Category Archives: Waste

10 million gallons of toxic wastewater evicts Mexican schoolchildren

On Climate Progress, Ari Phillips reports that the Buenavista Copper Mine let more than 24 hours pass before reporting a massive spill in north Mexico. They could no longer deny the incident when residents down river began reporting miles and miles of orange water. There are even rumors that the spill may contain trace amounts of cyanide. Nearby schools have been evacuated and children are expected to stay away for at least a week.

Located just south of the U.S. border, the mine is one of the largest in the world. As the flagship mine of Grupo Mexico, Buenavista helped the group’s second quarter profits soar above $500 million. That’s one quarter’s profits. There are four quarters in a fiscal year. In other words, a global mining conglomerate that makes millions in ONE QUARTER can’t prevent or clean-up a toxic spill that is destroying the environment and forcing children out of their schools. In that first day, the company could have made substantial steps to limit the damage caused by the spill. Instead, they hid behind their oak desks in their corporate offices and tried to pretend it didn’t happen.

Guess what? It did.

Rio Bacanuchi after the spill. Photo: Earth First

Rio Bacanuchi after the spill. Photo: Earth First

Mining Spill Near U.S. Border Closes 88 Schools, Leaves Thousands Of Mexicans Without Water
by Ari Phillips, Climate Progress, August 18, 2014

An acid spill from a large copper mine in northern Mexico is keeping 88 schools closed starting Monday due to uncertainty over the safety of drinking water. The 12-day-old spill, which sent 10 million gallons (40,000 cubic meters) of toxic wastewater into portions of the Bacanuchi and Sonora rivers, may keep schools closed for over a week according to the Associated Press.

[...]

 Mine officials have been criticized for not reporting the massive acid spill to authorities for around 24 hours, with residents downstream detecting the spill the next day as it turned dozens of miles of river orange. According to Carlos Arias, director of civil defense for the northern state of Sonora, the spill was caused by defects in a new holding pond, where overflow from acids used to leach metal out of the crushed rock is stored. Arias said a pipe either blew out or lost its positioning on August 7th, sending the sulfuric acid downstream.

Read the full article on Climate Progress.

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Filed under Corporate Globalization, Mining, Pollution, Uncategorized, Waste, Water

Another story about race and America this week

Photo by Carlan Tapp

Photo by Carlan Tapp

With the news and images, and ongoing battle, from Ferguson at the forefront of everyone’s mind, another story of race and America made news. Residents of a predominantly African American community have charged the state of Alabama with violating their civil rights when it dumped toxic coal ash in their community. The EPA is now investigating their claims.

A recent report has shown the damaging effects of coal ash not only on water, but also through the toxic dust released into the air.

Both stories vividly show how race and class work in the US to try to trap communities and deny the rights and quality of life deserved by all.

ALABAMA RESIDENTS SPEAK OUT AGAINST ALLEGED CIVIL RIGHTS VIOLATIONS INVOLVING COAL ASH DUMP IN BLACK COMMUNITY

Earthjustice. August 14, 2014.

Washington, D.C — Investigators from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency interviewed residents of the predominantly black and low-income community of Uniontown, in Perry County, Ala., this week, to probe charges that their civil rights were violated when the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) decided to re-permit a municipal landfill containing four million cubic yards of poisonous coal ash.

The coal ash came from a massive spill in Kingston, Tennessee, where coal ash burst through a dike in 2008 and sent a billion gallons of toxic waste across 300 acres of riverfront property, destroying two dozens homes. It was the largest coal ash spill in U.S. history.

Read more at earthjustice.org.

Photo comes from Carlan Tapp’s blog: He seems cool and it’s a great picture.

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Filed under Coal, Pollution, Waste

Busted! Research on food waste shows no need for GM crops

foodwaste-(1)An increasing population needs an increasing food supply, right? At least, that’s the excuse politicians and corporations have been force-feeding the public, justifying their pursuit of genetically modified foods. They tell us that organic processes and farming techniques in tune with nature just aren’t up to the task of feeding the nearly 7 billion people on the planet.

That myth is now busted, and the proof is in the nearly 222 million tons of food wasted by industrialized nations every year. “If we eliminated this unnecessary food waste, we could potentially provide 60-100 percent more food to feed the world’s growing population,” writes Andrew Gunter in his Huffington Post article, “Big Ag Profits From Food Waste.”

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Filed under Food Sovereignty, Industrial agriculture, Solutions, Waste

Pictou Landing First Nation government erect blockade

By Clayton Thomas-Muller, June 10, 2014. Source: Intercontinental Cry

Photo by Michelle Ann, member of Pictou Landing First Nation

Photo by Michelle Ann, member of Pictou Landing First Nation

Mi’kmak’i Territory (Nova Scotia) – Jonathan Beadle, member of Pictou Landing First Nation was documenting the major pollution site on his traditional territory around 7:30 pm on June 9, 2014 when discovered that the primary pipeline carrying effluent from Northern Pulp and Paper into Boat Harbour was not operating. This pipeline was built for moving the effluent created by the toxic industrial process of pulping of wood into paper to be dumped untreated into Boat Harbour. Boat Harbour is a historical fishing site to the local First Nations as well as a sacred site due to the proximity of burial grounds located directly under where the mill built the pipeline.

