News Round-Up: July 27, 2011


Today’s Essential Reads


Knocking on Doors for a Clean Gulf Coast

A year after the BP oil-spill disaster, the Gulf Restoration Network is working to engage community members in thousands of one-on-one conversations. The group believes it’s one way to force the oil industry and the federal government to fix the damage done to the coast, and to invite individuals to do their parts to protecting the gulf’s natural resources.

The Promise and Perils of Natural Gas (VIDEO)

Vast reserves of natural gas unlocked by hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” could lower energy prices and reduce emissions across the United States. In fact, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) says the U.S. now may have enough natural gas resources to power the country for 110 years at 2009 consumption levels. But is the rush to release this new domestic energy source causing environmental and health problems?

Plain Township Residents Want Total Ban on Fracking

About 70 residents urged Plain trustees to declare a complete ban on horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing within the township.

Department Of Energy Tackles Fracking

Drilling is a sensitive term. In search of cleaner, cheaper options over a year after the BP oil spill, drilling for natural gas has raced to the forefront of a tenuous debate on green energy. While residents, environmentalists, corporations and local governments alike battle it out over how to establish a secure policy, a federal source is stepping in to provide some clarity.


Water-Oil Mixture Spills at BP Alaska Facility

A spill of about 200gallons of an oil-water mixture has prompted a temporaryshutdown of an oil-separation facility at the BP -operated Prudhoe Bay oil field, the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation reported on Monday.

Spill Victims: BP Fund An “Abject Failure” In Need of Oversight

Spill victims suing BP in the Deepwater Horizon case have filed a joint brief that claims the oil company is implementing a deeply flawed and deliberately confusing claims process, and is taking advantage of their economic situation by offering a one-time low-figure lump sum from its relief fund in exchange for their signature on releases promising no future claims.

AP IMPACT: Gulf Oil Industry-Gov’t Ties Persist

Ties between offshore oil and gas companies and the agency that regulates them are so pervasive that a year after new ethics rules took effect, as many as a third of inspectors in some Gulf of Mexico offices have been disqualified to avoid potential conflicts of interest.

BP Oil Spill Victims Weary of Wait

Robert Campo once believed the TV commercials by oil giant BP that promised to “make it right” and compensate those along the Gulf Coast who lost work during last year’s disastrous oil spill. More than a year after the spill ruined his oyster beds, however, Campo is still waiting for what he believes is full payment. The $20 billion fund created by BP to compensate those ruined by the spill has offered him less than one-third of what he requested. He’s still waiting to hear why.


The Obama administration canceled a $1.2 billion program to install nuclear material detectors at U.S. ports of entry, according to a statement from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

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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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