Friday, December 24, 2010

America's Deadly Coal Ash Dumps

Two Years After the Largest Toxic Spill in the Nation's History, Where's the Regulation on Deadly Coal Ash Dumps?

EPA identified 431 containment units for coal slurry and has labeled 49 of them "high hazard"—meaning they pose a risk to human health and the environment.

Full article;

Monday, November 1, 2010

Supreme Bullshit: The High Courts Stripping Away of the EPA

I was jus diddlin round on the net doing various research projects when I stumbled cros this old article about the Supreme Court and the EPA, and as I read it over it struck me how very similar the sound of it all was, relative to the current wild horse (and burro) situation with the BLM today. (My annotations in red.)

Supreme Court Limits the Endangered Species Act

WASHINGTON, DC, June 25, 2007 (ENS) - In a 5-4 decision today, the U.S. Supreme Court today limited the obligation of federal agencies under the Endangered Species Act to ensure that their actions do not jeopardize federally listed threatened or endangered species.

In two combined cases - EPA v. Defenders of Wildlife and National Association of Home Builders v. Defenders of Wildlife - the court reversed an appeals court decision that required the U.S. EPA to consider the protection of listed species before handing Clean Water Act permitting authority over to the states.

The Clean Water Act requires that the EPA transfer permitting powers to the states if nine criteria are met.

The Endangered Species Act, ESA, requires that a federal agency must consult with other relevant agencies to ensure its actions do not jeopardize the continued existence of any endangered species or threatened species.

The question resolved by the court ruling is whether the ESA consultation requirement is effectively a tenth criterion on which the transfer of Clean Water Act permitting power must be based. The majority concluded that it is not.

Delivering the majority opinion, Justice Samuel Alito wrote, "The transfer of permitting authority to state authorities - who will exercise that authority under continuing federal oversight to ensure compliance with relevant mandates of the Endangered Species Act and other federal environmental protection statutes - was proper. We therefore reverse the judgment of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit."

This is the case that "sped up" the "resource development" processes, as it did away with the necessity of compliance to certain provisions of the EPA, provisions that were meant to give PROTECTION OF THE ENVIRONMENT Considerations a top priority BEFORE any development action could be taken. In effect, what this ruling does is NULLIFY that provision of the EPA, allowing development to proceed without any environmental impact studies. Justice John Stevens saw the error in this ruling and expressed it in his DISSENTING Opinion;

"The Endangered Species Act (Think Wild Free-roaming Horse & Burro Act of 1971) works in harmony with other federal mandates and should not be trumped by other federal laws without the express direction of Congress." (Hello! Thank you Judge Stevens for being the wiser one and seeing through the BS in this case. If ever we do sue the BLM for their NULLIFICATION of the Wild Horse and Burro Act,....I hope the case will be heard by YOU!)

Rodger Schlickeisen, president of Defenders of Wildlife said, "Today�s decision, while unfortunate, should apply only to a very narrow category of actions by federal agencies - actions compelled by the terms of another federal law - and should not be read as a broad abrogation of the authority of the Endangered Species Act."

Expressing the view that the majority opinion, "ignores the clear intention of Congress when they enacted the Endangered Species Act," Schlickeisen said, "We are concerned that the Court�s decision, combined with the Bush administration�s clear history of undermining the effectiveness of the Endangered Species Act, could lead to additional extinctions of American wildlife - extinctions which the Act is intended to prevent."

National Association of Home Builders President Brian Catalde was pleased with the ruling.

"This decision recognizes that we must always maintain a balance when we look at environmental regulations. We can't say that the Endangered Species Act is an 'uber-statute' that should slow down regulatory decisions under the Clean Water Act even as we recognize that both laws concern issues that are vital to preserving this earth for the next generation."

"This decision also tells us that the U.S. Supreme Court is helping to preserve housing affordability by striking down efforts at unnecessary, duplicative regulation," he said.

"Forcing the EPA to issue discharge permits in Arizona, which an unfavorable Supreme Court decision would have required," said Catalde, "would have cost builders more time and money, making homes less affordable in affected areas."

In the case of one protected species in Arizona, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service estimated that Endangered Species Act consultations delayed the typical development by five to 18 months and, when added to the cost of onsite mitigation and project modifications, cost between $1.7 million and $2.7 million, said Catalde.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Oil Industry Looks to Forestry Folk for Advice on How to Deal w/ Enviros

John Spears

Business Reporter

Oil industry players have been sniffing around the landmark Boreal Forest Agreement between industry and environmental groups, says one of the agreement’s architects.

Avrim Lazar, who head the Forest Products Association of Canada, says he’s fielded inquiries from senior civil servants, executives and oil industry associations about how the forest industry got together with its one-time adversaries.

“They’re saying: What were you thinking? How did you do it? What’s working, what’s not working? What would your advice be?” Lazar said in an interview Thursday.

"It seems like very honest, good faith curiosity.”

The forest agreement was signed in May between the forest companies and a coalition of environmental groups who had fought the industry bitterly for decades, and boycotted their products.

Under the pact, the 21 member forest companies agreed to suspend new logging on 29 million hectares of forest. Environmental groups agreed to end their boycotts.

The signatories set themselves a three-year target to set up detailed, working agreements in areas such as developing more sustainable harvesting practices and protecting wildlife and water systems.

Oil and gas officials, while expressing interest, are skeptical that a similar process could work in their sector, says Lazar. “Who wouldn’t be? I was skeptical when I started.”

“All that being said, there are pieces of the model which are very importable,” Lazar said.
“A precondition of having a constructive conversation is acknowledging the legitimacy of each other’s public interest.”

That means environmentalists would have to stop calling oil sands extraction “an abomination that has to be stopped,” and acknowledge that the oil industry is going to operate in the sands.

“We’re not debating that. We’re debating how, and at what pace and under what conditions.”
The oil industry, for its part, must say: “We recognize that over time this degree of greenhouse gas intensity, this degree of effluent in the water, this disturbance of biodiversity, is not going to be acceptable. We know we have to be quite a bit better. It’s a question of how, and how fast.”

“Once you have those two, then you have something to talk about. You can go to problem-solving mode…It doesn’t become easy, but it becomes possible.”

Lazar says progress is continuing toward fleshing out the boreal forest agreement.

A panel on acceptable forest practices has been established, for example: Each of the three members was agreed to by both. The panel’s recommendations must be accepted in whole by both sides, unless there’s a fundamental disagreement.

A working group is pursuing protocols for protecting caribou habitat and migration routes.

But hurdles remain. The agreement was negotiated at a national level, but many areas lie within provincial jurisdiction. First nations groups were not part of the pact; their participation is now needed.

And vast cultural changes must take place. Forest industry managers, for example, were always rewarded for extracting every last scrap of fibre from a given area. That must change.

“It’s complicated,” says Lazar. “But over-all, we’re moving forward

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

James Jay Lee's Manifesto

The Discovery Channel MUST broadcast to the world their commitment to save the planet and to do the following IMMEDIATELY:

1. The Discovery Channel and it’s affiliate channels MUST have daily television programs at prime time slots based on Daniel Quinn’s “My Ishmael” pages 207-212 where solutions to save the planet would be done in the same way as the Industrial Revolution was done, by people building on each other’s inventive ideas. Focus must be given on how people can live WITHOUT giving birth to more filthy human children since those new additions continue pollution and are pollution. A game show format contest would be in order. Perhaps also forums of leading scientists who understand and agree with the Malthus-Darwin science and the problem of human overpopulation. Do both. Do all until something WORKS and the natural world starts improving and human civilization building STOPS and is reversed! MAKE IT INTERESTING SO PEOPLE WATCH AND APPLY SOLUTIONS!!!!

2. All programs on Discovery Health-TLC must stop encouraging the birth of any more parasitic human infants and the false heroics behind those actions. In those programs’ places, programs encouraging human sterilization and infertility must be pushed. All former pro-birth programs must now push in the direction of stopping human birth, not encouraging it.

3. All programs promoting War and the technology behind those must cease. There is no sense in advertising weapons of mass-destruction anymore. Instead, talk about ways to disassemble civilization and concentrate the message in finding SOLUTIONS to solving global military mechanized conflict. Again, solutions solutions instead of just repeating the same old wars with newer weapons. Also, keep out the fraudulent peace movements. They are liars and fakes and had no real intention of ending the wars. ALL OF THEM ARE FAKE! On one hand, they claim they want the wars to end, on the other, they are demanding the human population increase. World War II had 2 Billion humans and after that war, the people decided that tripling the population would assure peace. WTF??? STUPIDITY! MORE HUMANS EQUALS MORE WAR!

