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HEALTH
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | July 8, 2011
In a sweeping move aimed at curbing long-distance air pollution that afflicts the health of 240 million Americans — including Marylanders — the Environmental Protection Agency is ordering power plants across much of the eastern United States to sharply curtail emissions. The rule, announced Thursday, gives coal-fired plants in Maryland and 26 other states until 2014 to make steep reductions in emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide, pollutants that contribute to serious health problems such as asthma, bronchitis and heart attacks.
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NEWS
By Joe Garonzik | July 11, 2014
While Maryland is well positioned for complying with Environmental Protection Agency's preliminary carbon regulations, mandating a 30 percent nationwide reduction in CO2 emissions from power plants by 2030, those proposed regulations by themselves will do nothing for the dismal air quality of the Baltimore metro area because we're already largely in compliance. Instead of the federal CO2 standard, we must focus on the state level to eliminate the toxic pollutants nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide.
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NEWS
By Joe Garonzik | July 11, 2014
While Maryland is well positioned for complying with Environmental Protection Agency's preliminary carbon regulations, mandating a 30 percent nationwide reduction in CO2 emissions from power plants by 2030, those proposed regulations by themselves will do nothing for the dismal air quality of the Baltimore metro area because we're already largely in compliance. Instead of the federal CO2 standard, we must focus on the state level to eliminate the toxic pollutants nitrogen oxides and sulfur dioxide.
NEWS
June 12, 2014
Coal-fired power plants are the greatest source of greenhouse gas in America ( "Carbon rules can work," June 2). Neighboring West Virginia extracts 90 percent of its power from coal alone, and there are eight active coal units in Maryland that violate the EPA's requirements for the filtering of sulfur dioxide, smog-inducing nitrogen oxide and other toxic emissions. Maryland is in soot soup! Not surprisingly, there are 34 deaths per million asthma cases in Baltimore. Twenty-eight percent of city high school students claim diagnosis (national average was 20 percent in 2007)
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | October 10, 2012
While Baltimore's air is healthier to breathe than it used to be, at least one environmental group thinks it could be cleaner still.  The Sierra Club released a report this week contending that two power plants in the area - C.P. Crane in Baltimore County, and H.A. Wager in Anne Arundel County - are releasing four times as much potentially harmful sulfur dioxide as the Environmental Protection Agency now deems safe.  The group,...
FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | July 11, 2013
The present and former owners of a Hagerstown cement plant have agreed to pay a $700,000 fine and beef up emission controls at the facility to settle alleged air pollution violations, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Thursday. The proposed federal court consent decree requires Holcim Inc. to install "advanced pollution controls" at the Hagerstown manufacturing facility, which employs about 100 workers. The company, based in Waltham, Mass., also pledged to spend at least $150,000 on replacing an outdated piece of plant equipment with one that emits less pollution.
NEWS
By TOM PELTON and TOM PELTON,SUN REPORTER | March 14, 2006
The Ehrlich administration relaxed yesterday some of the air pollution reduction requirements in the governor's new rules for coal-fired power plants, but dropped a hotly contested proposal to exempt about half of the generators from some emission limits. The changes to the Maryland Clean Power Rule were requested by the power industry, which has been seeking weaker standards, and environmental groups, which asked for the elimination of a "gaping loophole" that exempted smaller plants from sulfur dioxide limits.
NEWS
April 7, 1993
Pork bellies, heating oil, orange juice, acid rain?Created by the federal Environmental Protection Agency, air-pollution rights began publicly trading last week like other commodities on the Chicago Board of Trade. A permit to emit one ton of sulfur dioxide -- the principal component of acid rain -- sold for about $140; nearly 300,000 rights (tons per year) were offered for sale.The pollution rights market rewards utilities that go beyond their government-mandated smokestack cleanup requirements, and provides a hedge for utilities that cannot (or choose not to)
NEWS
March 22, 2005
MARYLAND'S AGING coal-fired power plants do more than generate electricity. They pollute, belching forth a smog-forming stew of nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, carbon dioxide and mercury. It's one of the reasons the Baltimore-Washington area has some of the unhealthiest air in the nation. Conventional wisdom is that technology to clean them up would be ruinously expensive, but last month, an independent economist hired by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation reported otherwise. In a study of two of the largest culprits, Morgantown in Southern Maryland and Constellation Energy's Brandon Shores plant in Anne Arundel County, economist Matthew Kahal gauged the effects of legislation pending in Annapolis to gradually reduce these Big Four pollutants over the next decade or so. The conclusion: The old plants are such cash cows that even if the pollution controls cost them $100 million each, they'd still make at least that much each year in profits.
