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A project tracking federal judicial nominations and courts.


Defenders of Wildlife

Editorials and Opinion

 

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Obama leaves his mark on the federal bench (MSNBC, 06/11/14)
Adam Serwer: "Alliance for Justice, a liberal legal group, released a report Monday ... The blue-slip is not quite as effective as the filibuster, but it has taken its toll. According to the report, “nine out of every 10 judicial vacancies without a nominee are in states with at least one Republican senator—and 55% are in states where both senators are Republicans.”"

Editorial: A major step to reduce carbon footprint (Day [CT] , 06/10/14)
"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's plan, announced last week, to require dramatic reductions in carbon output from coal-fired power plants brings a breath of fresh air ... President Barack Obama ... is finally coming through with an aggressive initiative designed to tackle one of the planet's most critical problems: climate change worsened by carbon emissions."

LETTER: Toomey, Casey should act to fill judicial vacanciesexp (Express-Times [PA], 06/10/14)
Christine Stone, Co-Chairwoman, Pennsylvania Coalition of Constitutional Values: "There are eight vacancies on the U.S. Eastern and Western District courts in Pennsylvania. These openings erode justice and Sens. Pat Toomey and Bob Casey each share responsibility. Constitutionally, the president nominates individuals for judgeship, but tradition holds that the two senators from the state with the vacancy — or, in this case, eight vacancies — are to offer up candidates for the president to approve. As seats remain unfilled, Pennsylvanians who rely on district courts are being denied the justice they deserve. With eight vacancies in Pennsylvania ranging in duration from two years to six months, Toomey and Casey must act now and suggest candidates for nomination to these openings."

EDITORIAL: Gazette opinion: Energy jobs, health matter in writing emissions rules (Billings Gazette [MT,WY], 06/10/14)
"The new challenge for Montana is to look for opportunities in the nationwide push to reduce carbon emissions. Montana must respond with a plan that recognizes the value of coal and other energy sources. The American Lung Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics and various public health groups cheered the news that CO2 emissions will be reduced. The EPA estimated its rule would prevent up to 6,660 premature deaths and 150,000 asthma attacks in children by 2030. ... With good planning and aggressive research and development of more affordable clean energy technologies, we can sustain both better health and a thriving economy."

Editorial: Coal rules might be first step to save ourselves (Lake County News-Sun [IL], 06/09/14)
"Obama’s leadership on this issue might reflect that we have at least crossed some consensus threshold. Maybe we’ve figured out the truth. Our energy choices are killing the planet and us along with it. However expensive and disruptive the changes might be, survival sure beats the alternative. We apparently have figured out that greenhouse gases and climate change are real."

Berms and future storms (editorial)stat (Staten Island Advance [NY] , 06/09/14)
"[N]o one thought a storm that started off as Sandy did could produce such a catastrophe around here. And with climate change, say responsible experts, we can expect more huge tempests....the process of returning former wetland areas that were foolishly developed into residential blocks in the 20th Century back to their natural state has begun."

EDITORIAL: Our View: A cleaner Valley in which to live (Decatur Daily [AL] , 06/09/14)
"President Barack Obama, in an attempt to deal with climate change, wants to reduce carbon emissions ... His plan, expected to be finalized next year, presents challenges to industry and automobile makers that instead of being insurmountable should be an opportunity for innovation. Here at home, the Tennessee Valley Authority is quietly going about reducing emissions at its fossil fuel plants, and appears to be well ahead of the president’s timetable.... The evidence of warming is becoming alarmingly clear with ice melting at the polar caps and temperatures steadily rising. Not only will green energy provide us with a cleaner, healthier environment, it will open new avenues of economic development and research"

Editorial: The conservative backpedal (Charleston Gazette [WV] , 06/09/14)
"Soon, we predict, retreat will be seen in a different field: right-wing opposition to evidence of climate change. As scientific proof of global warming grows ever more solid — and abnormal weather grows ever more violent — we expect conservatives to go through another shut-up-and-back-off withdrawal. ... Here in West Virginia, the “shut up” phase has begun. When reporter David Gutman asked Mountain State political figures “Do you believe that man-made carbon emissions are causing climate change?” he drew mostly silence or evasions."

EDITORIAL: New carbon rules are essential (Herald [Rock Hill, SC], 06/08/14)
"The Obama administration’s new effort to reduce carbon emissions is an important, sensible and necessary step in reducing threat of global warming. It should serve as an example to other polluting nations around the world.... It’s not only something the American people should accept; it’s what they should demand."

