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Battles over Sea Mammals Hit Courts, State Legislatures

Washington state Senator Kevin Ranker (D-Orcas Island) introduced legislation that would make it a criminal offense, punishable by up to six months in jail and a $100,000 fine, to keep whales, dolphins, and porpoises in aquariums. Ranker’s bill failed to receive a hearing. It was not the first effort to criminalize the ownership of cetaceans.  “This is about pushing a broader animal rights agenda,” said Jeff Stier, director of the Risk Analysis Division at the National Center for Public...

Senate Hearing Highlights State Clean Power Plant Objections

A Senate hearing concerning the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) sweeping clean power plant rule featured testimony from state officials opposing new carbon-dioxide regulations EPA is expected to finalize in the summer of 2015. John Eick, director of the Energy, Environment, and Agriculture Task Force at the American Legislative Exchange Council, says it is difficult to respond to the rule without knowing what it will be. “One of the main challenges in addressing the Clean Power Plan now...

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