NEWS
June 12, 2014
Coal-fired power plants are the greatest source of greenhouse gas in America ( "Carbon rules can work," June 2). Neighboring West Virginia extracts 90 percent of its power from coal alone, and there are eight active coal units in Maryland that violate the EPA's requirements for the filtering of sulfur dioxide, smog-inducing nitrogen oxide and other toxic emissions. Maryland is in soot soup! Not surprisingly, there are 34 deaths per million asthma cases in Baltimore. Twenty-eight percent of city high school students claim diagnosis (national average was 20 percent in 2007)
FEATURES
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | July 11, 2013
The present and former owners of a Hagerstown cement plant have agreed to pay a $700,000 fine and beef up emission controls at the facility to settle alleged air pollution violations, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Thursday. The proposed federal court consent decree requires Holcim Inc. to install "advanced pollution controls" at the Hagerstown manufacturing facility, which employs about 100 workers. The company, based in Waltham, Mass., also pledged to spend at least $150,000 on replacing an outdated piece of plant equipment with one that emits less pollution.
FEATURES
Tim Wheeler | October 10, 2012
While Baltimore's air is healthier to breathe than it used to be, at least one environmental group thinks it could be cleaner still.  The Sierra Club released a report this week contending that two power plants in the area - C.P. Crane in Baltimore County, and H.A. Wager in Anne Arundel County - are releasing four times as much potentially harmful sulfur dioxide as the Environmental Protection Agency now deems safe.  The group,...
FEATURES
By Meredith Cohn, The Baltimore Sun | August 21, 2012
A federal appeals court swept aside a key pillar of Maryland's plan to reduce soot and smog on Tuesday when it struck down a federal rule aimed at limiting air pollution crossing from one state to another. Maryland has moved aggressively to cut emissions from coal-burning power plants that officials say contribute to serious health problems such as asthma, heart attacks and premature death. But up to 70 percent of the pollution fouling the state's air comes from upwind states, according to Robert M. Summers, Maryland secretary of the environment.
HEALTH
By Timothy B. Wheeler, The Baltimore Sun | July 8, 2011
In a sweeping move aimed at curbing long-distance air pollution that afflicts the health of 240 million Americans — including Marylanders — the Environmental Protection Agency is ordering power plants across much of the eastern United States to sharply curtail emissions. The rule, announced Thursday, gives coal-fired plants in Maryland and 26 other states until 2014 to make steep reductions in emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide, pollutants that contribute to serious health problems such as asthma, bronchitis and heart attacks.
NEWS
July 19, 2007
Coal company fined $150,000 for pollution The Maryland Department of the Environment has fined the Mettiki Coal company $150,000 for emitting illegal amounts of air pollution from a processing plant in Western Maryland. The sulfur dioxide was released from a coal drying machine at 293 Table Rock Road in Oakland in May and June 2006, according to a consent decree filed in Baltimore Circuit Court. "Sulfur dioxide leads to the formation of fine particles that impact public health," state Environment Secretary Shari T. Wilson said in announcing the fine yesterday.
NEWS
By LARRY WILLIAMS and LARRY WILLIAMS,IDEAS EDITOR | April 23, 2006
One oil company thinks solar energy is hot There's another way to think about that incredible 72 percent electric rate increase proposed for BGE customers this summer. Like the $3- or $4- or $5-a-gallon gasoline that may be just around the corner, it's a painful reminder of the Darwinian axiom that the future belongs to those who plan and evolve. Just ask the folks at BP Solar. The company, a subsidiary of the global oil giant, recently spent $25 million to more than double the capacity of a Frederick plant where it manufactures panels of solar electric cells designed to be mounted on the roofs of homes or businesses.
NEWS
April 22, 1999
EARTH DAY 1999, the 30th annual observance, reminds us of a continuing obligation to the health of our planet. It is not a commemoration of victory but of an ongoing responsibility.Much has been accomplished to clean up the environment since that first Earth Day in 1970. Whether these improvements are a result of stricter laws, or of competitive demands of the economy, is debated. But trends that began before the Clean Air and Clean Water acts of the early 1970s were certainly accelerated by those laws.
NEWS
By TOM PELTON and TOM PELTON,SUN REPORTER | March 14, 2006
The Ehrlich administration relaxed yesterday some of the air pollution reduction requirements in the governor's new rules for coal-fired power plants, but dropped a hotly contested proposal to exempt about half of the generators from some emission limits. The changes to the Maryland Clean Power Rule were requested by the power industry, which has been seeking weaker standards, and environmental groups, which asked for the elimination of a "gaping loophole" that exempted smaller plants from sulfur dioxide limits.
NEWS
November 22, 2005
Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. deserves credit for a change of heart - and a heart-healthy plan to fight pollution. A year ago, he was dead set against imposing tougher standards on the noxious emissions coming out of Maryland's coal-fired power plants. Last week, he announced stricter air-quality regulations for those same aging power plants. The proposal is not strong enough, mind you, but is a big improvement over doing nothing at all. There are seven Maryland power plants that are old enough to be exempt from much of the federal Clean Air Act standards.
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