Verizon Makes Maplecroft Climate Innovation Benchmark List

Wireless network company Verizon Communications has been listed on the Maplecroft Climate Innovation Benchmark Index (CII), among 300 of the largest companies in the US, for its efforts in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In the reportAccording to the report, Verizon's strengths include policies and procedures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; programs to encourage innovation related to those emissions and energy conservation; and partnerships and public disclosures. The Maplecroft CII lists, which are calculated by global financial news company Bloomberg, provide investors with useful insight into companies with climate-related innovations and carbon management systems

Scientists find fastest deep ocean current near Antarctica

Scientists have discovered a fast-moving deep ocean current with the volume of 40 Amazon Rivers near Antarctica that will help researchers monitor the impacts of climate change on the world's oceans. A team of Australian and Japanese scientists, in a study published in Sunday's issue of the journal Nature Geoscience, found that the current is a key part of a global ocean circulation pattern that helps control the planet's climate. Scientists had previously detected evidence of the current but had no data on it.

Well beneath sunken rig has serious oil leak

An oil well on the ocean floor beneath a drilling rig that exploded and sank into the Gulf of Mexico began spewing oil on Saturday, the U.S. Coast Guard said. The well, 5,000 feet beneath the ocean surface, was leaking about 1,000 barrels per day of oil, a Coast Guard spokeswoman said, in what the agency called a "very serious spill." Remote underwater vehicles detected oil leaking from the riser and drill pipe, the spokeswoman said. "We are classifying this as a very serious spill and we are using all our resources to help contain it," Coast Guard Petty Officer Connie Terrell said.

Colorado Law Will Retire or Retrofit Coal-Fired Power Plants

Colorado Governor Bill Ritter on Monday signed into law the Colorado Clean Air-Clean Jobs Act--legislation that requires Xcel Energy (NYSE: XEL) to cut nitrogen oxide emissions by up to 80% from several Front Range coal plants by the end of 2017, most likely sooner. Xcel will work with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to submit a plan to the Public Utilities Commission by Aug. 15, detailing how it will retire or retrofit 900 megawatts (MW) of coal-fired capacity. Xcel will give primary consideration to replacing or repowering those plants with natural gas, renewables, greater efficiencies and other cleaner energy sources. "This law is a template for tomorrow that allows us to transform our energy portfolio, our economy and our environment by working strategically and collaboratively," Gov. Ritter said. "By shifting our oldest and least efficient coal plants to cleaner, Colorado-produced natural gas, we send a strong message to the rest of the country that we absolutely can cut air pollution and protect public health while also creating jobs and protecting ratepayers." Governor Ritter was joined at the Capitol signing ceremony by members of a broad coalition that supported House Bill 1365, including Xcel Energy Chairman and CEO Dick Kelly, lawmakers, power producers and conservationists.

Time Travel

What is time? One of the earliest concepts proposed is that is simply the fourth dimension, another direction. Humans travel daily one way into the future. Science fiction writers have long been obsessed with the subject from the legendary "The Time Machine" by HG Wells to the the Doctor Who series about the last time lord and his adventures. From summer blockbusters to sensational science headlines, modern culture is constantly inundated with tales of time travel. But when you boil down the physics involved, is it possible to travel through time?

Four New Jersey Cities to Clean Up Contaminated Sites

The New Jersey cities of Trenton, Jersey City, Newark, and Camden are set to receive a total of $2.3 million dollars from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to help them assess and clean up contaminated and abandoned sites. The funding will be channeled through the EPA's Brownfields Program. The clean up projects will help revitalize commercial and industrial properties by removing the toxic pollution that has hindered their redevelopment.

Invasive Lionfish Attacks Reefs and Fish as Scientists Scramble

Indo-Pacific lionfish, an invasive carnivore equipped with venomous spines, are spreading—and eating their way—through the fishes of the Caribbean Sea. In an effort to stop, or at least slow down, these fearless invaders, the National Science Foundation has awarded a 3-year, $700,000 grant to scientists at Oregon State University (OSU), Corvallis. The lionfish are normally found in Pacific Ocean waters. But since the 1990s, they've been spotted from Florida to Rhode Island, and as far south as Colombia, and are now wreaking havoc among the fishes of Caribbean coral reefs—adding yet another woe to those already facing the reefs.

MerleFest 2010 is Coming April 29 – May 2, 2010

The annual MerleFest, presented by Lowe’s takes place next week in Wilkesboro, NC. MerleFest has been an annual event since 1988. It attracts attendees from a wide area, and generates significant economic benefit to the region. This year MerleFest is making increased environmental efforts to reduce the potential environmental impacts of such a large-scale event. It all began with a gardener who wanted to raise funds for gardens on the campus of a rural North Carolina Community College and a community of musicians who wanted to honor the memory of a fallen friend and his musician father. It grew to an internationally renowned music festival and fundraiser that contributes more than $17 million to the region. It's MerleFest.

Rig sinks in Gulf of Mexico, oil spill risk looms

An oil drilling rig that had burned for 36 hours in the Gulf of Mexico sank on Thursday as hopes dimmed for 11 missing workers and the risk of a major oil spill loomed, officials said. The fire went out as the Deepwater Horizon, operated by Transocean Ltd, sank below the surface at 10:21 a.m. CDT (1521 GMT), about 42 miles off the Louisiana coast. The rig was drilling BP Plc's Macondo project with 126 workers on board when it was ripped by an explosion and fire on Tuesday night. Some 115 workers escaped, including 17 helicoptered to New Orleans area hospitals with injuries.

Earth Day 2010

What is Earth Day? It has spread and is celebrated all over the world. Earth Day is a day designed to inspire awareness and appreciation for the Earth's environment. It was founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson as an environmental teach-in held on April 22, 1970. Earth Day is celebrated in the spring in the Northern Hemisphere and autumn in the Southern Hemisphere. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will hold free events for the public on the National Mall this weekend to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. The events will feature interactive, fun and educational exhibits related to environmental protection.