4. Civilization must be exposed for the filth it is. That, and all its disgusting religious-cultural roots and greed. Broadcast this message until the pollution in the planet is reversed and the human population goes down! This is your obligation. If you think it isn’t, then get hell off the planet! Breathe Oil! It is the moral obligation of everyone living otherwise what good are they??

5. Immigration: Programs must be developed to find solutions to stopping ALL immigration pollution and the anchor baby filth that follows that. Find solutions to stopping it. Call for people in the world to develop solutions to stop it completely and permanently. Find solutions FOR these countries so they stop sending their breeding populations to the US and the world to seek jobs and therefore breed more unwanted pollution babies. FIND SOLUTIONS FOR THEM TO STOP THEIR HUMAN GROWTH AND THE EXPORTATION OF THAT DISGUSTING FILTH! (The first world is feeding the population growth of the Third World and those human families are going to where the food is! They must stop procreating new humans looking for nonexistant jobs!)

6. Find solutions for Global Warming, Automotive pollution, International Trade, factory pollution, and the whole blasted human economy. Find ways so that people don’t build more housing pollution which destroys the environment to make way for more human filth! Find solutions so that people stop breeding as well as stopping using Oil in order to REVERSE Global warming and the destruction of the planet!

7. Develop shows that mention the Malthusian sciences about how food production leads to the overpopulation of the Human race. Talk about Evolution. Talk about Malthus and Darwin until it sinks into the stupid people’s brains until they get it!!

8. Saving the Planet means saving what’s left of the non-human Wildlife by decreasing the Human population. That means stopping the human race from breeding any more disgusting human babies! You’re the media, you can reach enough people. It’s your resposibility because you reach so many minds!!!

9. Develop shows that will correct and dismantle the dangerous US world economy. Find solutions for their disasterous Ponzi-Casino economy before they take the world to another nuclear war.

10. Stop all shows glorifying human birthing on all your channels and on TLC. Stop Future Weapons shows or replace the dialogue condemning the people behind these developments so that the shows become exposes rather than advertisements of Arms sales and development!

11. You’re also going to find solutions for unemployment and housing. All these unemployed people makes me think the US is headed toward more war.
Humans are the most destructive, filthy, pollutive creatures around and are wrecking what’s left of the planet with their false morals and breeding culture.

For every human born, ACRES of wildlife forests must be turned into farmland in order to feed that new addition over the course of 60 to 100 YEARS of that new human’s lifespan! THIS IS AT THE EXPENSE OF THE FOREST CREATURES!!!! All human procreation and farming must cease!

It is the responsiblity of everyone to preserve the planet they live on by not breeding any more children who will continue their filthy practices. Children represent FUTURE catastrophic pollution whereas their parents are current pollution. NO MORE BABIES! Population growth is a real crisis. Even one child born in the US will use 30 to a thousand times more resources than a Third World child. It’s like a couple are having 30 babies even though it’s just one! If the US goes in this direction maybe other countries will too!

Also, war must be halted. Not because it’s morally wrong, but because of the catastrophic environmental damage modern weapons cause to other creatures. FIND SOLUTIONS JUST LIKE THE BOOK SAYS! Humans are supposed to be inventive. INVENT, DAMN YOU!!

The world needs TV shows that DEVELOP solutions to the problems that humans are causing, not stupify the people into destroying the world. Not encouraging them to breed more environmentally harmful humans.

Saving the environment and the remaning species diversity of the planet is now your mindset. Nothing is more important than saving them. The Lions, Tigers, Giraffes, Elephants, Froggies, Turtles, Apes, Raccoons, Beetles, Ants, Sharks, Bears, and, of course, the Squirrels.

The humans? The planet does not need humans.

You MUST KNOW the human population is behind all the pollution and problems in the world, and YET you encourage the exact opposite instead of discouraging human growth and procreation. Surely you MUST ALREADY KNOW this!

I want Discovery Communications to broadcast on their channels to the world their new program lineup and I want proof they are doing so. I want the new shows started by asking the public for inventive solution ideas to save the planet and the remaining wildlife on it.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

All Things Being Relative, and E=Mc2,..We're Doomed (If We Dont Straightern Out and Fly Rite Soon)

I have heard it said that everything boils down to a mathematical equasion. Here is some mathmatition types that most certainly thought so;

And here are a few that let their unprovable mathematical hypothesis' drive him mad;

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Climate Change: Worse Than We Thought

Listen here as an Insider from the U.S. tells how humanity will end within 20 years if we dont start getting serious about changing the way we live;

You will not find this information on any main-stream news media, or even on the internet or UTube

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

EPA to Hold Public Meeting on Fracking / Binghampton, NY

In March 2010, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it will study the potential adverse impacts that hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” may have on drinking water.

As part of the study, the EPA is hosting four public information meetings on the proposed study. New York’s meeting is Thursday, August 12, at the Anderson Center at SUNY Binghamton. The public is encouraged to attend and submit comments. Click here to register;
Join us at the hearing as Katherine Nadeau, our water & natural resources program director, submits comments voicing concerns about the harmful effects of fracking.

If you can’t be in Binghamton on the 12th, click here to submit your own comments, be sure to erase any email addys in the "from" line and put in your own;!
The deadline for written comments is August 26.
WHAT: Public Hearing on the EPA’s proposed study of Fracking
WHERE: Osterhout Concert Theater in the Anderson Center for the Performing Arts, SUNY Binghamton.
WHEN: Morning Session: 8:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m.
Afternoon Session: 1:00- 5:00 p.m
Evening Session: 6:00 – 10:00 p.m.
MORE INFORMATION: Admission requires registration, even to just observe the hearing. A photo ID is required for speakers and perhaps for people in the audience as well. A rally (more details to come) is also being planned.

Click here to find out more about the EPA’s study on fracking;

Sunday, August 8, 2010


A ProMED-mail post

ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases

[1] Date: 3 Aug 2010
Source: The Times, London, pp.6-7 News [edited]
[subscription required]

Some statistics from chart shown at URL above:
105 days since disaster
632 miles of coastline currently affected
57 539 square miles closed to fishing
3257 dead birds
1823 dead turtles (including 700 Kemp's Ridley turtle, endangered
species, rarest and smallest sea turtle -- see photo link at end)
56 dead mammals [dolphins]
5300 response vessels
30 200 personnel in cleanup

Bob Thomas, biologist and director, Center for Environmental
Communication at Loyola University: "[I]t's more important what's
happening at the bottom of the food chain among the plankton, [fish]
larvae and eggs, because that's the future."

Steve Murawski, chief scientist for fisheries at NOAA (National
Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration): "Testing after Hurricane
Katrina which caused millions of gallons of pollutants to flood
coastal fishing grounds, found that oyster beds had fully recovered
within 7 months." He also said it was possible that the fishing ban
had more than compensated for the fish and mammals killed by the oil.

Communicated by:

[2] Date 2 Aug 2010
Source: "The Ongoing Administration-Wide Response to the Deepwater BP
Oil Spill Restore the Gulf" [edited]

Flow Rate Technical Group reports that the well initially was dumping
62 000 barrels of oil per day after the spill and that it dwindled to
53 000 barrels when it was capped as the well was depleted. This
means that approximately 4 million barrels were released into the
Gulf [net after 0.8 million were captured by BP tankers - Mod.JW].

US Environmental Protection Agency releases a study of 8 dispersants
which concludes that Corexit 9500 "is generally no more or less toxic
than mixtures with the other available alternatives" and that
"dispersant-oil mixtures are generally no more toxic to the aquatic
test species than oil alone."

Communicated by:

[Article [1] gives a tally of wildlife killed by the oil slick, which
is possibly only the tip of the iceberg since there was no systematic
survey and many corpses probably sank without a trace. But it also
gives some encouraging news about the probable swift recovery of fish
and oysters -- providing consumers do not shun seafood of Gulf Coast
origin through misguided fears that it may not be fit for human consumption.

The BP oil spill ranks as the 2nd-worst in world history, behind the
Kuwaiti oil fires in 1991, which released as much as 336 million
gallons [8 million barrels at 42 US gallons crude per barrel] into
the Persian Gulf. One has to wonder how long it took for the sea life
there to recover -- does anyone have any data?

