2024年6月20日 星期四

E.P.A. Rule Severely Limits Emissions From Coal Plants 美國環保署從嚴限制燃煤電廠汙染

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2024/06/21 第490期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份
紐時周報精選 E.P.A. Rule Severely Limits Emissions From Coal Plants 美國環保署從嚴限制燃煤電廠汙染
Protesters Connect Gaza War to Struggles Near and Far 美大學抗議潮遍地烽火 目標不局限加薩
E.P.A. Rule Severely Limits Emissions From Coal Plants 美國環保署從嚴限制燃煤電廠汙染
文/Lisa Friedman and Coral Dave


The Biden administration on Thursday placed the final cornerstone of its plan to tackle climate change: a regulation that would force the nation's coal-fired power plants to virtually eliminate the planet-warming pollution they release into the air or shut down.


The regulation from the Environmental Protection Agency requires coal plants in the United States to reduce 90% of their greenhouse pollution by 2039, one year earlier than the agency had initially proposed. The compressed timeline was welcomed by climate activists but condemned by coal executives who said the new standards would be impossible to meet.


The EPA also imposed three additional regulations on coal-burning power plants, including stricter limits on emissions of mercury, a neurotoxin linked to developmental damage in children, from plants that burn lignite coal, the lowest grade of coal. The rules also more tightly restrict the seepage of toxic ash from coal plants into water supplies and limit the discharge of wastewater from coal plants.


Taken together, the regulations could deliver a death blow in the United States to coal, the fuel that powered the country for much of the last century but has caused global environmental damage. When burned, coal emits more carbon dioxide than any other fuel source.


The new rules regarding power plants come weeks after the administration's other major climate regulations to limit emissions from cars and large trucks in a way that is designed to speed the adoption of electric vehicles. Transportation and electric power are the two largest sources in the United States of the carbon pollution that is driving climate change.


President Joe Biden wants to cut that pollution about 50% from 2005 levels by the end of this decade, and to eliminate emissions from the power sector by 2035.


The limits on power plant emissions announced Thursday would also apply to future facilities that burn gas, requiring them to capture their emissions or to use a fuel that is nonpolluting. Gas-fired power plants that are currently in operation would be exempt.


Protesters Connect Gaza War to Struggles Near and Far 美大學抗議潮遍地烽火 目標不局限加薩
文/Jeremy W. Peters

美大學抗議潮遍地烽火 目標不局限加薩

Talk to student protesters across the country, and their outrage is clear: They have been galvanized by the scale of death and destruction in the Gaza Strip, and will risk arrest to fight for the Palestinian cause.


For most of them, the war is taking place in a land they've never set foot in, where those killed — 34,000 so far, according to local health authorities — are known to them only through what they have read or seen online.


But for many, the issues are closer to home, and at the same time, much bigger and broader. In their eyes, the Gaza conflict is a struggle for justice, linked to issues that seem far afield. They say they are motivated by policing, mistreatment of Indigenous people, discrimination toward Black Americans and the impact of global warming.


Many protesters have rebuffed entreaties from university administrators, chained themselves to benches and taken over buildings. Now, demonstrators have faced a harsh crackdown, with hundreds of arrests in the past 24 hours at many schools, including Columbia University.


With pro-Israel students ratcheting up their counterprotests on a number of campuses, the climate could grow even more strained in the coming days.


In interviews, the language of many protesters was also distinctive. Students freely salted their explanations with academic terms like intersectionality, colonialism and imperialism, all to make their case that the plight of Palestinians is a result of global power structures that thrive on bias and oppression.


"As an environmentalist, we pride ourselves on viewing the world through intersectional lenses," said Katie Rueff, a first-year student at Cornell University. "Climate justice is an everyone issue. It affects every dimension of identity, because it's rooted in the same struggles of imperialism, capitalism — things like that. I think that's very true of this conflict, of the genocide in Palestine."


Jawuanna McAllister, a 27-year-old doctoral candidate in cell and molecular biology at Cornell, pointed to the name of the student group she is affiliated with: the Coalition for Mutual Liberation.


"It's in our name: mutual liberation," McAllister said. "That means we're anti-racist, anti-imperialist, anti-colonialist organization. We believe that none of us can be free and have the respect and dignity we deserve unless all of us are free."


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