Southwest (AZ NM OK TX)
"An intense fire churned through massive chemical storage tanks Monday at a facility east of Houston, continuously pumping plumes of black smoke that drifted across the region as firefighters fought to contain the blaze for a second straight day."
An environmental documentary that follows a risk-laden effort to save a rare and elusive porpoise won over audiences at the recent Sundance Film Festival. Correspondent JoAnn Valenti takes a look at the film, along with other documentaries that explore the role of journalists and journalism.
"New Mexico on Tuesday sued the U.S. Air Force over groundwater contamination at two bases, saying the federal government has a responsibility to clean up plumes of toxic chemicals left behind by past military firefighting activities."
The fierce contest over the Trump border wall has critical environmental implications, both local and regional, per the latest TipSheet. A key suit against the Trump emergency declaration was filed by environmental groups and plans for a border barrier may harm significant wildlife habitat, as well as numerous migrating species, including some that are endangered. Get the back story and why it matters, along with story ideas and reporting resources.
"Thousands of protests have been lodged with U.S. land managers in opposition of next month’s oil and natural gas lease sale despite a decision to remove from the offering several parcels near a national park in northwestern New Mexico."
"For months, Clovis, New Mexico, dairy farmer Art Schaap has been watching his life go down the drain. Instead of selling milk, he is dumping 15,000 gallons a day – enough to provide a carton at lunch to 240,000 children. Instead of working 24/7 to keep his animals healthy, he’s planning to exterminate all 4,000 of his cows, one of the best herds in his county’s booming dairy industry."
Small market environmental beat reporting can shine a light on serious issues that affect local residents, and Texas Observer’s Christopher Collins does that with a passion. That’s the word from judges for the Society of Environmental Journalists’ annual reporting awards, who recently honored Collins for his work, citing his mix of hard-hitting info and interesting characters. In the latest Inside Story, Collins shares how he gets his story ideas, overcomes challenges and focuses on how issues affect real individuals.
U.S. courts will be a key venue of environmental conflict in 2019, as the Trump administration pushes back against an extensive array of long-standing environmental law. This special edition Issue Backgrounder looks at seven key legal disputes, including cases involving climate change liability, intergenerational equity and policy, as well as conflicts over maintaining national monuments, defining which waters are subject to anti-pollution rules, disposing of coal ash and extending offshore drilling.