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Obama administration

D.C. police have arrested 160 people and counting, in response to a non-violent protest against the Keystone XL Tar Sands pipeline. Among those arrested-- Bill McKibben, prolific environmental author and co-founder of 350.org. Released today after three days in jail, McKibben encouraged the continuation of the two-week protest, which is taking place in front of the White House.

Late in his administration, Bill Clinton attempted to build a conservation legacy worthy of Teddy Roosevelt by designating more than a dozen national monuments across the West.

George W. Bush tried to undo that legacy.

And President Barack Obama, to his dis-credit, has allowed the Bush-adopted, monument-undercutting status quo to remain, despite being the "hope-y, change-y" candidate in 2008.

But a little more background.

A major new scientific study shows significantly higher rates of birth defects in areas of heavy mountaintop removal mining, even after controlling for a range of other contributing factors. The study found that living near a mountaintop removal site poses a much greater risk to unborn babies than smoking during pregnancy. More than double the risk!

The 112th Session of the House of Representatives is at it again, doing what they do best: writing legislation to strike and block the clean air and clean water laws that keep us alive and healthy.

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