Obama Takes Another Step Toward Reducing Actions Blamed For Global Warming

The billionaire Koch brothers and other mega-donors are expected to spend hundreds of millions of dollars this year to shape the midterm outcome, and Republicans enjoy a healthy majority of the super-rich. The Koch-backed Americans for Prosperity has already spent millions targeting vulnerable Democrats. Compounding some Democrats frustration, Obama http://www.obamastudentloanforgiveness.net has also been raising money for Organizing for America, his former campaign apparatus that now functions as something of a shadow DNC. When you create your own DNC with OFA, theres a reason the actual DNC is in debt, said one party operative. Theres probably nothing that Obama could do in these midterm elections to match the conservative billionaires advantage.
Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/dana-milbank-obama-can-help-democrats-all-the-way-to-the-bank/2014/02/18/5b44dfa6-98d9-11e3-80ac-63a8ba7f7942_story.html

“I’m against fast track,” Reid says flatly. “Everyone would be well advised just to not push this right now.” White House press secretary Jay Carney said Tuesday that, “We’re going to continue to press for this priority, as we have in the past. Mindful, of course, and recognizing that there are differing views on these issues in both parties, not just the Democratic Party.” The top House Democrat, Nancy Pelosi, also opposes fast track President Bill Clinton, a Democrat, used the powers to speed congressional approval of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with the United States, Mexico and Canada in 1993. The landmark pact had been negotiated under his predecessor, President George H.W. Bush.
Source: http://news.yahoo.com/obama-fellow-dems-odds-big-trade-bills-184647485–finance.html?pt=tAD1SCT8P7/

Progress on the Keystone XL oil-sands pipeline, immigration reform and a major new Asian trade pact will be high on the agenda when Obama attends the one-day North American leaders meeting in Toluca, Mexico. But Obama has faced resistance from congressional Democrats in his push for trade promotion authority , also known as fast track, which would make it easier for the administration to negotiate trade deals without Congress amending them. Last week, Vice President Biden appeared to acknowledge that the administrations push for fast-track trade powers was unlikely to move forward, even as he made the case for the TPP and a separate European trade agreement to Senate Democrats. Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) has said he will not bring a fast-track bill to the floor. Without that power, Obamas push for approval of the TPP, which he hoped to complete last year, could be delayed significantly.
Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/as-obama-heads-to-meeting-with-canada-and-mexico-several-agenda-items-are-stalled/2014/02/18/4ca569ce-98bc-11e3-b931-0204122c514b_story.html

Obama seeks new fuel efficiency rules to cut truck pollution

Obama said in California’s drought zone on Friday that a warming planet is intensifying the severity of droughts and other weather events. “Unless and until we do more to combat carbon pollution that causes climate change, this trend is going to get worse,” he said. Obama will also renew his appeal for Congress to end $4 billion a year in subsidies to the oil and gas industry and urge lawmakers to establish a $2 billion “energy security trust” to support development of advanced vehicles that run on electricity, homegrown biofuels, hydrogen, and domestically produced natural gas. The $2 billion in spending would be drawn from revenues generated by federal oil and gas development. (Editing by Paul Tait) Also on HuffPost: Loading Slideshow A Bumpier Ride? Researchers in Britain have found that climate change could cause increased turbulence for transatlantic flights by between 10 and 40 percent by 2050.
Source: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/18/obama-fuel-standards_n_4807138.html

18, 2014 7:42 p.m. ET President Barack Obama on Tuesday ordered his administration to develop and implement new fuel-efficiency standards for medium and heavy-duty commercial trucks by March 2016. Environmental groups and a trucking industry alliance including large fleet operators FedEx Corp. and Con-way Inc. came out in favor of the order while a representative of smaller operators expressed worries that coming regulations would raise prices on future…
Source: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303945704579391134023266444

Those rules applied only to truck models for the years 2014 through 2018. The next round of regulations will set standards for models beyond 2018. Heavy-duty trucks are the second-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions on the road, behind passenger cars, the White House said. The 2011 regulations are projected to save 530 million barrels of oil and reduce emissions by about 270 million metric tons, according to the White House, which estimates savings of $50 billion in reduced fuel costs over the lifetimes of the vehicles covered. The White House said the administration would work closely with the California regulators to ensure the new rules align with regulations drafted by the state’s Air Resources Board.
Source: http://www.latimes.com/nation/politics/politicsnow/la-pn-obama-trucks-fuel-efficiency-20140218,0,7707686.story

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