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Top Energy and Health News: Fear of death in Southern Cali
Friday November 03rd 2017, 5:46 PM

‘The fear of dying’ pervades Southern California’s oil-polluted enclaves

As the state wins praise for its progressive climate policies, refinery emissions vex people in low-income communities.

(Center for Public Integrity)

Even Trump’s EPA says Obama’s climate plan would save thousands of lives each year

A sweeping Obama-era climate rule could prevent up to 4,500 premature deaths per year by 2030, the Trump administration has found in its analysis of the plan.

(Washington Post)

Study finds elevated levels of dangerous chemicals in Porter Ranch residents


An independent health study released earlier this month showed elevated levels of carcinogens in residents living near Aliso Canyon, the site of the massive 2015 natural gas blowout in Los Angeles’ San Fernando Valley.

(Capital and Main)

China’s air pollution is hindering its ability to produce solar power

The particulate matter lodging itself deep in people’s lungs is also reducing the amount of sun reaching solar arrays, according to a study published last week.


Exxon will pay $2.5 million for pollution at Gulf Coast plants

The Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Justice announced Tuesday that Exxon Mobil will pay $2.5 million in fines for flaring gases at eight plants along the Gulf Coast.

(NY Times)

Alaska orders review of all North Slope oil wells after spill linked to permafrost

Thawing permafrost cracked the casing on a BP oil well earlier this year, starting a leak that continued for days.

(Inside Climate News)

How a 672,000-gallon oil spill was nearly invisible

About 672,000 gallons of oil spilled when a pipeline fractured about a mile below the ocean’s surface this month in the Gulf of Mexico southeast of Venice, La., which is about 65 miles south of New Orleans.Hardly any of it was visible.

(NY Times)

Now it’s oilmen who say fracking could harm groundwater

It’s no longer just environmentalists who suspect hydraulic fracturing is contaminating groundwater.

(E&E News)

The battle of treaty camp

No other incident during Standing Rock better illustrates the collaboration between police and private security in suppressing the NoDAPL movement.

(The Intercept)

Angry Front Range residents pack hearing, berate state regulators for allowing drilling near homes

Hours ahead of scheduled hearing on Broomfield drilling plan, Colorado regulators got an earful.

(The Denver Post)

Big power plant ignites political fight in small Pennsylvania town

A wave of new gas-fired power plants is hitting the nation, with uncertain implications for the climate. The local consequences can be just as thorny.

(Center for Public Integrity)

Top energy and health news for the week of Oct. 27 – Nov. 3.

[News Source]

Analysis: Securing safety of drinking water
Friday November 03rd 2017, 1:08 PM

Amid concerns over GenX and other compounds in drinking water supplies, state and local officials have yet to reach consensus on how to identify unknown contaminants, how to regulate them and how to keep the public informed.

[News Source]

Contested land owned by nuns is first spot for Atlantic Sunrise pipe burial in Lancaster County
Friday November 03rd 2017, 1:00 PM

Despite two work disruptions and arrests of 29 protesters, Oklahoma-based Williams Partners is preparing to bury 42-inch pipe through a cornfield owned by an order of nuns near Columbia.

[News Source]

COP 23: A clean energy tipping point is coming—sooner the better
Friday November 03rd 2017, 12:56 PM

Prospects for change have never been better, but we still need deliberate action to realize them.

[News Source]

Louisville neighborhoods use trees to fend off heart disease
Friday November 03rd 2017, 12:55 PM

Researchers think plants could be more effective that statins in treating cardiovascular problems.

[News Source]

Coal – the killer investment without a future
Friday November 03rd 2017, 12:50 PM

Assets that kill don’t make for good investments

[News Source]

iPhone X captures California wine country destruction
Friday November 03rd 2017, 12:41 PM

Senior photographer James Martin spent a day in one city hit hard the largest fire in state history.

[News Source]

L.A., Long Beach ports adopt plan to slash air pollution and go zero-emissions
Friday November 03rd 2017, 12:29 PM

The nation’s largest port complex will cut health-damaging and planet-warming air pollution by phasing out diesel trucks and equipment in favor of natural gas, then zero-emissions technology.

