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Climate science denier group must pay damages for frivolous lawsuit against UVA, scientist

Southernstudies.org -- "There is a larger context for this latest development," Mann wrote on his Facebook page at the time he filed the defamation suit, "namely the onslaught of dishonest and libelous attacks that climate scientists have endured for years by dishonest front groups seeking to discredit the case for concern over climate change."  (go to article)

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Fix the Climate Problem? Easy. Cut U.S. Emissions to 1901 Levels

Bloomberg news -- The study contains detailed sections on each of a dozen large national emitters, including the U.S., China, Russia and the U.K. It suggests to national leaders that cutting carbon may be possible, without economic compromise and without fear that they’ll have to go it alone. Such analysis might help them generate the political support they’ll need to make the UN climate negotiations in Paris at the end of 2015 successful.

So the good news, according to the two organizations that wrote the report, is that cutting U.S. emissions 85 percent below 1990 levels by 2050 is “technically feasible.” That’s a drop of more than 5.4 gigatons of carbon dioxide pollution in 2010 to 746 megatons in 2050, according to the study.  (go to article)

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Shale Seen Shifting Flows at America’s Biggest Oil Port

Bloomberg Businessweek -- For more than 30 years, the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port LLC has been a symbol of U.S. dependence on foreign oil, pumping Nigerian and Saudi Arabian crude from the world’s biggest supertankers into underground storage caverns beneath the marshes of southern Louisiana.

Now, with domestic production at a 28-year high, LOOP’s managers are thinking the previously unthinkable: They want to reverse the flows and send North American oil out as well as take foreign oil in.  (go to article)

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Now a Canadian Tar Sands Pipeline Threatens Endangered Whales

Takepart.com -- That's what environmentalists are arguing as they fight energy giant Kinder Morgan's proposed expansion of a $5.4 billon pipeline that would carry tar sands oil to a coastal terminal in Vancouver to be shipped overseas. The number of oil tankers traversing the feeding grounds of endangered whales—such as the blue whale, the North Pacific right whale, and the Southern resident whale—would jump 600 percent, according to estimates by environmental groups.

The fear: As more huge tankers ply the marine mammals' habitat, the risk of oil spills and whale deaths from ship collisions will rise.

Last Friday, Living Oceans and EcoJustice, First Nation tribes, and Canadian municipalities filed motions with Canada's National Energy Board seeking a temporary halt to the 18-month review...  (go to article)

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Dodge Charges into Its 100th Year

Product Design & Development -- The Dodge brand is tearing into its centennial year as America's mainstream performance brand, celebrating its 100th anniversary on July 1, 2014. With the purification of the brand and consolidation with SRT, Dodge is getting back to its performance roots with every single model it offers. The consolidated Dodge and SRT brands will offer a complete lineup of performance vehicles that stand out within their own segments. Dodge is the "mainstream performance" brand within the Chrysler showroom. SRT is positioned as the "ultimate performance" halo of the Dodge brand, together creating a complete and balanced performance brand with one vision and one voice.  (go to article)

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WTI Slips for Ninth Day After Supplies Advance at Cushing

bloomberg.com -- West Texas Intermediate oil fell for a ninth day, the longest stretch of declines since 2009, after supplies rose at Cushing, Oklahoma, the contract’s delivery point. Gasoline slipped to a one-month low.

Cushing stockpiles rose by 447,000 barrels to 20.9 million last week, Energy Information Administration data showed. Gasoline inventories increased 579,000 barrels to 214.3 million as demand slipped. Brent fell to a one-month low amid signs Libyan oil exports will gain.

“I was expecting to see Cushing supplies sink, so the build caught me a bit by surprise,” said Tom Finlon, Jupiter, Florida-based director of Energy Analytics Group LLC. “The Libyans appear to be making progress and are taking a pragmatic approach about returning their oil to the market.”

WTI for August delivery dropped  (go to article)

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What happens when there’s no money to repair our highways

Yahoo Finance -- The federal gasoline tax hasn't changed for 21 years, and remains at 18.4 cents a gallon (24.4 for diesel).