Photo of Kemp's Ridley Sea Turtle (_Lepidochelys
kempii_): - Mod.JW]

[see also:
Oil contamination, wildlife - USA: (Gulf Coast, MI) cleanup 20100731.2575]

ProMED-mail makes every effort to verify the reports that
are posted, but the accuracy and completeness of the
information, and of any statements or opinions based
thereon, are not guaranteed. The reader assumes all risks in
using information posted or archived by ProMED-mail. ISID
and its associated service providers shall not be held
responsible for errors or omissions or held liable for any
damages incurred as a result of use or reliance upon posted
or archived material.
Donate to ProMED-mail. Details available at:

Visit ProMED-mail's web site at .
Send all items for posting to: (NOT to
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For assistance from a human being, send mail to:

Saturday, August 7, 2010

BP to Blame for Reported Massive Fish & Ocean Life Die-Off?

A ProMED-mail post

ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases

Date: 6 Aug 2010
Source: [edited]

Another fish kill fuels debate over what's causing wildlife deaths
In all her years walking the Pass Christian beach, [a resident] said
Thursday [5 Aug 2010] morning was different. "I've really never seen
this many seagulls. I walked this beach for about 5 years and it's
really phenomenal. It's beautiful to see, but it's unusual," said Alley.

It didn't take long to figure out what had attracted all the birds.
WLOX (Radio station for South Mississippi) saw massive dead fish on
the beach and in the water, along with crabs and sting rays.

Department of Marine Resource (DMR) officials said it was the 3rd
fish kill reported to them in recent months. DMR officials sent a
team out to take samples from a fish kill, but they said they already
had a good idea of what happened.

"When we see real warm water, which is what's happening, we have low
oxygen conditions," said Joe Jewel, DMR Assistant Director. "That's
what we're attributing to the fish kills that we're aware of right
now. Warm water, low oxygen, that's what's causing these fish kills."

Two commercial fishermen told WLOX they don't believe the heat is
enough to cause as many fish kills as we've been seeing in our area
lately. They say it's just not normal. Instead, they blame chemical
dispersants for robbing the water of oxygen.

Jewell said, "What is unusual is that we have the oil spill. We have
a lot of citizens that are concerned about the oil. They're concerned
about that relationship, but our scientists out there investigating
these fish kills and the DEQ has scientists that are out there."

"They're taking water samples and oxygen samples and what we can
determine right here at this point is that it's not related to the
oil," said Jewell.

DMR officials continued to stress that their tests show the seafood
is safe to eat and they will continue to run tests.

[Byline: Danielle Thomas]

Communicated by:
HealthMap Alerts via ProMED-mail

[It is unlikely at this point in time that the oil spill or the
dispersants had anything to do with the fish kill. It is much more
likely that there is red tide, or hot water causing the problem.
While it is difficult to believe that the water temperature of the
ocean can change, it does, and the waters of the Gulf of Mexico are
especially warm anyway. The Gulf region has been plagued this summer
with extremely high temperatures and the normally warm water is even
hotter than usual.

Hopefully the appropriate samples will get taken and disease will
either be ruled in or ruled out. - Mod.TG]

[see also:
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (CA) 20100805.2640
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA (02): (MN) catfish 20100804.2630
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (MN) catfish 20100731.2573
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (NC) 20100728.2532
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (PA, ID) corr. 20100718.2410
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (PA, ID) corr. 20100718.2409
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA (WA) natural causes 20100718.2408
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (HI) puffer fish 20100716.2384
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (PA, ID) 20100716.2373
Undiagnosed fish die-off - USA: (MI) RFI 20100618.2056
Undiagnosed fish die-off - USA (02): (WV, OH, PA) olumnaris 20100610.1946
Undiagnosed fish die-off - USA: (WV, OH, PA) 20100601.1827
Undiagnosed fish die-off - USA: (NJ) koi herpesvirus susp. 20100528.1773
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (NY), viral hem. septicemia
susp. 20100519.1649]

ProMED-mail makes every effort to verify the reports that
are posted, but the accuracy and completeness of the
information, and of any statements or opinions based
thereon, are not guaranteed. The reader assumes all risks in
using information posted or archived by ProMED-mail. ISID
and its associated service providers shall not be held
responsible for errors or omissions or held liable for any
damages incurred as a result of use or reliance upon posted
or archived material.
Donate to ProMED-mail. Details available at:

Visit ProMED-mail's web site at .
Send all items for posting to: (NOT to
an individual moderator). If you do not give your full name
name and affiliation, it may not be posted. You may unsub-
scribe at .
For assistance from a human being, send mail to:

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Forbes: The Dangers of Fracking

Gas Industry Faces The Dangers Of Fracking
Christopher Helman, 09.28.09, 08:30 PM EDT

Politicians want to regulate the use of hydraulic fracturing in oil and gas wells. If the industry is smart, it will reform on its own.

HOUSTON -- Last week the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection shut down some operations of natural gas driller Cabot Oil & Gas after 8,000 gallons of toxic chemicals were spilled on the ground and into a creek in Susquehanna County.

Houston-based Cabot Oil & Gas ( COG - news - people ) says a hose ruptured during a process called hydraulic fracturing, a method used to break apart tight rock formations, allowing gas to escape, in which a million gallons of water mixed with sand and chemicals are shot down a well under immense pressure.

More than 80% of all wells drilled in the U.S. today use some kind of "fracking." And in the Marcellus basin, a shale rock formation that stretches across Pennsylvania, Ohio, New York and West Virginia, usage is more like 100%. Without the high flow rates created by the frack, the gas wouldn't be economical to go after. With the fracks, geologists figure the Marcellus has more than 50 trillion cubic feet of gas, enough to meet all of U.S. needs for two years.

But can hydraulic fracturing be trusted? This wasn't Cabot's first fracking fracas. Pennsylvania's DEP cited the company last February for contaminating wells used for drinking near drill sites.

In a 2007 case unrelated to Cabot, an Ohio house exploded from what state regulators determined was a buildup of methane bubbling up water pipes from wells polluted by drilling operations. Nineteen neighboring homes were evacuated. Last April at least 10 cows died in Louisiana after drinking fracking chemicals collected at a drilling site operated by Chesapeake Energy ( CHK - news - people ).

So what's in this stuff? Hydrochloric acid, solvents, surfactants, petroleum-based lubricants, corrosion inhibitors, microbe killers. Basically, it's a lot of the same carcinogenic chemicals found in household cleaners like Formula 409 and Drano.

Most of the fracking fluids are recovered from the gas wells, stored in ponds, transferred to tanks and trucked to processing plants. Most wells are drilled away from and much deeper than drinking water sources. But it only takes a few mishaps to destroy public faith.

It's vital that the oil and gas industry voluntarily implement tougher standards on the implementation of hydraulic fracturing, the recovery of chemicals from wells and the safeguards to avoid contaminating groundwater with chemicals of any kind. Or politicians will let the Environmental Protection Agency do it for them.

In June, the FRAC Act (Fracking Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals) was introduced simultaneously in the U.S. House and Senate. The act would call for hydro-fracking to be regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act. Thus fracking would be subject to EPA's permitting process governing the underground injection of other chemicals.

This doesn't sound outlandish except to the oil and gas lobby, which points out that the EPA has none of the bureaucracy in place to accept or evaluate applications for FRAC permits, let alone issue one. If the act were to pass, the effect would be at least a temporary halt to all well fracking nationwide. In a study paid for by the American Petroleum Institute, researchers at IHS Global Insight figured that if well fracturing were halted today, U.S. natural gas production would fall 45% by 2014 and 57% by 2018. A ban would likewise cost 2.9 million jobs and decimate the business of leading frack-jobbers like Schlumberger ( SLB - news - people ), Weatherford and Halliburton ( HAL - news - people ) (which was the primary contractor on Cabot's well).

But that's the worst-case scenario. Assuming there's a (slightly less efficient) frack method that can pass muster with the EPA, the result would be just 10% less gas by 2014. The added cost to the industry would not be too much to bear. The IHS Global study figures that complying with existing rules for underground injections would cost less than $100,000 per well in shale zones. That's not a lot. Analysts at Tudor, Pickering & Holt in Houston figure that Cabot's current drilling costs are running $3 million a well. At $4 per thousand cubic feet Cabot's recent wells can pay that back in six months.

Even the biggest users of hydrofracking, like Aubrey McClendon, chief executive of leading shale driller Chesapeake Energy, concede that the industry needs to "demystify" the practice. Speaking at a conference last week, McClendon, according to Reuters, said, "We need to disclose the chemicals that we are using and search for alternatives to the chemicals we are using."

Chesapeake is keen to tap northern reaches of the Marcellus in the Catskills and Finger Lakes regions of New York State. This area, however, serves as the source of drinking water for New York City. Because of its pristine quality, New York City has been able to forego building a $6 billion water filtration system. Last year, City Comptroller William Thompson said that if water pollution from fracking in the watershed necessitated filtration, it could mean 30% higher water rates for New Yorkers. State politicians' likely revenue source for such a system: a special tax on energy companies.

