“The federal government and the Gulf Coast states have reached a tentative deal with the British oil company BP for it to pay about $18.7 billion, the largest environmental settlement in American history, to compensate for damages from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, federal, state and company officials said Thursday.
An American BP subsidiary, BP Exploration and Production, will pay at least $7.1 billion, and possibly more, to the federal government and the states of Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Texas and Florida, for damage to natural resources; $5.5 billion in penalties to the federal government for violation of the Clean Water Act; $4.9 billion to the states to compensate for harm to their economies; and up to $1 billion to more than 400 local governments.
New York is preparing for attack on July Fourth. The threat assessment proves real but the city is ready to move forward with the celebration.
“Thousands of law enforcement officers in New York will spend July 4 trying to prevent a terror attack that could come from supporters of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). NYPD Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence and Counterterrorism John Miller called it one of their biggest operations ever. The news is “How is NYC preparing for potential July 4 terror threat,” reported CBS News.
“I think if you look at history, they’re looking at big events, they’re looking at symbolic dates. They’re looking at military, police, intelligence,” Miller said Thursday on “CBS This Morning.”
NASCAR Fans Urged To Bring Confederate Flags To Daytona Over July 4th Weekend
Joie Chitwood III — president of Daytona International Speedway — urged NASCAR fans to bring Confederate flags to Daytona over the Fourth of July weekend as part of NASCAR’s flag exchange.
“For us, we’re celebrating the American Flag this weekend,” Chitwood said Tuesday. “It’s our nation’s birthday. We’re going to have a flag exchange opportunity. So fans who would like to fly the American Flag, we’ll trade with you on whatever flag you have. We want you to celebrate that flag this weekend.”
Chitwood’s announcement comes on the heels of the shootings at Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, N.C. in June. Following the tragedy, NASCAR came out in support of South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley’s call to remove the Confederate flag from in front of the state house in Columbia.
Currently, NASCAR has not placed an outright-ban on the Confederate flag at races, but Chitwood added that the sport was not opposed to changing that policy in the future.
OUR BUILDINGS— HOMES, HOSPITALS, AND HIGH RISES— ARE MODERN MONUMENTS TO WHAT WE DEEM IMPORTANT
Green buildings rise up from our communities like beacons of innovation and thoughtfulness. Every façade tells a story, every foundation leaves a lasting impression—no marble inscription needed. Green building is uniting people, changing lives, revolutionizing business, and addressing our world’s most pressing problems. And that’s monumental.
The excitement is already building, and Greenbuild 2015 is truly gearing up to be a Monumental Green event. Now’s the time to take a look at your calendar and mark November 18-20 as busy. We’re bringing back the best education in green building, renowned speakers in the industry, and exciting events for you to attend.
Visit the Greenbuild website frequently or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ for the latest conference and expo updates.
We look forward to you joining us in Washington, DC for the greatest Greenbuild yet!
THE PREMIER CONFERENCE & EXPO FOR THE GREEN BUILDING MOVEMENT
Greenbuild is the premier event for sustainable building. Featuring three exhilarating days of uplifting speakers, unmatched networking opportunities, showcases, LEED workshops and tours of green buildings in Washington, DC, Greenbuild offers a place for thousands to gather and renew their commitment to the green movement.
With so much to see and do, you can’t miss the excitement and energy of Greenbuild 2015 in Washington, D.C. .
About Greenbuild International Conference & Expo
Greenbuild ExpoGreenbuild is the world’s largest conference and expo dedicated to green building. The ideals and passion of the green building community come alive at Greenbuild. The buzz is contagious. Greenbuild brings together industry leaders, experts and frontline professionals dedicated to sustainable building in their everyday work, and a unique energy is sparked. Participants are invigorated. Inspired. They find themselves equipped to return to their jobs with a renewed passion and purpose.
California Cities Show Biggest Water Savings yet in Drought
FILE – In this May 18, 2015, file photo, irrigation pipes hang along a dried irrigation canal on a field farmed by Gino Celli near Stockton, Calif. California’s drought-stricken cities set a record for water conservation, reducing usage 29 percent in… View Full CaptionThe Associated Press
California’s drought-stricken cities set a record for water conservation, reducing usage 29 percent in May, according to data released by a state agency Wednesday.
