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Coal to see big year! 

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Coal Ash Worries

Credit: Nadia Kounang, CNN

Worries linger after EPA changes coal ash rules 06:02

Story Highlights

  • Coal burning power plants create coal ash, one of the largest forms of industrial waste
  • Heavy metals found in coal ash, such as arsenic, lead and mercury can carry health risks
  • EPA acting head Andrew Wheeler previously lobbied on behalf of energy companies

(CNN)In March 2017, coal mogul Bob Murray came to the Washington headquarters of the US Department of Energy for a meeting with Secretary Rick Perry. Also at the table was Andrew Wheeler, who this month became acting head of the Environmental Protection Agency.

Wheeler had helped organize the meeting as a lobbyist for the firm Faegre Baker Daniels, where Murray Energy was one of four energy clients he represented. The Murray team's agenda that day: a four-page action plan"for achieving reliable and low cost electricity in America and to assist in the survival of our Country's coal industry."

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Earth Just Shattered Another Climate Record — & We Should Be Terrified

April 2018 was the 400th “consecutive month with above-average temperatures” on Earth, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration(NOAA). To clarify, that means December 1984 was the last month the planet had below-average temperatures. It also means we’re headed towards a climate change of 2 degrees Celsius, a number that will have devastating effects on the Earth’s biodiversity.

Not only has Earth reached the milestone of 400 consecutive months of heating up, but last April happened to be the third-warmest April ever recorded globally, according to the NOAA report released Thursday. Carbon dioxide levels also hit another milestone by reaching the “highest level in recorded history at 410 parts per million” last month.

Map showing climate anomalies

NOAA's map of climate anomalies in April 2018

With these new records behind us, scientists are now forecasting that the “worst case scenario,” one in which the planet heats up more...

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