In new battleground over toxic reform, American Chemistry Council targets the states

By Ronnie Greene

The fight between industry and activists over regulation of toxic chemicals has shifted from Washington, D.C., to state venues.

Excerpts from this story referencing "American Chemistry Council":

"… What happened this year in Hartford shows how industry — fueled by the American Chemistry Council, a $100-million-a-year advocacy group glittered with Fortune 500 partners …"

"… alth. I don’t think we ever got the opportunity to see that.” For the American Chemistry Council, it was another in a string of victories in state houses from Maine to Was …"

"… re feeling threatened.” Big money, big connections — and results The American Chemistry Council has resources to push back, representing members such as Dow, Pr …"

"… uman health.” “The toxics resolution in particular was opposed by the American Chemistry Council,” Isenhart wrote the Center. When his resolution came out of Iowa’s C …"

From homemaker to hell-raiser in Love Canal

By Ronnie Greene

In 1978, Lois Gibbs was a mom with sick kids. Her fight prompted a president to free 900 families -- and paved the way for U.S. buyouts.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Erin Brockovich":

"… tive in a ploy to get the president’s attention. It worked. Long before Erin Brockovich became a movie, Gibbs helped secure an environmental victory of greater he …"

Louisiana sinkhole shatters calm, prompts buyouts on the bayou

By Ronnie Greene

A massive sinkhole roils a Louisiana bayou community — forcing many to seek buyouts, part of a U.S. trend of communities fighting to leave.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… wing and growing,” said Marylee Orr, executive director of the Louisiana Environmental Action Network, an advocacy organization based in Baton Rouge. “Myster …"

"… olitics,” said Lois Gibbs, executive director of Center for Health, Environment and Justice, a nonprofit based in Falls Church, Va., that works with commu …"

"… heavy metals from an abandoned former wood treating facility. By 1992, the Environmental Protection Agency said it excavated 225,000 cubic yards of con …"

"… around the sinkhole. So far, tests results by the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality show “no harmful Environmental releases,” the state said. Y …"

Inspector General to review EPA's 'Watch Lists'

By Jim Morris

The EPA’s inspector general has begun a review of the agency's use of internal watch lists of alleged chronic polluters nationwide.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Clean Air Act":

"… nce Assurance. The watch lists include allegedly chronic violators of the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, which …"

"… orts found that there were some 1,600 “high priority violators” of the Clean Air Act – nearly 400 of which were on the EPA’s watch list – and that federa …"

Obama administration signals higher gas royalties on public lands — and anticipated industry resistance

By Evan Bush

Big Oil underpays on royalties - and may resist attempts to collect more

Excerpts from this story referencing "Government Accountability Office":

"… we’re just soliciting comments and suggestions,” Etchart said.A June 2 Government Accountability Office report urged improvements in oversight, among many changes being debated s …"

Wealthy ‘farmers’ snag federal dollars

By Joe Eaton

Forget stimulus checks; wealthy farmers raked in more than $49 million in federal funds between 2003 and 2006 that they may have been inelig

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… ayments quality for them. Lisa Shames, director of Natural Resources and Environment at the GAO, said her office does not have the authorization to release nam …"

New air monitor planned for heavily fracked South Texas county

By Lisa Song and David Hasemyer

After a Center and InsideClimate News investigation, Texas regulators say they'll put an air monitor in the heart of the Eagle Ford Shale.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… air monitor in the heart of the Eagle Ford Shale. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) will install the monitor in Karnes County, the epice …"

"… ired air monitoring expert with more than 30 years' experience at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, said the new monitor is "a very general thing that's …"

Open pits offer cheap disposal for fracking sludge, but health worries mount

By David Hasemyer and Zahra Hirji

Air emissions from oil and gas waste are among the least regulated, least monitored and least understood components of the fracking boom.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Pollution":

"… ity. They formed a grassroots opposition group called Concerned About Pollution, or CAP, and held their first meeting under the gazebo in Nordheim’s Jub …"

Black lung disease surges to highs not seen since the '70s, research shows

By Chris Hamby

The likely culprit: a failure by coal mining companies to use readily available tools to control the dust that lodges in miners' lungs.

