Texas fracking verdict puts industry on notice about toxic air emissions

By David Hasemyer

A nearly $3 million jury verdict against a Texas oil and gas company highlights regulatory failures and health risks linked to fracking.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Campaign Legal Center":

"… lay the money game,” said Meredith McGehee, policy director for the Campaign Legal Center, a Washington D.C.-based nonprofit that tracks money in politics and monit …"

Residents of polluted U.S. communities fear planned cuts in EPA enforcement

By Ronnie Greene and Chris Hamby

The EPA's "Next Generation Compliance" plan would lead to fewer inspections of, and enforcement actions against, polluters.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Center for Public Integrity":

"… wide over the next five years. Those cutbacks — continuing a trend, the Center for Public Integrity found, that began in 2006 and accelerated last year — mean the EPA will …"

"… ution triggered by the utility’s coal ash ponds. Beginning in 2009, the Center for Public Integrity exposed the environmental perils of coal ash ponds. Earlier this …"

Offshore shells helped tangle Chinese giant in Italian fraud scandal

Court records and secret offshore files shine light on Chinese green energy firm’s links to Italian criminal probe.

EPA to regulate coal ash amid court settlement

By Kristen Lombardi

Facing a legal challenge from Earthjustice and others, the EPA agrees to set a plan by year's end to regulate coal ash.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Tennessee":

"… on for decades. After a disastrous December 2008 coal-ash spill in eastern Tennessee, the EPA pledged to act. Two years later, in June 2010, the agency announc …"

EPA under the gun to regulate coal ash

By Kristen Lombardi

Environmental Protection Agency faces new pressure to regulate disposal of the toxic waste for the first time after a judge's decision.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Earth":

"… lows an earlier judicial order, issued Sept. 30, partly ruling in favor of Earthjustice and 10 other groups in a lawsuit challenging the EPA over its slow …"

"… forward a schedule for making a final decision,’” said Lisa Evans, the Earthjustice lawyer handling the suit, explaining that the judge does not addres …"

Clean Air case yields rare criminal convictions in New York

By Sam Pearson

A NY coke plant and its environmental manager, convicted of felony Clean Air violations, await sentencing — as residents push for relief.

Excerpts from this story referencing "DOJ":

"… irectly into the air, in violation of the TCC’s operating permit,” the DOJ said. Attorneys for Kamholz and Tonawanda Coke did not respond to intervi …"

Award-winning Center series looks at toxic, sometimes hidden chemical releases

By Bill Buzenberg

In case you missed it over the weekend, the Center environment team published another piece in its Poisoned Places series.

Earth Day 2013

A look at some of the Center's award-winning environmental reporting.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Lisa Jackson":

"… 00 premature deaths by 2020. In a speech last year, then-EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson said the Clean Water Act “has kept tens of billions of pounds of sewage, …"

Meteor strikes on lobbyists' minds

By Dave Levinthal

Special interests have prodded U.S. government to fund tracking of killer space rocks.

Excerpts from this story referencing "United States":

"… of Potentially Hazardous Near-Earth Object Preparedness" and "prepare the United States for readiness to avoid and to mitigate collisions with potentially hazardo …"

"… records show. The bill also "expresses the sense of the Congress that the United States should seek to obtain commitments for cooperation from other nations with …"

EPA's 'Brownfields' program coming up short

By Gwyneth Shaw, Beverly Ford and Evelyn Larrubia

Thousands of polluted properties remain despite $1.5 billion in federal assistance

Excerpts from this story referencing "federal government":

"… use the EPA’s brownfields program merely hands out grants and loans. The federal government has not established standards for Brownfields cleanups. The EPA does not e …"

"… eveloper-driven] model to deal with all the brownfields would bankrupt the federal government,” he said.Hollander said communities would be better served if federal m …"

About the 'Mystery in the Fields' project

By Ronnie Greene

About the Project: Mystery in the Fields

Excerpts from this story referencing "Christine Montgomery":

"… porter: Sasha ChavkinPhotographer/videographer: Anna Barry-JesterWeb team: Christine Montgomery, Paul Williams, Sarah WhitmireFact-checking: Peter Newbatt SmithProject Ed …"

IG: Afghan fuel records go missing

By Aaron Mehta

New IG report warns of missing data on $475 million in oil

Clean Water Case targets wetlands protection in North Carolina

By Alice Su

As part of a U.S. effort to protect wetlands, a federal court has ordered $1 million in preservation projects in North Carolina.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Earth":

"… she wrote, and its headwaters hold “fish that are found nowhere else on Earth.”The Freedman case is part of the Environmental Protection Agency’s 20 …"

Bush EPA chief urges action on chemical hazards

By Alice Su

Former EPA administrator says agency should use Clean Air Act to impose stricter safety standards on chemical facilities.

Excerpts from this story referencing "chemical plants":

"… trator, Whitman was prepared to unveil a proposal requiring chemical plants to use safer processes in the months after 9/11. Under the Clean Air Act …"

"… ir Act … ” The letter quotes then-Sen. Obama’s own 2006 reference to chemical plants as “stationary weapons of mass destruction spread all across the country …"

Corruption still threatens U.S. efforts in Afghanistan

By Aaron Mehta

As U.S. heads for the door in Afghanistan, persistent corruption threatens to undermine development efforts there.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction":

"… $100 billion the U.S. has spent on reconstruction efforts since 2002. U.S. Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction Steven Trent warned that deep corruption persists in the country, and can …"

Former Bush EPA chief sounds alarm on chemical security

By Jim Morris

Former EPA chief Whitman urges administrator Jackson to seal security gaps 'before a tragedy of historic proportions occurs.'

