"SALT LAKE CITY â€” An administrative law judge is defending a Utah state agency's decision to issue a permit for a tar sands project â€” the first of its kind in the U.S.
"Judge Sandra Allen is turning back a challenge from the Moab-based environmental group Living Rivers in a decision issued Wednesday.
"Allen found Living Rivers couldn't prove the project would pollute any groundwater.
"Her recommendation goes to the Utah Water Quality Board for a formal ruling.
"U.S. Oil Sands Inc. says it will dig a 62-acre pit in Utah's Uinta basin that could yield 4 million barrels of crude over about six years.
"Executives hope to start producing oil next year. The Calgary, Alberta-based company holds leases on 50 square miles of state trust lands in eastern Utah."Â CBS Money Watch
Meanwhile, at the Republican National Convention, America is being sold on the proposition that Republicans are all about low taxes.Â One form of taxation that is not being talked about at all at the Republican National Convention is the atmospheric degradation tax, a tax that will be sky-rocketing this century and that has already cost Utahns dearly in terms of more intense droughts and more intense wildfire seasons.
According to a white paper "Heat Waves and Climate Change" published Aug 30, 2012,Â by the Climate Analysis Section at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colorado, heat waves â€” periods of days to weeks of abnormally toasty temperatures â€” used to come along every 20 years on average. Nowadays, they occur more frequently, every 10 years, and they are projected to pop up as often as every other year by centuryâ€™s end.Â Salt Lake Tribune
Kevin Trenberth, who leads the Climate Analysis Section at the National Center for Atmospheric Research: "The record-breaking fires this year in the Southwest and Rocky Mountain region are consistent with these trends."