[News Source]

‘Big Chicken’ connects poultry farming to antibiotic-resistant bacteria
Friday November 03rd 2017, 12:22 PM

In her new book, health journalist Maryn McKenna explores how many of the chickens consumed in the U.S. have been fed antibiotics, which can lead to serious infections in humans.

[News Source]

11-3: Wildfire chemical fallout; Clovis concedes over credentials
Friday November 03rd 2017, 11:45 AM

Northern California fires last month took a toll:

  • 43 people died
  • > 8400 homes destroyed
But what about the millions of gallons of flame retardants dropped from tankers onto crops and soil? In one week alone, more than 2 million gallons of retardant were dropped in California,

according to the state’s fire agency


After wildfires, what happens to fire retardant-soaked crops?



EPA finished with hazardous waste cleanup at one-third of destroyed Sonoma County homes

(The Press Democrat)

NPR obtained a copy of the most comprehensive climate study to date by federal scientists and reports it is “extremely likely” that human activities are the “dominant cause” of climate change.

Quick hits:

  • Past 115 years were the warmest in history of modern civilization
  • Global average temperature increased by about 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit over past 115 years
  • Sea level has risen 7 to 8 inches since 1900
Full story from NPR:

Massive government report says climate is warming and humans are the cause


USDA senior White House adviser, Sam Clovis withdraws his nomination to become the agency’s chief scientist because, well, he has no science or agricultural experience.

Oh yeah—and the Iowa talk radio show host and political scientist is linked to the ongoing Russia investigation.

Trump agriculture nominee Sam Clovis confirms he has no hard-science credentials, withdraws over ties to Russia probe

(Washington Post)

Meanwhile, Energy Secretary Rick Perry—who holds

a bachelor’s degree in animal science from Texas A&M University—linked fossil fuel use to decreased sexual assault …

“From the standpoint of sexual assault, when the lights are on, when you have a light that shines, the righteousness, if you will, on those types of acts.”

Did Rick Perry really just bring fossil fuels into the fight against sex assault?


  1. As it looks to go green, China keeps a tight lid on dissent

    (Yale Environment360)

  2. This coastal town banned tar sands and sparked a war with the oil industry

    (Inside Climate News)

  3. Dakota Access builder and Corps object to tribal proposal

    (LA Times)

  4. Fossil-fuel friendly tax plan spares oil, not solar or Tesla

    (Bloomberg Markets)

EPA head Scott Pruitt will head to South Carolina’s Kiawah Island next week to address the American Chemistry Council’s board meeting at a high-end resort.

He’ll bring eight staffers with him. The government is paying for the group’s expenses.

EPA’s Pruitt and staff to attend chemical industry meeting at luxury resort next week

(Washington Post)

Other toxics:

Cities are one big evolutionary experiment

Urbanization has unintended consequences on city-dwelling creatures, from the peppered moths of the Industrial Revolution to today’s pesticide-resistant bed bug.

(City Lab)

Evolution and climate change already at issue in new Utah school science standards.

The Utah Board of Education launched a review on Thursday.

(The Salt Lake Tribune)

When temperatures plummet in eastern Turkey, people round up their buffalo, get outside and strip off.

“As anyone who has lived in subzero climates for more than a couple of winters knows, staying sane means getting out into the world, whatever the weather.”

The Turkish hot springs where residents bathe with water buffalo

Top news for Friday, 11-3: Fire retardants and Cali crops; Clovis credentials; Climate report points to people

[News Source]

More coral bleaching feared for Great Barrier Reef in coming months
Friday November 03rd 2017, 11:39 AM

The next event, if it occurs, may not be as damaging as the previous two, but could ruin the chances of coral recovery

[News Source]

On the environment, de Blasio defied expectations with bold goals, but now must deliver
Friday November 03rd 2017, 11:24 AM

A mayor who was not known for environmental advocacy when he took office has set ambitious goals for carbon reduction, zero waste and air quality. Advocates hope he’ll turn more of those plans into reality if he’s re-elected.

[News Source]