emissions

  • The White House, Washington, D.C.  [Creative Commons license by dcjohn]

    These do not appear to be the best of times for President Donald J. Trump, but his agenda of eliminating regulations and promoting fossil fuels continues to roll out. This week, Trump appeared at the EPA to sign an executive order that directed the agency to reopen and reassess its Clean Power Plan for reducing carbon emissions from generating electricity in each state. The event was sparsely attended and, as reported by The Washington Post, some agency employees wore buttons saying "Scientific Integrity" as a silent protest. DON'T MISS: Trump Administration goal: undo every climate-change...

  • 2012 Subaru Impreza hatchback used for Google Street View, modified to gather data on methane leaks
    Google Street View car used to spot, quantify methane leaks

    Natural gas is growing as a part of the world's grid mix, because its carbon per kilowatt-hour is much lower. But methane leaks that emit large volumes of climate-change gas into the air may offset that advantage. Now, a Google Street View car has allowed researchers to pinpoint and quantify the...

  • 2017 Toyota Prius
    How to curb climate change yourself: drive a more efficient car

    Given the current political landscape in Washington, it's not unreasonable to worry about the future of U.S. efforts to combat climate change. The Trump Administration has embarked on an explicit mission to undo all Obama Administration efforts to reduce carbon emissions. Climate-science deniers in...

  • Cooling tower at power plant, by Flickr user Paul J Everett (Used under CC License)
    Natural-gas plants cut carbon, but methane emissions can be 100 times higher than expected

    While renewable energy gets significant press as an alternative to coal in electricity generation, it isn't the main factor in decreasing the use of that carbon-intensive fuel. Thanks to its generally lower cost, natural gas is quickly displacing other fuels in the nation's power plants. In...

  • California Air Resources Board chair Mary Nichols (via Twitter)
    California reaffirms state emission, electric-car rules for 2025

    The California Air Resources Board voted Friday to confirm its stricter emissions standards for 2025, setting up a potential clash with the Trump Administration. The CARB vote reaffirms a decision by the EPA in the waning days of the Obama Administration to lock in emissions standards for vehicles...

  • Big square baler harvesting wheat straw for production of cellulosic ethanol
    E15 gasoline faces stronger headwinds as more states move to ban it

    While political control in Washington has changed, the debate over a mandate to blend specific volumes of ethanol into the U.S. fuel supply has not. Since its passage in 2007 as part of the Energy Independence and Security Act, the ethanol-mandating Renewable Fuel Standard has attracted...

  • Nissan Sway Concept

    California is very different from the rest of the United States. All by itself, it's the sixth largest economy in the world. One eighth of all Americans live there. It's home to Silicon Valley, as well as much of the global entertainment industry, and it produces a large proportion of the nation's fruit and vegetables. DON'T MISS: A Brief History Of Smog, Which Led To Electric Cars Its Los Angeles Basin is also doomed by its geography and geology to suffer perennially bad air. Even the Spanish Conquistadors complained about the haze caused when smoke from the campfires of indigenous peoples...

  • Gas pump
    Costs to meet fuel-economy standards even lower than EPA says: analysis

    The auto industry tends to oppose, viscerally and viciously, all attempts to regulate any aspect of its products or business operations for any reason. With President Trump in the White House, the industry has succeeded in getting the comment period reopened for the EPA emission standards finalized...

  • PSA's Carlos Tavares and General Motors' Mary T. Barra
    Europe's emission limits, small cars far from global mainstream: is this why GM sold Opel?

    At the 2017 Geneva auto show, General Motors announced the sale of its entire European operations—comprising factories and the Opel and Vauxhall brands—to PSA Peugeot Citroën. German Opel and its British Vauxhall sibling have represented GM's main presence in Europe for decades...

  • Oil well (photo by John Hill)
    The oil industry doesn't care about electric cars: here's why

    It crops up in comments from electric-car advocates and clean-energy users fairly regularly. And it goes something like this: "Big Oil and Gas are on the verge of collapse, as clean energy and electric cars make them obsolete." Occasionally the sentiment is followed by an approving emoji. DON'T...

  • 2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel
    French prosecutors to investigate Fiat Chrysler for 'aggravated cheating' on diesel emissions

    Fiat Chrysler Automobiles continues to be dogged by allegations that it cheated on various diesel-emissions tests. In the U.S., the company faces two lawsuits alleging that diesel vehicles use "defeat device" software to circumvent emissions tests in a similar manner to Volkswagen's cheating TDI...

  • Volkswagen ID Buzz concept, 2017 Detroit auto show
    First high-volume VW electric car must arrive by 2020, CEO says, mostly for China

    As it tries to put the ongoing diesel-emissions scandal behind it, VW Group is focusing its future on electric cars. The Volkswagen brand within the sprawling German company has developed an electric-car specific platform called MEB, and has shown multiple concepts based on it. Those include the ID...

