Tuesday June 25, 2019

Trump Administration Commits to Make Fossil Fuels Cleaner, Says Energy Secretary

Fossil fuel emissions have been cited by scientists as a major source of global warming

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U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry, center, speaks as Utah Gov. Gary Herbert, left, and and Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon look on at an energy summit, May 30, 2019, in Salt Lake City. VOA

The Trump administration is committed to making fossil fuels cleaner rather than imposing “draconian” regulations on coal and oil, U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry said Thursday at an energy conference in Salt Lake City.

Perry previously said the administration wants to spend $500 million next year on fossil fuel research and development as demand plummets for coal and surges for natural gas.

“Instead of punishing fuels that produce emissions through regulation, we’re seeking to reduce those emissions by innovation,” Perry said at the conference. Fossil fuel emissions have been cited by scientists as a major source of global warming.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres recently said the world must change how it fuels factories, vehicles and homes to limit future global warming.

Perry said the Trump administration has proven it can make energy cleaner, but he provided no details involving coal and other fossil fuels, other than the closing of old, inefficient coal-burning power plants and exporting increasing volumes of natural gas, an alternative to coal.

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Protesters gather outside the Utah Governor’s Energy Summit at Grand America Hotel, May 30, 2019, in Salt Lake City. VOA

Department of Energy spokesman Dirk Vande Beek didn’t immediately return an email and voicemail seeking more details about Perry’s claim.

Perry pointed to an overall drop in emissions as proof of progress.

Greenhouse gas emissions dropped 13 percent from 2005 to 2017, according to the most recent report from the Environmental Protection Agency.

Lindsay Beebe of the Sierra Club in Utah said trying to make fossil fuels cleaner is misspent energy.

“I don’t know that it’s possible right now, but what is ready right now are renewables. Wind, solar and geothermal are commercially viable and at scale,” Beebe said.

The summit Thursday was briefly interrupted when 15 protesters took the stage to criticize the administration’s fixation on fossil fuels.

They said the misguided approach ignores climate change. Police then escorted them out.

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About 25 protesters are escorted by police after interrupting a energy summit where U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry spoke, May 30, 2019, in Salt Lake City. Perry says the Trump administration is committed to making fossil fuels cleaner rather than imposing “draconian” regulations on oil, gas and coal. VOA

After they left, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert, who sponsored the event, said he and other leaders appreciated the “youthful enthusiasm” but their call to immediately discard fossil fuels and shift entirely to renewable energy isn’t realistic.

“They would like us to quit by Friday and not take anything out of the ground,” Herbert said. “That obviously doesn’t work from a practical standpoint.”

ALSO READ: Chinese Scientists Discover CO2 More Efficient to Use in Fracking than Water

Americans burned a record amount of energy in 2018, with a 10% jump in consumption from booming natural gas helping lead the way, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said.

Fossil fuels in all accounted for 80% of Americans’ energy use. (VOA)

Next Story

Due to Increase in Temperature, Risk of Crocodile Attacks can Increase

The spread of the population would mean the reptiles will come across with people who have never come into contact

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Crocodile, Attacks, Global Warming
As temperatures rise, crocodiles will move into areas that they never previously inhabited. Pixabay

The number of crocodile attacks could rise due to global warming, an Australian expert said on Sunday.

Adam Britton, a zoologist from the Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods (RIEL) at Charles Darwin University (CDU) in the Northern Territory (NT),said that as temperatures rise, crocodiles will move into areas that they never previously inhabited, reports Xinhua news agency.

He said that the spread of the population would mean the reptiles will come across with people who have never come into contact with the reptiles before.

“As the planet warms, it does mean crocodile attacks are going to go up as a direct result, because as it warms, it’s going to change the distribution of crocodiles,” Britton said.

Crocodile, Attacks, Global Warming
The number of crocodile attacks could rise due to global warming. Pixabay

“We’re seeing in Indonesia, crocodiles move into places that they haven’t been seen for a long time or seen before and we’re getting a string of attacks.

“Crocodiles will move after loss of habitat and move into areas where people aren’t used to them,” he added.

Also Read- Would You Give Up Digital Life if Given Lifetime Data Protection?

According to Britton, there have already been sightings of crocodiles in populated areas of northern Queensland where they have been rarely spotted. (IANS)