EPA Clean Energy Incentive Program Hearing, 2016 Summer Olympics and More in the Week Ahead

Olympic Rings Unveiled

Here’s a look at some environmental news happening this week.   

NOAA Issues 2015 “State of the Climate”

On Tuesday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issues the annual report on the state of the climate, which examines temperature, precipitation and weather events experienced around the world. The report has been compiled by 460 scientists from 62 countries and will focus on the fact that 2015 was the hottest year on record. Not only did we set record temperatures in 2015, but we did so by a record margin--over a quarter of a degree warmer than 2014. Those records may not stand long as 2016 has a 99 percent chance to be even hotter. Reporter Andrea Vittorio has you covered Tuesday.

EPA hearing on Clean Energy Incentive Program

The Environmental Protection Agency holds a public hearing Wednesday in Chicago on the proposed design details for the Clean Energy Incentive Program. On June 16, the EPA proposed adding hydropower and geothermal generation to the criteria of projects eligible to receive emissions reductions credits under a voluntary program that would reward states that choose to make early investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy in preparation for the Clean Power Plan that would take effect in 2022. The U.S. Supreme Court has stayed the Clean Power Plan until it can be litigated, though the EPA believes it still has the authority to propose the Clean Energy Incentive Program. Many states and tribes have expressed interest in the voluntary program designed to provide incentives for early investments in renewables and energy-efficiency programs in low-income communities, the EPA has said. Reporter Michael Bologna has the story.

2016 Summer Olympics Opening Ceremony

The 2016 Olympic Games kick off Friday night in Brazil. Keep an eye on the sailing, kayaking, rowing and canoeing events, all of which will take place in polluted bodies of water in and around Rio de Janeiro. Our correspondent Michael Kepp recently took an in-depth look at Rio’s pollution problems and found out how Olympic organizers are planning to keep floating trash from interfering with the competition. Check it out here: Olympic Athletes Go for Gold Amid Rio Garbage.

Floating Debris Rio

(Workers examine floating debris caught by an eco-barrier at the mouth of the Meriti River before entering Guanabara Bay. Photo: Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty Images)

And while this week is off to a quiet start, last week ended with a flood of environmental news. Here are some of the big stories, in case you missed them.

Boiler Emissions Ruling a Win for Environmental Groups: A federal appeals court sided with environmental organizations in identifying several legal flaws in the EPA's emissions standards for boilers, while also rejecting several industry challenges to key aspects of the rule, reports Patrick Ambrosio.

Park Service Sued Over Seismic Oil Testing Near Everglades: A team of environmental groups sued to block oil and gas exploration near the Everglades, where they say the use of heavy “thumper trucks” to conduct seismic testing in wetlands would harm endangered wildlife and water resources, reports Chris Marr.

Chemical Rules' Worker Safety Parts Updated: EPA Proposal: The EPA will present plans to update the worker safety provisions of its new chemical rules, under a regulation it proposed July 27. The changes the EPA will propose align with updated requirements the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has established. Pat Rizzuto covered the story.