013
The regulations released last week by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to limit carbon emissions from new power plants are so clearly necessary - and have been in the works for years - that it's difficult to even think of them as somehow controversial. That is, unless, one continues to deny the existence of man-made climate change. If you are a denier, well, there's not much to be said on the subject. It requires only that you ignore that global warming is happening at an unprecedented rate, that the heat-trapping effects of carbon dioxide have been documented since the mid-19 t h century, and that oceans are warming, sea levels are rising and glaciers have been retreating to a record extent.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | September 20, 2013
Maryland's Democratic office-holders joined environmentalists in praising the Obama administration's announcement Friday that it is moving to curb carbon-dioxide emissions from power plants. Gov. Martin O'Malley issued a statement in support of the regulation issued by the Environmental Protection Agency , which would impose limits on carbon emitted by new power plants. He noted that existing power plants account for 34 percent of the nation's climate-altering greenhouse gas emissions, the largest source.
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