Air
EPA Orders St. Croix Refinery to Close Until Proven Safe

EPA Orders St. Croix Refinery to Close Until Proven Safe

The Environmental Protection Agency has ordered the Limetree Bay refinery in the U.S. Virgin Islands to close for at least 60 days because its operation is an “imminent risk to public health,” the agency said in a statement. 

Why This Matters: The air pollution and oil that were being emitted at the plant have long caused harm to the people of St. Croix, a majority Black island.

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Animal Farms,  A Serious Source of Air Pollution

Animal Farms, A Serious Source of Air Pollution

by Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer Air pollution from animal farms leads to nearly 13,000 deaths annually, according to a new study that links food protection and air quality harms. The manure and animal feed from farms produce fine-particle pollution that leads to breathing issues as well as long-term health issues like heart disease and […]

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Next Stop in the European Union: Expanded Tram Service

Next Stop in the European Union: Expanded Tram Service

The European Union is angling for climate neutrality by 2050, and in order to hit that target needs to ramp down its transportation emissions by about 90 percent. Trams — or what is known as light rail here in the U.S. — are having a moment as part of that planning. 

Why This Matters: Lowering emissions doesn’t have to mean reinventing the wheel.

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EPA Announces Rule to Reduce HFCs in New A/C and Refrigeration

EPA Announces Rule to Reduce HFCs in New A/C and Refrigeration

On Monday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed the first rule of the Biden administration to combat climate change. EPA Administrator Michael Regan has announced that the rule implementing the 15-year phase-out of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) passed by Congress last year. 

Why This Matters: Although HFCs have an atmospheric lifetime of about 15 years, which is less than any other GHG, and the most common type is 3,790 times more damaging to the environment than carbon dioxide.

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13 U.S. Oil Refineries Release Illegally High Levels of Benzene

13 U.S. Oil Refineries Release Illegally High Levels of Benzene

by Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer A new list from the Environmental Integrity Project (EIP) shows that last year, thirteen U.S. oil refineries emitted more of the cancer-causing chemical benzene than was permitted by the government. This is an increase from eleven refineries that made the list in 2019.  Why This Matters: These unlawful benzene […]

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Future of EV Batteries from CA’s Salton Sea and the Shores of Lake MI

Future of EV Batteries from CA’s Salton Sea and the Shores of Lake MI

New electric vehicle battery capacity is cropping up across the U.S. — places like the Hell’s Kitchen Lithium and Power in California’s Imperial Valley where they are extracting lithium from the Salton Sea, and Ion Park, a “pilot facility” where Ford Motors will eventually produce batteries.

Why This Matters:  With EV sales expected to increase, particularly given the Biden Administration’s emphasis on their development, lithium is in such high demand that experts refer to it as “white gold.

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