  • Coal-fired Nanticoke Generating Station, Ontario, Canada, now being converted to 44-MW solar farm

    One of the major sources of carbon emissions is electricity generation. It's an issue that is becoming increasingly important in the automotive sphere, due to the slow rise of plug-in electric cars. So what would it take to eliminate carbon emissions entirely from making electricity? DON'T MISS: Bipartisan governors' group urges Trump to back solar, wind power The answer is both efficiency improvements, and a shift of the generating mix into renewable energy, according to a new study. Carbon emissions from electricity generation could be reduced 70 percent by 2050, and eliminated entirely by...

  • President Donald Trump (Photo courtesy Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia Commons)
    EPA to reopen emission-rule review; how important is this step?

    Tomorrow is expected to be the day when President Donald Trump announces the EPA will reopen the comment period for the vehicle emissions standards it finalized in the waning days of the Obama Administration. The event will likely be accompanied by predictable language: Trump will be...

  • 2017 Nissan Leaf
    Five electric-car questions to worry about this year

    It seems fair to say that the new presidential administration may have increased the generalized level of worry among many Americans, not to mention the rest of the world. Among the things to worry about are the future of incentives, infrastructure, and legislation encouraging the adoption of...

  • BMW M3 M Performance exhaust
    EPA's internal watchdog to check vulnerability to emission cheating

    Even with a new leader apparently at odds with its mission, the Environmental Protection Agency continues to function on some level. On Thursday, EPA administrator Scott Pruitt said carbon dioxide released by human activity is not a major cause of climate change, directly contradicting the...

  • Bill Nye in new 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV, Jan 2017 [photo: Oskar Liners, Community Chevrolet, Burbank]
    Trump's EPA deletes 'science' from Science Office mission statement

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is emerging as one of the government entities most targeted by the new Trump Administration for change. In this case, if reports of the administration's draft budget proposal are accurate, change means wholesale elimination of staff, funding, and programs...

  • Smog obscures George Washington Bridge, 1973 [From EPA Documerica series]
    Trump budget to slash EPA funds, ax staff, kill climate-change plans: reports

    Imagine appointing a lifelong pacifist, who believes it is never justifiable to take up arms against any man, to run the U.S. armed forces. The appointment of Scott Pruitt as the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency could perhaps be viewed in a similar light. In his former...

  • BYD e6 electric taxi in service in Shenzhen, China

    China's latest effort to promote electric cars focuses on taxis in its capital city of Beijing. The country that is now the world's largest new-car market already offers generous purchase incentives for electric cars bought by individuals. Now the city also plans to replace its entire fleet of gasoline taxis with electric cars. DON'T MISS: Electric-car winds in China shift again: goals to be cut after sales fall? That fleet currently includes around 70,000 taxis, and would cost around $1.3 billion to convert to electric power, according to the local National Business Daily (via Futurism). The...

  • 2017 Chevrolet Volt
    Which states follow California's emission and zero-emission vehicle rules?

    California leads the nation in policies that promote reductions of carbon emissions from road vehicles. It is unique in having a federal waiver that allows it to set its own, stricter emissions standards, along with a zero-emission vehicle mandate that requires automakers reaching certain sales...

  • Chrome exhaust pipe
    EPA to reopen 2022-2025 auto-emission rule decision: report

    It looks like lobbying pays off, at least in the case of EPA emission rules. According to numerous recent reports, the EPA is expected to reopen the commenting period for vehicle-emission rules it finalized in January, more than a year ahead of schedule. Automaker CEOs and the Alliance of...

  • Smog obscures George Washington Bridge, 1973 [From EPA Documerica series]
    Photos reveal how polluted the U.S. was before EPA was founded

    It can be argued that the current presidential administration appears to lack interest in the traditional mission of the Environmental Protection Agency. As a candidate, Donald Trump advocated wholesale repeal of environmental regulations and increased production of fossil fuels. He has also called...

  • 1991 BMW M5
    Overall U.S. vehicle fleet gas mileage rose only slightly over last 25 years

    The average fuel economy of the new cars and light trucks sold in the U.S. is appreciably higher than it was 10 years ago. The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute has demonstrated that in its regular reports calculating new-car average fuel economy since October 2007. But...

  • Traffic in Atlanta, Georgia during rush hour (via Wikimedia)
    3 billion cars by 2050 would need biofuels to offset climate impact: projection

    Even with aggressive promotion of battery-electric or hydrogen fuel-cell cars, hundreds of millions of internal-combustion vehicles will remain on the world's roads for decades to come. But estimates of exactly how many internal-combustion cars will be displaced by alternatives in a given period...

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