Last week, nine U.S. senators--a mix of Democrats and Republicans from gas-rich states--sent a letter to Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., who, with Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., is cobbling together the Senate's version of climate change legislation passed by the House earlier this year. In the letter, they reminded Boxer that natural gas, which has roughly half the carbon emissions of coal and 30% less than oil, should be treated as "a vital bridge fuel as we transition to the new energy economy." In exchange for legislation incentivizing expanded gas usage, the senators proposed funding an EPA study of the dangers of hydraulic fracturing to drinking water--the better to help Congress regulate it.

This move might sideline the FRAC Act for now, but should indicate to the likes of Halliburton that they'd better get to work on some new ways to get at all that gas.

How can anyone with a mind or conscience call this a "cleaner" form of energy production? Radioactive drinking water is no answer to current environmental dilemma created by companies only intereste....


Study: Receipts could be harmful to your health

"Cash-register receipts from many fast-food outlets, groceries,
pharmacies, big-box stores and U.S. post offices contain high levels
of the endocrine-disrupting chemical bisphenol A. A study released
late today by the Environmental Working Group reported that a
laboratory analysis it commissioned found the plastic component BPA on
40 percent of receipts from McDonald's, CVS, KFC, Whole Foods, Wal-
Mart, Safeway and other businesses. BPA is used to coat thermal paper,
which reacts with dye to form black print on receipts handled by
millions of Americans every day. In laboratory tests, the chemical has
been linked to a long list of serious health problems in animals.
Several environmental activists, including Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-
Calif., also have called for removing BPA from canned
goods." [editor's note: Umm ... excuse me, but isn't the main reason
for keeping receipts from purchases ... to use them to offset alleged
"tax liabilities" to the Gestap ... err, IRS? - SAT] (07/27/10)

Monday, August 2, 2010

EPA Releases Corexit Toxicity Test, Everything "A-OK"


EPA Press Office

Aug. 2, 2010

EPA Releases Second Phase of Toxicity Testing Data for Eight Oil Dispersants

WASHINGTON —The US Environmental Protection Agency today released peer reviewed results from the second phase of its independent toxicity testing on mixtures of eight oil dispersants with Louisiana Sweet Crude Oil. EPA conducted the tests as part of an effort to ensure that EPA decisions remain grounded in the best available science and data.

EPA’s results indicate that the eight dispersants tested have similar toxicities to one another when mixed with Louisiana Sweet Crude Oil. These results confirm that the dispersant used in response to the oil spill in the gulf, Corexit 9500A, when mixed with oil, is generally no more or less toxic than mixtures with the other available alternatives. The results also indicate that dispersant-oil mixtures are generally no more toxic to the aquatic test species than oil alone.

“EPA has committed to following the science at every stage of this response - that’s why we required BP to launch a rigorous dispersant monitoring program, why we directed BP to analyze potential alternatives and why EPA undertook this independent analysis of dispersant products,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. “We have said all along that the use of dispersant presents environmental tradeoffs, which is why we took steps to ensure other response efforts were prioritized above dispersant use and to dramatically cut dispersant use. Dispersant use virtually ended when the cap was placed on the well and its use dropped 72 percent from peak volumes following the joint EPA-U.S. Coast Guard directive to BP in late May.”

The standard acute toxicity tests were conducted on juvenile shrimp and small fish that are found in the gulf and are commonly used in toxicity testing. The tests were conducted on mixtures of Louisiana Sweet Crude Oil and eight different dispersant products found on the National Contingency Plan Product Schedule – Dispersit SPC 1000, Nokomis 3-F4, Nokomis 3-AA, ZI-400, SAFRON Gold, Sea Brat #4, Corexit 9500 A and JD 2000. The same eight dispersants were used during EPA’s first round of independent toxicity testing.

All eight dispersants were found to be less toxic than the dispersant-oil mixture to both test species. Louisiana Sweet Crude Oil was more toxic to mysid shrimp than the eight dispersants when tested alone. Oil alone had similar toxicity to mysid shrimp as the dispersant-oil mixtures, with exception of the mixture of Nokomis 3-AA and oil, which was found to be more toxic than oil.

While there has been virtually no dispersant use since the well was capped on July 15 – only 200 gallons total applied on July 19 – EPA’s environmental monitoring continues.

EPA required rigorous, ongoing monitoring as a condition of authorizing BP’s use of dispersant in the gulf. Dispersants prevent some oil from impacting sensitive areas along the gulf coast. EPA’s position has been that BP should use as little dispersant as necessary and, on May 23, Administrator Jackson and then-federal on-scene coordinator Rear Admiral Mary Landry directed BP to reduce dispersant usage by 75 percent from peak usage. EPA and the Coast Guard formalized that order in a directive to BP on May 26.

Before directing BP to ramp down dispersant use, EPA directed BP to analyze potential alternative dispersants for toxicity and effectiveness. BP reported to EPA that they were unable to find a dispersant that is less toxic than Corexit 9500, the product then in use. Following that, EPA began its own scientific testing of eight dispersant products.

EPA released the first round of data – on the dispersant products alone – on June 30. Today’s results represent the second and final stage of the independent acute toxicity tests.

View the toxicity test results:


Note: If a link above doesn't work, please copy and paste the URL into a browser.

View all news releases related to emergency response

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

No To Fracking in New York State

The New York State Legislature is coming back to the Capitol this week. Before they leave town again, it’s critical that our lawmakers pass legislation to protect New York and our precious waters from the dangers of industrial gas drilling.
We need state legislators to know that New Yorkers like you are watching and expect our lawmakers to guarantee us safe, clean water.

Call Senate Majority Leader Sampson at 866-403-3551 and Assembly Speaker Silver at 866-374-0409, listen or click here for your script.
Don’t have time to call? Click here to send an email.

It is vitally important that you call leaders in the Senate and Assembly today. Let Senate Majority Leader Sampson and Assembly Speaker Silver know that lawmakers CANNOT leave Albany without passing legislation to protect our waters from natural gas drilling.

The oil and gas industry is eager to drill in New York using a risky technique called hydraulic fracturing or “fracking.” Fracking has the potential to endanger our drinking water. This water-intensive and highly polluting technique has ruined drinking water in Pennsylvania, Colorado and Wyoming. We need to make sure that New York’s waters are safe before drilling begins here.

Legislation that would hold off on drilling permits until the Legislature has time to update our laws has been introduced in both houses. It’s the least our lawmakers can do to protect our drinking water. Call Majority Leader Sampson at 866-403-3551 and Speaker Silver at 866-374-0409 today and ask them to slow the rush to drill.

The Legislature needs to pass legislation to create a time-out on drilling, and they need to do it before they adjourn. Without their action, the Department of Environmental Conservation could begin issuing permits to drill by year’s end using a fatally flawed plan that is not protective of our communities or water.
Call our legislative leaders now and let them know that New York is watching.
Thank you.

Katherine Nadeau
Water & Natural Resources Program Director
Environmental Advocates of New York

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Rockin' the Big-Oil & Gas Boat (3rd. Ed.)

Edited from Original FB Posting:

GE developing next generation of solar "thin-film" panels
2 hours ago Friends Only · Comment ·LikeUnlike · View Feedback (1)Hide Feedback (1)

Already the Big-Oil and Gas Guys (The BO&GGs or BOGG's) are disparging this idea, making up all kinds of negative stuff about it, "we" dont get enough sun," ..."too much space," and "too expensive." Well this will be bad news for them. This industry is so far advanced that they are making them as thin as paper! They are working on a way to make it so you can print them up off of your computer at home! I"m not kidding, look it up. The idea is to put them in masss-production so that we can buy them on the cheap @ any WalMart$ someday. With this new innovation, the solar energy business is going to take off like a (pardon the pun) "rocket in the sun." Just want ya'll to keep this is mind whenever you hear the BOGGs talking shit about solar energy, just know that they are talking about an industry that very well might be the end of them, and they know it. Just wait untl that ole Mule-Faced Corporate-Raider-Marketeer, Mr. T Bone NosePickins Big Bag of Wind & Gas & Oil guy gets wind of this devistatin' news,.... I bet he will be blowed away! I'll bet you he'll be on the phone and running all over the place buying up all the solar energy stocks. I wouldnt be one bit suprized if he started right in to building solar energy plants of his own. He could incorporate them into his wind-mill farms hes got springin up all over the place, and call his "New Pickins Plan" enterprize "Big Wind & Sun Energy." I bet he could corner the market in alternative energy very easily. Now wouldnt that be a nice windfall for him? Lucky bastard. His life must be a gas! Buuuuuu HHaaaaaaa (my evil laugh)
about a minute ago · LikeUnlike ·
Note to Friend: You may want to stop following my blogs once you find out how much on-line editiog I do! (Another BrrrroooouuuuuuuuHaHa)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Fish Dying Off All Over the USA

A ProMED-mail post

ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases

Date: Sat 10 Jul 2010
Source: [edited]

Mysterious illness killing puffer fish
A wildlife disease specialist with the US Geological Survey said his
office has received at least 100 reports of dead puffer fish from
across the state in the last 6 months.

