Twenty-two global leading experts held an urgent virtual workshop, convened by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), about the connection between the degradation of nature and increasing pandemic risks.
The UK’s government has raised the 5p charge on plastic bags in England to 10p, which will be effective from April 2021. It will be extended to all retailers in order to curb plastic waste pollution. So why can’t the US work to ban bags at a national level?
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) head Andrew Wheeler will be questioned by members of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee today about rolling back environmental regulations during the coronavirus pandemic.
The Supreme Court yesterday, in a 6-3 ruling on the Maui/Clean Water Act Case, held that discharges to “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) via groundwater are covered under the Clean Water Act “when there is a functional equivalent of a direct discharge.” The federal government must regulate groundwater pollutants that make their way into navigable waters such as oceans.
Electrek compiled how three environmental and political groups — The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund, Build a Movement 2020, and Greenpeace — grade the presidential candidates on environmental and climate-change issues.
In a new paper in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology, Tugce Yuksel and Jeremy Michalek at Carnegie Mellon University have shown the average energy usage per mile of electric cars across the US. You’ll note that warm but temperate climates like the California Coast and the Deep South especially Florida fare the best. Very hot desert areas like Arizona don’t do well because of the energy required to cool off bith the batteries and cabin. The North does poorly because batteries lose power as weather gets cooler. Below, a Nissan Leaf efficiency is graphed at different temperatures which illustrates this disparity more clearly. The optimum range for operation is between 45 and 82 degrees where the 300W/mile threshold is beaten.
This all translates to CO2 emissions obviously and with the West making their energy much cleaner, they produce about 1/3rd the CO2 emissions as the north Midwest which is basically one big coal plant. In fact, that area’s energy is so CO2 intensive that running an electric car there (assuming you don’t have your own solar/wind) rivals the CO2 emissions of a fuel efficient car like a Prius.
The big takeaway is that moving to electric cars isnt enough. The grid also needs to move to cleaner power like wind and solar.