Coastal Wetlands at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge in Newburyport, MA. Ohoto: Kelly Fike/USFWS/flickr/CC
Environmental advocates and congressional Democrats are raising alarm after the U.S. Supreme Court this week agreed to hear arguments in two cases regarding bedrock regulations designed to protect the quality of the nation’s air and water.
The nine justices announced Monday that they plan to hear arguments in the case of an Idaho couple who were blocked from building a home on their land by the Clean Water Act. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Chantell and Michael Sackett’s land contained wetlands and the couple needed a federal permit to build. Continue reading →
Two centuries of burning fossil fuels has put more carbon dioxide, a powerful greenhouse gas, into the atmosphere than nature can remove. As that CO2 builds up, it traps excess heat near Earth’s surface, causing global warming. There is so much CO2 in the atmosphere now that most scenarios show ending emissions alone won’t be enough to stabilize the climate – humanity will also have to remove CO2 from the air.
The U.S. Department of Energy has a new goal to scale up direct air capture, a technology that uses chemical reactions to capture CO2 from air. While federal funding for carbon capture often draws criticism because some people see it as an excuse for fossil fuel use to continue, carbon removal in some form will likely still be necessary, IPCC reports show. Technology to remove carbon mechanically is in development and operating at a very small scale, in part because current methods are prohibitively expensive and energy intensive. But new techniques are being tested this year that could help lower the energy demand and cost.
We asked Arizona State University Professor Klaus Lackner, a pioneer in direct air capture and carbon storage, about the state of the technology and where it’s headed. Continue reading →
A pair of local advocacy groups in St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana, submitted a civil rights complaint to the U.S. EPA on Thursday, accusing two state agencies of failing to protect residents of the low-income and predominantly Black jurisdiction from toxic air.
According to the complaint—filed by Earthjustice and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law on behalf of Concerned Citizens of St. John (CCSJ) and the Sierra Club—the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ) and the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH) have violated Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits entities receiving federal financial assistance from engaging in activities that subject individuals to discrimination on the basis of race, color, or national origin. Continue reading →
Sheriff’s deputies and police make arrests after their mobile field force (MFF) retook the occupied Enbridge Line 3 Two Inlets pumping station.. Photo: Unicorn Riot
With Canadian oil giant Enbridge pouring more than $4 million into a fund that was used by the law enforcement agencies which have arrested hundreds of people for protesting the company’s thousand-mile-long tar sands pipeline, the prosecutor who is bringing charges against the environmental defenders believed he was also entitled to benefit from the fund, according to an independent investigation.
The Center for Protest Law and Litigation (CPLL) revealed Thursday that Jonathan Frieden, the lead prosecutor seeking to jail hundreds of opponents to the Line 3 pipeline, sought more than $12,000 last July from the so-called Line 3 Public Safety Escrow Trust, which the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) ordered Enbridge to pay into as a condition of the pipeline’s construction. Continue reading →
When many people think of New Year’s resolutions, they brainstorm ways to improve themselves for the year ahead. What if we expanded those aspirations to include resolutions that benefit our communities, society and the planet, too?
It might not be a typical approach, but it can broaden your horizons to show ways you can also be of service to others.
New federal disclosures reveal that major corporations poured donations into West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin’s political action committee in the weeks leading up to his pivotal announcement Sunday that he would oppose the Build Back Better Act, a stance that progressives argue is motivated by the senator’s deference to special interests.
CNBCreported late Tuesday that Federal Election Commission (FEC) filings show that donors to Manchin’s Country Roads PAC raked in 17 contributions from corporations in October and 19 in November as he pared back and repeatedly threatened to tank Democrats’ $1.75 trillion social spending and climate legislation. Continue reading →
The political consequences of hunger are profound and unpredictable but could be the spark that lights a powder keg of anger and resentment that would make the 2020 Black Lives Matter protests look tame by comparison.
Soldiers from the 1177th Transportation Company support warehouse and distribution operations at the Atlanta Community Food Bank as a part of the Georgia National Guard COVID-19 response force, April 2020. Photo: Georgia National Guard/Wikimedia Commons/CC
Already dealing with the economic fallout from a protracted pandemic, the rapidly rising prices of food and other key commodities have many fearing that unprecedented political and social instability could be just around the corner next year.
With the clock ticking on student loan and rent debts, the price of a standard cart of food has jumped 6.4% in the past 12 months, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, with the cost of eating out in a restaurant similarly spiking, by 5.8% since November 2020. Continue reading →
One of the messages displayed onto the USS Balao Conning Tower outside of the U.S. Navy Museum in Washington D.C. on December 12, 2021. (Photo: CodePink)
Activists with CodePink, in solidarity with Hawaii-based water protectors, on Friday projected images on a submarine tower outside the Navy museum in Washington, D.C., calling for a shutdown of a military fuel storage facility associated with contamination of Oahu drinking water.
Messages displayed on the USS Balao Conning Tower included “Shut down Red Hill tanks,” “Demilitarize Hawaii,” and “Navy is poison.” Continue reading →
One critic called the proposal, which describes green investment policies as a form of “energy discrimination,” a “desperate attempt by fossil fuel companies and their lobbyists to maintain their profits.”
Marathon Petroleum’s Los Angeles Refinery in Carson, California, Photo: Marathon Petroleum
Progressives are sounding the alarm about a recently launched right-wing campaign that seeks to preempt green investment policies throughout the United States by portraying the financial sector’s potential turn toward clean energy as discriminatory—and introducing legislation that would punish banks and asset managers for divesting from fossil fuels.
South African activists on Monday vowed to keep fighting after a court ruling allowing fossil fuel giant Shell to proceed with massive underwater explosions off the ecologically sensitive Wild Coast, a move environmentalists say would cause “irreparable harm” to marine life.
“We won’t stop fighting,” tweeted Greenpeace Africa following Sunday’s nationwide protests. “Shell must immediately stop oil and gas exploration off S.A.’s Wild Coast.” Continue reading →