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JLN Environmental/Energy: EPA Greenhouse-Gas Rules Draw U.S. Supreme Court Scrutiny; Cracking the Energy Puzzles of the 21st Century; India Increases Effort to Harness Biomass Energy

In this edition, the Supreme Court will decide whether to block key aspects of the Obama administration’s plan aimed at cutting power plant and factory emissions. The AP and others have coverage. Plus, China Offers Cash in Bid to Cut Air Pollution, says The Wall Street Journal.

Quote of the Day:

“Populations are switching to domestic fuels when they can’t afford energy prices.”

–Valentin Foltescu, an air quality expert at the World Health Organization, in The New York Times’ “Bulgaria’s Air Is Dirtiest in Europe, Study Finds, Followed by Poland”

Lead Stories

High court will review EPA global warming rules
AP
The Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to decide whether to block key aspects of the Obama administration’s plan aimed at cutting power plant and factory emissions of gases blamed for global warming.
http://jlne.ws/GXhkR1

EPA Greenhouse-Gas Rules Draw U.S. Supreme Court Scrutiny
Bloomberg
The U.S. Supreme Court said it will scrutinize the Environmental Protection Agency’s first-ever push to curb greenhouse-gas emissions, agreeing to hear appeals from industry trade groups and Republican-led states.
http://jlne.ws/19QiyKc

Cracking the Energy Puzzles of the 21st Century
The New York Times
Not long ago, Chevron’s exploration teams were stuck. Several years earlier they had struck oil at a place called Rosebank, 9,000 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean west of Britain’s Shetland Islands. But the usual seismic surveys could not make out the location of the field clearly enough for Chevron to decide where to place wells, which can cost $100 million or more apiece.
http://jlne.ws/1giMH8l

China Offers Cash in Bid to Cut Air Pollution
The Wall Street Journal
China’s government is trying a new tack in addressing the country’s polluted skies: It is offering a total of 5 billion yuan ($818 million) in extra funding to regions that make the greatest improvement in reducing air pollution by the end of the year.
http://jlne.ws/15FMZ2i

ADB Forecasts Soaring Asian Energy Use Through 2035
The Wall Street Journal
Asian countries will face big challenges in securing enough oil over the next two decades, as their additional demand will be equivalent to the current oil output of the Middle East, the Asian Development Bank said Monday.
http://jlne.ws/1epgjN6

Bulgaria’s Air Is Dirtiest in Europe, Study Finds, Followed by Poland
The New York Times
Hold your breath if you visit Bulgaria. The air in the small Black Sea nation is thicker with several major air pollutants than the air in any other country in Europe, according to a new study prepared by Europe’s environmental regulators.
http://jlne.ws/1bwohSU

Events

Climate Strategies Forum
Association of Climate Change Officers
October 14-17
Washington, D.C.
http://jlne.ws/14cGFtN

Verge: Where Tech Meets Sustainability
October 14-17
San Francisco, California
http://jlne.ws/1bAKXT4

FT Global Shale Energy Summit
October 21
London
http://jlne.ws/1cemi7d

Solar Power International
October 21-24
Chicago
http://jlne.ws/184e0wa

Climate Leadership Conference
Association of Climate Change Officers
February 24-26, 2014
San Diego, CA
climateleadershipconference.org/

Carbon

Merkel party took BMW money before emissions call
AP
Germany blocked the introduction of tougher European Union emissions rules for cars shortly after Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party received a large donation from three major BMW shareholders, according to newly released parliamentary records.
http://jlne.ws/1epfmV8

Natural Gas/Coal/Alternative Fuels

Canada’s Energy Exports to Asia to Be Competitive -Minister
The Wall Street Journal
Canada is set to effectively compete for Asian energy customers with a host of other exporting countries in the next decade, the country’s energy minister said Tuesday.
http://jlne.ws/1hUS5u4

ERB Plans $109 Million Brazil Sugar-Cane Biomass Plant With Dow
Bloomberg
Energias Renovaveis do Brasil Ltda., a Brazilian biomass-power developer, agreed to build a 237 million-real ($109 million) plant at a Dow Chemical Co. (DOW) ethanol project in Minas Gerais State fueled by sugar-cane residue.
http://jlne.ws/GXjlg4

India Increases Effort to Harness Biomass Energy
The New York Times
THE hulking power plant set against the green countryside of Punjab state in northwest India does not look like a source of renewable energy. Yet filling its stockyard, instead of mounds of coal, are bales of rice straw. Machines break up the heavy straw cubes as men with pitchforks hoist fibrous mounds onto a conveyor belt leading to the power plant. Handkerchiefs cover their faces to protect them from dust swirling in the air.
http://jlne.ws/1fAYZYq

Power

Creditors Squabble Over Utility’s Future
The Wall Street Journal
The prospects for a streamlined bankruptcy of one of the nation’s largest utilities were thrown into doubt on Monday, after creditors failed to agree on how to rework the company’s finances.
http://jlne.ws/1cqDrdm

Wal-Mart Leads 40% Solar Surge Among U.S. Companies, SEIA Says
Bloomberg
The largest retailer in the world also is the largest commercial solar-energy user in the U.S.
http://jlne.ws/18jGd3f

Germany Power Consumers to Pay Record Green Surcharges
Bloomberg
Germany’s power grid operators boosted the surcharge consumers pay for renewable energy by 18 percent to a record, adding to pressure on Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government to act against rising electricity bills.
http://jlne.ws/1hUSDQt

Reports

Global 500 Climate Change Report 2013 (Posted September 12, 2013)
CDP
http://jlne.ws/16mBo8p

The Future of China’s Power Sector (posted August 27, 2013)
Bloomberg New Energy Finance
http://jlne.ws/14Bk1k2

Sub-national involvement in NAMA development (posted August 7, 2013)
Ecofys’ International Climate Policies Unit
http://jlne.ws/19LKChs

U.S. Energy Sector Vulnerabilities to Climate Change and Extreme Weather (Posted July 14, 2013)
U.S. Dept. of Energy
http://jlne.ws/12z1YK5

Turn down the heat: climate extremes, regional impacts, and the case for resilience (Posted June 19, 2013)
World Bank
http://jlne.ws/14KrLza

Four energy policies can keep the 2 Degree C climate goal alive (Posted June 10, 2013)
IEA
http://jlne.ws/12Bpk41

Maneuvering the Mosaic: State of the Voluntary Carbon Markets 2013 (Posted June 10, 2013)
Ecosystem Marketplace
http://jlne.ws/12Cyi0X

View all reports >

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About Author

Koning Beals is a contributing editor to JLN Environmental/Energy.