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There are about 2 million abandoned oil and gas wells nationwide that haven't been properly plugged with cement. Many of the wells are releasing methane, which is a greenhouse gas containing about 86 times the climate-warming power of carbon dioxide over two decades. Some are leaking chemicals such as benzene, which is a known carcinogen, into fields and groundwater. Regulators don’t know where hundreds of thousands of the abandoned wells are. That's because many were drilled before modern regulations and record-keeping systems were established. In recent years, abandoned wells have been found under brush deep in forests and beneath driveways in suburbia. 

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The Biden administration has announced new sanctions against Cuba’s national revolutionary police and its two top officials as the U.S. looks to increase pressure on the communist regime following this month’s protests on the island. The Police Nacional Revolcionaria and the agency’s director and deputy director were targeted in the latest sanctions announced Friday by the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control. The police are part of Cuba’s interior ministry, which was already the subject of a blanket designation by the Trump administration back in January. The sanctions were announced shortly before President Joe Biden met with Cuban Americans in the White House.

Federal authorities and now the company itself say former FirstEnergy Corp. CEO Chuck Jones and former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder worked closely together to win a $1 billion legislative bailout for two failing nuclear plants and provide the company's three Ohio electric companies with annual rate guarantees. Details about the audacious plan they crafted together were made public last week in a document related to a deferred prosecution agreement signed by the Akron-based company's current CEO and president. Jones, who has not been charged criminally, and Householder, who faces trial on a federal racketeering charge, have both vehemently denied wrongdoing.

The United States has laid off nearly 200 local staff working for its diplomatic missions in Russia ahead of an Aug. 1 deadline set by the Kremlin for their dismissal. Secretary of State Antony Blinken says the move is regrettable and one the U.S. had hoped to avert despite a deterioration in ties between Moscow and Washington. Russia earlier this year announced a ban on almost all non-American staff at the embassy in Moscow and consulates in Yekaterinburg and Vladivostok. That came in response to U.S. expulsions of Russian diplomats. Friday’s announcement pertains to 182 staffers who worked as office and clerical staff, drivers and contractors at the U.S, facilities.