"KCRA obtained video of hundreds, possibly thousands of mercury-containing fluorescent bulbs and PCB containing ballasts stored outside, in the open air behind a Sacramento contractor’s facility. State law explicitly states that all these materials must be in a container to prevent leakage and breakage, yet a former employee says the company ran out of space and told employees to put them outside. Just days after KCRA’s calls the county and state opened investigations and the company cleaned up the materials. Yet concern still exists that with all the sales of energy efficient equipment and materials more and more ...Read more ...
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Extra Extra Monday: OSHA ignores slow and silent killers, corporate influence reaches court, back-door school handouts
As OSHA Emphasizes Safety, Long-Term Health Risks Fester | The New York Times
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the agency that many Americans love to hate and industry calls overzealous, has largely ignored the slow, silent killers that claim the most lives.
Corporations, pro-business nonprofits foot bill for judicial seminars | Center for Public Integrity
Conservative foundations, multinational oil companies and a prescription drug maker were the most frequent sponsors of more than 100 expense-paid educational seminars attended by federal judges over a 4 1/2-year period, according to a Center for Public Integrity investigation.
Back-door school handouts | Chicago Tribune
"Crisscrossing Michigan are more than 3,100 miles of old wrought- and cast-iron natural-gas pipelines -- the type federal regulators consider the most at risk of corrosion, cracking and catastrophic rupturing. The state's two largest utilities have replaced less than 15% of these pipelines -- 542 miles -- in the past decade," according to an investigation by the Detroit Free Press.
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
The Wrong-Way River
“Biologists predict the number of unwanted organisms moving on the Chicago canal will only grow until the waterway is somehow plugged. And it is much more than a Great Lakes problem because biological pollution travels both directions on this invasive species superhighway.”
The Morning Call
Amazon warehouse workers fight for unemployment benefits
“Its relationship with Amazon has made Integrity Staffing Solutions the biggest temporary-employment firm in the Lehigh Valley and one of the fastest-growing agencies of its kind in the country. Part of its role is fighting to keep its workers from collecting unemployment ...
Shell Oil and federal regulators have been tight-lipped about a failed test of the energy giant's Arctic oil-spill equipment in Washington state. But a freedom-of-information request by KUOW reveals what happened beneath the surface of Puget Sound.
The Seattle Times
Glamour Beasts: The Dark Side of Elephant Captivity
“Zoos' efforts to preserve and propagate elephants have largely failed, both in Seattle and nationally. The infant-mortality rate for elephants in zoos is almost triple the rate in the wild.”
Food and Environment Reporting Network
Fracking our food supply
“In Pennsylvania, the oil and gas industry is already on a tear—drilling thousands of feet into ancient seabeds, then repeatedly fracturing (or “fracking”) these wells with millions of gallons of highly pressurized, chemically laced water, which shatters the surrounding shale and releases fossil fuels. New York, meanwhile, is on ...
The Indianapolis Star
Star Watch Investigation: Vectren's costly coal deal is a profit for company, pain for ratepayers
“At a time when coal prices were at record highs, Vectren locked into expensive, multiyear agreements to buy almost all of its coal supply from its own wholly-owned mining subsidiary, Vectren Fuels. And ratepayers paid the price. Experts say Vectren disregarded the common industry practice of staggering its coal purchases through shorter-term contracts to hedge against unusually high prices.”
The Salt Lake Tribune
Utah Highway Patrol discipline problems go beyond Lisa Steed
“While the case of Cpl. Lisa Steed, the one-time ...
Chesapeake Energy has become the principal player in the largest land boom in America since the 1850s California Gold Rush, amassing acreage positions that rival those of any U.S. energy company. Its strategy is clearly spelled out in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission: “We believed that the winner of these land grabs would enjoy competitive advantages for decades to come.” Chesapeake isn’t nearly as transparent about its methods, however. Reuters reviewed hundreds of internal Chesapeake emails, thousands of pages of documents and dozens of lawsuits in seven states, and interviewed contractors who cut ...Read more ...
Lisa Song, an InsideClimate News reporter, has analyzed a decade worth of federal data that shows that the general public has detected far more oil pipeline spills than leak detection technology."
"An investigation by NPR and the Center for Public Integrity found federal regulators and the mining industry are failing to protect miners from the excessive toxic coal mine dust that causes black lung. The disease is now being diagnosed in younger miners and evolving more quickly to complicated stages."
"The report also reveals widespread and persistent gaming of the system that's designed to measure and control the coal mine dust that causes the deadly disease."