Technology

EWG Database Helps Public, Journos Find Drinking Water Threats

While EPA and local utilities make much data available online, the Environmental Working Group has compiled a tap water database that is much easier to use. It gathers data from the states as well as from EPA, and compiles city-by-city rankings of the best and worst drinking water quality. It also explains the health significance of contaminants and lists contaminants not regulated by EPA.

Fund for Environmental Journalism Announces Winter 2013 Grantees

Thanks to generous funding from the Grantham Foundation, and individual members and friends of the Society of Environmental Journalists (SEJ), we are pleased to announce grants totaling $12,500 to five journalism projects selected in SEJ’s Fund for Environmental Journalism Winter 2013 grant cycle. Next application deadline: July 15, 2014. Pictured: FEJ grantee Douglas Haynes.

FAA Nixes Drones for Journos

Drones might count as new media — and certainly have journalistic uses in covering everything from prairie fires to chemical emergencies. The federal government, which devotes enormous technical resources to spying on its citizens, now says this is illegal. The Federal Aviation Administration issued the ruling, saying there was no grey area: hobbyists can legally fly video drones. But journalists can not. Image: Cade Cleavelin, a science/ag journalism senior at U of Missouri, demonstrates a DJY Phantom quadcopter at the 2013 SEJ Conference in Chattanooga, TN. © Roger Archibald.

Secret CRS Reports on Environment Published

Taxpayers' money funds the Congressional Research Service as it produces objective and authoritative reports on issues facing Congress — many on subjects of interest to environmental journalists. Congress, however, does not share these reports with the public who paid for them. Thanks to the Project on Government Secrecy, another batch of the reports has been leaked and published.

"Despite Reports, Response Slow To Danger of Oil Fires on Rail Tankers"

"WASHINGTON -- Five years before a train loaded with crude oil derailed and exploded last year in Quebec, killing 47 people, another derailment in Oklahoma should have given federal regulators an early warning that the type of oil both trains carried was more flammable than authorities realized."

Source: McClatcht, 01/06/2014

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