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Governor Andrew Cuomo directs phase-out of climate change pollutants in New York

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New York Governor Andrew Cuomo on Monday directed the state’s Department of Environmental Conservation to promote regulations to phase out the use of climate change pollutants called hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).

The change, to be implemented from 2020-2024, is expected to reduce such emissions by more than 20 percent of projected levels by 2030, the statement said. “The regulations would prohibit specific substances for use in new consumer products.”

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A group of U.S. states led by New York had, in June, sued the Environmental Protection Agency over a plan to roll back limits on the use of hydrofluorocarbons, which are used in air conditioning, refrigerants, aerosols and foam-blowing.

DEC will seek input on the proposal before drafting rules, with the intent of finalizing them in 2019.

New York’s Environmental Protection Fund includes nearly $10 million for projects to reduce HFCs and greenhouse gases.

Reporting by Eileen Soreng in Bengaluru; Editing by Richard Chang

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Louisiana Democrat re-elected governor — despite Trump’s rallies for the Republican candidate

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The Associated Press has called the Lousiana's governor's race for incumbent Democrat John Bel Edwards.

Edwards triumphed over Republican businessman Eddie Rispone, who called to concede.

The outcome is another major political loss for President Donald Trump, who had held multiple campaign rallies for Rispone.

During his most recent rally, Trump begged the crowd to give him a "big win" in the election.

Eddie Rispone has conceded the #lagov race to Gov. John Bel Edwards, giving the Democrat four more years in ruby red Louisiana despite Trump’s best efforts to flip the seat. Edwards camp says Rispone called minutes ago to concede. #lagov #lalege

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Press secretary says it is ‘dangerous for the country’ to question whether she is putting out honest info

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Press secretary Stephanie Grisham on Saturday argued it was "dangerous for the country" for anyone to challenge the veracity of her claims.

Grisham made her argument after President Donald Trump went to Walter Reed Hospital for an unannounced doctor's visit, resulting in a great deal of speculation.

Following the visit, Grisham claimed Trump was "healthy" and "without complaints" -- a claim many found unlikely as the president has spent a good deal of time as president airing his many grievances.

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Sondland used WhatsApp to communicate with Ukraine — and won’t turn over the messages: report

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Ambassador Gordon Sondland used WhatsApp to send encrypted messages to a top Ukranian official, The Washington Post reported Saturday.

The communication occurred with Andriy Yermak, a top aide to President Volodymr Zelensky, when Sondland was in Kyiv, the newspaper reported.

"Sondland was also texting back and forth on WhatsApp with Yermak throughout the trip, and had been communicating with other Ukrainian officials over the messaging app in the preceding and subsequent months, according to people familiar with his interactions," The Post reported.

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