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In a setback to Murphy-Brown, hog nuisance suits can go on, federal judge rules.
Monday November 13th 2017, 6:48 PM

This story is part of a larger series on the national pork industry that NC Policy Watch is co-publishing with Environmental Health News. The series, Peak Pig, begins at EHN today. On Wednesday, Policy Watch will examine the history of nuisance suits, plus swine waste-to energy technologies, and more.

[News Source]

Song, dance and protest at US energy talk at COP23
Monday November 13th 2017, 6:34 PM

The audience was standing-room-only because protestors wanted a full chorus in the room.

Side events at the UN climate talks are often somewhat sleepy: A panel of people, often men, usually in suits, offering PowerPoint slides.

That changed quick Monday evening in Bonn, as Trump Administration officials talked of the crucial role fossil fuels will continue to play in the world’s energy landscape – and of the crucial need for “this U.S. vision for a balanced approach” to oil, gas and coal.

U.S. Energy Association chief Barry Worthington was in the midst of his slide deck when many members of the packed, standing-room-only audience stood up and started singing.

They riffed on Lee Greenwood’s iconic 1984 “God Bless the U.S.A.,” tweaking the lyrics a bit:

“I’m proud to be an American/where they keep it in the ground.”

Twitter, of course, caught the action.

Gotta say, really proud of these protestors right now disrupting this Trump admin presentation on how fossil fuels are best way to address energy poverty, to hell with the climate consequences.

— Andrew Freedman (@afreedma)

November 13, 2017

Woman from


helped lead protest of US


event- 100 people stood up & walked out singing, “leaving them talking to themselves”


— Kim Nicholas (@KA_Nicholas)

November 13, 2017

After about 10 minutes, the chorus filed out of the room, and Worthington took stock of the much emptier room. “That gave me a chance to not put up a couple of slides that I really didn’t want to put up there anyway,” he quipped.

But other panelists, after the protesters left, lamented the tendency for all sides on the energy debate to stay in their silos.

“I can disagree with my fellow panelists here,” said Amos Hochstein, a U.S. Special Envoy for International Energy under President Obama who now works to bring LNG to the world market. Staying to listen, he added, “I may actually end up learning something.”

“We miss something at the COP when we congratulate ourselves … but we haven’t convinced anyone to do anything on climate change.”

Thank you. Dialogue is important and hard. Echo chambers are easy and less productive. Focus on the goal – lowering emissions






— amos hochstein (@amoshochstein)

November 13, 2017

[News Source]

Toxic fishing tackle is hampering loon recovery in New Hampshire
Monday November 13th 2017, 5:33 PM

A new study shows that lead poisoning is the leading cause of death for the state’s Common Loon population.

[News Source]

$300 billion war beneath the street: Fighting to replace America’s water pipes
Monday November 13th 2017, 3:45 PM

Much more is at stake than billions of dollars.

A national conversion to plastic pipes would amount to a massive experiment with public health because of the potential for plastic additives to leach out of the pipes into drinking water, and for hazardous chemicals to form in the event of fires, e.g., what happened in Santa Rosa CA last month.

From the article: ”

Studies have shown

that toxic pollutants like benzene and toluene from spills and contaminated soil can permeate certain types of plastic pipes as they age. A

2013 review

of research on leaching from plastic pipe identified more than 150 contaminants migrating from plastic pipes into drinking water.”

“Plastics are being installed without any real understanding of what they’re doing to our drinking water,” said

Andrew J. Whelton

, assistant professor of civil engineering at Purdue University, and an author of the 2013 study. “We don’t know what chemicals we’re being exposed to.”

[News Source]

Wake up and smell the coffee trouble
Monday November 13th 2017, 3:44 PM

Climate change, global politics and pests could interrupt the flow of beans that awaken our nation.

[News Source]

Groups appeal power plant, coal mine case dismissal
Monday November 13th 2017, 1:57 PM

Environmental groups are challenging a federal judge’s decision to dismiss a 2016 lawsuit for operations at the Four Corners Power Plant.

[News Source]

Fossil fuel burning set to hit record high in 2017, scientists warn
Monday November 13th 2017, 1:46 PM

The rise would end three years of flat carbon emissions – a ‘huge leap backward’ say some scientists, while others say the longer term trend is more hopeful

[News Source]

Water wizards: Dutch flood expertise is big export business
Monday November 13th 2017, 1:37 PM

On a calm, clear morning, historic wooden fishing boats float tranquilly on the glassy waters of the Dutch harbor of Spakenburg. Yet just over a century ago, they were slamming through the houses lining the harbor as a powerful storm unleashed devastating flooding.

[News Source]

Are international pledges bold enough to stop global warming?
Monday November 13th 2017, 1:32 PM

The countries signed onto the Paris Agreement have made pledges to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. The promises are at the core of the accord, but can they prevent devastating climate change?

[News Source]

When wildfires broke out, two North Bay Cal Fire dispatchers were on duty
Monday November 13th 2017, 1:28 PM

Cal Fire says its North Bay command center received more than 3,600 calls for help in the first 48 hours of what’s been dubbed the “October Fire Siege.

[News Source]

Blunt assessment from climate scientist Robert Kopp: NJ’s coastline could disappear quickly
Monday November 13th 2017, 1:03 PM

A Q&A with the noted Rutgers climatologist.

[News Source]

Want to understand climate change in Myanmar? Talk to kids
Monday November 13th 2017, 12:57 PM

Children can play an important role in talking about climate change in their communities.

[News Source]