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.
"When Uranium Energy Corp. sought permission to launch a large-scale mining project in Goliad County, Texas, it seemed as if the Environmental Protection Agency would stand in its way. To get the ore out of the ground, the company needed a permit to pollute a pristine supply of underground drinking water in an area already parched by drought."
"Texas was ordered to temporarily stop issuing new water permits for a river system that supplies dozens of Central Texas cities, power generators and petrochemical plants to ensure enough water reaches the last migratory flock of endangered whooping cranes."
"CARRIZO SPRINGS, Tex. -- In this South Texas stretch of mesquite trees and cactus, where the land is sometimes too dry to grow crops, the local aquifer is being strained in the search for oil. The reason is hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, a drilling process that requires massive amounts of water."
"PLAINVIEW, Tex. — After two years of drought, people are starting to leave this parched West Texas town."
"The former U.S. EPA official who tangled with Texas officials in a drilling contamination case outside Fort Worth said the state's oil and gas regulators were more interested in promoting the industry than policing it."
"A former Texas state oil and gas regulator outlined in 2011 how two Range Resources Corp. wells outside Fort Worth could have leaked natural gas into the water supply of nearby homes."
A Texas company quit plans to build a coal-fired power plant -- blaming President Obama's environmental rules, but admitting the low price of natural gas was a key reason.
"HOUSTON -- More than 80 environmental groups on Monday demanded a broad investigation into whether the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency behaved improperly when it abruptly dropped enforcement actions against a gas driller it had accused of contaminating water in Texas."
"TransCanada, the company currently constructing the southern segment of the Keystone XL pipeline, claims to use 'top quality steel and welding techniques' throughout its pipeline network. Last week, however, activists fighting the construction of the pipeline released images of what they claim are improperly welded pipeline seams. The photos were released by Keystone XL blockader Ramsey Sprague at the Pipe Tech Americas 2013 conference in Texas and were taken by blockader Isabel Brooks."
"A Canadian mining company has come one step closer to building a mile-wide, half-mile-deep open-pit copper mine on public land 30 miles south of Tucson. On Thursday, Arizona’s Department of Environmental Quality granted Rosemont Copper, a subsidiary of Augusta Resource of Vancouver, a crucial air quality permit, saying emissions from the proposed mine would not violate federal standards for carbon monoxide, nitrogen and sulfur dioxide, or fine and large particles."
"In south Texas, where the Rio Grande divides the United States from Mexico, three of the last remaining sections of border fence -- approved more than five years ago -- remain unbuilt."
"The Railroad Commission of Texas regulates one of the most advanced industries in the world — oil and gas drilling. Yet the commission's software systems, many of its rules and even its name are from another era."
"Last fall, remote cameras in a rugged expanse of desert grasslands in Southern Arizona captured arresting images of a jaguar slinking through the underbrush, its yellow eyes fixed on some distant sight. The photos add to the dozen or so documented sightings of the endangered cat on American soil in the last century."
"In a bid to clean up one of the nation’s dirtiest coal-fired power plants without causing economic harm to the Navajo Nation that surrounds it, the Environmental Protection Agency indicated on Friday that it would give the plant’s owners five extra years, until 2023, to install expensive state-of-the art emissions reduction equipment."
"WEATHERFORD, Texas -- When a man in a Fort Worth suburb reported his family's drinking water had begun "bubbling" like champagne, the federal government sounded an alarm: An oil company may have tainted their wells while drilling for natural gas. At first, the Environmental Protection Agency believed the situation was so serious that it issued a rare emergency order in late 2010 that said at least two homeowners were in immediate danger from a well saturated with flammable methane. More than a year later, the agency rescinded its mandate and refused to explain why."