President Obama said last week if Congress doesn't act, states will have to choose between which highway projects to continue and which ones to shut down, putting as many as 700,000 jobs at risk. "That would be like Congress threatening to lay off the entire population of Denver, or Seattle, or Boston," said Obama, standing beside the Key Bridge, one of five bridges that connects Washington, DC to Virginia and is used by more than 100,000 commuters daily.

Valliere says there could be "a little patch" applied to the Highway Trust Fund that maintains it through Election Day but after that "a bigger problem still looms."  (go to article)

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What do Americans Think About Federal Tax Options to Support Public Transit, Highways, and Local Str

SJSU -- The survey results show that a majority of Americans would support higher taxes for transportation—under certain conditions. For example, a gas tax increase of 10¢ per gallon to improve road maintenance was supported by 69 percent of respondents, whereas support levels dropped to just 25 percent if the revenues were to be used more generally to maintain and improve the transportation system. For tax options where the revenues were to be spent for undefined transportation purposes, support levels varied considerably by what kind of tax would be imposed, with a sales tax much more popular than either a gas tax increase or a new mileage tax.
With respect to public transit, the survey results show that most people want good public transit service in their state. In addition, nearly two-thirds  (go to article)

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Local car dealers on hiring spree amid booming sales

Winsor Star -- Local car dealers are expanding stores and hunting for workers as they gear up for booming car sales that are expected to break another record this year.

“We are in a constant state of growth,” said Fred Francis, spokesman for the Rafih Auto Group, which owns 12 dealerships in Windsor and Essex County.

The company is seeking 30 additional employees, including sales and administrative staff, licensed technicians and service advisers, said Francis.

In a bid to lure more sales staff, Rafih Auto Group recently changed its compensation policy from one based largely on commission to a guaranteed annual salary, plus commission and benefits, said Francis.

“We’re not seeing too many young people or recent grads wanting to get into this line of work. Our focus groups told us that one concern  (go to article)

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Harley-Davidson recalling 66,421 motorcycles for safety defect

Associated Press --
DETROIT - Harley-Davidson is recalling 66,421 Touring and CVO Touring motorcycles from the 2014 model year because their front wheels can lock up without warning.

Motorcycles with anti-lock brakes built between July 1, 2013, and May 7, 2014, are included in the recall.

Harley-Davidson Inc. says the front brake line can get pinched between the fuel tank and the frame. That could cause front brake fluid pressure to increase, increasing the risk that the front wheel could lock up while riding.

The company knows of five crashes and two minor injuries related to the defect, which it discovered last fall through warranty claims.

Harley-Davidson will notify owners later this month. Dealers will replace the brake lines for free and attach straps to hold them in place.
 (go to article)

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House’s $10 Billion Highway-Fund Boost Shows Split Congress

Bloomberg News -- A proposal late yesterday for a $10 billion infusion to the U.S. Highway Trust Fund highlights divisions in Congress over how to replenish the main source of federal money for state road, bridge and mass-transit projects.

The plan by House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp, a Michigan Republican, would offset its costs by letting employers delay contributions to their employee pension plans, which raises corporate taxable income in a boon for the U.S. Treasury. It also would boost customs user fees and transfer $1 billion from a federal leaking underground storage trust fund.

The proposal diverges from a plan in the Senate, complicating the ability to forestall a slowdown in disbursements from the highway trust to states next month.  (go to article)

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America’s Energy Addiction: Where It Comes From, Where It Goes

Wall st cheat sheet -- America’s Energy Addiction: Where It Comes From, Where It Goes

SAM BECKER | MORE ARTICLES
JULY 09, 2014
Page 1 of 3view all

David McNew/Getty Images
America is addicted to energy. We drill miles under the ocean, run nation-length pipelines, and even fight wars just to get our fix. Our reliance on cheap fuel sources has also helped bring untold prosperity to the United States, helping power businesses and residential dwellings, and also supplying everyone with ample power to properly heat and cool their homes. There is also plenty of oil power the millions of vehicles, not to mention ships, airplanes, and everything other method of transport we have been able to come up with.

Since the United States depends so largely upon energy, we have been able to find several different sources from  (go to article)

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Council axes red light cameras

Press Enterprise -- Riverside, California will turn off its red light cameras in two months, ending an eight-year program that lost money most of those years and, by some accounts, aggravated a majority of residents.

After several years of contentious public debate, the council on Tuesday voted 5-2 to cancel the contract with Redflex Traffic Systems...

