Environment

Report: The Country's Top Cities for Clean Energy Policy

New York City, Boston and Seattle top the 2020 Clean Energy Scorecard, which ranks 100 cities on local efforts to implement clean energy policy. But only 20 cities are on track to meet their own community climate goals.

In Santa Monica, City Hall Makes its Own Water, Power—and Goodwill

COMMENTARY | Municipal leaders can build new facilities that recycle water and generate power, as well as uplift staff and citizens.

The Insurance Industry Can Help States Act on Climate Change

COMMENTARY | States looking to act on climate change should consider partnering with the industry.

Oregon Wildfires Prompt Evacuation Advisories for About 500,000

About 1 million acres are burning in the state and people have been told to leave areas within 30 miles of Portland.

One Solution to California’s Blackouts? The World’s Biggest Battery.

As states move away from fossil-fuel energy, they are going to need increased battery storage to meet clean energy goals.

California Braces for More Rolling Blackouts Amid Heat Wave

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | Arrest controversy in Pittsburgh ... Boston signs local contract for protective gear ... Cuomo green-lights bowling alley re-openings ... Nonprofit seeks to improve drinking water access in West Virginia.

What Happened When a Public Institute Became a De Facto Lobbying Arm of the Timber Industry

Internal emails show a tax-funded agency created to educate people about forestry has acted as a public-relations agency and lobbying arm for Oregon’s timber industry, in some cases skirting legal constraints that forbid it from doing so.

States Warn Residents About Unsolicited Seed Packages Sent From China

People have received the mysterious shipments in at least 22 states. The seeds could pose threats to the environment and agriculture. Federal authorities are investigating.

State Attorneys General Sue Over Clean Water Act Changes

They say that the new rule will lessen states’ abilities to combat pollution.

Report: High-Tide Flooding Broke Records Last Year. It Will Probably Keep Getting Worse.

Nineteen locations around the country in 2019 set or tied records on the number of flood days, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found.

The Coronavirus Has Resurrected Single-Use Plastics—Are They Back to Stay?

COMMENTARY | The trend to re-embrace plastic bags and other single-use disposable goods reverses previously growing policies in cities and states to restrict their use.

Conservation Could Create Jobs After the Pandemic

COMMENTARY | When it comes to public lands, conservation and developing parks can create more jobs than oil and gas development.

How Climate Change Is Contributing to Skyrocketing Rates of Infectious Disease

A catastrophic loss in biodiversity, reckless destruction of wildland and warming temperatures have allowed disease to explode. Ignoring the connection between climate change and pandemics would be “dangerous delusion,” one scientist said.

In a Hawaii Sewage Case, Supreme Court Bolsters Protections Under Clean Water Act

Environmental activists expect the ruling will force a Maui County wastewater treatment plant to obtain a permit regulating its sewage discharge into groundwater.

Study: Air Pollution Increases Risk of Death from Coronavirus

The study by researchers at Harvard University's public health school is the first nationwide research to find a link between high rates of air pollution and higher rates of death from the novel coronavirus.

Trump Administration Issues Final Auto Emissions Rollback

The new standards will require automakers to reduce vehicle emissions by 1.5% each year, as opposed to 5% reductions required under an Obama-era rule.

Some States Stall Plastic Bag Bans During Coronavirus Outbreak

Lawmakers and some store chains are temporarily banning reusable bags amid fears that their usage could help spread coronavirus.

Bee Lawns Generate National Buzz

At least 28 states have enacted pollinator health laws in recent years.

Deer, Bear and Everywhere: Animals Move Into the City

Many wildlife agencies are shifting to a more hands-off approach to animals in urban areas instead of treating every sighting as a problem to be solved.

Lawmakers Push to Restore Waterway, Coastal Storm Assessment Funds

The Trump administration has proposed significant reductions to a program that funds cleanup in the Chesapeake Bay and stopped funding studies that seek to address threats posed by coastal storm-related flooding.