Category Archives: Regulation

The fight over fracking has entered a new and alarming phase. After the initial shock of the boom in unconventional gas drilling, citizens in environmentally ravaged communities have been fighting back and claiming victories. But Big Oil and their colluders — the big money politicians — don’t put up with this sort of thing for very long. I learned this a generation ago, after I and other lawyers started winning [...]

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Posted in Fracking, Human Interest, Main, Politics, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , , ,

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 , , , , , , , ,

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 , , , , , , ,

When is the government ever going to get it right on regulating those mile-long oil trains that are criss-crossing America these days, thanks to the fracking boom? You know the ones — the trains that activists call “oil bombs” because so many of them have exploded in the last two years, causing mass fatalities in Quebec and scaring the bejesus out of citizens from North Dakota to Alabama and everywhere [...]

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Posted in Causes, Fracking, Important Articles, Main, Regulation, Safety Tagged , , , , ,

By this point, we’re all pretty familiar with the touchstones of the debate over fracking for oil and natural gas. During the early days of this unconventional drilling practice, the best argument in favor of fracking did have something going for it: Natural gas is a much cleaner burning power source than the fuels that it typically replaces, especially coal. Crude oil isn’t very clean, but at least there are [...]

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

From time to time, I’ve been honored to use this blog to highlight the work of a colleague and a tireless crusader for the environment, Bonny Schumaker. A former NASA engineer and a pilot, Bonny began to focus on the Gulf in the days immediately following the Deepwater Horizon disaster in 2010, and her aerial photography has brought the public information about not just the BP oil spill but about other [...]

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Posted in Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Regulation, Response Tagged , , , , , ,

The jury shouldn’t be out anymore on Corexit, the toxic dispersant that was massively dumped on the Gulf of Mexico after the BP oil spill in 2010. Many of us had concerns almost from Day One, with reports from clean-up workers of headaches and nausea. Despite our campaign to convince the government to prevent BP from dumping more toxins on top of its gigantic oil spill, the feds ultimately allowed [...]

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Posted in BP Spill, Illnesses, Important Articles, Investigations, Main, Ocean Life, Oil Spill Facts, Regulation, Response, Spill Damages 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 , , , , , , , , , ,

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 , , , , , ,

President Obama gave an extensive interview late last week to the Huffington Post, and to the president’s credit he brought up one of the most pressing problems facing America and mankind: Climate change. Increasingly, the Obama White House has taken a tougher stance on the issue, insisting that the administration is willing to act to curb the emissions of greenhouse gases that cause climate change — with or without support [...]

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