Dumping the program will wipe out about $450,000 in revenue that was anticipated in this year's budget.

“I think the will of the people should take precedence over the desires of the bureaucracy,” Councilman Chris Mac Arthur said. “It’s time once and for all to terminate this.”

Riverside’s red light camera program started in late 2006 and includes 18 cameras at 15 intersections, though four are not in use due to road construction.
 (go to article)

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Toronto's Aerovelo aims to build world's fastest bike

Canadian Press -- Team already known for winning human-powered helicopter $250K prize that went unclaimed for 33 yrs

Headed by two U of Toronto alumni, the team is currently working on a bicycle that can go faster than the current world record of 83.14mph

The aerodynamics of the vehicle — a recumbent bicycle encased in a slick bullet-shaped shell — are different from the helicopter, the choices of materials and manufacturing processes are similar

Cycling is still the most efficient way to harness the human body. Not only does it make use of the powerful leg muscles, it also holds a unique advantage over other propulsion methods

The project will cost $120K from donations and sponsorship

The team raised $30K through crowdfunding

A functional vehicle is expected to be completed by the end of the month  (go to article)

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Fortune 100 companies saved $1.1B using renewable energy

IT World -- Clean energy is no longer just the bastion of crunchy granola types and companies hoping to improve their public image.

Increasing the use of renewable energy has become a targeted goal of almost half of Fortune 500 companies, and with good reason. According to a new report, more than half of Fortune 100 companies collectively saved $1.1 billion in energy costs by rolling out renewable energy programs.
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Rep. Pascrell Calls for Robust Transportation Funding

The Paramus Post -- Today, U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09), a member of the House Ways and Means and Budget Committees, called for more robust transportation funding ahead of tomorrow’s Ways and Means markup of a $10.5 billion, eight-month transportation funding extension. The proposal, which was released this afternoon, would push the debate over road and transit spending into the next Congress.  (go to article)

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Harley-Davidson Recalling 66,421 Motorcycles

AP -- Harley-Davidson recalling 66,421 motorcycles
Associated Press
28 minutes ago

DETROIT (AP) — Harley-Davidson is recalling 66,421 Touring and CVO Touring motorcycles from the 2014 model year because their front wheels can lock up without warning.

Motorcycles with anti-lock brakes built between July 1, 2013, and May 7, 2014, are included in the recall.

Harley-Davidson Inc. says the front brake line can get pinched between the fuel tank and the frame. That could cause front brake fluid pressure to increase, increasing the risk that the front wheel could lock up while riding.

The company knows of five crashes and two minor injuries related to the defect, which it discovered last fall through warranty claims.

Harley-Davidson will notify owners later this month. Dealers will replace the br  (go to article)

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General Motors Recalls 8 Million Vehicles in One Day

Carcomplaints.com -- By David A. Wood

June 30, 2014 — General Motors is recalling over 8 million vehicles in separate recalls taking in models going back to 1997. GM said it's aware of three fatalities, eight injuries and seven crashes, all related to ignition keys that move out of the "run" position. However, GM says there is no "conclusive evidence" the ignition defect caused those crashes.

GM didn't release much information about the recalls, other than to say the huge number of recalled vehicles is all part of GM's "most comprehensive safety review in the history of our company because nothing is more important than the safety of our customers."

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration hasn't released any information about when the recalls will begin or what repairs GM will make to...  (go to article)

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Under Sanction Threat, Russia Turns To Own, Chinese Oil Technology

RigZone -- MOSCOW/LONDON, July 9 (Reuters) - With President Vladimir Putin watching from afar, the head of Rosneft, Igor Sechin, launched the world's biggest oil drilling platform in the Okhotsk Sea to warm handshakes with his colleagues from ExxonMobil.

Beamed live to the Kremlin on June 27, the event marked a major step in fulfilling the president's goal of increasing oil output, and the presence of U.S. executives seemed to support Putin's argument that Western sanctions were not hurting.

But partly built in South Korea, the more than 200,000 tonne Berkut platform at the Sakhalin-1 project, led by Exxon, also highlighted the oil industry's dependence on foreign technology - something Washington could target if it decides to step up sanctions on Russia over its actions in Ukraine.
 (go to article)

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Does America need more oil refineries?