Dying puffer fish were discovered in Kona back in February [2010].
Reports of dead puffers were coming from Maui in May. Recently, the
puffer fish have been washing ashore in Kaneohe Bay and Kailua beach
here [Honolulu] on Oahu.

The sick and dying puffer fish have been found with lesions on the
skin, but it's what they're finding on the inside that has
researchers alarmed. "We're seeing things like enlarged livers,
enlarged swim bladders, which is the organ that allows them to
float," said the US wildlife disease specialist Theirry Work.

Work and his staff have been able to analyze only 14 sick puffer fish
so far and they're baffled by what is killing them.

Right now, they're leaning towards some type of virus or toxicosis.

"We really need to sort out what it is that's killing them. Once we
sort out the cause, we can decide if it can affect other fish or
not," said Work.

The illness appears to be affecting the striped puffer fish the most,
followed by the porcupine puffer fish. Researchers are asking for the
public to be on the lookout for these sick fish. They ask if you find
one, to put it on ice and report it to your local aquatics resources office.

"You'll see these fish either floating and can't submerge and they
just don't look right, or if they're on the beach, their gills will
be moving a little bit," said Work. "As long as there's a little bit
of movement in those fish, they're super fresh and we can use them.
If they've sitting on the beach a while, they're too decomposed and
we can't do much with them."

These agencies will take care of transporting the fish to Oahu for analysis:
DLNR Division of Aquatics Resources
Eyes of the Reef:
Kauai - Paul Clark
Maui - Darla White
Oahu - Thierry Work or Greta Aeby
Big Island - Linda Preskitt

Communicated by:
HealthMap Alerts via ProMED-mail

[There are about 100 species of puffer fish. Most puffer fish are
found in sub-tropical and tropical marine waters in the Atlantic,
Pacific, and Indian Oceans. Some puffers live in brackish and fresh water.

The puffer fish is also known as the blowfish, fugu, swellfish, and
globefish. It is called the puffer fish because when it is
threatened, it puffs up to about twice its normal size by gulping
water. In this engorged state, the puffer fish can swim at only about
half its normal speed.

Any number of toxins in the water may be causing the problem, or
perhaps a different concentration of an agent. A water analysis may
be helpful. Also, it may be helpful to know if their food source has
changed: is it less or more abundant? What about water temperatures
as compared to previous years?

Many parts of the blowfish (including the liver, muscles, skin, and
ovaries) contain an extremely strong, paralyzing poison called
tetrodoxin. This poison is about a thousand times deadlier than
cyanide. There is no known antidote for this poison. Fugu (torafugu
or _Fugu rubripes_, Japanese puffer fish) is eaten in Japan, but is
only cooked by specially-trained chefs who can minimize the amount of
poison. Even so, many Japanese diners have died from eating this
poisonous delicacy.

The poison found in puffer fish, blowfish, balloon fish, toads,
sunfish, porcupine fish, toadfish, globefish, and swellfish is a
tetrodotoxin. This is one of the most toxic poisons found in nature.
Most people who eat puffer fish do so intentionally; puffer fish are
considered an Asian delicacy, served in some types of sushi and
sashimi. Unless the chef is specially trained to cut the meat in a
particular fashion, the dish may contain a large amount of the toxin.
Puffer fish poisoning is similar to paralytic shellfish poisoning.

Portions of this comment have been extracted from

See image of puffer fish at

Image of tetrodotoxin molecule at

[The HealthMap/ProMED-mail interactive map of Hawaii is available at
. - Sr.Tech.Ed.MJ

[see also:
Undiagnosed die-off, fish - USA: (PA, ID) 20100716.2373
Undiagnosed fish die-off - USA: (MI) RFI 20100618.2056
Undiagnosed fish die-off - Canada: (ON) 20100613.1987
Undiagnosed fish die-off - USA (02): (WV, OH, PA) columnaris 20100610.1946
Undiagnosed fish die-off - USA: (WV, OH, PA) 20100601.1827
Undiagnosed fish die-off - USA: (NJ) koi herpesvirus susp. 20100528.1773
Tetrodotoxin, sea slug, canine - NZ (02): dolphin susp. 20090906.3136
Tetrodotoxin, sea slug, canine - New Zealand 20090818.2923
Tetrodotoxin poisoning, puffer fish - Japan (Yamagata) 20090129.0399

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Friday, July 16, 2010

DEP Orders EOG Resources to Halt All Natural Gas Drilling Activities in PA

HARRISBURG -- The Department of Environmental Protection today ordered EOG Resources Inc. to suspend its natural gas well drilling activities in Pennsylvania after a June 3 blowout at one of the company’s Clearfield County wells sent natural gas and at least 35,000 gallons of drilling wastewater into the sky and over the ground for 16 hours.

DEP Secretary John Hanger said that while the order bans all drilling and hydrofracturing, or fracking, operations for specified periods of time, the suspension will remain in effect until DEP has completed a comprehensive investigation into the leak and the company has implemented any needed changes.

“DEP staff, along with an independent expert, will conduct a detailed investigation of not just the incident that occurred last week in Clearfield County, but of EOG Resources’ drilling operations, as a whole, here in Pennsylvania,” said Hanger. “The Clearfield County incident presented a serious threat to life and property. We are working with the company to review its Pennsylvania drilling operations fully from beginning to end to ensure an incident of this nature does not happen again.”

The order prohibits EOG Resources from drilling activities up to seven days; from engaging in fracking operations up to 14 days; and from completing or initiating post-fracking operations for 30 days in any wells throughout the state. These actions and operations cannot resume until the department agrees that the investigation has been fully completed.

The results of the investigation will also help determine whether DEP should take additional enforcement action against the company, such as fines or penalties.

Hanger added that EOG Resources has been fully cooperative and in agreement with the department’s ongoing investigation and order.

The leak began at approximately 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 3, when the well’s operators lost control of it while preparing to extract gas after fracking the shale. As a result, natural gas and flowback frack fluid was released uncontrollably onto the ground and 75 feet into the air. The well was capped at around noon on June 4.
The EOG well pad is located in a rural area near the Penfield/Route 153 exit of Interstate 80 in northwestern Clearfield County, near Moshannon State Forest.

The department’s Emergency Response and Oil and Gas programs responded to the incident, along with the Pennsylvania State Police, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency, and local fire and police departments.

PEMA elevated its activation level to coordinate resources among multiple state agencies and worked with PennDOT and the Federal Aviation Administration to institute a temporary airspace restriction above the well. The restriction was lifted at approximately 1:45 p.m. on June 4.

“Fortunately, the well did not ignite and explode, and there were no injuries to the well crew or emergency responders,” said Hanger. “Our preliminary assessment is that the environmental damage was modest as the frack fluid was contained and did not appear to reach any streams, but DEP is continuing its monitoring efforts because sometimes the impacts of a spill like this are delayed. We have noted that a spring in the area has shown a spike in conductivity and that discharge is being collected by EOG for proper disposal.”

The secretary noted that the company expects to have a more accurate estimate of the amount of fracking water that was leaked after it finishes draining the pits and waterboxes it deployed to collect the fluids. As of June 7, initial estimates totaled 35,000 gallons, although more was certainly released and the company believes this accounts for a majority of the leaked water.

DEP’s preliminary investigation has determined that a blowout preventer on the well failed, but the agency does not yet know if that failure was the main cause of the incident. The blowout preventer has been secured and will be one piece of the investigation.

EOG Resources, formerly known as Enron Oil & Gas Co., operates approximately 265 active wells in Pennsylvania, 117 of which are in the Marcellus Shale formation.

