EJToday: Top Headlines
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"The Atlantic hurricane season could be the busiest since 2005, when Katrina and Rita caused massive destruction along the same part of the Gulf Coast now struggling with the largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history, government scientists said Thursday."
"The Center for Biological Diversity Thursday filed a lawsuit against Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and the Minerals Management Service to strike down the agency's exemption of 49 Gulf of Mexico drilling projects from all environmental review."
"Unable for six weeks to plug the gushing oil well beneath the Gulf of Mexico, BP renewed an effort Monday to use a dome to funnel some of the leaking crude to a tanker on the surface. A similar attempt failed three weeks ago, but officials said they had resolved some of the technical problems that forced them to abort last time."
"The Obama administration scrambled to respond on Sunday after the failure of the latest effort to kill the gushing oil well in the Gulf of Mexico. But administration officials acknowledged the possibility that tens of thousands of gallons of oil might continue pouring out until August, when two relief wells are scheduled to be completed."
"President Barack Obama Thursday rejected charges he was slow to respond to the Gulf of Mexico "tragedy" and clamped down on the oil industry, as he tried to contain political blowback from the crisis."
Oil-soaked pelicans in some coastal marshes, coated with oil from the Gulf spill, can no longer fly. The number of miles of shoreline smothered in oil continues to grow, and the oil pushes further inland.
"Three months before the massive BP oil spill erupted in the Gulf of Mexico, the Obama administration proposed downsizing the Coast Guard national coordination center for oil spill responses, prompting its senior officers to warn that the agency's readiness for catastrophic events would be weakened."
"After several years of relatively somnolent hurricane seasons in the Atlantic Ocean, conditions have aligned to create a heightened storm threat this summer and fall. If the season plays out as forecast, this will almost certainly complicate the months-long effort needed to insure the closure of the gushing seabed oil well and limit the spread of resulting slicks."
"Interior Secretary Ken Salazar says in a report to be delivered to the White House on Thursday that he will not consider applications for permits to drill in the Arctic until 2011. Shell Oil is poised to begin exploratory drilling this summer on leases as far as 140 miles offshore."
"BP started pumping heavy mud into the leaking Gulf of Mexico well Wednesday and said everything was going as planned in the company's boldest attempt yet to plug the gusher that has spewed millions of gallons of oil over the last five weeks."
"Several days before the explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, BP officials chose, partly for financial reasons, to use a type of casing for the well that the company knew was the riskier of two options, according to a BP document." Hearings and investigations have revealed a string of other factors contributing to the blast.
The joint Coast Guard-BP unified command has recalled to land all 125 of the private fishing vessels helping to contain the Gulf oil spill, after fumes overcame four or more crewmembers Wednesday.