By Payal Sampat
February 28, 2012
The 313 million people who live in the United States send about 120 million tonnes of trash to landfills every year. That’s a lot of trash - just think of all the photos you’ve seen of landfills overflowing with mountains of discarded refuse.
But that number pales in comparison with the amount of waste that mining corporations dump into oceans, rivers, and lakes around the world each year, which tops 180 million tonnes. These wastes can contain arsenic, lead, mercury, cyanide and over thirty other dangerous chemicals.
The staff at Earthworks and MiningWatch Canada have spent the past year investigating this egregious - and outdated – practice; we report our findings in a new study, Troubled Waters: How Mine Waste Dumping is Poisoning Our Ocean, Rivers and Lakes.
February 24, 2012
Apple is known for creating state-of-the-art electronic products that become the most wanted items of the day. Products such as the iPhone, iPod, iPad, and MacBook have revolutionized the electronics industry and made Apple one of the most successful companies in the world.
However, recent incidents have exposed the unfair labor practices at Foxconn and Wintek, Apple’s suppliers in China. The mental and physical health of workers at their facilities are overlooked as they are constantly under great pressure and overworked. Many workers live in crowded dorms and work longer hours than what Apple has suggested – Apple claims there is a maximum 60-hour workweek except in unusual circumstances.
By Lisa Sumi
February 23, 2012
Today Earthworks is launching In Their Own Words a series of recordings from a much ballyhooed industry PR conference in Houston where Texas Sharon recorded industry talking about transparency. Despite their constant use of the word "transparent" these recordings will show an industry that is anything but.
In this first post, we hear Anadarko Petroleum discuss/dismiss the use of fracking biocides.
February 17, 2012
Yesterday I attended a public comment hearing before the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC). The SRBC is an interstate agency responsible for making important water resource decisions affecting the Susquehanna River basin. Comprised of appointees from Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, and the Army Corps of Engineers, the SRBC met to receive comments on a series of proposed permit applications for water withdrawals intended for use in hydraulic fracturing operations.
This was a do-over meeting. The first one, held December 15 in Wilkes-Barre, abruptly and improperly ended when a number of protesters shouted down the Commissioners as they moved for unilateral approval of all the permit applications without allowing for public comment. The protests clearly rattled the SRBC commissioners. Not used to such public outrage, the SRBC was left with no ability to neither conduct their business nor provide an opportunity for other advocates to speak.
By Lauren Pagel
February 17, 2012
Today I testified in front of the Energy and Mineral Subcommittee of the House Natural Resources Committee on HR 785, a bill that would allow states and tribes who have not cleaned up all of their abandoned coal mining sites to use coal abandoned mine land funds to clean up hardrock mining sites. This legislation essentially lets the coal mining industry pay to clean up the metal mining industries messes -- a situation we have been forced into due to the inability to reform the 1872 Mining Law.