For more information, visit

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Pa Fracking Fluid Contain Neurologically Harmful Chemicals

MARC LEVY HuffPost 06/28/10 07:30 PM HARRISBURG, Pa. — More than two years after the start of a natural gas drilling boom, Pennsylvania is making public a complete list of the chemicals used to extract the gas from deep underground amid rising public fears of potential water contamination and increased scrutiny of the fast-growing industry. Compounds associated with neurological problems, cancer and other serious health effects are among the chemicals being used to drill the wells, although state and industry officials say there is no evidence that the activity is polluting drinking water. The Associated Press obtained the list from the state Department of Environmental Protection, which assembled what is believed to be the first complete catalog of chemicals being used to drill in Pennsylvania's gas-rich Marcellus Shale. The department hopes to post it online soon. It counts more than 80 chemicals being used by the industry in a process called hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," as it pursues the gas in the mile-deep shale. Many of the compounds are present in consumer products, such as salt, cosmetics, gasoline, pesticides, solvents, glues, paints and tobacco smoke. Environmental advocates worry the chemicals are poisoning underground drinking water sources. However, environmental officials say they know of no examples in Pennsylvania or elsewhere. "If we thought there was any frack fluid getting into fresh drinking water ... I think we'd have to have a very serious conversation about prohibiting the activity completely," said Scott Perry, the director of the department's Bureau of Oil and Gas Management. Conrad Volz, who directs the University of Pittsburgh's Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, said state and federal agencies haven't done enough research to come to that conclusion. A decades-old technology, hydraulic fracturing was coming under increased scrutiny even before the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Its spread from states such as Texas, Colorado and Wyoming to heavily populated watersheds on the East Coast has led to worries about water contamination and calls for federal regulation. Hydraulic fracturing is exempt from the federal Safe Drinking Water Act, leaving states to regulate the activity. In New York state, regulators have effectively held up drilling on the Marcellus Shale while they consider new regulations. Last year, they published a list of more than 250 chemicals that could potentially be used there. In Pennsylvania, where approximately 1,500 Marcellus Shale wells have been drilled and many thousands more are expected in the coming years, the state is working to buttress its regulations even as rigs poke holes in large swaths of the state. Last week, HBO aired a documentary called "Gasland" that portrayed the natural gas industry as an environmental menace that spoils water, air and lives. The industry has challenged the film's veracity, saying it botches facts, exaggerates evidence and spotlights citizens whose claims already have been investigated and debunked. Pennsylvania assembled the list in recent months from information the industry is required to disclose and decided to prepare it for the public as public interest grew, Perry said. Industry officials say the chemicals pose no threat because they are handled safely and are heavily diluted when they are injected under heavy pressure with water and sand into a well. Industry officials say the chemicals account for less than 1 percent of the fluid that is blasted underground. The mixture breaks up the shale some 5,000 to 8,000 feet down and props open the cracks to allow the gas trapped inside to flow up the well to the surface. One compound, naphthalene, is classified by the federal Environmental Protection Agency as a possible human carcinogen. The EPA said central nervous system depression has been reported in people who get high levels of toluene by deliberately inhaling paint or glue. In its online guidelines on xylene, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration cites an industrial hygiene and toxicology text that says chronic exposure to xylene may cause central nervous system depression, anemia, liver damage and more. The chemicals are used to reduce friction, kill algae and break down mineral deposits in the well. Various well services firms make different proprietary blends of the solutions and supply them to the drilling companies, which blend them with water at the well site before pumping them underground. In recent years, some makers of the solutions have sought to replace toxic ingredients with "green" or food-based additives. For instance, Range Resources Corp., one of the most active drilling companies in Pennsylvania, is close to rolling out a 100 percent biodegradable friction reducer, spokesman Matt Pitzarella said Monday.

BP Oil Spill Reaches New Orleans' Lake Potchartrain



Joe Raedle / Getty Images
(above): Workers use nets to scoop small globs of oil from the water in
Rigolets Pass, which connects the Gulf to Lake Pontchartrain.
Cain Burdeau reports:

"New Orleans, which managed to escape the oil from the BP spill for more than two months, can't hide any longer.

"For the first time since the accident, oil from the ruptured well is seeping into Lake Pontchartrain, threatening another environmental disaster for the huge body of water that was rescued from pollution in 1990s to become, once more, a bountiful fishing ground and a popular spot for boating and swimming.

"Over the July Fourth weekend, tar balls and an oil sheen pushed by strong winds from faraway Hurricane Alex slipped past lines of barges that were supposed to block the passes connecting the Gulf of Mexico to the lake.

"State authorities closed the lake's eastern reaches to fishing on Monday, though most of it remained open. Barges were lined up at bayous and passes to stop the oil from coming in, and cleanup crews Tuesday used nets to collect tar balls from marinas and docks. They also planned to lay out 9,000 feet of special permeable booms. But the lake was too choppy for skimmer vessels to operate.

"About 1,700 pounds of oily waste has been collected, said Suzanne Parsons Stymiest, a spokeswoman for St. Tammany Parish."

(above): Tar balls wash ashore on Texas beaches
NOLA finally affected by oil spill - what are your comments?

Greg Dempsey
Voice of the People

Oil seeps into New Orleans' Lake Pontchartrain

By CAIN BURDEAU, Associated Press Writer Cain Burdeau, Associated Press Writer - 2 hrs 41 mins ago
NEW ORLEANS - The amount of oil infiltrating 600-square-mile Lake Pontchartrain (pronounced PAHN-chuh-trayn) appears small so far. And tests on seafood have not turned up any oil contamination, said Brian Lezina, a state biologist. But the pollution is distressing to the many people in Louisiana who have a deep attachment to the lake.

"You won't hear songs about a lot of the marshes in south Louisiana, but you will hear songs about Lake Pontchartrain," Lezina said.

Out in the Gulf, meanwhile, stormy weather kept skimmers from working offshore Tuesday for yet another day and delayed the hookup of a big new ship intended to suck more crude from the gushing well. Also, the arrival of a Navy blimp intended to hover above the relief effort was delayed until Friday.

Tar balls from the spill also washed up on Texas beaches over the holiday weekend, meaning the disaster now touches all five Gulf Coast states, spanning more than 500 miles of coastline.

Lake Pontchartrain, named for the French count of Pontchartrain during the reign of Louis XIV, is on the northern edge of the city. It is connected to the Gulf of Mexico by two main passes: the Rigolets, a winding passage of about 10 miles, and the Chef Menteur, around nine miles long.

For centuries, it has been a playground, a source of seafood and a backdoor route to New Orleans for invading British troops and hurricane storm surge.

Until the 1970s, its shores were a top destination for city folks who took streetcars and buses to the lake to swim and to dine at restaurants that cooked up the lake's crabs and other seafood. They played in penny arcades and rode the Zephyr roller coaster at the Pontchartrain Beach amusement park.

But pollution shut down the swimming and chased away marine life, and the amusement park closed in the early 1980s.

The lake's restoration included a ban on commercial clam dredging and new regulations governing urban runoff. Slowly, the lake revived. In recent years, sightings of dolphins and manatees have delighted locals, and commercial and recreational fishing is thriving.

About 60 commercial fishermen catch blue crabs and shrimp in the lake, and scores of sport fishermen can be found on any given day reeling in speckled trout, redfish, flounder, black drum and sheepshead.

"Even the people involved in the restoration didn't believe it could be restored. It was completely written off. It was thought to be an impossible task," said John Lopez, a scientist with the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, which led the restoration effort. "It has been a dramatic turnabout."

The oil could be the second setback in five years. Hurricane Katrina knocked out seafood docks and lakeside restaurants in 2005. The lake's water quality also took a hit when the Army Corps of Engineers drained the city's contaminated floodwaters into the lake.

"So far, this stuff has been offshore for the majority of the population in the southeastern portion of Louisiana," Anne Rheams, executive director of the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation, said of the oil spill. "This is bringing it closer to home."

Gerica, like the dozens of other commercial fishermen who use the lake, planned to pick up his crab traps as soon as the weather cleared.

Anthony Montalbano Jr., the chef and owner of II Tony's, an Italian seafood restaurant next to the lake, said it has been a struggle to stay open. Katrina swamped his restaurant at Bucktown, a lakeside community in New Orleans that has the feel of a bayou town.

"This was going to be our best year since Katrina for sure, but not now," Montalbano said as the TV in the bar showed an ad for a law firm suing BP.


Associated Press writers Michael Kunzelman and Tom Breen in New Orleans contributed to this report.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

EPA to Vist Gulf Coast Tomorrow

EPA Press Office

July 1, 2010

TOMORROW: EPA Administrator Makes Sixth Trip to Gulf Region to Oversee Response to the BP Spill

WASHINGTON – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa P. Jackson returns to the gulf coast tomorrow to monitor EPA’s on-the-ground response to the BP oil spill, meet with federal responders and BP representatives, and speak with residents about ongoing federal efforts to mitigate the spill’s impact on the region. She will travel to New Orleans and Pensacola, Fla.

