"At 5:20 on Tuesday evening, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke tweeted a photo of himself at the Tallahassee airport with Gov. Rick Scott of Florida, announcing that he had decided, after meeting with Governor Scott, to exempt the state from a new Trump administration plan to open up most of the nation’s coastline to offshore oil drilling."
Water & Oceans
"At least 13 people are dead and more than 20 are injured in California from weather-related incidents, the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday. The southern part of the state has been drenched with severe rain just weeks after several fires tore through the area."
"Nearly 70 people live on a sliver of land wedged between Interstate 82 and Rattlesnake Ridge in central Washington state. A massive chunk of the ridge is moving, and cracking, and geologists say it will likely cause a landslide."
The battle over environment and energy issues may ultimately come down to U.S. courts, where, unlike Congress and White House, the GOP doesn't hold sway ... yet. This week's TipSheet looks at a dozen major legal issues making news in 2018, like wetlands protection, and offers story ideas and resources to cover them.
"Thousands of Southern Californians fled their homes on Monday as a powerful rain storm that could cause flash floods and trigger mudslides soaked steep slopes where a series of intense wildfires burned off vegetation last month."
"Nearly everywhere you turn during this frigid stretch of winter, much of the world seems covered in a layer of salt aimed at keeping our roads drivable and sidewalks free of ice. All that salt is one reason — although not the only one — that many of the nation’s rivers and streams are becoming saltier, according to new research published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences."
"An oil tanker that caught fire after colliding with a freighter off China's east coast is at risk of exploding and sinking, Chinese state media reported Monday, as authorities from three countries struggled to find its 32 missing crew members and contain oil spewing from the blazing wreck."
"In a vicious cycle California knows too well, parts of the state scarred by recent wildfires now face an elevated risk of flash floods and debris flow."
"APALACHICOLA, Fla. — Reminders of the oyster’s pre-eminence in this slice of northwestern Florida are everywhere, from the shells that line the edges of downtown buildings to the paintings of oysters that dot the walls of Apalachicola’s art and history museum."
As Hurricane Harvey dumped record rains on the Houston area, nature ruled and man reacte. Harvey was Houston's reckoning.