Category Archives: Human Interest

I’m very grateful to writer Mark Hand and the popular website CounterPunch for reviewing Crude Justice: How I Fought Big Oil and Won, and What You Should Know About the New Environmental Attack on America. I thought Mark’s piece really captured the essence of the book. Here’s an excerpt: Early in his career, Smith said he learned that big oil and gas companies operated in a system that valued profits [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Commentary, Human Interest, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Regulation Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Here we go again. It was a large oil spill in the Pacific Ocean off Santa Barbara in 1969 — and the pictures of oiled birds and marine wildlife — that shocked the nation, led to bans and restrictions on offshore oil drilling in California and elsewhere, and created the momentum for the very first Earth Day celebration and the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, both in 1970. [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Fracking, Human Interest, Important Articles, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Response, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

Everyone knows that drilling offshore for oil in the unforgiving waters of the Arctic is a fool’s errand. Three summers ago, Shell’s initial foray into this extreme quest for crude oil was an unmitigated disaster, ending with the bizarre yet tragically predictable saga of its oil rig the Kulluk breaking loose and slamming into the rocky coastline of Alaska. Now, Shell has been making plans to try drilling in the [...]

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Posted in Human Interest, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

New Orleans has been through a lot of political and physical upheaval since 2005 and the days after Hurricane Katrina. But there is much that hasn’t changed at all. Because so much of our city—nearly 80 percent—was harmed by the levee breaks following Katrina, it made sense to give the updating of the City Zoning Ordinance and the attendant Master Plan a lot of attention since the storm. And to [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Human Interest, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Politics Tagged , , , , , ,

Today, on the actual 5th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon tragedy, I published an op-ed in the Los Angeles Times, voicing my dismay not only at the current state of the Gulf of Mexico but over the complete failure to take the necessary steps to make sure this never happens again. Here’s an excerpt: The Obama administration, for its part, has been a lot more aggressive about awarding new leases [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Commentary, Human Interest, Important Articles, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Tomorrow is the 5th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon rig explosion that triggered an environmental calamity in the Gulf of Mexico. For many of us the region, it’s an anniversary tinged with vivid and painful memories. As I recount in my new book, Crude Justice: How I Fought Big Oil and Won, and What You Should Know About the New Environmental Assault on America, we were in the skies over [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Causes, Human Interest, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Response, Safety, Spill Damages Tagged , , , , , , ,

The 5th anniversary of the BP oil spill is causing a lot of journalists to revisit issues that have not received the attention that they deserve in the last couple of years. Take the seafood catch from the Gulf of Mexico — not only a vital source of regional pride but a key driver of jobs in Louisiana and its neighboring states. In the weeks following the Deepwater Horizon disaster, officials [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Human Interest, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Ocean Life, Spill Damages, Wildlife Tagged , , , , , , ,

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Posted in BP Spill, Human Interest, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Research, Response, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

Thank God for the National Wildlife Federation. Few non-governmental agencies have worked as hard at staying on the case of the 2010 BP oil spill, and documenting that severe harm that has been done to the various creatures of the Gulf of Mexico. With the 5th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon accident less than a month away, the researchers at the NWF continue to perform yeoman’s work in counteracting the [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Human Interest, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Recovery, Research, Wildlife Tagged , , , , , , , ,

If you looked in the dictionary to define the word “denial,” there’s a pretty darn chance you’d find a picture of the BP logo right next to the entry. For nearly five years, the British oil giant has managed to maintain a state of practically blissful unawareness about why it’s massive Deepwater Horizon rig exploded with lethal force, how much oil was really spewing forth from the damaged wellhead, the [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Human Interest, Investigations, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Regulation Tagged , , , , , ,