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We Shouldn’t be Moving on From West Virginia’s Chemical Spill – February 3, 2014

The US has grown a vast and complex regulatory and financial support system for cheap, dirty energy. This isn't over

Authorities in West Virginia declared the water of 300,000 residents affected by last month's chemical spill safe to drink on 14 January, just five days after the incident. Since then, a few things have happened. Stop me if you've heard them before (but I doubt you have).

photonamePhoto courtesy West Virginia National Guard Public AffairsA West Virginia National Guard official draws a water sample in Kanawha Valley to determine
levels of contamination remaining in local water supply.

1. On 15 January, the Centers for Disease Control and the state issued a statement advising pregnant women to ignore the state's OK.

2. On 17… more

by: The Guardian

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Great Barrier Reef Authority Approves Dredging and Dumping to Expand Port – January 31, 2014

Australian marine park authority grants approval with strict conditions in decision met with derision by conservation groups

Great Barrier Reef, Australiaphoto by eutrophication&hypoxia, on FlickrThe reef: the spoil will be dumped about 24km from Abbot Point, the gateway to the world heritage-listed reef.

Three million cubic metres of sediment from dredging to expand a coal port will be dumped in the Great Barrier Reef marine park, after the park authority approved the move on Friday.

The spoil resulting from the Abbot Point port project is to be dumped 24km away at a location near Bowen in north Queensland.

The expansion, which hinged on the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's… more

by: The Guardian

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The Anti-Fracking Activist Barred from 312.5 Sq Miles of Pennsylvania – January 29, 2014

Court injunction brought in by oil and gas company makes even supermarkets off-limits for Vera Scroggins

Vera Scroggins, an outspoken opponent of fracking, is legally barred from the new county hospital. Also off-limits, unless Scroggins wants to risk fines and arrest, are the Chinese restaurant where she takes her grandchildren, the supermarkets and drug stores where she shops, the animal shelter where she adopted her Yorkshire terrier, bowling alley, recycling centre, golf club, and lake shore.

photo of a womanVera Scroggins has been banned from stepping foot onto any
land leased by Cabot Oil & Gas.

In total, 312.5 sq miles are no-go areas for Scroggins under a sweeping court order granted by a local judge that bars… more

by: The Guardian

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Shell’s Arctic drilling set back by US court ruling – January 23, 2014

Appeal court rules environmental risks have not been properly assessed by government in victory for green groups

Shell's hopes of drilling in Arctic waters off Alaska this summer faced a serious setback when a US federal court ruled that the full range of environmental risks had not been assessed by the government.

The 9th circuit court of appeals ruled in favour of green groups and Native Alaskan tribes which want Shell and its partners to call off their exploration programme for fear of an oil spill.

photo of a Shell oil neon signphoto by Karen Blaha, on… more

by: The Guardian

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Unchecked global warming ‘will double extreme El Niño weather events’ – January 20, 2014

World's most devastating global weather phenomenon will occur once a decade under current emissions scenario, says new report

The world's most devastating global weather phenomenon – the weather events associated with "El Niño" – will double in frequency to once a decade if global warming remains unchecked, according to what scientists believe is a major step forward in the understanding of such events.

Razed homes in CaliforniaPhoto by Bob Nichols/USDATorrential rains from the last extreme El Niño,created mudslides that destroyed homes along the Southern California coast on January 23, 1995.

The last extreme El Niño, in 1997-98, resulted in the hottest year on record, and the accompanying floods, cyclones, droughts and wildfires killed an estimated 23,000… more

by: The Guardian

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