"Concern for the survival of albatrosses, penguins, and other marine birds has drawn scientists from 40 countries to first World Seabird Conference in Victoria. The five-day event opened Tuesday, sponsored by 26 professional seabird groups and societies from around the world."
Water & Oceans
"In May, the company pledged $500 million for critical oil spill science. Then politics and parochialism got in the way."
"Oxygen levels fell significantly in deep-sea areas of the Gulf of Mexico contaminated by oil plumes from the BP spill. But although researchers found a 20% decline in dissolved oxygen, the drop was not steep enough to create biological 'dead zones' that some scientists feared might form in the wake of the BP disaster." Those were the findings of a government study.
"New oil and gas drilling is probably the most visible activity people associate with threats to groundwater in Texas. But it's not usually the source of known contamination, according to state records. Instead, old or abandoned oil and gas wells, petroleum storage facilities and even existing water wells are most frequently identified as problems."
"An oil and natural gas production platform exploded in flames Thursday morning, sending 13 workers on board plunging into the Gulf of Mexico and touching raw nerves about the safety of offshore energy operations in the wake of the BP spill. But none of the 13 workers sustained serious injury, and by the end of the day Thursday, it appeared catastrophe had been averted and that early comparisons to BP's April 20 disaster were unjustified."
"A federal judge has ordered Patriot Coal Corp. to spend millions of dollars to clean up selenium pollution at two surface coal mines in West Virginia. Environmental groups said it was the first time a court had demanded restrictions on selenium, a trace mineral commonly discharged from Appalachian surface mines, where the tops of mountains are blown away to expose coal."
Eight small earthquakes in central West Virginia since April have Chesapeake Energy and the state Department of Environmental Protection discussing the possibility of seismic monitoring near a disposal well for gas-drilling fluids."
The fifth anniversary of Katrina reminds us that we are indeed at the peak of hurricane season. The resources in the Hurricane Reporting Toolbox can help you do better stories.
Topics of interest to your audience could include agriculture, construction, sewage plant discharges, urban stormwater runoff, industrial sources, concentrated animal feeding operations, hydraulic fracturing used in natural gas extraction, power plant cooling water use, and pesticide infiltration.
"Pinpointing the amount of oil lingering in the Gulf of Mexico continues to be a source of frustration for journalists and scientists alike, with multiple, contradictory — if not necessarily 'dueling' —research reports having been published on the subject over the last few weeks."