Earthwire

Sewer Suits

Environmental groups sue the EPA over shoddy stormwater rules. -

The rainwater that washes through our cities contaminates drinking supplies, triggers beach closings, and dirties rivers, streams, and lakes. And yet, the EPA still hasn't followed up on a 2003 court order to improve its urban runoff regulations (which were found to violate the Clean Water Act). So NRDC (which publishes Earthwire) and the Environmental Defense Center are taking the agency to court—again. Reuters 

41 min ago
Follow the Flock

Songbirds know when storms are a-brewin'. -

Scientists have found that tiny golden-winged warblers skipped town en masse two days before a massive storm struck the southern United States last April, churning out 84 tornadoes and killing 35 people. Large storms send out rumbles that travel for thousands of miles at a frequency humans can’t hear but songbirds can—allowing them to make their winged escapes in advance. The Atlantic 

3 hours ago

There is very little impact, nominal impact, on U.S. gas prices…I want to make sure that if in fact this project goes forward, it’s not adding to the problem of climate change, which I think is very serious and does impose serious costs on the American people.

—President Obama fielding a question on the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline at his year-end press conference. Watch his full answer here

2 days ago
And Another One Bites the Dust

eBay dumps ALEC over its climate-denying agenda. -

The company is withdrawing its membership from the American Legislative Exchange Council, the secretive lobby group that promotes the passage of anti-environmental laws (among other nefarious activities). The decision follows Google’s exit last September, when its executive chairman accused ALEC (rightly so) of “literally lying” about climate change. Reuters

3 days ago
Scraping Bottom

The Ogallala Aquifer is running dry (and fast). -

According to a new report, the aquifer's water levels decreased substantially between 2011 and 2013. From South Dakota to Texas, the massive 175,000-square-mile freshwater system is the drinking source for millions of people across eight states and sustains much of the the heartland's agricultural industry, but increased irrigation and more frequent droughts in the region are leaving it parched. Casper Star-Tribune

3 days ago
Good Riddance

Chevron ditches plan to drill in the Arctic's Beaufort Sea. -

Citing "economic uncertainty in the industry" (read: plummeting oil prices), the company announced Wednesday that its multimillion-dollar drilling plans would be put on hold indefinitely. Crude prices have dropped nearly 50 percent since June, causing many oil companies to tighten their belts in response. Frugality saves the day! Reuters

4 days ago

I cannot support high-volume hydraulic fracturing in the great state of New York.

—Howard Zucker, the state's acting commissioner of health, during a cabinet meeting today at which Governor Andrew Cuomo banned the practice of fracking due to health risks. A temporary moratorium has been in place since 2008.

5 days ago