GasBuddy Blog -- Image From ..ogj.comDo we have enough oil refineries?  Enough refining capacity?  The answers often depend not only on whom you ask but when. If  it’s springtime when refineries are wrestling with annual maintenance checks and balances and the often bumpy transition from ‘winter-blend’ to ‘summer-blend’ that boils our blood... many of us may be inclined to say that a few more refineries might ease bottlenecks and price spikes particularly in some regions where fuel supply logistics and options are nonexistent or extremely limited.   (Sure, build those refineries, they’ll say… almost anywhere, except the Gulf Coast that already has nearly 50% of the nation’s refining capacity.)  What do you say?...  (go to article)

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Ford wrings mileage out of three-cylinder Fiesta

ap -- There's a new little secret under the hoods of some 2014 Ford Fiesta small cars.

Added as an optional selection for Fiesta buyers during the model year, a new, three-cylinder, gasoline engine with turbocharger is so fuel thrifty, it makes the Fiesta the top gasoline-powered 2014 sedan in fuel mileage in the United States.

In fact, the 2014 Fiesta four door with SE EcoBoost package has government fuel economy ratings as high as those for some diesel-powered sedans from BMW, Audi and Volkswagen. Specifically, the 2014 Fiesta sedan with the three-cylinder, EcoBoost engine is rated at 31 miles per gallon in city driving and 43 mpg on highways for a combined average of 36 mpg.

The numbers aren't farfetched. The test Fiesta sedan with the little engine averaged 34 mpg even when the driver was  (go to article)

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Republicans Have Unveiled Their Solution To The 'Highway Shutdown,' And Conservatives Already Hate I

business insider -- The House Ways and Means Committee unveiled its plan to shore up the Highway Trust Fund, providing a proposed solution to what many on Capitol Hill view as Congress' next big looming crisis.

The House Republican plan, which was given a thrust of public support by House Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday, would provide federal financing for federal construction projects through next May. The plan would be financed through unusual offsetting, revenue-generating measures such as a method known as "pension smoothing" and various customs user fees.

The proposal is viewed as an early step toward an eventual congressional deal. A Senate committee spearheaded by Democrats is expected to introduce its own plan on Wednesday.

Lawmakers have warned that the Highway Trust Fund, which helps support  (go to article)

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Wanna Bet? Setting the Odds for Future Speed

Car and Driver -- If there is one thing we enjoy more at C/D than driving, it would be arguing. Over everything. From the “right” number of digits after a decimal point, to the correct spelling of “donut,” to where we should go for doughnuts. We argue about cars, too, with many such automotive debates taking the form of prognostication. The less high-minded might call it “gambling out of spite.” Here you’ll find 20 of these predictions-in-dispute with the favorites handicapped. Our stated odds are valid through 2020, or until we all decide that the people who came up with this list are crazy or idiots or crazy idiots...

 (go to article)

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Daimler demonstrates its driverless big rig on the Autobahn

Yahoo! Autos -- In the ‘70s classic movie, “Duel,” a seemingly driverless tanker truck terrorizes an innocent salesperson driving to his next call along a remote stretch of highway. Could a driverless big rig – minus the stalkerish behavior – be part of our future?

Daimler Trucks thinks so. In fact, it’s betting big on it and showed its ante with the introduction of its Future Truck 2025 earlier today in Germany. Using the truckmaker’s Highway Pilot system, the prototype semi-truck is capable of driving itself while hauling a full load at speeds exceeding 50 mph, according to the company.

“The truck of the future is a Mercedes-Benz that drives itself.” Dr. Wolfgang Bernhard, the member of Daimler’s Board of Management responsible for Daimler Trucks and Buses, at the debut of the truck earlier today.  (go to article)

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Flanagan South Oil Pipeline Line Fill Seen Pushed to Early Q4

Reuters -- Construction of the 600,000-barrel-per-day Flanagan South oil pipeline from Illinois to Oklahoma will be complete late in the third quarter, with the first oil flowing early in the fourth quarter, operator Enbridge Inc said.

The new timeline for commissioning the nearly 600-mile conduit is later than generally expected, delaying the delivery of another large slug of Canadian crude to refiners along the U.S. Gulf Coast. The arrival of that heavy oil is expected to further diminish imports from supplies like Mexico and Venezuela.

