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Kentucky Law Could Restrict Health Care for Miners Suffering From Black Lung Disease

A Kentucky law that goes into effect Saturday could make it more difficult for miners suffering from black lung to claim federal benefits, Vice News reports.

The law mandates that only five of Kentucky's 11 pulmonologists, or lung experts, may examine miners' X-rays in benefit claims.

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A message to the Irish government to divest from fossil fuels is spelled out in lights in front of the lower house of parliament. Sasko Lazarov / 350.org

Ireland on Path to Become First Country to Divest from Fossil Fuels

Ireland took a major step Thursday towards becoming the first country in the world to divest from fossil fuels, NPR reported.

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Energy
X-ray tech explains a chest x-ray to a coal miner in Harlan County, KY. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health

Coal Execs Indicted for Lying on Safety Tests

Eight former coal company officials were indicted in a Kentucky court Wednesday on charges that they lied to federal regulators about the levels of breathable dust in their mines, increasing their miners' risk of exposure to the conditions that can cause black lung disease.

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Business
Canterbury Cathedral is the mother church of the Church of England. Jules & Jenny / CC BY 2.0

Church of England to Divest From Companies That Neglect Paris Agreement Goals

The Church of England will divest its $16 billion fund from companies that are not aligning themselves with the goals of the Paris agreement, church officials announced Sunday.

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Politics
Brendan Smialowski / AFP / Getty Images

10 Scandals That Ultimately Booted Pruitt

When Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) head Scott Pruitt resigned his position Thursday, he explained in a letter to President Donald Trump that he was stepping down because "the unrelenting attacks on [him] personally, [and his] family, are unprecedented and have taken a sizeable toll on all of [them]."

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Xcel Energy's Sherco Generating Station, a coal-fired power plant, near Becker, Minnesota. Tony Webster / CC BY-SA 2.0

Trump's Coal Bailout Could Cause Spike in Deaths From Pollution

The Trump administration's plan to bail out coal and nuclear industries could cause one American death from pollution for every two to four additional coal jobs generated over the next two years, according to new research.

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Politics
Former EPA head Scott Pruitt (on right) with Andrew Wheeler when Wheeler was sworn in as deputy administrator in April. EPA

Pruitt’s Replacement Andrew Wheeler Will Be ‘Much Smarter’ Threat, Environmentalists Fear

When President Donald Trump announced the resignation of scandal-plagued EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt via tweet on Thursday, he also introduced his successor, current Deputy Administrator Andrew Wheeler, who was approved by the Senate in April.

"I have no doubt that Andy will continue on with our great and lasting EPA agenda. We have made tremendous progress and the future of the EPA is very bright!" Trump tweeted.

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First gas from the Oselvar module burns on the flare of the BP Ula oil platform in the North Sea. Varodrig / CC BY-SA 3.0

Oil and Gas Operations Release 60 Percent More Methane than EPA Thought, Study Finds

A study published Thursday found that U.S. oil and natural gas operations release 60 percent more methane than currently estimated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), according to a press release from the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at University of Colorado, Boulder.

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Politics
The collapsed coal ash impoundment and closed power plant at Dan River Steam Station (Duke Energy), Eden, North Carolina. The impoundment failure caused the 2014 Dan River coal ash spill. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Pruitt Grants Oklahoma Leniency to Dispose of Toxic Coal Ash Without Federal Oversight

On Monday, Oklahoma became the first state to be granted a permit from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to dispose of its own coal ash, The Associated Press reported.

The move displaces the federal government as the body responsible for coal ash disposal in EPA head Scott Pruitt's home state. Coal ash is the residue left over from burning coal for power that often contaminates groundwater. It is a change that industry has lobbied for and environmental groups have opposed.

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