Excerpts from this story referencing "disease":

"… y reporter, now works for BuzzFeed. …"

"… le tools to control the dust that lodges in miners’ lungs and causes the disease. Each case of advanced black lung “is a tragedy, and represents a failu …"

"… epresents a failure among all those responsible for preventing this severe disease,” the researchers from the National Institute for Occupational Safety an …"

"… ;limited the amount of dust allowed in mines with the expectation that the disease would be virtually eradicated. This appeared to be happening: Prevalence d …"

National Academy of Sciences agrees with EPA that formaldehyde causes cancer

By David Heath

To the chemical industry's chagrin, a National Academy of Sciences review found that formaldehyde causes cancer.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… y Council, has persuaded members of Congress that the findings of both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Health and Human Services were w …"

"… pportunity to advance the science.” Richard Denison, a scientist at the Environmental Defense Fund, countered: “One can only hope that this sorry episode an …"

Center honored for revealing chemical industry influence over science

"Toxic Clout" investigation into chemical industry wins an award from the Society of Environmental Journalists.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… s questionable influence over science has won an award from the Society of Environmental Journalists. The series won the Kevin Carmody Award for outstanding in- …"

"… he writers were David Heath, Ronnie Greene and Jim Morris. The Society of Environmental Journalists received 313 entries for seven categories of awards.  …"

"… , the Miami Herald and Chemical & Engineering News for beat reporting, Environmental Health Perspectives for feature reporting, National Geographic …"

EPA: No comment on fracking air pollution

By Jim Morris and Lisa Song

No one at the Environmental Protection Agency has been willing to talk on the record about air pollution associated with fracking in Texas.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environmental Protection Agency":

"… ’t doing much to curb the industry's air pollution, why isn’t the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency stepping in? The EPA, after all, is ultimately responsible for enforcing t …"

Families sick from fracking turn to scientists

By Lisa Song

A Pennsylvania nonprofit provides free health consultations to people who live near gas drilling sites and complain of health effects.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… r even decades for long-term studies to emerge, the Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project (SWPA-EHP) is using the best available science to help pe …"

"… igate the risks people face from drilling. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection — which oversees the oil and gas industry — has no ongoin …"

"… Pennsylvania medical society, the Pennsylvania health department, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. " …"

Energy influence in North Dakota is expanding — so what?

By Nicholas Kusnetz and Jared Bennett

A Q & A with reporter Nicholas Kusnetz about the oil and gas industries growing influence in North Dakota.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… ome national Environmental organizations are starting to get involved, the Environmental Defense Fund hired a local lobbyist who I actually interviewed because h …"

Even low doses of arsenic trigger cancer in mice, study finds

By David Heath

Study by the National Institutes of Health found levels of arsenic similar to what some people consume caused cancer in mice.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… rs in history. Extrapolating from those studies, scientists with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have tentatively concluded that arsenic is a serious p …"

"… pears to be safe,” Linda Birnbaum, director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Toxicology Program, said in a statement …"

How politics derailed EPA science on arsenic, endangering public health

By David Heath

A ban on arsenic-containing pesticides was lifted after a lawmaker disrupted a scientific assessment by the EPA.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environmental Protection Agency":

"… e, beer and wine. Under orders from a Republican-controlled Congress, the Environmental Protection Agency in 2001 established a new drinking-water standard to try to limit people …"

Leadership at Chemical Safety Board questioned amid investigation backlog

By Rosalind Adams

Evidence of ongoing management failures and a toxic work environment at the Chemical Safety Board was presented at a hearing Thursday.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Obama":

"… eadership by Chairman Rafael Moure-Eraso, appointed by President Obama in 2010. Former board member Beth Rosenberg resigned from her positi …"

EPA plan would slash climate-damaging carbon emissions from 1,000 existing power plants

The EPA on Monday proposed the first-ever limits on greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Washington":

"… four public hearings on the proposal, in Denver, Atlanta, Pittsburgh, and Washington, D.C. A final rule is expected by June 2015. …"

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 "hydraulic fracturing":

"… ;in a blog post for Earthworks, an environmental organization that opposes hydraulic fracturing, the process that has made it profitable to tap deeply buried shale deposi …"

Groups seek EPA action on toxic air emissions from fracking

By Jim Morris

Sixty-four environmental and community groups on Tuesday petitioned the EPA to clamp down on toxic air emissions from fracking operations.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… egulation, 64 Environmental and community groups on Tuesday petitioned the Environmental Protection Agency to clamp down on toxic air emissions from oil and gas …"