"The majority of construction is complete on the 593-mile Flanagan South pipeline project, and work continues on the seven pump stations," company spokeswoman Kristen Higgins said in an email late on Tuesday.

"With this remaining pump station work - and the time  (go to article)

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Court: Cops can't stop drivers based on the color of their cars

Justin Hyde | Motoramic -- "Probable cause" has long been one of those terms that made the jump from legal jargon to household term, especially with regards to drivers who get pulled over. The struggle over what that allows on American roads — and what it doesn't — took a new turn last week with a Florida ruling that threw out a conviction stemming from a police officer who found something wrong with the color of a car.  (go to article)

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ecall Roundup: Subaru, Chrysler Recall Nearly 1.2 Million Vehicles Combined over Brake Line, Ignitio

J.D. Power and Associates -- During the past week, Subaru recalled more than 660,000 vehicles over concerns about corroded brake lines, while Chrysler recalled more than 525,000 vehicles due to an ignition switch defect. Details are below, in alphabetical order by manufacturer.

 (go to article)

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Teens don't do one simple thing that could save their lives!

Autoblog -- Hindsight being what it is, I now realize that I was a certifiable moron as a teenager. I thought I was far smarter and slicker than I actually was, and I took part in a spectacular array of things that, when viewed through the wiser eyes of someone pushing 30, were the height of stupidity. I'm sure most average Joes and Janes have a similar view of their adolescence. Throughout my teen years, though, I did do one thing correctly – I always wore my seatbelt.

Weirdly, that's a topic that today's teenagers have issue with. And no, this isn't just some rant about youth; there's empirical evidence to back up this troubling trend. A new report by the Governors' Highway Safety Association has revealed that of the teen drivers killed on the roads in 2012, over half (51.2 percent, to be precise)  (go to article)

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Students set to create Le Mans race car capable of crushing Nurburgring record

Motoramic -- Designing and creating an experimental race car destined for Garage 56 at the 24 Hours of Le Mans is typically reserved for your bigwig engineers who have experience building some of the world's fastest machines. Usually those mighty-minds get bored by regulation restraints and set out to build something revolutionary – like in recent years, the Delta Wing and Nissan ZEOD RC.

This is the InMotion IM01, a hybrid experimental race car hoping to debut at Le Mans in 2017, and in the same breath, crush the long-standing 6 minute 11 second lap record at the fabled Nurburgring. Only this isn't designed by ex-F1 boffins, or a bored Adrian Newey. It's the creation of a bunch of Dutch students.

Birthed from the minds of those studying at the Technical University of Einhoven and Fontys University o  (go to article)

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Shale boom confounds forecasts as U.S. set to pass Russia, Saudi Arabia

Reuters -- Four years into the shale revolution, the U.S. is on track to pass Russia and Saudi Arabia as the world's largest producer of crude oil, most analysts agree. When that happens and by how much, though, has produced disparate estimates that depend on uncertain factors ranging from progress in drilling technology to the availability of financing and the price of oil itself.

 (go to article)

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Nearly half of teens report having texted while driving, student survey finds

Vancouver Sun -- TORONTO - An alarming proportion of Ontario teens report that they have texted while behind the wheel of a vehicle, says a survey of Grade 7 to 12 students in the province conducted for the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.

The 2013 Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey found that more than one-third of licensed Ontario students in Grades 10 to 12 — or an estimated 108,000 teens — reported having texted while driving at least once in the past year.

For Grade 12 students alone, 46 per cent of those who drive say they also texted at least once while operating a vehicle.  (go to article)

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EIA: Crude inventories down, but overall petroleum supply now up vs. year ago

GasBuddy Blog -- The Energy Information Administration released its weekly report on the status of petroleum inventories in the United States today. 
Here are some highlights:

CRUDE INVENTORIES:
Crude oil inventories decreased by 2.4 million barrels to a total of 382.6 million barrels. At 382.6 million barrels, inventories are 8.6 million barrels above last year (2.3%) and are above the upper limit of the average range for this time of year.

