"The Trump administration has proposed whacking the budget of the Environmental Protection Agency by nearly a third, eliminating thousands of employees and scrapping dozens of programs, including climate-change research and cleanup efforts in the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay. But a detailed budget plan obtained by The Washington Post last week includes a request to add positions within the agency’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance 'to provide 24/7 security detail' for EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt."
"A prominent land rights activist has been shot dead by five gunmen at a hospital in Brazil where he was recovering from a previous assassination attempt."
"Secretary of Defense James Mattis has asserted that climate change is real, and a threat to American interests abroad and the Pentagon’s assets everywhere, a position that appears at odds with the views of the president who appointed him and many in the administration in which he serves."
"More than $4 billion is needed by the end of March to help nearly 20 million people who risk starvation in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen, United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres said on Wednesday."
"Qayyarah, Iraq - Six months after ISIL fighters torched oil wells in Qayyarah, Iraqi fire crews are still battling the flames. Like a scene from a Hollywood blockbuster, a vast and pervasive darkness hangs over Qayyarah, as toxic black smoke billows from the burning wells.
Oil has been a key source of income for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group, making Qayyarah an important strategic town. Its recapture last August by Iraqi forces was a significant gain in their advance towards Mosul.
The National Response Center, run by the Coast Guard, takes reports of toxic spills and is supposed to keep a database on spill incidents. But a new study shows that it does nothing of the sort -- putting the public at risk by keeping them in the dark.
"U.S. Navy-trained dolphins and their handlers will participate in a last-ditch effort to catch, enclose and protect the last few dozen of Mexico's critically endangered vaquita porpoises to save them from extinction."
"The Mosul Dam is failing. A breach would cause a colossal wave that could kill as many as a million and a half people."
"Rebel groups reportedly dumped diesel into the source of the city's water supply, prompting authorities to shut down pipelines. Government forces are laying siege to the source of the water."
A Portland Oregonian investigation turns up problems with toxic lead in National Guard armories around the country, exposing not just military personnel, but the general public. TipSheet reports that a database built for the investigation gives journalists around the nation a way to track problems in their local facilities.