Energy Dept. confirms it's been on the wrong path since 2007

By Douglas Birch

A newly-released DOE study concludes the department can save billions by shelving a costly South Carolina nuclear fuel factory.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Lindsey Graham":

"… ’s Congressional delegation has long championed the project, led by Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. The United States and Russia first signed a deal to each dispose …"

Texas freezes agency's funding after air pollution data released

By Lisa Song

The Alamo Area Council of Governments had its funding frozen after releasing data linking oil and gas drilling to worsening air pollution.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… t of smog. If that happens, it could be subject to sanctions from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, including increased EPA oversight for new development …"

"…  Austin American-Statesman reported that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), which funded the study, had slashed AACOG’s air-qualit …"

"… ere was an ill intent” on Bella’s part. Craft is a toxicologist at the Environmental Defense Fund, a green group that often works with industry partners to r …"

"… o ask the state to restore $182,000 in grants that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is withholding from the San Antonio metropolitan region. The mon …"

Report offers grim predictions for South Texas air quality amid Eagle Ford oil boom

By Jim Morris, Lisa Song and David Hasemyer

State-funded study projects dramatic increase in emissions from oil and gas development by 2018.

Excerpts from this story referencing "gas and oil industry":

"… e Ford and found that the Texas regulatory system does more to protect the gas and oil industry than the public. The TCEQ has installed only five permanent air monitors i …"

Japan reaffirms its plan to produce plutonium

By Douglas Birch and Jake Adelstein

The Abe government’s new energy plan calls for completing the Rokkasho plutonium fuel factory despite U.S. concern it poses terrorism risks

Excerpts from this story referencing "Japanese government":

"… urn hundreds of pounds of plutonium to the United States for disposal, the Japanese government on April 11 formally endorsed the completion of a factory design …"

GAO report again finds black lung proposal supported by science

By Chris Hamby

A new government study supports reducing the dust limit workers encounter in mines; the industry is pushing back against stronger rules.

Excerpts from this story referencing "America":

"… n for that,” said Phil Smith, a spokesman for the United Mine Workers of America. At the heart of the rule are provisions cutting in half the amount of du …"

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 "Washington":

"… that you can’t really get if you’re sitting in an office in Dallas or Washington or Denver or some other EPA office, and somebody writes that down on a pie …"

ICIJ offshore project wins IRE award, two environmental projects recognized

The Center for Public Integrity and its ICIJ receive four reporting honors from Investigative Reporters & Editors, the IRE announced.

Air monitoring in fracking areas fails to detect spikes in toxic emissions, new study says

By Lisa Song and Jim Morris

A new study finds that common air monitoring methods are all but useless in capturing intense, short-term emissions from gas development.

Excerpts from this story referencing "hydraulic fracturing":

"… pressor stations and pipelines during every step of the process: drilling, hydraulic fracturing, production, and processing. "Unfortunately, the states don't have much i …"

"… t the health impacts of unconventional natural gas development, which uses hydraulic fracturing to extract tightly bound gas. In February, 190 experts from industry, gove …"

States target toxic chemicals as Washington fails to act

By Ronnie Greene

In state capitols from Maine to Oregon, environmental advocates are filing bills to identify and ban noxious chemicals.

Excerpts from this story referencing "head":

"… protect pregnant women and children from harmful chemicals, and where the head of the Department of Environmental Protection is a former lobbyist for the …"

"… e Conservation Voters. “It creates all the reason we’ve decided to go ahead on our own, because we cannot wait for TSCA reform.” …"

Tough new fracking rules in Colorado drawing keen attention in Texas, where boom rages on

By Zahra Hirji, Lisa Song and Jim Morris

Air pollution rules adopted last month in Colorado may have an impact on oil and gas drilling in Texas.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Environment":

"… tightening air standards. Several companies have approached the nonprofit Environmental Defense Fund and expressed interest in discussing whether Colorado’s r …"

"… tend we could have done it ourselves," he said. Luke Metzger, director of Environment Texas, a citizen advocacy group, also found hope in Colorado’s actions. …"

"… Hickenlooper’s office and the state’s Department of Public Health and Environment led the process. “I’d love to think we could have the support of the g …"

"… zene, a known carcinogen. The rules exceed regulations issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 2012, which won't fully be implemented until 2015. …"

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