"An enormous cloud hits Lubbock, where residents compare it to the Dust Bowl of the 1930s. The ongoing drought helped produce the storm, an expert says."
Southwest (AZ NM OK TX)
"Several environmental groups sued Arizona Public Service Co. and the other owners of the Four Corners Power Plant in New Mexico on Tuesday, seeking to shut down the power plant if they won't add additional pollution controls to the facility."
"A devastating Texas drought that has browned city lawns and caused more than $5 billion in damages to the state's farmers and ranchers could continue for another nine years, a state forecaster said on Thursday."
"'It is possible that we could be looking at another of these multiyear droughts like we saw in the 1950s, and like the tree rings have shown that the state has experienced over the last several centuries,' State Climatologist John Nielson-Gammon told Reuters.
"ALBUQUERQUE -- Acquisition of 570 acres to establish a national wildlife refuge along the Rio Grande in Albuquerque has been approved, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced today in Albuquerque."
Sites in CA, GA, IL, IN, MS, NC, NJ, NM, NY, OR, SC, TN, and TX received a final designation of Superfund status, meaning they are among the most toxic in the country, due to contamination from industrial operations, mining, military activities, landfills, and other sources.
"Photos and video of the haboob that ate Phoenix on July 5 went viral on the Internet. News stories worldwide predicted a hotter, drier, dustier future for the 'Southwest Dust Bowl.'"
"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency should move forward with tougher standards it has developed for ozone and toxic emissions because they will help protect Latinos’ health in Texas and other states, environmental and Latino groups said Tuesday."
"The series of fires that broke out in the Bastrop area last weekend and killed two people, destroyed 1,400 homes and upended the lives of countless residents may have been unexpected in scope and in their ferocity. Yet to anyone who has been paying attention, the potential of a massive fire such as Austin-area residents have witnessed billowing to the east could hardly be called a surprise."
"Firefighters gained ground Wednesday against one of the most destructive wildfires in Texas history even as the state said the number of homes lost reached almost 800, and an elite search team set out to find any victims in the smoking ruins."