EJToday: Top Headlines
EJToday is SEJ's selection of new and outstanding stories on environmental topics in print and on the air, updated every weekday. SEJ also offers a free e-mailed digest of the day's EJToday postings, called SEJ-beat. SEJ members are subscribed automatically, but may opt out here. Non-members may subscribe here. EJToday is also available via RSS feed. Please see Editorial Guidelines for EJToday content.
"WACO, Texas — Federal agents and the state fire marshal have effectively barred a federal safety panel from the site of a Texas fertilizer plant blast that killed 15 people and injured about 200 others, hampering its investigation, the panel's chairman said."
"The federal government might have enough money in its emergency coffers to help tornado-ravaged Oklahoma without Congress having to pass another contentious disaster response bill, the Senate's top Democrat said yesterday."
"Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told reporters he wasn't immediately considering legislation to help finance cleanup and recovery from the massive tornado that hit Oklahoma City and its suburbs earlier this week, killing at least 24 people.
"Pinning the deadly tornado in the US state of Oklahoma on climate change is wrongheaded, even though the world is set to see a rise in high-profile weather disasters due to global warming, the leader of a UN body said Tuesday."
"Most utilities have not implemented voluntary cybersecurity measures recommended by an industry organization that oversees reliability, according to findings from a report released this morning by two House Democrats who say they reveal gaps in the government's voluntary approach to cybersecurity."
"You might think that everything would have changed for the chemicals industry on April 16, 1947. That was the day of the Texas City Disaster, the worst industrial accident in U.S. history. A ship loaded with ammonium nitrate — the same chemical that appears to have caused the disaster last month in West, Texas — exploded. The ship sparked a chain reaction of blasts at chemical facilities onshore, creating what a newsreel at the time called "a holocaust that baffles description."
"DHAKA, Bangladesh -- A cyclone blowing across the Indian Ocean is expected to hit Bangladesh on Thursay, threatening the lives of 8.2 million people in northeast India, Bangladesh and Myanmar (Burma). The highest storm surge and rainfall predictions are for Bangladesh’s coastal cities of Chittagong and Cox’s Bazaar."
"Experts judged on Wednesday that a reactor on Japan's west coast is located on ground at high risk of an earthquake, setting in motion a process that will likely lead to the first permanent shutdown of a nuclear plant since the 2011 Fukushima crisis."
"Twenty-four plaintiffs, including a dozen police officers who rushed to the scene of a November train derailment in Paulsboro, sued on Monday, alleging that the rail company's negligence caused the derailment, and that it downplayed the dangers of a chemical spill and failed to protect responders."
"BOISE, Idaho (AP) — After another dry winter across much of the West, fire officials are poised for a tough wildfire season that will be even more challenging because federal budget cuts mean fewer firefighters on the ground, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said Monday."
"EWELL, Md. -- Superstorm Sandy barely laid a glove on Smith Island last fall, to hear residents tell it. Though storm-driven flooding damaged hundreds of homes in Crisfield and the rest of Somerset County, only a couple islanders got any water in their homes from the surging Chesapeake Bay."
"NEW BRAUNFELS, TX — Off a dirt road connected to ever-flowing Interstate 35, a little metal sign on a wooden fence is the only indication of what lies ahead. Nearby, Buckley Powder, a mining and construction supply company, stores large quantities of ammonium nitrate, the source of the explosion at a fertilizer depot that killed at least 14 people and injured hundreds more last month in West."
"In the wake of a massive US Department of Agriculture report highlighting the continuing large-scale death of honeybees, environmental groups are left wondering why the Environmental Protection Agency has decided to approve a 'highly toxic' new pesticide."
"Two residents of Mayflower, Arkansas, the site of the March 29 pipeline spill, traveled to Washington on Thursday to ask Secretary of State John Kerry to reject the Keystone XL pipeline."