4 Top Eco News Stories

February 5, 2016

This week in the news: the CFLs industry is dimming, progress on an energy  reform bill, lawsuits in LA and the Super PACs behind the budget tradeoff.



GE announced on Monday that they will stop producing Compact Fluorescent Lamp bulbs, or CFLs, for the US. These coiled tubes of heated gas were not well liked, although they were once the best option for environmentally conscious consumers. In 2012, LEDs could cost $50 a bulb, but thanks to advances in technology they can be found for less than four dollars today. This price decline and accompanying rise in LED sales, combined with the fact that CFLs will not meet the next set of Energy Star standards, has rendered the light source obsolete. (More from GE)

Energy Reform

Harry ReidMembers of the Senate have filed more than 100 amendments to an energy reform bill since debate began last Wednesday. The bill addresses a range of energy policy issues including natural gas exportation and modernization of the electricity grid. One proposed amendment provided for 400 million in aid to Flint Michigan, another would cut federal tax credits for fossil fuels. These and other controversial measures have been rejected, keeping with the Energy Committee’s goal to keep the bill a bipartisan effort. (The Hill)
(Image: Harry Reid (D-NV))

Kamala HarrisMethane Leak Lawsuits

Criminal charges have been filed against Southern California Gas, the company responsible for the recent leak that has displaced thousands of residents from the surrounding area. The misdemeanor charges are for failing to report the release of hazardous materials and for discharging air contaminants. Filings have been made by both Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey and California Attorney General Kamala Harris. These are in addition to over 20 other suits filed by residents, and another seeking 250,000 a day by the South Coast Air Quality Management District. (Reuters)
(Image: Kamala Harris (Attorney General CA))

Super PAC Donations

Mitch McConnellWhile aggressively lobbying for an end to the ban on oil exports, fossil fuel companies hedged their bets by contributing millions of dollars to Super PACs dedicated to a Republican majority in the Senate. One, Senate Leadership Fund, received huge donations from Chevron, Petrodome Energy and Devon Energy Corporation in the second half of 2015. Senate Leadership Fund was also supported by NextEra Energy, a utility and renewable energy company, which donated 250,000 this past June. Each of these companies benefitted significantly from the end-of-year budget
agreement that ended a ban on US oil exports and
provided for continued tax credits to renewable
energy producers. (Huffington Post)
(Image: Mitch McConnell (R-KY))

-Aidan Kelly

Photo Credit: Flickr/Nioxxe, Flickr/Center for American Progress Action Fund, Flickr/Nick St. Charles, Flickr/Gage Skidmore

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