Posts tagged: Bush administration

unEARTHED. The Earthjustice Blog

Bush administration


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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.

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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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View Terry Winckler's blog posts
03 February 2009, 6:24 PM
Sunflower jolted back to life

Contradictory actions by the coal industry this week illustrate how treacherous the road is to a clean energy future for America.

On Tuesday, to our delight, developers of the proposed Highwood coal-fired power plant in Montana surrendered and announced that they would instead build natural gas and wind-powered generating plants. The credit for this should go to Earthjustice attorneys Abigail Dillen and Jenny Harbine, whose two years of legal action against the plant obviously paid off.

Also on Tuesday, Michigan's governor made it clear that her state was becoming a coal-free zone and gave coal developers marching orders to look at alternative energy.

But sobering news out of Kansas on the same day cut our victory dance short.

View Terry Winckler's blog posts
29 January 2009, 1:45 PM
 

We haven’t gotten much good news out of the Environmental Protection Agency for eight years, but suddenly the news is huge... so big that it deserves an exclamation mark. Bear with me as I wend my way towards the punch line.

President Obama and the new folks he's put in charge at EPA are now reconsidering a Bush-era decision to let a monster coal-fired power plant operate without controlling its prodigious C02 emissions. The proposed plant, called Desert Rock, would pour air pollutants over Navajo communities in New Mexico, and 12.7 milllion tons of C02 into the atmosphere each year. C02 is the world’s biggest contributor to global warming.

The EPA, under Bush, said that's OK.

It’s not OK under Obama.

View Emma Pollin's blog posts
26 January 2009, 1:02 PM
 

"Toxic emissions" sounds like a precocious 10-year-old's euphemism for cattle reek, but that's how the term is applied in last week's press release on factory farm exemptions. Presumably because he wanted to go out on a wafting cloud of the odor, Bush tried to make it easier for factory farms to release unsafe levels of these emissions into neighboring communities without notification. It was one of our former president's final acts in office, and Earthjustice is hot on the case.

California's Central Valley is the capital of industrial agriculture, and on the big road Southern Californians call "The Five," you can experience those toxic emissions firsthand. At certain spots along "The Five," a sickening odor invades the car. You may suspect your travel companion and passive-aggressively roll down the window, but once you notice the sea of cows ahead, the window goes back up quick. The smell precedes the cows by a good mile or so. And if it's that traumatic to whiz past doing 80 mph, imagine working at the feedlot or living nearby.

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View Trip Van Noppen's blog posts
22 January 2009, 11:21 AM
 

I joined Tuesday's huge crowd in Washington to witness the inauguration of our 44th President. The people who traveled from all over the country had worked to elect Barack Obama and create a community of hope, optimism, and readiness to tackle the challenges, and that spirit pervaded the Mall.

For me, as for so many, a big part of the amazement and deep joy that I experienced was because our nation had elected an African-American as our president. The ideals and the movement that made Barack Obama's election possible stretch back to the American Revolution, through the Civil War and the great social movements of the 20th century—steady, hard work to broaden our democracy and push it to live up to its founding ideals. Obama didn't create this movement; it created the opportunity that he and his unique talents have stepped into.

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View Ted Zukoski's blog posts
22 January 2009, 5:30 AM
 

Jan. 20 marked the dawn of a new day in Washington.  We hope it means a clear break from the past eight years of drilling, logging, and ignoring science.  So now all us enviro lawyers can retire or get real jobs because President Obama - enjoy those two words together - is going to take care of everything ... right?

Well ... probably not.  The next four years will likely be as busy as the last four for conservationists.  Here's a sampling of reasons.

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View Raviya Ismail's blog posts
12 January 2009, 2:37 PM
Earthjustice attorney Tom Waldo argues to protect Lower Slate Lake

Earthjustice press secretary Raviya Ismail was at today’s (Jan. 12) U.S. Supreme Court hearing on whether the Clean Water Act allows Coeur Alaska’s Kensington Mine to fill Lower Slate Lake in Alaska with mining waste – killing all aquatic life. Earthjustice attorney Tom Waldo argued to protect the lake. The high court decision, expected by June, could determine whether waterways throughout the nation may be likewise filled and killed. Here is Raviya’s report:

View Ted Zukoski's blog posts
09 January 2009, 12:56 PM
 

With the end of the Bush Administration, the President's faithful servants are putting a smiley face on their "accomplishments." 

Before we look at the praises the Interior Department sang of itself, let's do our own quick review, starting with the out-and-out sleaze. 

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View Tom Turner's blog posts
09 January 2009, 11:56 AM
 

On this coming Monday - while the media are riveted by the upcoming inauguration - the fate of our nation’s waters will be taken up by the U.S. Supreme Court. The Court will hear arguments in an Earthjustice case that has implications for rivers, lakes, and streams across the country.

The case concerns a gold mine north of Juneau, Alaska. The Army Corps of Engineers granted a permit for the mine to Coeur Alaska. One provision of the permit allows Coeur to deposit its mine tailings into Lower Slate Lake after raising the level of the lake by building a long earthen dam.

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View Trip Van Noppen's blog posts
18 December 2008, 11:35 AM
 

Maybe it's a good thing that Bush has kept Earthjustice so busy these last eight years, fending off unrelenting assaults on the environment. The experience is proving invaluable as we face, in these final weeks of the administration, a frantic effort to roll back some of the nation's most significant protections. We also are encountering a barrage of last-minute attempts to convert America's wild, public treasures into private, commercial commodities.

Any day now, we expect Bush's Fish and Wildlife Service to once again remove endangered species protections from the northern gray wolf—protections we secured this year after Bush first de-listed the wolf.

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View Brian Smith's blog posts
27 November 2008, 7:00 AM
 

Joe Klein (author of Primary Colors, the scathing send-up of the Clinton years) gives President Bush quite a valedictory send-off today in the pages of TIME magazine.

Besides distaste for President Bush's "intellectual laziness," Klein lists a number of environmental actions that could be taken now in the final weeks of the Bush administration. Sadly, none of these are expected to happen.