News Round-Up: June 29, 2011


Today’s essential reads.


Natural Gas Drillers’ Group Spent $910K Lobbying

The main natural gas drillers’ trade group spent $910,000 lobbying in the first quarter on drilling regulations and on plans for clean energy mandates, according to a disclosure report.

Frack Off and Dinosaur: The Heart-Warming Tale of Talisman Terry

Kids across America have some tough choices to make this summer, like which Crayola crayon should be used to depict benzene, or diesel fuel, or any of the 29 known human carcinogens used by the natural gas industry in the hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, process.

EPA Chief Promises Action On Air Pollution From Gas Drilling

Environmental Protection Agency head Lisa Jackson said Tuesday her agency is working on air quality regulations for areas impacted by natural gas production and hydraulic fracturing.


Sierra Club Can’t Join U.S. to Sue BP Over Spill, Judge Says

The Sierra Club lost its bid to join the U.S. government’s civil lawsuit against BP Plc (BP/) seeking billions of dollars for violations of pollution laws and damage to natural resources during the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

BP Exerts Too Much Influence Over Oil Spill Cleanup, Louisiana Official Tells Senators

BP is asserting too much control over efforts to alleviate environmental damage from last year’s oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and it’s time for Congress to transfer authority directly to government officials, a key Jindal administration official told senators in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday.

Loren Steffy Spills the Beans on BP’s Gulf Disaster

It goes by many names: the Macondo blowout; the Deepwater Horizon spill; the Gulf of Mexico disaster. But it takes only two letters to explain why it happened: BP.

You Can Comment On Restoration Project

The $420 million project was designed to restore 2,066 acres of beach, dune and marsh on Shell Island in Plaquemines Parish and the Caminada headland, which stretches from Belle Pass west of Fourchon Beach to Caminada Pass at Grand Isle, said Fay Lachney, a senior plan formulator with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Help Slow Down Drilling in the Arctic Ocean {TAKE ACTION}

The Wilderness Society has a good petition to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar right now on drilling in the Arctic. As it notes, Shell Oil Co. currently has plans to drill up to 10 exploratory wells in the Arctic Ocean over the next 2 years. Not cool.


Nuclear Plants and Disasters: NRC Inspection Results

After the earthquake and tsunami crippled the Fukushima Daiichi plant in Japan, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission ordered an inspection of U.S. plants to check their preparedness for a catastrophic natural disaster or terrorist attack. Inspectors found problems at 60 of the 65 plants. Excerpts from the inspection reports are below.

On Eve of Independence Day, Environmental Health Trust Calls for the American “Right to Know” About Cell Phone Radiation

Local legislators from coast to coast are taking the lead to ensure that in addition to the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, Americans also have the right to know about cell phone radiation—and that they can easily learn safer ways to use these ubiquitous devices in their homes and workplaces.


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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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