As recently permitted oil companies turned in their plans for deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, environmental groups said the plans fall short of what is needed to prevent another blowout and pollution incident like the Deepwater Horizon well.
"Millions of gallons of potentially hazardous chemicals and known carcinogens were injected into wells by leading oil and gas service companies from 2005-2009, a report by three House Democrats said Saturday."
EPA and Justice Department officials in the Obama administration are putting more emphasis on environmental justice -- an effort to reduce the greater hazards faced by poor and minority communities. But that job is not easy, especially in the face of industry resistance.
"The Pew Environment Group says the Grand Canyon is especially at risk. Critics of the mining say an 1872 law gives companies 'carte blanche.'"
"The Tennessee Valley Authority has agreed to shutter 18 coal-fired units at three power plants and make major improvements at 10 other sites, in a deal that's being called one of the largest pollution reductions agreements in the nation's history."
The fiscal year 2011 budget deal just passed by Congress slashes funds for weather satellites. That may hurt the bottom lines of small and large businesses from farming to shipping and insurance that depend on accurate weather forecasts. It is also wasteful of taxpayer funds, since the temporary budget cut is just show, according to the Congressional Budget Office, and laid-off workers in the program will need to be hired back at greater cost. It may also mean that people will die in weather disasters.
Some 10,000 young activists descend on Washington, DC, this weekend to train, network, lobby, and demonstrate on climate change in an event called Power Shift. On dirty energy, they suspect President Obama has goe over to the dark side.
"With everything Big Oil and the government have learned in the year since the Gulf of Mexico disaster, could it happen again? Absolutely, according to an Associated Press examination of the industry and interviews with experts on the perils of deep-sea drilling."
"A fatal bat disease has been confirmed in Kentucky for the first time, state and federal officials said Wednesday."
Mark Twain was not only one of America's most under-appreciated nature writers, but he may also have been the Jon Stewart of his time -- blending satire with acute journalistic observation to puncture received wisdom with real truth. Francesca Lyman starts a discussion on the subject in Sacramento -- Twain's old stomping grounds.