News Round-Up: May 24, 2012


Today’s Essential Reads


Vermont Bans Fracking, Citing Injury Concerns

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin has signed into law the nation’s first statewide ban against fracking, citing concerns the oil- and gas-extraction practice could hurt the environment and public health.

Ohio Taking Steps to Toughen Drilling Rules

Once a piece of legislation moving through the Ohio General Assembly is enacted, the state will have the most-stringent oil-and-gas well construction regulations in the country, according to a spokesman for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

State of Wyoming Proposes Cisterns for Pavillion Residents

The state of Wyoming will hear out Pavillion residents’ opinions later this month on whether to establish a series of water cisterns for households whose groundwater has allegedly been contaminated from hydraulic fracturing.

NIOSH Sounds Alarm on Fracking Silica Exposures

Crystalline silica exposure among workers should be evaluated at all U.S. hydraulic fracturing sites and effective controls should be implemented if necessary, four NIOSH employees recommend in a new report posted on the agency’s Science Blog. Their report sets off alarm bells because the measured levels of respirable silica are so high and fracking is so prevalent across large areas of the country.


The U.S. Practices Oil Tolerance

I just read, “How Brazil is Making an Example of Chevron” in Bloomberg Businessweek. Compared to the BP Oil spill in the Gulf, which spewed 50 million barrels of oil wreaking havoc on the environment, Chevron reacted quickly to an oil spill mitigating environmental damage. The spill was contained at just 2,400 barrels. That is .0048 percent of the BP spill. An expert in deep sea drilling leads Chevron Brazil, and did everything “right.”

New and Frozen Frontier Awaits Offshore Oil Drilling

Shortly before Thanksgiving in 2010, the leaders of the commission President Obama had appointed to investigate the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico sat down in the Oval Office to brief him.

Gulf Coast Fishermen Fear Effects of Oil Spill May Be Far From Over


Fire Marshal: BP Tanker Driver David Cowles at Fault

The State Fire Marshal’s Office says the man who drove the tanker delivering fuel when a BP station exploded in August demonstrated culpable negligence by leaving the tanker unattended while it was off-loading fuel.


Fukushima Radiation Higher Than First Estimated

The radiation released in the first days of the Fukushima nuclear disaster was almost 2-1/2 times the amount first estimated by Japanese safety regulators, the operator of the crippled plant said in a report released on Thursday.

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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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