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.
"BP, the company in charge of the rig that exploded last month in the Gulf of Mexico, hasn't publicly divulged the results of tests on the extent of workers' exposure to evaporating oil or from the burning of crude over the gulf, even though researchers say that data is crucial in determining whether the conditions are safe. Moreover, the company isn't monitoring the extent of the spill and only reluctantly released videos of the spill site that could give scientists a clue to the amount of the oil in gulf."
A blanket of thick oil smothered Louisiana's life-giving wetlands as the BP oil spill finally moved ashore.
"The health hazards of bisphenol A are well documented, but now scientists report that the chemical used in the coating of cans to protect food from corrosion and bacteria is pervasive in the canned goods on our kitchen shelves."
"A proposal to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean as early as this summer received initial permits from the Minerals Management Service office in Alaska at the same time federal auditors were questioning the office about its environmental review process."
The vast deposits of deepwater methane hydrates may have been a major factor in the Deepwater Horizon blowout and explosion. Methane hydrates expand 164 times in volume when destablilized by heat and reduction in pressure. Such conditions may have existed the night of the explosion, causing a quickly expanding bubble of methane gas to shoot up the drill column before exploding on the platform on the ocean's surface.
"The best way to curb global warming is to put a price on climate-warming carbon dioxide emissions, according to a trio of reports from the U.S. National Academy of Sciences released on Wednesday."
"As BP prepares to launch its latest effort to plug the oil leak in the gulf, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar says the agency will be split into three arms to oversee leasing, safety and royalties."
"The nation's premier public health agency knowingly used flawed data to claim that high lead levels in the District [of Columbia]'s drinking water did not pose a health risk to the public, a congressional investigation has found. And, investigators determined, the agency has not publicized more thorough internal research showing that the problem harmed children across the city and continues to endanger thousands of D.C. residents."
"Manufacturers have been adding the germ fighter triclosan to soaps, hand washes, and a range of other products for years. But here’s a dirty little secret: Once it washes down the drain, that triclosan can spawn dioxins."
"Some creams promising to lighten skin, eliminate age spots and zap freckles contain high levels of mercury, a toxic metal that can cause severe health problems, a Tribune investigation has found."
Local officials in Carlsbad, Calif., see salvation for their water-starved community in a huge proposed desalination plant. Poseidon Resources, the company hoping to build it, says building it won't cost taxpayers and ratepayers a dime. But tough investigative reporting shows that southern Californians would pay at least $640 million over 30 years for the project.
"A whistleblower filed a lawsuit [Monday] to force the federal government to halt operations at another massive BP oil platform in the Gulf of Mexico, alleging that BP never reviewed critical engineering designs for the operation and is therefore risking another catastrophic accident...."
"Federal authorities on Tuesday expanded the no fishing zone associated with the BP oil spill to encompass 19% of the Gulf of Mexico."
"The Minerals Management Service did not adequately regulate safety devices and procedures for offshore drilling before the massive Gulf of Mexico disaster, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said [Tuesday]."