This marks Administrator Jackson’s sixth visit to the gulf region since the oil spill began. During the trip, she will be briefed by EPA and Coast Guard officials on the latest response updates and monitoring data, and oversee beach clean up efforts in the region. The administrator will also meet with EPA scientists in Gulf Breeze, Fla., for a briefing on ongoing dispersant testing.

Administrator Jackson and EPA continue to work closely with National Incident Commander Admiral Thad Allen, who is leading the administration-wide response and directing all interagency activities.

To request an interview with Administrator Jackson, please email

For more information on EPA’s efforts in the gulf and for the latest air, water, sediment and underwater dispersant monitoring data:


10:00 a.m. CENTRAL Briefing with Local Officials

1:00 p.m. CENTRAL Town Hall Meeting: “Expanding the Environmental Conversation”
Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
900 Convention Center Blvd
New Orleans, La.

3:00 p.m. CENTRAL Meeting with Environmental Groups


10:30 a.m. CENTRAL Tour of EPA’s Gulf Breeze Lab and Pensacola Beach Operations Lab
Gulf Breeze and Pensacola, Fla.

1:15 p.m. CENTRAL Stakeholder Meeting
Gulf Breeze, Fla.


Note: If a link above doesn't work, please copy and paste the URL into a browser.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Hands Across the Sands

Yesterday afternoon, a Louisiana judge overruled President Obama's suspension of offshore drilling. This decision leaves Big Oil free to resume operations off the Louisiana coast, despite the obvious risks.

It's more clear than ever before: offshore drilling will continue to expand unless we keep the pressure on government leaders and the oil industry. This Saturday, we have a chance to focus the world's attention on this crucial issue through a massive coordinated action: Hands Across The Sand.

On June 26th At 11 AM, tens of thousands of individuals will head to nearby beaches to join hands in a massive demonstration of support for clean energy. With enough supporters, these simple events will make a powerful statement the world cannot ignore - please join us and draw a metaphorical line in the sand against offshore drilling

Find and attend a Hands Across The Sand event near you

We hope to make Hands Across The Sand the largest demonstration against offshore drilling in history, but we need your help to reach this goal. Please take a few moments to find an event near you. You don't even need to live near a beach - use the event-finder to choose a local solidarity event.

Can't find a nearby Hands Across the Sand event? Step up and organize one for your community - we'll connect you with local organizers to take your demonstration to the next level.

Hold a Hands Across The Sand event in your community
Thanks for everything you do. We hope to see you at the beach this Saturday!
athleen Rogers
President, Earth Day Network
PS, don't forget to show your support by wearing an Earth Day Network t-shirt to the beach.
© Copyright 2010, Earth Day Network
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Thursday, June 17, 2010

60,000 Gallons a day My Ass!

Market Commentary and Intraday News

Scientists: Oil leaking up to 2.52M gallons daily
1 day ago

Associated Press Writer

(AP:NEW ORLEANS) Scientists provided a new estimate for the amount of oil gushing from a ruptured well in the Gulf of Mexico on Tuesday that indicates it could be worse than previously thought.

A government panel of scientists said that the ruptured well is leaking between 1.47 million and 2.52 million gallons a day of oil. That is an increase over previous estimates that put the maximum size of the spill at 2.1 million gallons per day.

"This estimate brings together several scientific methodologies and the latest information from the sea floor, and represents a significant step forward in our effort to put a number on the oil that is escaping from BP's well," Energy Secretary Steven Chu said in a statement.

The latest numbers reflect an increase in the flow that scientists believe happened after undersea robots earlier this month cut off a kinked pipe near the sea floor that was believed to be restricting the flow of oil, just as a bend in a garden hose reduces water flow. BP officials has estimated that cutting the kinked pipe likely increased the flow by up 20 percent.

The pipe was removed so BP could install a containment cap that is trapping leaking oil and drawing it a ship waiting on the ocean surface.

The new numbers are based on a combination of scientific data, including an analysis of high-resolution video taken by underwater robots, pressure meters, sonar, and measurements of oil collected by the containment device on top of the well.

It is the fourth _ and perhaps not last _ time the federal government has had to increase its estimate of how much oil is gushing. At one point, the federal government claimed only 42,000 gallons were spilling a day and then it upped the number to 210,000 gallons.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


A ProMED-mail post

ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases

Date: Thu 3 Jun 2010
Source: The Associated Press (AP) [edited]

For days now, Dr Damon Dietrich has seen patients come through his
emergency room at West Jefferson Medical Center [Louisiana] with
similar symptoms: respiratory problems, headaches and nausea.

In the past week, 11 workers who have been out on the water cleaning
up oil from BP's blown-out well have been treated for what Dietrich
calls "a pattern of symptoms" that could have been caused by the
burning of crude oil, noxious fumes from the oil or the dispersants
dumped in the Gulf to break it up. All workers were treated and

"One person comes in, it could be multiple things," he said. "Eleven
people come in with these symptoms, it makes it incredibly suspicious."

Few studies have examined long-term health effects of oil exposure.
But some of the workers trolling Gulf Coast beaches and heading out
into the marshes and waters have complained about flu-like symptoms --
a similar complaint among crews deployed for the 1989 Exxon Valdez
spill in Alaska.

BP and US Coast Guard officials have said dehydration, heat, food
poisoning, or other unrelated factors may have caused the workers'
symptoms. The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals is

Brief contact with small amounts of light crude oil and dispersants
are not harmful. Swallowing small amounts of oil can cause an upset
stomach, vomiting, and diarrhea. Long-term exposure to dispersants,
however, can cause central nervous system problems, or do damage to
blood, kidneys or livers, according to the Centers For Disease Control
and Prevention.

In the 6 weeks since the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded, killing 11
workers, an estimated 21 million to 45 million gallons [95 million-170
million liters] of crude has poured into the Gulf of Mexico. Hundreds
of BP contractors have fanned out along the Gulf, deploying boom,
spraying chemicals to break up the oil, picking up oil-soaked debris
and trying to keep the creeping slick out of the sensitive marshes and
away from the tourist-Mecca beaches.

A particular commercial fisherman spent a night on a vessel near the
source of the spill and left complaining of a severe headache, upset
stomach, and nose bleed. He was treated at the hospital, and sued --
becoming part of a class-action lawsuit filed last month [May 2010] in
US District Court in New Orleans against BP, Transocean, and their

This fisherman, who was part of a crew burning oil, believes planes
were spraying dispersant in the middle of the night -- something BP

"I began to ache all over ..." he said in the affidavit. "I was
completely unable to function at this point and feared that I was
seriously ill." Dozens of complaints, most from spill workers, have
been made related to oil exposure with the Louisiana Department of
Health and Hospitals, said spokeswoman Olivia Watkins, as well as with
the Louisiana Poison Center, clinics, and hospitals. Workers are being
told to follow federal guidelines that recommend anyone involved in
oil spill cleanup wear protective equipment such as gloves, safety
glasses, and clothing.

Michael J. Schneider, an attorney who decided against filing a
class-action lawsuit in the 1990s involving the Valdez workers, said
proving a link between oil exposure and health problems is very
difficult. "As a human being you listen to enough and you've got to
believe they're true," he said. "The problem is the science may not be
there to support them ... Many of the signs and symptoms these people
complained of are explainable for a dozen different reasons -- it's
certainly coincidental they all shared a reason in common."

Similar to the Valdez cleanup, there have been concerns in the Gulf
that workers aren't being supplied with enough protective gear.
Workers have been spotted in white jumpsuits, gloves, and booties but
no goggles or respirators.

"If they're out there getting lightheaded and dizzy every day then
obviously they ought to come in, and there should be respirators and
other equipment provided," said LuAnn White, director of the Tulane
Center for Applied Environmental Public Health. She added that most of
the volatile components that could sicken people generally evaporate
before the oil reaches shore.

BP PLC's chief operating officer Doug Suttles said reports of workers
getting sick are being investigated but noted that no one has
pinpointed the cause. Suttles said workers were being given "any
safety equipment" needed to do their jobs safely.

Unlike with Exxon Valdez, in the Gulf, the oil has been lighter, the
temperatures warm and humid, and there have been hundreds of thousands
of gallons of chemicals used to break up the oil.

Court records showed more than 6700 workers involved in the Exxon
Valdez clean up suffered respiratory problems which the company
attributed to a viral illness, not chemical poisoning.

Only one attorney representing a Valdez worker was known to
successfully settle with Exxon over health issues. According to the
terms of that confidential settlement, Exxon did not admit fault. This
attorney's client spent 4 months lifting workers in a crane for 18
hours a day as they sprayed the oil-slicked beaches with hot water,
which created an oily mist. Even though he had to wipe clean his
windshield twice a day, the worker said it never occurred to him that
the mixture might be harming his lungs.