Editorial: Time to get serious about greenhouse gases (Lewiston Sun-Journal [ME] , 06/08/14)
"New greenhouse gas rules announced last week by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency elicited howls of protest from the South and Midwest.... Maine’s congressional delegates should not only vote against any attempt to weaken or delay the new rules, they should be actively trying to convince members from other states to do the same. The Northeast has led the way on climate change, and led by example. It’s time for the rest of the country to follow."

EDITORIAL: Our view: A livable carbon rule; There will be pushback, but the EPA proposal takes a wise middle course for cutting emissions. (Roanoke Times [VA], 06/08/14)
"Industry lawyers are gearing up for a legal challenge, but public opinion is overwhelmingly on the side of reducing carbon in the air, even if consumers have to pay more for electricity."

Editorial: The EPA turns up the heat (Times-Union [NY] , 06/07/14)
"For all the alarmist, partisan noise, the reality is that EPA's proposal was only a modest step toward tackling the threat of global warming. ... A president whose push for cleaner energy has been thwarted by Congress at every turn is to be commended for making good on his threat to use what executive power he has to act on his own."

Editorial: The power of competition for electricity (Newsday [NY], 06/07/14)
"The Obama administration took a huge step last week in fighting climate change by proposing regulations to reduce carbon pollution from power plants. We now are on the cusp of a years-long process that could transform the nation's electrical industry, improve the air we breathe and reduce the risk of severe storms."

Editorial: Congress’ absence puts need to act on EPA (Spokesman-Review [Spokane, WA], 06/06/14)
"Whether or not you believe human-caused global warming is an urgent concern, it’s clear from extensive scientific research that it is a problem. So the sooner it’s addressed, the easier it will be to make a difference.... Aside from being politically and scientifically wrongheaded, the do-nothing approach is also legally untenable. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that carbon dioxide is a “pollutant” and thus is subject to regulation under the Clean Air Act. That’s why the ball is in the EPA’s court."

EDITORIAL: Overdue call to environmental accountability (Tennessean, 06/06/14)
"The Environmental Protection Agency’s new regulations for limiting carbon emissions from electric power plants, announced this week, were sure to be met with criticism since an alarming percentage of the American public still doubts that man-made climate change is occurring, and in fact accelerating.... ennessee and the entire country must do more to reduce carbon emissions — and on a dramatically larger scale than anything we have yet seen....verage Americans are seeing the results of this inaction in severe weather events, and scientists are seeing the long-term damage, as well, in glacier melt, species extinctions and more....his is a nation of 318 million people that must change its habits, and soon."

Editorial: EPA changes are a down payment on a viable planet (Detroit Free Press [MI] , 06/06/14)
"It’s a sensible, long overdue initiative that anyone interested in the next generation’s health and welfare should welcome. The new rules announced by the Environmental Protection Agency would set tougher emissions standards for the nation’s power plants, which generate more than a third of the carbon dioxide emissions most implicated in climate change. ... Any hazards posed by the new guidelines are almost certainly dwarfed by the long-term benefits to Michigan’s physical and economic health."

EDITORIAL: Curbing carbon vs. being reckless (Herald-Review [Decatur, IL], 06/06/14)
"But the evidence of the reality and risks of climate change grows every day. The administration's plan to reduce carbon emissions is an attempt to curb those dangers, primarily by discouraging the use of coal for generating electricity. That should not be terribly hard ... The carbon limits would be worthwhile even if global warming weren't looming in our future."

Editorial: Roses and Raspberries: June 6 (Corvallis Gazette-Times [OR], 06/06/14)
"Fourth District Congressman Peter DeFazio noted the downside: OR-7 needs our help: “This is great news, but the critical federal protections that have allowed OR-7 to start his new pack are in jeopardy. As we celebrate OR-7 and his new family, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is threatening to disregard science and take the gray wolf off the Endangered Species list. If the Service delists the gray wolf, states could declare open season on gray wolves like OR-7, his mate, and these new pups.” We agree with the 160,000 people who have signed their names to a petition asking the USFWS and Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell to continue protections for the gray wolf."

EDITORIAL: Our View: Coal rules show true cost; Why it matters: New rules on carbon emissions from power plants change the way we think about the price of energy (Mankato Free Press [MN] , 06/06/14)
"Why it matters: New rules on carbon emissions from power plants change the way we think about the price of energy....The new rules should not be viewed as some onerous new government policy with no relation to reality. They are simply reflecting the realization that carbon emissions are a very real cost that should be factored into the price of our energy."

