It's Sunshine Week, and open government events are scheduled around the United States. This month's WatchDog TipSheet has a rundown, plus news on SEJ concerns over restrictions to press access at FERC meetings, on a 7,564-page FOIA email dump on EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and more.
All forms of advocacy, esp. environmental groups.
"A groundbreaking climate lawsuit, brought against the federal government by 21 children, has been hailed by environmentalists as a bold new strategy to press for climate action in the United States. But the Trump administration, which has pledged to undo Barack Obama’s climate regulations, is doing its best to make sure the case doesn’t get far."
"Armed occupation brought an anticlimactic and forlorn end to the camp, which had been home to thousands of activists opposing the Dakota Access pipeline".
"CANNON BALL, N.D. -- All but a few dozen of the last holdouts from a months-long mass protest against a proposed oil pipeline in North Dakota peacefully vacated their riverside camp as an eviction deadline passed on Wednesday."
FERC’s calendar listed it as a “public comment meeting.” Later, FERC said it wasn’t a public meeting, but a “listening session” to which the public was invited. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regulates things like interstate pipelines and powerlines, and has been no stranger to controversy in recent years. In Wilson, N.C., the night of February 14, 2017, FERC officials would not allow the news media to work inside the auditorium where a “public” listening session was being held. The Society of Environmental Journalists today wrote FERC expressing concern about the procedure.
"As dawn breaks over an encampment that was once home to thousands of people protesting the Dakota Access oil pipeline, a few hundred holdouts rise for another day of resistance."
"In at least four states, encampments built as bases for pipeline resistance have emerged." They include the Trans-Pecos Pipeline, the Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline, the Sabal Trail Pipeline, and the Pilgrim Pipeline.
"Hundreds of scientists put aside their habitual wariness toward political activity and rallied over the weekend in Boston’s Copley Square, with many saying the Trump administration has left them no choice."
"William Happer, frontrunner for job of providing mainstream scientific opinion to officials, backs crackdown on federal scientists’ freedom to speak out". "The man tipped as frontrunner for the role of science adviser to Donald Trump has described climate scientists as 'a glassy-eyed cult' in the throes of a form of collective madness."
"The governor of North Dakota ordered protesters on Wednesday to evacuate a demonstration camp near the site of the Dakota Access Pipeline in the latest move to clear the area that has served as a base for opposition to the multibillion dollar project."