The administration has awarded more than 179,000 “categorical exclusions” to stimulus projects funded by federal agencies, freeing those projects from review under the National Environmental Policy Act, or NEPA. Coal-burning utilities like Westar Energy and Duke Energy, chemical manufacturer DuPont, and ethanol maker Didion Milling are among the firms with histories of serious environmental violations that have won blanket NEPA exemptions.
In the digital age, half our electricity still comes from coal. DIRTY BUSINESS: "Clean Coal" and the Battle for Our Energy Future is a documentary that reveals the true social and environmental costs of coal power and tells the stories of innovators who are pointing the way to an alternative energy future.
Earlier this month, we looked at the quality of those modifications. Although they're better than they used to be (most used to actually raise the homeowner's payments), the banks' in-house modifications are on average half as generous as those the government sponsored. Homeowners in those modifications are also twice as likely to default as those with government mods.
The vague language of the bill has caused many to object to S.510, fearing that increased power for the FDA and the HHS will also mean increased costs, paperwork and strict regulations that could bring down the axe on the already dwindling numbers of small farms. In a recent action alert, the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) summarizes, “The new regulations could erect new barriers to these important markets for small and mid-scale farmers unable to bear the expense of compliance.”
Eighteen months after the Environmental Protection Agency announced reforms to its controversial process for evaluating health hazards posed by dangerous chemicals, significant problems continue to hamper the program and leave the public at risk, according to a new report by a nonprofit research group.
In its Sunday, Nov. 6, business feature, The New York Times wrote about concerns some residents across the country have about pollution in their water supplies from natural gas drilling. The paper traveled to northwestern Pennsylvania, where more than a dozen residents' water has been fouled by the drilling process and the state is arranging to replace their drinking-water supply.