Category Archives: Politics

President Obama landed in Alaska last night to begin a 3-day trip though the 49th state, his first extensive visit there since entering the White House. The trip is fascinating, important, very historic — and highly hypocritical. Most of the visit is dedicated to highlighting the problem of climate change, and what better backdrop than Alaska, where glaciers are melting amid record high temperatures, while sea ice melts in the [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Fracking, Main, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Regulation, Response, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

In the last decade, two disasters — one completely man-made, the other a joint production of Mother Nature and avoidable human error — have rattled my native Gulf Coast. I’ve had deep personal involvement — both as an environmental attorney and as an ally to those who’ve crusaded for truth and justice — in the latter one, BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill, and I’ve written frequently about that issue on [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Commentary, Human Interest, Investigations, Main, Politics, Recovery Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

It’s funny how things work out sometimes. Consider the sensitive issue of offshore drilling for oil in the Gulf of Mexico. Five years ago, when the Deepwater Horizon disaster wreaked its havoc on the region, killing 11 workers and ultimately spewing between 4 and 5 million barrels of crude oil into the Gulf, some folks actually wondered if that was the end of offshore oil production. After all, the environmental [...]

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

For a long time, I’ve been writing about Louisiana’s so-called “Cancer Alley,” the seemingly endless line of oil refineries and chemical plants which — exploiting the state’s rich natural resources — line the Mississippi River banks from Baton Rouge all the way past New Orleans, towards the Gulf of Mexico. For decades, locals tended to view these unsightly industrial beacons, tangles of steel pipe and belching smokestacks that light the [...]

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Posted in Causes, Commentary, Human Interest, Important Articles, Main, Politics, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

Here we go on the political see-saw with President Obama. Just last week, it was a sharp move down, as the White House continued to knuckle under to Big Oil interests on the critical issue of offshore drilling as it signed off on the risky practice of offshore drilling in the Arctic while continuing to promote new oil exploration in the Atlantic and elsewhere. The administration’s pro-drilling moves are deeply [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Important Articles, Main, Politics, Regulation, Response, Safety Tagged , , , , , ,

President Obama has been having quite a summer. In fact, some political pundits are calling 2015 the most successful year of his presidency — his nuclear-weapons deal with Iran, congressional approval of his Asian trade deal, seeing his health-care plan ratified by the U.S. Supreme Court and pushing a sweeping overhaul of the criminal-justice system. In the seventh year of his presidency, Obama seems to have a stronger sense of [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Commentary, Fracking, Important Articles, Main, Politics, Regulation, Safety, Spill Damages Tagged , , , , , , ,

I’ve long predicted that California will be the place where the rubber hits the road for the fracking boom in America. The rewards in a resource-rich state are too great for Big Oil and Gas to ignore, but the risks — of wasting millions upon millions of gallons of water in a drought-stricken state, of causing earthquakes in a region criss-crossed by fault lines, of polluting the already smoggy air [...]

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Posted in Causes, Fracking, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Politics, Regulation, Research, Safety, Testing Tagged , , , , , , ,

Last week I wrote here that BP’s $54 billion payout for damages and restoration from the 2010 Gulf oil spill just wasn’t really enough — both because of the ongoing environmental damage from the Deepwater Horizon oil that continues to wash up on our beaches and because dollars trumped real accountability. You won’t hear that critique too much from public officials, who are too preoccupied with boastful press releases and [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Claims, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Politics, Restoration, Spill Damages Tagged , , , , , ,

There has been a wave of scientific research lately on fracking and its environmental risks. Some of that work has emerged from the governmental agencies that regulate unconventional drilling for oil and gas, including the recent, highly publicized report by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on the effects of fracking on drinking-water safety. The problem, of course, with government regulatory agencies is that they’re prone to political pressure — from [...]

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Posted in Fracking, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Politics, Regulation, Research, Safety Tagged , , , , , , ,

There’s been a lot of excitement about the U.S. Supreme Court as it wrapped up its 2014-15 session, and understandably so. On Friday, many people took to the streets in celebration when the High Court ruled that same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states. In fact, that ruling was held up as a sign that the nine justices were, as a whole, becoming more liberal — building upon two [...]

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Posted in Commentary, Important Articles, Legal, Main, Politics, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , , , , , ,