A fatal November 30, 2012, collapse of part of a coal-slurry impoundment in West Virginia served as a reminder of safety issues that may not be adequately regulated in some states and localities. You can locate local coal-slurry impoundments and information on their status with an online public database.
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Referenced from "DHS and CDC Refuse To Give House Panel Docs on Failed BioWatch Program," SEJ WatchDog TipSheet, November 28, 2012.
After wasting billions of taxpayer dollars on a non-working program aimed at protecting the US public from biological attack, the Department of Homeland Security and Centers for Disease Control may be refusing to give documents on the program to House Energy Committee investigators.
Superstorm Sandy was a wake-up call on many levels — especially as a lesson on the need to be prepared for disasters. Here are some reporting tools that may come in handy.
Here are more Congressional Research Service reports relevant to the environment/energy beat, published by the Federation of American Scientists' Project on Government Secrecy.
Should passengers taking off from — or landing at — your local airport worry about bird strikes? You can find information leading to a few answers in the Federal Aviation Administration's online, searchable FAA Wildlife Strike Database.
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What's in that derailed railcar or overturned tanker truck? The answer is often visible on a hazmat placard affixed to the vehicle (we suggest binoculars). The placard often includes a "UN number" which you can look up in the "Hazardous Materials Table" published in the Code of Federal Regulations, among other places.
If your local utility burns coal, there is likely an environmental story about coal ash to be reported near you. A FOIA request by the Environmental Integrity Project and Earthjustice has produced the identities of another 451 coal ash dumps (than previously listed by EPA), raising the total to at least 1161.
A federal judge has denied BP's bid to see 21 e-mails and other documents sent between the White House and other federal agencies. More chilling, perhaps, was BP's effort to get e-mails sent by two private-sector scientists in an apparent effort to discredit their work.