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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The pattern of failure has a timeline

The Bush administration's pattern of failure to use regulatory policy in the public interest has been spelled out in a timeline, by the good folks over at In These Times magazine. Check it out!

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EPA Plans for TRI Burden Reduction

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently held a public meeting to announce two plans for reducing the burden of reporting for the Toxic Release Inventory (TRI). The first, scheduled for sometime in December, would propose simple changes to the TRI reporting forms in an effort to streamline the process. The second rulemaking, scheduled for June 2005, would contain a more substantial programmatic change, although EPA has not yet determined the exact nature of the change.

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The tragedy of the commons (under Bush, that is)

The sharp-eyed observers over at In These Times magazine have been publishing on-line a series of retrospectives they have called "The Bush Record: A Pattern of Failure." (Yeah, we thought that was a good title, too.) Today's installment starts with the environment, which it brilliantly links with attacks on public education (privatizing via vouchers) as a general attack on the commons.

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Science suppressed again: National Parks edition

The N.Y. Times is reporting that the National Parks Service has suppressed and failed to act upon a report insisting that NPS needs to "do much more to preserve biological diversity and ecological integrity in the national parks," according to a member of the panel that produced the report. That member, Dr. Sylvia Earle, an oceanographer who is explorer in residence at the National Geographic Society, said she and her colleagues had expected that the National Park Service would distribute the report and take action on its findings. Instead, she said, "it has just languished."

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Chemical manufacturers' "gift"

The Washington Post also reports today that the chemical manufacturers' trade association is giving $2 million to the EPA to conduct a comprehensive study of childhood exposure to chemicals. Carol Henry, vice president for science and research at the American Chemistry Council, said her industry wanted to promote a better understanding of the risks associated with chemical exposure. Teaming up with a preexisting federal study gives her group financial leverage, she said. . . .

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New report on environmental enforcement

TRAC continues to release valuable information about environmental enforcement during the Bush administration. Unlike the recent bad news about declining prosecution, the latest report -- about prosecution of wildlife law violations -- reflects only geographical unevenness: The extent federal criminal charges are brought against individuals and businesses for violations of the nation's wildlife laws vary remarkedly from one part of the country to another . . . .

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Nixon EPA chief criticizes Bush "war on the environment"

Don't miss Mother Jones's feature interview with Russell Train, EPA chief during the Nixon administration. Here's a glimpse: We’re at war in Iraq. They tell us we’re at war against terrorism. I’d say that George W. Bush has declared war on the environment. And I think that people ought to stand up and be counted in opposition to that. . . .

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Rhetoric and how it's killing endangered species

Beyond "sticks and stones," beyond hate speech: an interesting new article by a law professor studies the overheated rhetoric (calculatedly impassioned, as any propaganda is) from industry interests attacking the Endangered Species Act. The rhetoric has a materiality -- it is part of a larger political strategy that is eroding protections of vulnerable species:

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Measure the rollback in your own state

How much have you been affected by the Bush administration's rollback of public health, safety, and environment protections? How much does your state need improved protections? Check out the excellent feature My Backyard from the Center for American Progress: a clickable map that allows you to go state by state and look up data on pollution, workplace health and safety, fuel economy, and more.

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Yet more bad news on the environment

As if the news weren't bad enough already: Mercury Rising: More women of childbearing age are showing alarming levels of mercury, a powerful neurotoxin: One-fifth of women of childbearing age have mercury levels in their hair that exceed federal health standards, according to interim results of a nationwide survey being conducted by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Asheville. . . .

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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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more resources