Regulators hope the savings will last through summer as California communities are under order to cut water use by 25 percent compared to 2013 levels. Gov. Jerry Brown announced his mandatory conservation order in April.
Felicia Marcus, chairwoman of the State Water Resources Control Board enforcing Brown’s order, said the results show it’s possible to meet steep conservation targets.
“It’s gratifying that far more communities are stepping up, and we want to see this much more through the summer,” Marcus said. “It ends up putting off the need for much harsher rationing, which has greater impacts on people and the economy.”
California is in a four-year drought that has devastated some rural communities, prompted some farmers to leave fields unplanted or tap expensive water supplies and dented fish populations. Many cities have avoided the brunt of the dry spell because of backup supplies and preparation, but the governor wanted conservation efforts ramped up with no clear end to the drought in sight.
May’s water savings were the best showing since the state started tracking conservation last summer. The report followed several months of tepid conservation, 13.5 percent in April and 4 percent in March.
Conservation may have been skewed by rain in parts of the state in May, which reduces the need to water lawns.
The data is self-reported by more than 400 California water departments and includes residential and business consumption. All regions of the state showed improvement.
Sacramento and its surrounding communities were the state’s top performer, cutting water use by nearly 40 percent.
The southern coast, where more than half of the state’s population lives in cities including Los Angeles and San Diego, conserved 25 percent in May after months of lackluster savings. Temperatures in the region were about 5 degrees cooler compared to May 2013 with an additional half inch of rain, according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration data.
Regulators have been encouraging Californians to let their lawns go dry this summer as the easiest way to save large amounts of water and maintain local supplies if the drought continues.
The water board has assigned each community a mandatory conservation target between 4 and 36 percent, depending on how much water residents used last summer, that will be tracked between June and February. Cities that don’t meet these targets face fines or state-imposed restrictions on water use.
Some have complained these targets are unfair because it doesn’t take into account water savings made before the drought or how secure local supplies are. The city of Riverside is suing the water board over conservation, saying it has ample groundwater supplies.
Repost By FENIT NIRAPPIL Associated Press and ABC News.
A suspicious item forced the evacuation and closure of Hamilton County Courthouse on Tuesday. After several hours investigating, a bomb squad determined the item was a bottle of perfume.
A woman going to a court appearance was stopped with the suitcase at a metal detector near the courthouse front doors just before 8:30 a.m., said Jim Knapp, chief of staff for the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office.
An X-ray determined the contents of the suitcase held what appeared to be a suspicious item. A bomb-sniffing dog got a “hit” on the suitcase.
Using a robotic machine, officials opened the suitcase and discovered the perfume bottle around noon, according to Sheriff Jim Neil. The bottle resembled a pineapple grenade that would have been used in World War II.
Neil said a scent outside the suitcase, such as fresh fertilizer or cosmetics, could have been what alerted the bomb-sniffing dog.
Hundreds of courthouse workers including judges and prosecutors; lawyers and defendants were evacuated from the county’s main courthouse encompassing an entire city block along Main, Court and Sycamore streets and Central Parkway.
Federal counter-terrorism officials were also on the scene.
Cincinnati police shut down Main Street at Ninth Street. It reopened around 12:30 p.m.
“Without question” this is the biggest and longest evacuation of the building, said FOX19 NOW legal analyst Mike Allen, Hamilton County’s former prosecutor.
“This obviously puts a huge crimp in the justice system in Hamilton County to come to a screeching halt like this just as court is starting in the morning,” Allen said. “Everyone will have to continue their docket. It’s a royal mess.”
Hamilton County Municipal Court Judge Bernie Bouchard expressed gratitude to sheriff’s deputies for protecting the courthouse.
“It’s not over yet, so it’s a very fluid and scary situation,” Bouchard said. “This just goes to show what the world is like today, you have to be on your toes at all times. Very thankful for the deputies protecting the courthouse. They did an excellent job catching this. Praying for safe end to this scare.”
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