“When we got up to the site yesterday (June 9, 2014) to check on boat harbour, I noticed the mill was not operating at full capacity. My son and I walked in toward Boat Harbour and as soon as we got to the main area where the pipeline comes out into the bay we noticed the effluent pipeline was turned off. This spill had to have been going on for some time. The clean up for the area is going to be incredibly expensive. This situation with Boat Harbour has been going on for a long time, people need to know there is a sacred burial ground underneath were Northern Pulp built their effluent pipe that dumps into Boat Harbour” said Jonathan Beadle, Pictou Landing First Nation member. Continue reading

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Land Grabs, Waste, Water

Sport shock doctrine

By Andalusia Knoll, June 11, 2014. Source: Upside Down World

 

Photo from Upside Down World

Photo from Upside Down World

Reviewed: Brazil’s Dance With the Devil: The World Cup, The Olympics and the Fight for Democracy by Dave Zirin, (Haymarket Books, May, 2014).

A piece of street art, depicting a crying boy with a plate that holds a soccer ball in place of food has gone viral, exposing Brazil’s popular discontent with the World Cup. While the mural was painted after sports commentator Dave Zirin wrote his latest book Brazil’s Dance With the Devil: The World Cup, The Olympics and the Fight for Democracy, the book contains an explanation of the image’s volatile history.  In Brazil’s Dance with the Devil, Zirin peels back the colorful FIFA curtain of publicity that currently blankets sporting sites across the globe to reveal the repression, deaths, displacement and corruption that paved the way to the 2014 World Cup, and the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics to follow.

In this critical exposé, as in his other numerous books and articles, Zirin has the amazing ability to make sports interesting to those who have never been fans of spectator games. Brazil’s Dance with the Devil reveals a fascist history of the Olympics, a bleak history of the World Cup during military dictatorships, and the inspiring tales of thousands of people who struggled to keep the wrecking ball from demolishing their modest homes in the Rio poor marginalized hillside communities, called favelas.  Continue reading

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Filed under Political Repression, Politics, Waste

Ohio: Fracking blockaders plead to reduced charges

Note: Support direct action for community and eco-defense!  In a different action, last Thursday, five blockaders (and friends of ours) were arrested blocking the entrance to a frackpad in Tiadaghton State Forest, PA, and have been held since then on $57,500 bail.  Click here to learn more and offer financial support!

-The GJEP Team

By Jim Phillips, March 24, 2014. Source: The Athens News

Gilbert "Kip" Rondy, far left, reads a statement in court on behalf of the eight protesters.  Photo:  Jim Phillips  Photo Caption:

Gilbert “Kip” Rondy, far left, reads a statement in court on behalf of the eight protesters. Photo: Jim Phillips

Eight protesters who last month briefly shut down an eastern Athens County injection well for oil-and-gas drilling wastes took a plea bargain in Athens County Municipal Court this morning (Monday).

The eight, whose individual cases were handled by the court en masse, had all been charged with criminal trespass, a fourth-degree misdemeanor. All agreed to plead no contest to a lower charge of disorderly conduct, a minor misdemeanor, and each received a fine of $150, with $100 of that amount suspended.

As a condition of the deal, the protesters must remain law-abiding citizens for one year, and have no contact with the well site where the demonstration took place.

Arrested Feb. 1 for their involvement in a protest at an injection well near Torch, Ohio, operated by the West Virginia firm of K&H Partners, LLC, were More (Smiles) Welch of Athens; Sean Pavlac of Cleveland; Caprice Huffman of Sunbury, Ohio; Gilbert (Kip) Rondy of Amesville; Michelle Ajamian of Millfield; Christine Hughes of Athens; Timothy Fultz of Athens; and Elizabeth Florentino of Athens.

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, Fracking, Pollution, Waste, Water

Eight arrested in Ohio frack waste blockade

February 1, 2014. Source: Appalachia Resist!

Photo: Appalachia Resist!

Photo: Appalachia Resist!

Eight farmers and local business leaders blocked the driveway leading to a fracking waste disposal site operated by K&H Partners of West Virginia. The eight held a banner reading “Our Water, Our Lives! Their Poison, Their Lies!” and forced at least two trucks carrying toxic frack waste to divert during the two hour rally. The blockade was supported by more than 150 Torch, Coolville, and Athens residents.

All eight were arrested by the Athens County Sheriff’s Office and charged with trespassing. Observers described the arrests as calm and dignified. Lieutenant Kline at ACSO has told AR that arrestees should be released tonight with summons to appear in court Monday 3 Feb 2014.

Currently the Troy Township site contains a single Class II injection well and associated waste tanks owned and operated by K&H; the current well injects an average of 2,098 barrels of toxic frack waste per day. The permit being appealed would allow the drilling of a second well on the same property; which would receive an additional 4,000 barrels per day. The two wells are located 1.7 miles from the Hocking, 2.2 miles from the Ohio River, and 2.2 miles from Coolville Elementary School. 53% of this waste will come from other states with stronger regulations than Ohio.

The permit is under appeal by the Athens County Fracking Action Network, following a unanimous vote in December by the Athens City Council and the Athens County Commissioners to oppose the permitting of the second well. Continue reading

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Filed under Actions / Protest, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, Hydrofracking, Pollution, Waste, Water

Baltimore students march against proposed waste incinerator

By Fern Shen, December 19, 2013. Source: Baltimore Brew

Photo: Fern Shen

Photo: Fern Shen

Students rallying against a trash incinerator planned in their South Baltimore neighborhood said researching and organizing was important. But talking to fellow residents made it plain to them how sick their neighborhood really was from pollution-linked disease.

“One person said a neighbor three doors down had just died of asthma,” said Charles Graham, a senior at Benjamin Franklin High School who canvassed the streets of Curtis Bay and Brooklyn on weekends.

“We asked the students in one class how many had asthma and everyone’s hand went up!” said Destiny Watford, 18, a Towson University student who lives in the community, where rowhouses are just blocks away from heavy industry.
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Filed under Actions / Protest, Bioenergy / Agrofuels, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Ending the Era of Extreme Energy, Energy, False Solutions to Climate Change, Greenwashing, Pollution, Waste, Youth