Tonawanda News


June 4, 2014

DUVALL: New EPA rules are a no-brainer for most

Tonawanda News — The headlines haven’t been particularly friendly for President Obama for a while now but Monday he went a long way toward cementing one of the more promising parts of his legacy.

I’m speaking of a new set of regulations on coal-fired power plants that aim to reduce greenhouse gases by 30 percent by 2030. It’s a landmark achievement if it happens and requires no small amount of political bravery to push in an election year where endangered Democrats in coal-friendly states are trying desperately to hold onto their seats — and by proxy, the Democratic majority in the Senate.

Conservatives responded with their usual howls of indignation that the regulations will put Americans out of work but look just past the partisan rhetoric in Washington and you’ll find a huge majority of Americans who aren’t elected to federal office in agreement with the president’s position and the Environmental Protection Agency’s new rules.

A Washington Post/ABC News poll conducted at the end of May found 70 percent of voters, including a majority 56 percent of Republicans, agree the government must do more to curb carbon emissions. And furthermore, they’re willing to put some skin in the game. When asked whether they would continue to favor such rules if it meant an increase of $20 per month in their energy bills, 69 percent still said yes.

When was the last time seven in 10 Americans agreed on anything perceived as controversial?

Republicans — and some opportunistic Democrats seeking to convince voters in conservative states they don’t like the president, either — are shilling for the energy industry. They’re doing so standing naked in the gaze of history. As more and more Americans reach the same level of consensus the scientific community did years ago about the real threat posed by climate change those opposed will appear all the more foolish for supporting technology perfected during the 19th century’s Industrial Revolution while the rest of society embraces the 21st century Digital Revolution. 

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  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On lines blurred, crossed and nonexistent It strikes me more and more how blurry the lines have gotten in all facets of our world, large and small.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tucker, Barbara.jpg TUCKER: Oh, the joys of Sound Off Never thought the words "Thank goodness for Sound Off" would ever be printed here.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014

  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

    July 17, 2014

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: King George's abdication leaves many questions I've covered Niagara County politics for 10 years and it's been a fascinating -- and often infuriating -- experience. With the news the man known with equal parts respect and cynicism as "King George" is walking away it's about to get more interesting.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo