Tuesday

1,200 New Coal-Fired Power Plants Planned Worldwide

Despite warnings about fast-rising carbon emissions, study finds that a big expansion of coal plants could come. The World Resources Institute identified the 1,200 proposed plants in 59 countries, with about three-quarters in China and India. The new operations, if constructed, would increase greenhouse gas emissions by an amount equivalent to adding another China, currently the world’s biggest emitter. “This is definitely not in line with a safe climate scenario – it would put us on a really dangerous trajectory,” said the WRI’s Ailun Yang, who compiled the report. But she said new emissions limits proposed in the U.S. and a voluntary cap on coal use in China, which has begun slowing investment in the plants, could head off building plans. The Guardian

Honeywell International, 23 other companies agree to $78 million cleanup of polluted New Jersey site. Federal officials said the plan should take two to three years and will entomb coal tar, arsenic and other pollution at the Quanta Resources Superfund site, which has been contaminated since the 1880s and was shut in 1981. The agreement, in a federal court consent decree, comes more than a year after the Environmental Protection Agency chose a controversial plan to solidify most of the 150,000 cubic yards of coal tar and other contaminants on the site and leave the material there, next to the Hudson River. Honeywell became the primary responsible party because it merged with Allied Chemical, which operated at Quanta from 1930 to 1974. The Record, Daily Record

With election over, long-delayed food safety overhaul finally may advance. President Obama signed the Food Safety Modernization Act in January 2011 but, nearly two years later, none of the law’s major regulations has been released, even in provisional form. Some observers suspect the White House deliberately stalled to prevent conservatives from arguing that the president was over-regulating and hurting business. With the election over,  there is renewed hope the legislative reforms — the first comprehensive overhaul in U.S. food safety laws in decades — will move forward. Still, it could take until 2016 or 2017 until new rules are in place. Separately, an inspector general’s report listed implementation of the law as a top priority for the coming year. The Huffington Post, Healthcare Finance News

Illinois pork processing plant cited for three safety violations.  The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, after conducting an inspection based on a complaint, accused Cargill Meat Solutions’ operation in Beardstown, Ill., of failing to protect workers from unexpected start-ups of its machinery. One of the charges was a willful violation, OSHA’s most serious offense. The agency proposed penalties of $114,000. “Cargill has a responsibility to provide training to workers about the hazards that exist in their facilities, and to respond to safety concerns expressed by workers,” an OSHA official said. A Cargill spokesman called the citations “unjustified” and “unwarranted.” The plant employs 2,200 workers and processes 18,000 hogs a day. OSHA, The (Springfield, Ill.) State Journal-Register

Death of convenience store employee prompts proposed fine of $19,600. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited the Dallas-based chain TMT Inc. for four safety violations. The action followed an aggravated robbery in May that led to the death of an employee at TMT’s Whip In store in Garland, Texas. OSHA then investigated the company’s three other stores in the Dallas area, and found that workers were exposed to the same or similar workplace violence hazards. “Handling money, working alone and standing behind open counters leaves employees vulnerable to violent crimes,” an OSHA official said, adding that if the employer provided training and took other measures, “it is possible that this tragic loss of life could have been avoided.” OSHA

Compiled by Stuart Silverstein and Bridget Huber

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