New Posts

Feb 8, 2016

Top 400 Taxpayers See Tax Rates Rise, But There’s More to the Story

As Americans were gathering party supplies to greet the New Year, the Internal Revenue Service released their annual report of cumulative tax data reported on the 400 tax r...

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Feb 4, 2016

Chlorine Bleach Plants Needlessly Endanger 63 Million Americans

Chlorine bleach plants across the U.S. put millions of Americans in danger of a chlorine gas release, a substance so toxic it has been used as a chemical weapon. Greenpeace’s new repo...

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Jan 25, 2016

U.S. Industrial Facilities Reported Fewer Toxic Releases in 2014

The Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) data for 2014 is now available. The good news: total toxic releases by reporting facilities decreased by nearly six percent from 2013 levels. Howe...

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Jan 22, 2016

Methane Causes Climate Change. Here's How the President Plans to Cut Emissions by 40-45 Percent.

  UPDATE (Jan. 22, 2016): Today, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released its proposed rule to reduce methane emissions...

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Obama Asks for Improved Safety Conditions for Government Workers

President Obama is asking his administration to make federal workplaces safer. In a memo yesterday, Obama announced his Protecting Our Workers and Ensuring Reemployment (POWER) Initiative, a four-year effort aimed at reducing on-the-job illnesses and injuries among government employees.

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After Crises, Companies Continue to Place Public and Workers at Risk

In the wake of high-profile regulatory failures, including the worst mine disaster in recent history, the companies responsible continue to run afoul of laws and regulations meant to protect public health and worker safety.

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MSHA Limited Number of Mines on Violations List

Earth Officials at the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) purposefully prevented a number of mines with serious safety violations from being placed on the list of mines with patterns of violations. Budget constraints, not safety concerns, led to some dangerous mines not being listed, according to the Department of Labor's Office of Inspector General (OIG).

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West Virginia Mine Continues to Flout Safety Laws

Massey Energy is back to work, endangering the lives of miners with its reckless attitude toward safety. Inspectors from the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) have continued to find safety violations at the Upper Big Branch mine in West Virginia where 29 miners were killed in an April explosion, according to The Wall Street Journal.

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Could These Corporate Failures Have Been Prevented?

In a new blog post written for The Huffington Post, OMB Watch Executive Director Gary Bass finds similarities among the BP oil spill, the Massey Energy mine explosion, and Toyota's massive vehicle recall. "In each instance, businesses with poor safety records have continued to operate in a system of voluntary regulation," Bass writes.

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Interior Agency Split to Devote Attention to Safety and Environment

The Interior Department announced yesterday that it will split into two parts the Minerals Management Service (MMS), the troubled agency that has been blamed for not doing enough to prevent the explosion and ensuing oil spill at the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico.

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Environmental, Health, and Safety Agencies Set Rulemaking Agendas

Unified Agenda On April 26, federal agencies published their updated rulemaking agendas outlining past, present, and future regulations. The agendas provide insight into the Obama administration's plans and expectations in the coming months.

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Labor Pushing Proactive Agenda during a Dark Time for Workers

It doesn’t seem like a very safe time to be an American worker. Yesterday was Workers Memorial Day, and the news is filled with stories about why such a day is necessary. Seth Harris, Deputy Secretary of the Labor Department, called it a “somber time” in an event today at the Center for American Progress.

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What's Next for Coal Mine Safety?

Miner In the wake of the latest coal mining disaster that killed 29 miners at the Upper Big Branch Mine in West Virginia, calls for safety reforms and enhanced regulatory powers echo once again. While mine safety has improved since the recent high death toll of 2006, it remains to be seen if this incident will result in significant changes or if deaths and injuries will continue to be perceived as a cost of doing business.

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Obama Calls for Review of Mine Safety Policy

In reaction to the West Virginia explosion that left 29 miners dead, President Obama called today for reform of mine safety laws and regulations and better enforcement of those regulations by the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA). His remarks are available on the White House website.

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Resources & Research

Living in the Shadow of Danger: Poverty, Race, and Unequal Chemical Facility Hazards

People of color and people living in poverty, especially poor children of color, are significantly more likely...

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A Tale of Two Retirements: One for CEOs and One for the Rest of Us

The 100 largest CEO retirement funds are worth a combined $4.9 billion, equal to the entire retirement account savings of 41 percent of American fam...

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