Jessica Goddard's Blog Posts

unEARTHED. The Earthjustice Blog

Jessica Goddard's blog

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Everyone has The Right To Breathe clean air. Watch a video featuring Earthjustice Attorney Jim Pew and two Pennsylvanians—Marti Blake and Martin Garrigan—who know firsthand what it means to live in the shadow of a coal plant's smokestack, breathing in daily lungfuls of toxic air for more than two decades.

Coal Ash Contaminates Our Lives. Coal ash is the hazardous waste that remains after coal is burned. Dumped into unlined ponds or mines, the toxins readily leach into drinking water supplies. Watch the video above and take action to support federally enforceable safeguards for coal ash disposal.


unEARTHED is a forum for the voices and stories of the people behind Earthjustice's work. The views and opinions expressed in this blog do not necessarily represent the opinion or position of Earthjustice or its board, clients, or funders.

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26 October 2011, 10:10 AM
Climate change effect on oceans

If ancient Greek polytheism defined our belief system, we would be well into an era of ritual sacrifices seeking to pacify the sea god, Poseidon.

Island and coastal cities fear full submersion as oscillating and extreme weather patterns take headlines more than ever. Hurricanes and tropical storms are growing in size and destructiveness. Costal reefs are in peril as calcium carbonate (“food” for coral reef skeletons) disappears with rises in ocean acidity and sea pollution. Sea ice is melting and receding in the Arctic and Argentina. And land ice (frozen fresh water) continues to melt at an accelerated rate in Antarctica. Climate change and increased surface temperatures are impacting our oceans as you read.

We at Earthjustice are leaving the skeptics behind. Let’s consider the facts: the average reach of ice in the Arctic in September 2011 (yearly minimum) was 4.61 million square kilometers. That’s 2.43 million square kilometers below the average from 1979 to 2000. This reflects an average monthly decline of 11.5 percent per decade. In Antarctica, NASA satellites show an annual decrease in ice coverage of more than 100 cubic kilometers (24 cubic miles) since 2002.

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07 October 2011, 10:07 AM
Illegal fishing practices in the Gulf of Mexico lead to death of 3,000 sharks
Texas game wardens pull in miles of netting filled with killed sharks. Source:

It was the largest shark kill the Texas game wardens had ever seen. Last week, wildlife officials discovered an estimated 3,000 sharks caught and killed in an illegal gill net off South Padre Island in the Gulf of Mexico.

Gill nets hang underwater from floats to a lead-weighted bottom line like mesh curtains, often extending up to 5 miles in length and 25 feet in depth. Notorious for their bycatch threat to sea turtles, marine mammals (such as, sea otters, dolphins and whales), sea birds, and other non-target fish, gill net possession has been illegal in Texas since 1981.
"This is by far the most sharks I have ever gotten in one load. Myself and my deck hand have been working on this boat for 15 years and have never seen this many sharks in one net,” said Sgt. James Dunks. Indeed, Texas Parks and Wildlife regulations prohibit licensed fishers from catching more than one shark per day.