Category Archives: Investigations

They promised us it was going to be different the next time. What else could they say after the Deepwater Horizon catastrophe four years ago, when 11 people lost their lives and so much crude oil spewed forth into the Gulf. The BP oil spill was, first and foremost, a failure of corporate responsibility, with a culture that was geared toward cutting costs and maximizing profits, not toward dealing with [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Investigations, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Recovery, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

With America about to make a big decision on the fate of the Keystone XL pipeline, let’s revisit yet another recent major oil transportation fiasco, this time in my home state of Louisiana. As I mentioned here recently, Sunoco — the oil giant that is betting heavily on building new pipelines to accommodate America’s surge in oil and natural gas production — had to own up to a pipeline accident [...]

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Posted in Fracking, Investigations, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Recovery, Regulation, Safety, Spill Damages Tagged , , , , ,

Fracking has caused a lot of Americans to focus on the alarming environmental practices of the U.S. oil and gas industry, and that’s perfectly understandable. For one thing, the term “fracking” is still new and  scary sounding to some, and perhaps funny sounding to others. Perhaps more importantly, the boom in unconventional gas drilling has come to a lot of parts of the country, such as Pennsylvania and (potentially) parts of [...]

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Posted in Fracking, Illnesses, Investigations, Main, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , ,

This weekend, the New York Times Magazine ran a lengthy — and rather remarkable — look at what happened when a New Orleans levee board decided to take seriously its mission of restoring the Louisiana environment to its original health. If you’ve been reading this blog, the story of New Orleans historian John Barry, the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East (also known as Slfpa-E), and Big Oil’s effort to quash its [...]

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Posted in Causes, Important Articles, Investigations, Legal, Main, Politics, Restoration Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

There’s been a lot of talk in recent weeks about how Big Oil uses public relations, or PR, to achieve its political goals and try to steamroll its environmental opponents. One such episode played out recently in an unusually public fashion, as Politico, the website that’s popular with Beltway insiders, ran what amounted to a free ad for BP (not so coincidentally, one of its own advertisers) in the form [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Fracking, Human Interest, Investigations, Main, Politics Tagged , , , , , , ,

Over the last year or so, an increasing number of articles have appeared — in widely read publications like Newsweek or the Guardian — bemoaning the sorry environmental state of the Gulf, more than four years after the Deepwater Horizon spill. To me, there’s no more important issue than this — it’s the very reason that I started this blog not long after the spill, so that people would know [...]

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

A lot of folks in Louisiana are talking today — the 9th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s landfall — about a major investigation by the New Orleans-based website, The Lens, and the award-winning investigative-reporting outfit, ProPublica, looking at the dramatic loss of wetlands in my native state. Perhaps the most jaw-dropping element of the project is an interactive map that chronicles exactly how much wetland has become open sea since 1922. [...]

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Posted in Important Articles, Investigations, Legal, Main, Ocean Life, Politics, Restoration Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Recently, I’ve been highly focused on one story in particular: The Gulf of Mexico remains under extreme stress. Some of the problems go back a number of years — particularly the oxygen-deprived, so-called “dead zones in the Gulf that have grown to the size of the state of Connecticut and had a severe impact on our fisheries. This seemingly intractable crisis has defied calls for action, as farming and overdevelopment [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Fracking, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , , ,

On April 15, 2014, with the fourth anniversary of the massive Deepwater Horizon rig explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico just days away, British Petroleum – the rig’s operator — issued a press release that caught many people off-guard. BP announced that its “active cleanup” of oil pollution in the Gulf had officially ended. The statement by the British energy giant did not say that the spilled [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Commentary, Important Articles, Investigations, Oil Spill Facts, Recovery, Restoration, Spill Damages Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

In January 2011, Republican Gov. Tom Corbett took office in Pennsylvania, heavily indebted to the fracking industry (in fact, he’d received more than $1 million in campaign contributions from oil and gas interests, and those numbers have continued to grow). Since then, he has run one of the most pro-fracking governments in America. He has blocked efforts for a severance tax — every other gas-producing state has one, even ultra-conservative [...]

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Posted in Fracking, Illnesses, Investigations, Main, Politics, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , ,