Columbus, OH—After a year that saw many parts of the country hit by scorching heat, devastating wildfires, severe storms and record flooding, a new Environment Ohio report documents how global warming could lead to certain extreme weather events becoming even more common or more severe in the future. The report found that, already, 4 out of 5 Ohioans live in counties affected by federally declared weather-related disasters since 2006.
Ohio is on its way to a clean energy future, according to a new report by Environment Ohio, Ohio’s Clean Energy Report Card, Year 2: Wind, Solar, and Energy Efficiency on the Rise. Two years into the implementation of the state’s Clean Energy Law, which sets standards for both renewable energy and energy efficiency, Ohio saved enough electricity each year to power 82,000 homes, among other significant benefits.
Earlier today First Energy announced the retirement of four northeast Ohio coal plants, noting that they are too old to meet modern emissions standards for mercury and other toxic chemicals. The oldest plant that is retiring, Cleveland’s Lake Shore plant, was built over 100 years ago.
Today, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced that the Department of the Interior has chosen the withdrawal of one million acres of land around Grand Canyon National Park from new mining claims for up to twenty years as the agency’s preferred course of action and that it would continue to protect these areas under an emergency withdrawal until the release of a final decision, expected at the end of the year. Environment America’s Anna Aurilio issued the following statement:
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) held a public meeting today to release the 60-day findings of the NRC task force reviewing NRC processes and regulations in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear meltdowns. The review found faults in plant preparedness systems and the regulations that prescribe the extent of those systems. For example, the review highlighted the fact that ‘Severe Accident Management Systems’ are inconsistently implemented across the country. The NRC has continued its licensing and re-licensing of nuclear reactors without any new protections against disasters.