GASOLINE INVENTORIES:
Gasoline inventories increased by 0.6 million barrels to 214.3 million barrels. At 214.3 million barrels, inventories are down 6.7 million barrels, or 3.0% lower than one year ago. Here's how individual regions and their gasoline inventory fared last week: East Coast (+1.3mb); Midwest (-0.1mb); Gulf Coast (-0.2mb); Rockies (+0.0mb); and West Coast (-0.3mb). It is important to note which regions saw increases/decreases as this information likely drives p  (go to article)

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Quebec police roll out blitz for construction zone speed limits

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/quebec-police-roll-out-blitz-for-construction-zone-speed-limi -- Operation Orange reminds drivers that speeding near construction risks workers' lives

QC provincial police are cracking down on speeding in constructions zones, as a part of an annual safety blitz.

The campaign, dubbed Operation Orange, is organized by the Quebec transport ministry and the Sûreté du Québec

Police are reminding motorists that anyone caught speeding in a construction zone will be fined double the normal rate

Fine in a construction zone 45mph posted

55mph $55 x 2 = $110

62mph $105 x 2 = $210

72mph $195 x 2 = $390

According to the transport ministry, speeding is a major factor in construction zone collisions

Last year, 938 people in QC were involved in crashes in construction zones and 5 people were killed  (go to article)

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Today's top opinion: No nukes?

Richmond Times Dispatch -- noring a problem doesn’t make it go away, so Gov. Terry McAuliffe did the right thing when he revived a state commission on climate change that his predecessor, Bob McDonnell, had allowed to expire. Unfortunately, the commission lacks a clear advocate for the most effective method of reducing greenhouse-gas emissions: nuclear power.

True, the representatives of Dominion can speak knowledgeably about the role nuclear power plays in the state’s energy mix. For that matter, environmentalists — who have several seats at the new commission’s table — also cannot deny nuclear power’s status as a zero-carbon-emissions energy source.

Indeed, Virginia’s earlier commission, impaneled by Gov. Tim Kaine, recommended increasing reliance on nuclear energy. And scientists concerned about global warming  (go to article)

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Car battery thieves target Communauto

The Gazette -- Call it grand theft battery.

Thieves are making off with batteries from cars operated by Communauto, a car-sharing service with 1,000 vehicles in its fleet

About 50 batteries have been taken so far, including about 20 last weekend

Thieves can make $15 per battery. It costs Communauto about $200 to replace one

The culprits don’t appear to be targeting particular parts of the city but they are zeroing in on Communauto, whose cars feature a stylized C and are left in parking lots until customers pick them up

The thefts left some customers stranded

Police are investigating and Communauto is asking its 30,000 members to call 911 if they see suspicious behaviour

Montreal’s other car-sharing service — car2go, which launched in Nov — has not experienced any battery thefts  (go to article)

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Natural-Gas Vehicle Makers Propose New Unit: Diesel Gallon Equivalent

Green Car Reports -- How do you ensure that all fuels are treated equally, and that customers are aware of the benefits and drawbacks to every alternative to gasoline power?

One of the most effective ways is to compare a new fuel to one consumers are already familiar with.

That's why a group of natural gas advocates, retailers, businesses and users is proposing a new fuel unit: the Diesel Gallon Equivalent (DGE).

In the haulage industry, diesel is currently the dominant fuel.

It's also a hard fuel to compare to natural gas, that has different benefits and different drawbacks. As people are inclined to stick with what they know, it's a hard sell turning people onto the idea of natural-gas powered vehicles.

That's where the Diesel Gallon Equivalent comes in. By comparing natural gas to diesel on s  (go to article)

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Idaho, Wyoming Officially Add 80 MPH Speed Limit

Autoguide.com -- As expected, Idaho and Wyoming officially adopted an 80 MPH speed limit on certain highways.

The two states joined Utah and Texas on July 1 to have speed limits of 80 mph or higher, with the Texas State Highway 130 boasting an 85 MPH speed limit. But don’t expect the recent changes as a making of an American Autobahn or unrestricted-speed highways joining the fray..........  (go to article)

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The New Focus ST Diesel Could Preface a 2015 Ford Mustang Diesel

TourqueNews -- Ford Motor Company recently introduced the new Focus ST with a new high performance diesel engine and while that powerful little oil burner isnt strong enough to power the newest Ford Mustang – that new Focus ST engine option could offer a first look at a performance oriented diesel that could end up under the hood of the S550 Ford Mustang.

