US President Barack Obama wants the federal government to set an example when it comes to global warming.
In an executive order signed on Monday, Obama required all agencies to do what he wants companies operating power plants, refineries and making automobiles to do: reduce heat-trapping gases.
Each federal agency will have to set the first targets for reducing climate-altering pollution from its buildings, fleets and workers’ commutes.
The agencies will have 90 days to tell the White House how much they plan to measure and reduce greenhouse gases from buildings and vehicles by 2020. Targets for employees’ commutes and travel will be due by next June.
“As the largest consumer of energy in the US economy, the federal government can and should lead by example when it comes to creating innovative ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” Obama said in a statement.
The government mandate comes as the Obama administration takes steps to require automakers and large industrial facilities to cut greenhouse gas emissions. It is also a way for the White House to show much-needed progress toward reducing greenhouse gases before more than 180 nations meet in Copenhagen in December to hammer out a new international treaty to slow global warming.
Obama wants Congress to pass a bill setting mandatory limits, but its passage is unlikely in the Senate before the Copenhagen negotiations begin. The Senate bill would require refineries, factories and power plants to reduce greenhouse gases by 20 percent by 2020 and roughly 80 percent by mid-century.
It was unclear how deep the targets would be for the federal government, or how much of a dent it would make in total US greenhouse gas emissions.
The order also compels agencies to curb petroleum use, conserve water and curtail waste — extending and expanding on an executive order issued by former president George W. Bush in January 2007 that became law earlier this year.
Bush’s order, unlike Obama’s, did not require agencies to set emissions targets.
Henry Tong (湯偉雄) and Elaine To (杜依蘭) were preparing to spend their first wedding anniversary in separate prison cells until their acquittal for rioting during Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protests. There were gasps and tears of relief in court on Friday last week as a judge declared prosecutors had failed to prove that the couple took part in clashes with police in July last year. The pair walked free in a ruling that has potential consequences for hundreds of other protesters facing similar charges. However, they have a long journey ahead as they try to rebuild their lives and business. “We have already been punished,”
WARNINGS OVER COMPLACENCY: The curves of new infections in numerous countries is climbing, while others see the the first new infections in months Spikes in COVID-19 infections in Asia have dispelled any notion that the region might be over the worst, with Australia and India yesterday reporting record daily infections, Vietnam fretting over a new surge and North Korea urging vigilance. Asian nations had largely prided themselves on rapidly containing initial outbreaks after the coronavirus emerged in central China late last year, but flare-ups this month have shown the danger of complacency. “We’ve got to be careful not to slip into some idea that there’s some golden immunity that Australia has in relation to this virus,” Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters. Australia recorded its
‘COVIDIOTS’: Politicians condemned the protest that came amid surging infections in the country, while a marcher said government-induced fear weakened the body Loudly chanting their opposition to masks and vaccines, thousands of people on Saturday gathered in Berlin to protest against COVID-19 restrictions before being dispersed by police. Police put turnout at about 20,000 — well below the 500,000 organizers had announced as they urged a “day of freedom” from months of virus curbs. Despite Germany’s comparatively low toll, authorities are concerned at a rise in infections over the past few weeks and politicians took to social media to criticize the rally as irresponsible. “We are the second wave,” shouted the crowd, a mixture of hard left and right and conspiracy theorists, as they converged
The Australian government yesterday said that it plans to give Google and Facebook three months to negotiate with media businesses fair pay for news content. In releasing a draft of a mandatory code of conduct, Canberra aims to succeed where other nations have failed in making tech firms pay for news siphoned from commercial media companies. Australian Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said that Google and Facebook would be the first platforms targeted by the proposed legislation, but others could follow. “It’s about a fair go for Australian news media businesses, it’s about ensuring that we have increased competition, increased consumer protection and a sustainable