Inquirer Editorial: Cleaner and cooler (Philadelphia Inquirer [PA], 06/06/14)
"The Obama administration's historic move to rein in carbon pollution from coal plants could help slow climate change, reduce respiratory illnesses, and foster cleaner energy and conservation. Alone, it's not enough to head off the harms of global warming, but it is an important and welcome step....The Obama administration has made the choice that stands to prevent the most damage to our health, safety, and economy."

Editorial: Indiana needs to reduce its dependence on coal (Indianapolis Star [IN] , 06/06/14)
"In addition, there are important health and environmental reasons to move away from such a heavy dependence on coal. Indiana’s air quality, while substantially better than in the past, remains among the worst in the nation. Mercury, a byproduct of burning coal, pollutes many of the state’s waterways. And a strong majority of scientists are pushing for reductions in CO2 emissions in order to slow climate change.... the national trend away from coal is real and likely irreversible. Indiana can’t afford to get left behind in that transition. That means making a strong push for heightened energy efficiency"

EDITORIAL: Our View: Clearing the air— Coal’s hidden costs must be part of debate (Joplin Globe [MO], 06/06/14)
"There will be costs going forward with new EPA-proposed emissions standards — no question — but the tradeoff will be 20.2 million fewer tons of pollution each year in Missouri....Greenhouse gases are altering our climate in ways that are affecting us all. More severe weather, which scientists say will result from climate change, and the costs and consequences of that have to be factored into the real price of coal."

Editorial: We can’t afford to trash our backyards (Reno Gazette-Journal [NV] , 06/05/14)
"In some ways, the Indian Ocean, like the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, too, is a big dump. Each has numerous dead zones, areas where accumulating detritus has made it impossible for them to support life ... That’s a lesson worth remembering in the coming months as we debate the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal to cut back on the pollution that the nation’s power plants pour into the air, another seemingly infinite resource that could have a significant impact if we continue to use it as a receptacle for our trash. The good news for Nevada is that it already is ahead of the game."

Editorial: Carbon emissions proposal gives U.S. a leadership role (Knoxville News Sentinel [TN] , 06/05/14)

EDITORIAL: Stop fouling our own nest (Burlington Free Press [VT] , 06/05/14)
"The proposed Environmental Protection Agency regulation is a long-overdue move by Washington to reduce greenhouse gasses spewing from the nation’s dirtiest power plants.... Washington for too long has dithered on climate change, hampered by aggressive obstructionists who question the validity of the data and analysis, or are unwilling to bear the cost of dealing with our past sins."

Editorial: Cutting carbon (Gainesville Sun [FL] , 06/05/14)
"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has put Florida on notice that it's finally time for the Sunshine State to tap the full potential of solar power and other renewable energy sources....The consensus among an overwhelming majority of climate scientists is that warming trends over the past century are very likely due to human activities. Rather than continuing to waste time on that debate, it's time for action....Florida should instead fully embrace energy efficiency, solar power and other renewable fuels. The result would be a brighter future for the Sunshine State in which residents benefit from jobs in growing fields."

EDITORIAL: California leads way in efforts to cut reliance on fossil fuels (Fresno Bee [CA] , 06/05/14)
"Aimed at slashing carbon dioxide emissions from power plants, the new rules -- like the EPA's recent California-based fuel economy standards -- have the larger mission of curbing greenhouse gases....Arguments about jobs and burdened families also are specious."

Editorial: EPA moves needle on greenhouse gases (Recorder [Greenfield, MA], 06/05/14)
"What the EPA draft regulations represent is not a dictatorial stance by the Obama administration but an effort to work together with all interested parties to achieve cleaner air."

Editorial: District Attorney Mark G. Mastroianni has proved his mettle, will serve the bench honorably (Republican [Springfield, MA], 06/05/14)
"Hampden District Attorney Mark G. Mastroianni is about to step into position of U.S. District Judge in Springfield. In a 92-2 vote of the U.S. Senate Thursday, Mastroianni was confirmed ... Mastroianni will make an excellent judge. His integrity, pragmatism and compassion will serve the bench well."

EDITORIAL: Federal carbon limits / Breathe easier (Press of Atlantic City [NJ] , 06/05/14)
"Now the federal government is taking a harder line on power-plant emissions, and New Jersey residents should breathe easier as a result."