A few months back, the discussion came up about the possibilities of a 2015 Ford Mustang Diesel and I called it globalization gone too far. I wasn’t too keen on the idea of a diesel powered Mustang and while some people agreed with me, others fired off on me as though I was the dingo which stole their baby. It is clear that there are some people in both the US and overseas markets who think that a diesel Mustang would be a perfectly good idea and whi  (go to article)

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BNSF reports drop in oil train shipments in Washington

The Spokesman Review -- SEATTLE – The latest disclosure from BNSF Railway shows a drop in the number of volatile oil train shipments that moved through Washington in a single week.

BNSF Railway previously reported as many as 19 trains of Bakken crude oil traversed the state during the week of May 29 to June 4. It updated those numbers to show as many as 13 oil trains during the following week.

State officials released the updated information Monday in response to a public records request from the Associated Press.

While the weekly counts fluctuated, the average high and low reported by BNSF remained the same.

On average, as many as 18 trains move through the state. The trains traversed 16 counties, with Lincoln County topping the list with an average weekly high of 18 and a low of 15.  (go to article)

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NY reaches price limit deal with car service Uber

Associated Press -- The car service Uber has agreed to limit prices during emergencies, natural disasters or other unusual market disruptions consistent with New York's law against price gouging, the company and state attorney general said Tuesday.

Uber, which uses a mobile application to connect riders with vehicles for hire, has its rates rise and fall with demand, but it has been criticized for "surge pricing" that's sometimes exponentially higher than base fares. Prices usually increase weekdays during rush hour in New York City, on Saturday nights, special occasions like New Year's Eve and during bad weather.
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Bay Area governments make big electric-vehicle buy

Detroit News -- San Francisco — A group of San Francisco Bay Area cities, counties and water agencies has joined forces for what is being billed as one of the largest single government purchases of all-electric vehicles in the country.

The six cities, two counties and two water agencies have united to buy 90 electric vehicles with the help of a $2.8 million grant from the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, a regional transportation agency, officials with the Bay Area Climate Collaborative said Tuesday.

The vehicles will save more than $500,000 in fuel costs and about 2 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions over five years, Bay Area Climate Collaborative Executive Director Rafael Reyes said.

The collaborative — a public-private initiative of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group that was started  (go to article)

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Shale boom confounds forecasts as U.S. set to pass Russia, Saudi Arabia

Reuters via Yahoo! Finance -- Four years into the shale revolution, the U.S. is on track to pass Russia and Saudi Arabia as the world's largest producer of crude oil, most analysts agree. When that happens and by how much, though, has produced disparate estimates that depend on uncertain factors ranging from progress in drilling technology to the availability of financing and the price of oil itself.

Forecasts for U.S. shale oil production vary from an increase of 7.5 million barrels per day by 2020 – almost doubling current domestic output of 8.5 bpd -- to a gain of 1.5 million bpd, or less than half of what Iraq now produces.

The disparities are a function of the novelty of the shale boom, which has consistently confounded forecasts. In 2012, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimated that ...  (go to article)

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Changes to gas tax in Indiana

WTHI 10 -- TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) Hoosiers may be paying more at the pump over the next year. Its part of a possible tax increase that may have slipped into your gas tank without you knowing.

Welcome to the summer travel season. Perhaps better known as the time of the year where we’re reminded how many motorists we actually share the road with and how much it costs to travel.

“For years the state of Indiana has had a flat per gallon gas tax,” Indiana State Economist Robert Guell PhD said. “When gas prices would go up, some consumption would fall and gas tax revenue would fall.”  (go to article)

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App of the Week: Watch the Road

Detroit News -- Resist the temptation to email, text or fiddle with your phone while driving with the Watch the Road app. Once activated, the free app sends a customizable, automatic response to people trying to reach you to let them know you’re driving and will be with them shortly. Watch the Road is currently available for Android; an iOS version is set to launch soon.
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The $4 million Lamborghini Veneno's maiden voyage

CNBC -- On a recent rainy afternoon, Antoine Dominic slid into the driver's seat of his gleaming $4 million Lamborghini Veneno. He pressed a red start button on the dashboard, and the 740-horsepower V12 engine roared to life.

