News Round-Up: December 5, 2011


Today’s Essential Reads


New York’s Lifeblood Flows From Its Upstate Reservoirs

The man charged with protecting the water that 8 million New York City residents depend upon for their survival says approval to begin natural gas drilling upstate must wait until the safety of the city’s water tunnels can be absolutely guaranteed.

Fracking’s Effect On Roads Causes Concern

Ohio’s shale-drilling boom might beat a path to economic prosperity, but township trustees and county engineers across the state worry that it also will beat down their roads.

As Gas Riches Remake Plains, Lawmaker Shares in Bounty

Gas money is transforming vast stretches of Oklahoma. Here, 40 miles west of the state capital, crews work through the night drilling new wells deep into the earth, and a small army of laborers rips through just-planted fields of winter wheat to install miles of gas pipeline.

Actor Mark Ruffalo Embraces Anti-Fracking Role

Movie star Mark Ruffalo is embracing a role as a fervent opponent of natural gas driling and hydraulic fracturing in the Marcellus Shale, a huge, gas-rich geological formation that underlies much of the northeastern U.S., including the Catskills region of New York where Ruffalo and his family live.


Departing Regulator Hopes Offshore Reforms Stick

When Michael Bromwich took over the helm of the agency overseeing offshore drilling 17 months ago, oil was still gushing into the Gulf of Mexico and a handful of ethical lapses had shattered public confidence in the ability of federal regulators to police the industry.

Are We Really Ready to Drill in America’s Artic Ocean?

After last year’s BP Deepwater Horizon disaster, President Obama promised cleaner, safer energy development. Yet the administration is on the brink of approving industry plans to drill up to 10 exploratory oil wells in the extreme, remote, and fragile Arctic Ocean, beginning this summer. In addition, the federal government just released a draft offshore drilling plan that could open even more of America’s Arctic waters to oil and gas leasing over the next five years, even though 3.8 million acres already are under lease.

Fury, Up Close and Personal, at the Lingering Effects From the BP Oil Spill

“The Big Fix” is an enraged exposé of the crimes of Big Oil, specifically BP, which has been accused of negligence and of taking shortcuts that helped lead to the explosion of the Deepwater Horizonrig off the Louisiana coast in April 2010. Eleven workers on the platform died and nearly five million barrels of oil spilled into the Gulf of Mexico over the next five months, killing vast numbers of marine animals before much of it washed ashore, where it wrought incalculable damage.

Tougher Rules Hit Fishermen, Industry Hard

Travis Palladeno, a veteran charter fishing captain on Florida’s Gulf Coast, flips through his appointment book and bemoans the blank pages. Restrictions on some of the most popular — and tasty — sport fish are so strict right now, fewer people want to go out.


Contaminated Water Found Leaking At Japanese Nuclear Plant

Workers at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear facility have discovered a leak of 45 metric tons of radioactive water, operator Tokyo Electric Power Company said in a statement Monday.

More Radioactive Water Leaks at Japanese Plant

At least 45 tons of highly radioactive water have leaked from a purification facility at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station, and some of it may have reached the Pacific Ocean, the plant’s operator said Sunday.

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Stuart H. Smith is an attorney based in New Orleans fighting major oil companies and other polluters.
Cooper Law Firm

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