By Nick Magel
June 26, 2012
Last week Global Witness released the report, A Hidden Crisis?, documenting the murders of environmental activists around the world. The report examines reported killings of journalist, activists, and community members that have been killed because of their involvement in the defense of the environment. Spanning back to 2002, the report finds that 711 people have been killed in the last decade, or more than one person a week. The report paints a stark picture of the threats community members are facing as the mining industry, logging, and cattle ranching look to develop new lands. Killings have skyrocketed in the past years. Global Witness reports that there were over 106 murders in 2011 alone.
June 13, 2012
The idea that risk is lower when fewer people are exposed to harm may hold true in statistical analysis—but is little comfort to those who actually suffer the consequences. Which is precisely why New York Governor Cuomo’s proposal to allow high-volume gas development in certain locations is a bad idea.
June 13, 2012
Last Thursday I sat in on a hearing for the House Committee for Oversight and Government Reform, Subcommittee on Technology, Information Policy, Intergovernmental Relations, and Procurement Reform, where discussion on the possibility of federally regulating fracking caused such a heated debate that it nearly broke out into a “duel” on the Hill. Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, Michael Krancer, challenged the director of the Agriculture, Energy, and Environment Program at Cornell University, Dr. Robert Howarth to a duel over the validity of state regulation on environmental issues.
June 12, 2012
With all the innovation in the market today, consumers are constantly upgrading their electronic devices. Many consumers are making the responsible decision to recycle their unwanted electronic items. When managed properly, parts of their old electronics could be reused and potentially enter the supply chain again, thus decreasing the need to mine precious metals.
June 8, 2012
The first salmon are arriving in Bristol Bay's rivers this week -- just as the EPA is holding public hearings in communities throughout the region about the watershed assessment that the agency just completed on the threat of large-scale mining to the Bristol Bay fishery - the largest wild salmon fishery in the world.
Upwards of three hundred people packed the halls of the Dillingham gymnasium, and the testimony was unanimously in support of protecting Bristol Bay's fishery from the Pebble Mine. Over and over again, community leaders thanked the EPA for completing the study and urged it to move forward to protect the area's waters from mine waste disposal under 404c of the Clean Water Act.
The EPA has authority under Section 404c to restrict the disposal of mine waste into streams, lakes and wetlands, and Bristol Bay native tribes and commercial fishermen have asked the EPA to use its authority to protect the salmon fishery from the Pebble mine.
Fish come first!
The same message dominated every hearing in the region - Nak Nek, Levelock, Nondalton, Igiugig, and New Stuyahok.
The Bristol Bay watershed assessment makes a clear and compelling scientific case that developing the Pebble deposit will have severe and lasting consequences for salmon.
The EPA will be taking public comment on the watershed assessment until July 23rd.