"Do you know how to drive this thing?" I asked.

"We'll figure it out," he said. "What's the worst thing? You're gonna crash a $4 million car."

Thus began a rare moment in the rarified world of multimillion-dollar supercars. Dominic, a former tech CEO turned luxury car dealer, is one of only three people in the world who own a Lamborghini Veneno—the most expensive production car on the road today..............  (go to article)

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The 2015 Ford Edge Pushes Into Premium-Car Territory With Major Upgrades

Forbes -- Cars like the 2015 Ford Edge will make it harder for some to justify shelling out big bucks on luxury vehicles. A comprehensive makeover to this midsize crossover promises to bring refinement, comfort and technology normally only seen on cars costing thousands more.  (go to article)

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In the Pedways of Los Angeles Past, a Vision of a Pedestrian-Friendly Future

The Atlantic -- It was against that backdrop that Hamilton came up with his Concept Los Angeles. He didn't want to eliminate cars; instead, he came up with a whole second level for Los Angeles, a place where people would be removed from their vehicles. "Automobiles will be restricted to the ground level," Hamilton wrote. "Interconnected pathways for pedestrian circulation will be provided at the second floor and higher levels. This nearly complete separation of vehicles, transit, and pedestrians, will enhance the convenience, safety, and pleasantness of the core."  (go to article)

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The Rise of Bicycling in Smaller and Midsize U.S. Cities

The Atlantic -- Although large cities have led the way with bike infrastructure innovations and grabbed the national headlines, bicycling is also on the rise in many small and midsized cities. With a bike share of commuters at 6 percent in 2012, Portland led all large American cities, but lagged behind smaller cities such as Davis, California (19 percent), Boulder, Colorado (12 percent), Corvallis, Oregon (11 percent), and Santa Cruz, California (9 percent). Smaller cities may offer some advantages for cycling because their shorter trip distances are more easily covered by bike, and because lower volumes of motor vehicle traffic make cycling less stressful.  (go to article)

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Oil prices up slightly ahead of US stockpile data

Yahoo Finance -- TOKYO (AP) -- Oil prices inched up Wednesday ahead of the release later in the day of information on U.S. stockpiles of crude and refined fuels that will be a key indicator of expected demand.

Benchmark U.S. crude for August delivery added 12 cents to close at $103.52 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Brent crude, a benchmark for international oils used by many U.S. refineries, added 5 cents to $108.99 on the ICE Futures exchange in London.

Investors will be closely watching the information set to be released Wednesday by the Energy Information Administration on U.S. stockpiles of crude and refined fuels.  (go to article)

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Valeo to invest $28m, create 257 jobs

Greensburg Indiana Daily News -- Auto parts maker Valeo Engine Cooling plans to invest nearly $28m in new machinery in Greensburg, IN and expects to create 257 new jobs by the end of 2015.

The company will add four new product lines for Honda, Nissan, Chrysler and Ford, according to city officials.

Total annual compensation for the 257 jobs will be about $14.5m, or about $56,400 per job — though that includes benefit costs, the officials said.

Greensburg Mayor Gary Herbert said the investment and jobs came about in part because of good communication between the company and city officials, who are focusing on bringing jobs to the community that pay a good wage.

Marc Coplon said Valeo executives chose to expand in Greensburg in part because they are pleased with the performance of local employees.

It manufactures engin  (go to article)

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Small SUVs claiming a larger slice of market

Detroit News -- Automakers are learning that small is big — at least when it comes to SUVs.

Combined sales of compact and subcompact SUVs have nearly doubled since 2008, from 10% to 18% of the U.S. market, according to AutoTrader.com. Analysts predict the market will grow for at least the next few years, as young, affluent buyers are drawn to likes of the Ford Escape, Chevrolet Equinox and the even smaller Buick Encore.

IHS Automotive predicts the compact SUV segment — now at 2 million vehicles — will grow to 2.2 million in the U.S. by 2017. The compact segment includes the Escape, Equinox, Toyota RAV4 and Honda CR-V.

The forecaster believes the subcompact SUV category — including smaller offerings such as the Nissan Juke, Buick Encore and the soon-to-be introduced Jeep Renegade — will hit 500,000 ...  (go to article)

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