Wednesday, November 16, 2011

President Obama Takes Biggest Single Step to Move America Beyond Oil

Sierra Club Press Release

For Immediate Release November 16, 2011
President Obama Takes Biggest Single Step to Move America Beyond Oil
Obama Administration Proposes Fuel Efficiency Standard of 54.5 mpg by 2025
Washington, D.C. — Today, the Obama administration officially proposed strengthening fuel efficiency and pollution standards for passenger cars and trucks to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.  The measure builds on a historic step taken last year to raise vehicle efficiency to 35.5 mpg in 2016 and begin reducing tailpipe carbon pollution levels.  The newly proposed standards also reduce carbon emissions to 163 grams per mile in 2025.

These highly anticipated standards would result in significant savings at the pump for American families, reduce climate-threatening carbon pollution and provide Americans with better and more fuel efficient vehicle choices.

In response, Michael Brune, Sierra Club Executive Director, released the following statement:

“Today’s proposal is a big win for American families and will prove to be a big boost for our economy.  President Obama has secured a decade of progress toward breaking our dangerous addiction to oil, creating American jobs, curbing life-threatening pollution and tackling climate disruption. American families will see much-needed relief at the gas pump as the auto industry moves toward a better, more efficient generation of American cars.

“To put it in perspective, in 2030 these standards will save American families $44 billion at the gas pump, reduce our oil use by 23 billion gallons, and cut carbon pollution by an amount equal to the annual emissions from 72 coal-fired power plants – and that’s all just in one year. 

“Fuel efficiency and pollution standards for passenger cars and trucks are just one critical piece of the equation for ending our addiction to oil.  This new standard will put American innovation and technology to work to deliver the best cars and trucks for consumers, but we must also ensure smart transportation choices such as transit, biking and walking for all Americans, and build livable cities and communities.

“As the administration moves toward finalizing these standards next summer, it is critical that they avoid loopholes and giveaways for the industry. We look forward to working with President Obama and his administration to ensure that these fuel efficiency and pollution standards deliver the strongest possible benefits to American families and workers through 2025 and beyond.”
***Check out the huge benefits that American families will see from these standards***
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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Fertilizer Preemption bill - HB 421 to be heard in Committee

HB 421 Limited Certification for Urban Landscape Commercial Fertilizer Application by Rep. Jimmie T. Smith will be heard Tuesday in the House Agriculture and Natural Affairs Subcommittee on Tuesday, November 15, 2011 at 1:00 p.m.

Please call the members of the committee and urge them to vote NO on this bill which would exempt lawn workers holding “limited certification” from any restrictions on fertilizer application.  The only urban turf fertilizer restrictions in Florida are those that have been adopted by localities.  This bill preempts them and will leave local governments and taxpayers defenseless against nutrient pollution from lawn applicators.

You can reach Committee members at their district offices Friday and Monday and in the Capitol on Tuesday morning.  Please call if possible.  A person-to-person exchange is always best (remember to ask the name of the person you speak

Saturday, November 5, 2011


Public health and tourism industry at stake

Nov. 2, 2011

CONTACT:  Cris Costello, 941-951-6084

TALLAHASSEE – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s thumbs up today for Florida’s polluter-friendly water quality rules is a loss for families who deserve clean water.

Today, the EPA sent a letter to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection announcing its preliminary approval of draft state regulations on sewage, manure and fertilizer pollution.  This preliminary approval is being given by the EPA without that agency’s having reviewed the technical comments provided by Florida’s water quality advocates.

Rudy Scheffer,  Sierra Club Florida Steering Committee Chair, said “The Florida DEP proposed rule won’t prevent the outbreaks of toxic green slime that currently plague the state, killing fish, fouling drinking water, closing swimming areas, and causing illness in people and livestock.  It will leave us right where we are now:  waiting until it is too costly and too late to protect our families and our jobs from sick water.” 

“EPA caved to congressional pressure to put polluter interests above those of the Florida public.  Who will be the losers?  Local waterfront communities, homeowners with sinking property values, and everyone who fishes, swims, boats or drinks water in the state” said Frank Jackalone, Florida Staff Director of the Sierra Club.

The FDEP proposed rule takes all the pressure of the state’s biggest industrial polluters and instead places it on taxpayers and local governments; it also gives the state legislature complete control over the future of Florida’s water resources, including the ability to defund the implementation and enforcement of the rule.

The state’s Environmental Regulation Commission will hear a presentation on the DEP’s draft rule at a meeting in Tallahassee tomorrow. If the ERC signs off on the draft rule, it goes before the Florida Legislature in the 2012 session. The EPA will then have the opportunity to approve or deny the state’s final rule.

Earthjustice filed suit to compel the EPA to set limits on sewage, manure and fertilizer pollution in 2008 in the Northern District of Florida on behalf of the Florida Wildlife Federation, the Sierra Club, the Conservancy of Southwest Florida, the Environmental Confederation of Southwest Florida, and St. John’s Riverkeeper. 

For St. Petersburg Times Editorial, click here.

Slimed Florida waterways devastate waterfront property values.  Cape Coral is a prime example:
Cape Coral 2010

Cape Coral 2005