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.
"Songbirds such as sparrows and thrushes carry various forms of bird flu and could potentially spread the viruses to pigs and poultry, U.S. researchers reported on Tuesday."
"The Obama administration is proposing a new rule to tighten restrictions on pollution from coal-burning power plants in the eastern half of the country, a key step to cut emissions that cause smog."
"Less than four months after President Barack Obama took office, his new administration received a forceful warning about the dangers of offshore oil drilling."
"HOUSTON — To hear the people at Baker Hughes tell it, a drill string — length after length of narrow pipe that can extend for miles into the earth — is far from a rigid assembly of high-strength steel. It is more like a wet noodle."
Just as harmful to the Gulf of Mexico as the BP oil spill is the annual "dead zone" whose increase in recent years has been driven by nitrogen fertilizer used to produce corn ethanol in the U.S. heartland.
"More than 27,000 abandoned oil and gas wells lurk in the hard rock beneath the Gulf of Mexico, an environmental minefield that has been ignored for decades. No one — not industry, not government — is checking to see if they are leaking, an Associated Press investigation shows."
"Climate scientists in the US say police inaction has left them defenceless in the face of a torrent of death threats and hate mail, leaving them fearing for their lives and one to contemplate arming himself with a handgun."
Proposals afloat in Congress would raise taxes on the oil industry to help pay for spill cleanup. The industry objects, claiming the burden would harm not only companies, but the country. But the oil industry already gets tens or hundreds of billions in tax breaks and outright subsidies from the federal government.
"Women who worked in the Grand Junction offices of the former Atomic Energy Commission have been diagnosed with diseases that would be compensable under the radiation exposure compensation law and related legislation, except for the fact they were employed by the federal government."
"The nearest glob of leaked oil is more than 800 miles away from this spot, where low buildings and the tang of dead shellfish hug a tributary of the Chesapeake Bay. But for all the crying that BP's spill in the Gulf of Mexico has caused at W.E. Kellum seafood, it may as well be seeping under the door."
"The Gulf of Mexico oil spill has sparked a lobbying rush as companies involved in drilling seek help navigating new policies and influencing ones under development."
"As the utility industry embarks on a potential $1 trillion-plus expansion in renewable energy transmission and energy-saving smart grid technologies over the next two decades, it must also confront a new and growing fragility while demands on the grid increase. It must be able to protect the grid against so-called "high-impact, low-frequency" threats to the power system."
"A coalition of environmental organizations sent President Obama a letter on Friday pleading for him to intervene in the stalled Senate negotiations on climate and energy legislation. The groups, which have been largely supportive of the president’s energy policies, expressed concern that time was running out for any action on climate change this year. Only the president’s personal and persistent attention can break the stalemate, they say."
"The use of roxarsone and other arsenic-based additives in poultry and swine feed is at the center of a national controversy."