A federal court has ruled unconstitutional a Utah law that made undercover filming of livestock operations illegal. What's it mean for similar laws elsewhere? The latest WatchDog has the story, plus news on protecting whistleblowers, a digital journalist's legal guide, shielding of climate info and leaked government reports.
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"North Carolina’s Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper said Thursday that his administration will oppose opening up Atlantic Ocean waters to offshore oil-and-gas drilling. Cooper’s decision reverses the state’s policy under former Republican Gov. Pat McCrory, who urged federal officials to promote energy exploration in ocean waters to help the nation achieve energy independence."
"Louisiana serves as a terrifying example of what can become of a state that shortchanges science and environmental regulations to boost industry and infrastructure." "If you’re visiting New Orleans and want to see something truly amazing, take your beer or daiquiri to-go and walk a few blocks past the Superdome—you’ll find a school being constructed on an old waste dump."
"An environmental group is accusing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency of violating federal pollution laws by allowing oil and gas companies to dump an unlimited quantity of fracking chemicals into the Gulf of Mexico."
"In southeastern Virginia and northeastern North Carolina, the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge has been dramatically altered over the past few centuries by human development, creating an environment more vulnerable to both floods and wildfires. Now, a federal project is trying to restore some of the swamp's natural habitat and other characteristics through a $3 million effort that aims to reverse some of that damage."
"THIBODAUX, Louisiana -- Louise St. Pierre paints pictures of shacks and swamps on the insides of oyster shells – tiny scenes of Cajun culture she sees washing away amid the rising saltwater and periodic floods inundating southern Louisiana."
"A Miami Beach doctor who last year helped spearhead angry opposition to using the pesticide naled has filed an emergency request in federal court to stop Miami-Dade County from conducting aerial spraying in its seasonal battle against native marsh mosquitoes."
"South Carolina’s republican governor has publicly come out in opposition to seismic testing off the southeastern coast, siding with the state’s fishermen, business community, and environmentalists."
Even though big proposed budget cuts may be DOA for the Interior Department, it doesn't mean there aren't a wide range of land and resource-related stories emerging from the debates. The latest TipSheet sets the scene and offers a half-dozen ways to localize the Interior Department funding story.
"Miami-Dade commissioners on Tuesday endorsed the Paris climate accord, giving the symbolic and explicit backing that the county’s mayor declined to provide after President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the agreement three weeks ago."