carbon pollution

carbon pollution

Environment Top Story

Amid a major federal investment in electric cars, it’s time for states to step up, advocates say

For years, electric vehicles posed something of a chicken-and-egg problem. Mass adoption, seen as critical to cutting the largest single source of U.S. ...
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Environment Top Story

States are vying for money to start ‘hydrogen hubs.’ What are they?

Across the country, states are inking agreements with neighbors or striking out on their own to pursue billions in federal funding to set up “hydrogen hubs,” clustered centers for production, storage and use of the gas that many see as a crucial piece of the puzzle for decarbonizing the U.S. economy. How broad a role it should play, however, is a matter of debate.

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Environment News Top Story

For offshore wind aspirations to become reality, transmission hurdles must be cleared

President Joe Biden’s administration laid out ambitious additional goals last month to boost offshore wind power generation, one of the American renewable energy industry’s emerging wide open frontiers. The federal announcements come as coastal states across the country are increasingly setting offshore wind energy targets, seeking to capture not just clean energy but the potentially big economic benefits of their ports serving as hubs for the vessels, blade manufacturing, cables and other infrastructure needed to get turbines more than 850 feet tall installed miles out at sea. 

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Environment News Top Story

Amid a massive American clean energy shift, grid operators play catch-up 

For the better part of the past century, the American electric power system evolved around large, mostly fossil fuel power plants delivering electricity to residences, businesses and industry through a network of transmission and distribution wires that collectively came to be called the electric grid. But as the threat of climate change driven by carbon pollution becomes more dire and as technological advances make wind, solar and battery storage ever cheaper options for powering homes and business, states, corporations and voters are increasingly pushing to aggressively decarbonize the grid.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

A tale of two realities

As the climate emergency worsens, grounds for hope and optimism continue to emerge It was the best of summers, it was the worst of summers. It was the summer the United Nations declared a healthy environment a universal human right, and a summer that shattered heat records across the globe. The U.S. enacted a historic climate bill not long after the Supreme Court struck down the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan.

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

North Carolina climate change deniers owe the world an apology

As you’ve no doubt noticed, our state, nation and planet are experiencing yet another summer of record heat and intense storms. As scientists have been explaining and predicting for decades, climate change resulting from carbon-pollution-driven global warming is altering weather patterns and spurring big and deeply problematic changes in the Earth’s environment.

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Other Voices Progressive Voices Top Story

The state’s new energy law explained

Why the onus is now on the state Utilities Commission to protect ratepayers and the environment North Carolina’s electricity sector is undergoing a generational change. Duke Energy will retire most of its remaining coal-fired power plants over the next decade, and a key question for the state is what energy resources will replace those retiring plants.

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

State lawmaker’s take on climate change is sadly emblematic of a toxic worldview

It’s relatively rare that North Carolina lawmakers utter illuminating statements during committee discussions, but it happened last week at the Senate confirmation hearing for Governor Cooper’s latest nominee to head the Department of Environmental Quality, Elizabeth Biser. Paul Newton is a Republican senator from Cabarrus and Union Counties and during an exchange with Biser, he reiterated an argument that he and many others of the right have previously championed...

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Original Commentary Other Voices Progressive Voices Top Story

As climate emergency grows more urgent, Duke Energy seeks to supersize CO2 pollution

Energy giant must halt planned fossil fuel expansion, aggressively embrace renewable energy, storage, conservation North Carolina—and the world—are well into the climate emergency. United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres recently stated that the world “is on the verge of the abyss” if we do not move at lightening pace to decarbonize our economies by 2030.

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Original Commentary Progressive Voices Top Story

New energy report could yield a win-win for climate and pocketbooks

COVID taught us a lot about living in crisis mode. The biggest lesson: address crises early enough to avoid complete disruption of our lives. Let’s start with the climate crisis. If we cannot slow climate change before certain tipping points are reached, changes will accelerate of their own accord and disastrous consequences will mount. There will be worse weather extremes, food shortages, mass migrations of people escaping rising seas and extinction of an estimated one-third of all species by 2050.

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