By Abrahm Lustgarten, July 3, 2013. Source: ProPublica
In this photo taken Nov. 8, 2007, John Fenton and others examine neighbor Louis Meeks’ water in Pavillion, Wyo. Photo: AP/Casper Star-Tribune, Dustin Bleizeffer
When the Environmental Protection Agency abruptly retreated on its multimillion-dollar investigation into water contamination in a central Wyoming natural gas field last month, it shocked environmentalists and energy industry supporters alike.
In 2011, the agency had issued a blockbuster draft report saying that the controversial practice of fracking was to blame for the pollution of an aquifer deep below the town of Pavillion, Wy. – the first time such a claim had been based on a scientific analysis.
The study drew heated criticism over its methodology and awaited a peer review that promised to settle the dispute.Now the EPA will instead hand the study over to the state of Wyoming, whose research will be funded by EnCana, the very drilling company whose wells may have caused the contamination.
Industry advocates say the EPA’s turnabout reflects an overdue recognition that it had over-reached on fracking and that its science was critically flawed.
But environmentalists see an agency that is systematically disengaging from any research that could be perceived as questioning the safety of fracking or oil drilling, even as President Obama lays out a plan to combat climate change that rests heavily on the use of natural gas.
Note: Industrial biomass is bad for forest health, bad for human health, and as study after study is beginning to show, is a significant driver of climate change due to its greenhouse gas emissions.
This news from Oregon comes just as the biomass industry in the US Southeast is embarking on a spate of biomass plant construction, which would be powered by greatly expanding monoculture tree plantations in the region. This would have devastating effects on native forests, especially if they include invasive genetically engineered eucalyptus trees.
You can help us stop this risk by clicking here to sign GJEP’s petition to Stop GE Trees.
-The GJEP Team
By Christina Williams, February 6 2013. Source: Sustainable Business Oregon
One of Iberdrola Renewables biomass facilities would be built adjacent to its natural gas plant in Klamath Falls. Photo: Sustainable Business Oregon
A spate of air pollution bad enough to be in violation of the Clean Air Act and comparable to the well-known pollution in Beijing has prompted an activist group to request an emergency moratorium on biomass plant development in southeastern Oregon’s Lake and Klamath counties.
Save Our Rural Oregon announced Wednesday that the group had sent letters to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Gov. John Kitzhaber requesting that biomass and biofuels projects in Klamath Falls and Lakeview be put on hold and no new or modified air quality discharge permits related to the projects be issues.
The group singles out three such projects in the works. Klamath Bio Energy is working on approval for a plant in Klamath Falls. Iberdrola Renewables has two in the works, one in Lakeview and another in Klamath Falls.
Iberdrola announced last October that the proposed Lakeview plant — which halted construction in 2011 — would emit twice the originally proposed amount of emissions. Continue reading
Note: Oh good, let’s “open up a potentially huge market” for rainforest-destroying, orangutan-killing, culturally genocidal palm oil. As long as we call it “green” that is…
–The GJEP team
By Michael Taylor and Yayat Supriatna, Oct 19, 2012. Source: Reuters
(Reuters) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will visit Indonesia
next week, officials said on Friday, in what may prove a crucial step in the battle to meet green standards and open up a potentially huge market for the world’s top palm oil producer.
Indonesia is seen as a key player in the fight against climate change and is under intense international pressure to curb its rapid deforestation rate and destruction of carbon-rich peatlands.
A recent blow to the Southeast Asian palm oil industry, which supplies more than 90 percent of world supplies of the edible oil, came in late January when it failed to meet greenhouse gas saving standards to qualify for the U.S. renewable fuels program.
The U.S. EPA said palm oil converted into biofuels in Indonesia and Malaysia cut up to 17 percent of climate warming emissions, falling short of a 20 percent requirement to enter the world’s largest energy market.
Filed under Biodiversity, Bioenergy / Agrofuels, Climate Change, Climate Justice, Forests, Forests and Climate Change, Green Economy, Greenwashing, Indigenous Peoples, Land Grabs, The Greed Economy and the Future of Forests