Excerpts from this story referencing "chemical industry":

"… consider using safer technologies and enhance security. “We cannot allow chemical industry lobbyists to dictate the terms of this debate,” Obama said. “We cannot …"

"… 2009.)“More than 10 years have passed since the attacks of 9/11, and the chemical industry still remains vulnerable to terrorist attacks,” said Bostock, now a spee …"

"… In a written statement to the Center, the American Chemistry Council, the chemical industry’s main trade association, said there is no need for the EPA to invoke th …"

IMPACT: Environmental groups sue EPA over lack of coal ash regulation

By Emma Schwartz

Groups sue EPA over lack of coal ash regulation.

Excerpts from this story referencing "lawyer":

"… re delaying much needed health protections from coal ash,” Lisa Evans, a lawyer with Earthjustice, a nonprofit environmental law firm, said in a  …"

Illegal ocean dumping persists despite DOJ crackdown

By Ronnie Greene

Federal prosecutors target dumping on the high seas, which taints global waterways with oil and other contaminants.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Maine":

"… cted. The company, OSG, pleaded guilty for violations in Boston; Portland, Maine; Los Angeles; San Francisco; Wilmington, N.C.; and Beaumont, Texas, and wa …"

Q&A: Former Bush official touts ‘market-based’ air toxics regulation

By Corbin Hiar

Q&A with the man some call "the next EPA administrator" if Romney wins the White House.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Mitt Romney":

"… have been avoided if we hadn’t suffered through all this litigation. …"

EPA releases long-awaited power plant air toxics rule

By Corbin Hiar

The EPA releases details of a landmark rule to cut air emissions of mercury and other toxics from coal- and oil-fired power plants.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Jackson":

"… n Metre, who authored the study. …"

"… tect millions of families and, especially, children from air pollution,” Jackson said at the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington on Wednesda …"

"… llion in costs associated with the rule.The rule is a personal victory for Jackson, who told the audience of her children’s struggles with asthma. “Fifte …"

"… n jobs and 8,000 long-term utility jobs for American workers, the EPA said.Jackson also used the event to bolster the Obama administration’s clean air cred …"

Mercury falling: Groundbreaking power plant emissions rule imminent

By Corbin Hiar

The EPA is poised to issue a new regulation restricting toxic power plant emissions

Excerpts from this story referencing "Lisa Jackson":

"… would more than compensate for the $3 to $4 a month that EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson said the regulation will cost homeowners when it’s fully implemented. Co …"

EPA allowed unsafe handling of asbestos, IG says

By Jim Morris and Chris Hamby

Use of 'unapproved methods' by EPA put workers and public at risk of asbestos exposure, IG says

Excerpts from this story referencing "Lisa Jackson":

"… eneral has concluded.In an “early warning report” to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson that speaks to the urgency of the matter, Inspector General Arthur A. Elki …"

Environmental injustice: EPA neglects discrimination claims from polluted communities

By Corbin Hiar

Agency’s dysfunctional Office of Civil Rights sits on complaints for years

Excerpts from this story referencing "U.S. Census Bureau":

"… her life, is about 70 percent Hispanic, according to the 2010 census. The U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent American Community Survey found that about a quarter of al …"

GOP assault on regulations could undermine air pollution protections

By Chris Hamby

House Republicans are expected to approve a bill that would allow Congress to block major regulations.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environmental Protection Agency":

"… k assigned by Congress in the 1990 amendments to the Clean Air Act — the Environmental Protection Agency has been “grossly delinquent,” a federal judge wrote in 2006.Some of t …"

Hotter, drier, meaner: Trends point to a planet increasingly hostile to agriculture

By Douglas Fischer

A host of data point to one conclusion: Our increasingly hotter, drier planet is going to be a tough place to farm

IMPACT: Day after story on weak enforcement, a state cracks down on polluter

By Chris Hamby

The day after an article highlighted weak enforcement, Iowa's attorney general takes on a source of toxic emissions.

Excerpts from this story referencing "attorney general":

"… the attorney general on Thursday accused the company of breaking. …"

"… bject to a specific rule requiring tighter control of toxic emissions, the attorney general alleges. The company eventually asked regulators if the rule applied and, …"

"… office, said, “These are significant violations.” In the petition, the attorney general asks the court to fine GPC up to $10,000 per violation per day and to prev …"

"… C agreed not to violate certain air pollution rules — the same rules the attorney general on Thursday accused the company of breaking. …"

Despite lone inspector’s efforts, persistent haze envelops Iowa town

By Chris Hamby

A polluter seemed to comply with the Clean Air Act while exposing citizens to toxics. An inspector tried for years to do something about it.

Why Americans still breathe known hazards decades after ‘clean air’ law

By Jim Morris and Corbin Hiar

Air toxics crackdown stymied by politics, industry resistance and ‘hopelessly irrational’ EPA

Excerpts from this story referencing "U.S. Court of Appeals":

"… ast 15 years. Ten of those cases made their way to a final decision in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, and Earthjustice prevailed in nine of them. In all n …"

U.S. deportees to Haiti, jailed without cause, face severe health risks

By Jacob Kushner

U.S. deportees to Haiti face incarceration, severe health risks

Few criminal cases target big air polluters

By Chris Hamby and Ronnie Greene

Prosecution level at its lowest among environmental cases

Excerpts from this story referencing "Texas":

"… from two massive, uncovered tanks at its refinery on the southern cusp of Texas.It seemed a major victory for the federal government in its quest to punis …"