Within weeks, he and others, who wore little to no protective gear,
were coughing and experiencing other symptoms that were eventually
nicknamed Valdez crud. Now 60, the worker cannot get through a short
conversation without coughing and gasping for breath like a drowning
man. He sometimes needs the help of a breathing machine and inhalers,
and has to be careful not to choke when he drinks and eats. Watching
the Gulf situation unfold, he says, makes him sick. "I just watch this
stuff everyday and know these people are on the very first rung on the
ladder and are going to go through a lot of misery," said the Valdez
worker, who now lives in Prescott, Arizona.

[Byline: Noaki Schwartz, Matthew Brown]

Communicated by:

[The Gulf of Mexico is very different from Alaska and the Valdez
spill. The Gulf is hot and humid, which can take a toll on the body
before the conscious mind is aware of it. Dehydration is a large
factor, and can occur before a person is aware of it in hot and humid
environments. Symptoms of dehydration can include light-headedness and
dizziness, also fatigue.

In this kind of heat the volatile hydrocarbons [in the oil] would have
dissipated. Perhaps the issue is not the oil but the dispersants, as
noted by the CDC above.

Some smells are more offensive to some people [than others]. Oil and
saltwater and heat have a peculiar smell, and while offensive, it may
not in itself be harmful, but the perception combined with the heat
and dehydration may lead to a distorted picture. Likewise, it may be
the chemical dispersants associated with the smells, which may be even
more unpleasant. Workers spending much time in protective equipment
are even more susceptible to dehydration.

I do not know what chemicals or microbes are being used to cause
dispersion of the oil, so it is impossible for me to comment on those
factors. - Mod.TG]

[A lot hinges on the definition of "long-term exposure". - Mod.JW]

[The state of Louisiana and the Gulf of Mexico can be seen on the
HealthMap/ProMED-mail interactive map at
. - Sr.Tech.Ed.MJ]
ProMED-mail makes every effort to verify the reports that
are posted, but the accuracy and completeness of the
information, and of any statements or opinions based
thereon, are not guaranteed. The reader assumes all risks in
using information posted or archived by ProMED-mail. ISID
and its associated service providers shall not be held
responsible for errors or omissions or held liable for any
damages incurred as a result of use or reliance upon posted
or archived material.
Donate to ProMED-mail. Details available at:

Visit ProMED-mail's web site at .
Send all items for posting to:
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etc. to: For assistance from a
human being send mail to:

Friday, June 4, 2010

Third Party Candidate-FAIL in Imperialistic USA

Ex- presidential Green Party Candidate Cynthia McKinney was for the earth;
and for the disinfranchised people of the world;

Of course, NO 3rd party candidate has much of a chance of succeeding in the USA today,...
The Powers-That-Be wont let them.
Ask Ron Paul;
Ask Ralph Nader;
Ask Bob Barr;

Fight Against American Imperialism - Join the FREE GAZA MOVEMENT in USA Today;


A ProMED-mail post

ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases

Date: Thu 3 Jun 2010
Source: Winnipeg Free Press [edited]

Health officials in the Sarnia area are investigating a serious
parasitic outbreak among people who attended a charity cooking event
on 12 May 2010.

About 400 people attended the Chef's Challenge event held by the
local Big Sisters charity, and as of Wednesday [2 Jun 2010], more
than 70 people have reported becoming ill.

Seven people have been confirmed as having cyclospora after lab tests.

Cyclospora is a one-cell parasite that infects the small intestine
and spreads through contaminated food or water. If not treated, the
illness can last from a few days to a month or longer.

Lambton Community Health spokeswoman Lori Lucas says symptoms include
stomach cramps, watery diarrhea, vomiting, body aches, headache,
fever, fatigue, loss of appetite and weight loss.

Communicated by:

[There is little doubt that _Cyclospora cayetanensis_ is endemic in
the United States and Canada as well as elsewhere. The epidemiology,
especially the reservoir if any, is poorly known. An investigation
into a recent outbreak in Canada was published in 2009 (Shah et al.
Challenges of investigating community outbreaks of cyclosporiasis,
British Columbia, Canada. Emerg Infect Dis. 2009;15:1286-8). The
epidemiology and biology have recently been reviewed (Ortega and
Sanchez. Update on _Cyclospora cayetanensis_, a food-borne and
waterborne parasite. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2010;23:218-34). - Mod.EP]

[see also:
Cyclosporiasis - USA (FL)(03) 20050604.1564
Cyclosporiasis - USA (FL)(02) 20050506.1259
Cyclosporiasis - USA (FL) 20050429.1200
Cyclosporiasis - Canada (Ontario) 20050506.1257
Cyclosporiasis - USA (PA) 20040918.2584
Cyclosporiasis - USA (TX, IL) 20040526.1419
Cyclosporiasis - USA (Missouri) 19990907.1574
Cyclosporiasis - USA (multistate): closure (02) 19990820.1447
Cyclosporiasis - USA (multistate) 19990625.1078

Cyclospora, risk assessment: RFI 19981124.2262
Cyclospora, the CDC & Guatemalan raspberries 19981121.2248
Cyclospora & Guatemalan raspberries, source unknown 19980715.1333
Cyclospora, new - Vietnam 19980424.0760
Cyclospora, safety of fresh fruit, imported & domestic 19971016.2138
Cyclospora - Germany: imported (02) 19970702.1416
Cyclospora - Germany: imported 19970702.1411
Cyclospora, raspberries 19970613.1239
Cyclospora - US (New York City) and Canada (Ontario) 19970530.1106
Cyclospora, outbreak - USA (Houston, TX) 19970521.1030
Cyclospora alert - USA 19970509.0956
Cyclospora & Cryptosporidium pseudo-outbreaks - USA, 1995 19970426.0850
Cyclospora outbreak, vehicle identified 19970228.0464
Cyclospora oocycts (03) 19970125.0149
Cyclospora oocycts (02) 19970121.0117
Cyclospora oocycts: RFI 19970117.0090
Cyclospora - USA/Canada: Correction 19961119.1938
Cyclospora - USA/Canada (7) 19961118.1931
Cyclospora - USA/Canada (6) 19961117.1920
Cyclospora - USA/Canada (5): RFI 19961114.1906]

ProMED-mail makes every effort to verify the reports that
are posted, but the accuracy and completeness of the
information, and of any statements or opinions based
thereon, are not guaranteed. The reader assumes all risks in
using information posted or archived by ProMED-mail. ISID
and its associated service providers shall not be held
responsible for errors or omissions or held liable for any
damages incurred as a result of use or reliance upon posted
or archived material.
Donate to ProMED-mail. Details available at:

Visit ProMED-mail's web site at .
Send all items for posting to:
(NOT to an individual moderator). If you do not give your
full name and affiliation, it may not be posted. Send
commands to subscribe/unsubscribe, get archives, help,
etc. to: For assistance from a
human being send mail to:

Thursday, June 3, 2010

BP asks Twitter to Remove Fake BP PR Account

No sense of humor, I guess. KUDOS to
Leroy Stick – the man behind @BPGlobalPR;

Wont you join him there? The idea is not to let BP forget.

BPGlobalPR Twitter;

Palin Plan to Open Up Artic Wildlife Refuge to Big Oil Exploration

Sarah Palin has a plan for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge which she is circulating on Twitter and Facebook. Palin's vision involves drill pads and pipelines, oil spills and air pollution... and pools of toxic waste.

In Palin’s world, the answer to the appalling disaster in the Gulf of Mexico is to "drill baby drill" in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Help us rein in Palin and her Big Oil allies: demand that the Obama administration protect the Arctic Refuge. Send a letter speaking out against Sarah Palin's Arctic drilling plans today.

The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is an international treasure. Caribou, muskoxen and moose, wolves and wolverines, foxes and grizzlies, and millions of migratory birds live in this wild place. If it were in the lower 48 states, a landscape as magnificent as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge would be as revered as Yellowstone or Yosemite.

The Refuge is a crown jewel of America's public lands. Help us keep this wilderness free of oil rigs and oil spills.
Sarah Palin claims that onshore drilling is "safe" - the same onshore drilling that led to an oil spill on the Trans-Alaska Pipeline just last week. There is no failsafe way to drill for oil, a lesson that the Gulf spill is driving home all too well.

Last week the Obama Administration kept the Arctic Ocean safe from a Gulf-style catastrophe by blocking offshore drilling in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas. Take action today: keep the last frontier safe from Sarah and her oil industry allies.

Thank you!

Kathy Kilmer
The Wilderness Society

Letter to Salazar;