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Mining The Earth: 11 Nov 2014

Mining The Earth:

*Everywhere. Sand is one more resource being depleted:  “From the deserts of Morocco to the beaches of the Caribbean, boatloads of sand are being spirited away, legally & illegally to enhance shorelines from Spain to Florida to Singapore, or to be used in the cement for high-rises that tower over prime coastal properties.”  Videos at link.

*USA.  National Geographic:  “An alignment of the newly empowered . . .  Republican leaders—who either openly doubt scientists’ findings that human industry has heated the planet, or contend that curbing carbon emissions into the Earth’s atmosphere isn’t worth the potential cost of lost jobs—is likely to create the most hostile political environment for addressing climate change in Washington.”  So, duck, EPA, and welcome back, coal.

*USA.  “The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to regulate coal-ash disposal for the first time.”  Recently, a rupture at a Tennessee Valley Authority let 1.1 billion gallons of coal ash into the Clinch River and a Duke Power pond dumped “80,000 tons of coal ash and 27 million gallons of contaminated water” into the Dan River which flows through NC and VA.  Coal ash contains heavy metals with very serious ill-health impacts.  Which way will the EPA go?  Tough rules and enforcement or pretty much continue the status quo?

*USA.  southeastcoalash.org has a very cool on-line “tool to help concerned citizens, activists, policymakers, and reporters better understand the potential hazards of toxic coal ash waste throughout our region on our interactive coal ash website SoutheastCoalAsh.org.”  Go here to Create-Your-Own Coal Ash Report.

*IL.  Under the 1977 Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act, mine sites must “be returned to an approximation of their natural contours and to uses at least as beneficial as their previous incarnation.”  Right now local legal action has been undertaken “that seeks a federal takeover of mining oversight in Illinois”.  This will have particular impact on ExxonMobile Coal USA.

*MI.  DTE Energy Co. will demolish it’s last “800-foot concrete stack” in Monroe next year, signaling its conversion from “billowing out plumes of [harmful] smoke in its heyday” to having “four selective catalytic reduction units working to remove 90 percent of nitrogen oxide emissions” with other technological improvements removing 97% of sulfur dioxide, and 80% of mercury emissions.  14 years and $2 billion in the making!

*MO.  Cyprus Amax Minerals and Missouri Lead Smeling will pay $7.3 million “to the state of Missouri over pollution damage from a lead mine, mill and smelter.”  The two firms owned Buick Mine in Iron County between 1968-1986.  Both companies “also settled with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the U.S. Forest Service.”

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Mining The Earth: 11 Nov 2014

Mining The Earth:

*Everywhere. Sand is one more resource being depleted:  “From the deserts of Morocco to the beaches of the Caribbean, boatloads of sand are being spirited away, legally & illegally to enhance shorelines from Spain to Florida to Singapore, or to be used in the cement for high-rises that tower over prime coastal properties.”  Videos at link.

*USA.  National Geographic:  “An alignment of the newly empowered . . .  Republican leaders—who either openly doubt scientists’ findings that human industry has heated the planet, or contend that curbing carbon emissions into the Earth’s atmosphere isn’t worth the potential cost of lost jobs—is likely to create the most hostile political environment for addressing climate change in Washington.”  So, duck, EPA, and welcome back, coal.

*USA.  “The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to regulate coal-ash disposal for the first time.”  Recently, a rupture at a Tennessee Valley Authority let 1.1 billion gallons of coal ash into the Clinch River and a Duke Power pond dumped “80,000 tons of coal ash and 27 million gallons of contaminated water” into the Dan River which flows through NC and VA.  Coal ash contains heavy metals with very serious ill-health impacts.  Which way will the EPA go?  Tough rules and enforcement or pretty much continue the status quo?

*USA.  southeastcoalash.org has a very cool on-line “tool to help concerned citizens, activists, policymakers, and reporters better understand the potential hazards of toxic coal ash waste throughout our region on our interactive coal ash website SoutheastCoalAsh.org.”  Go here to Create-Your-Own Coal Ash Report.

*IL.  Under the 1977 Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act, mine sites must “be returned to an approximation of their natural contours and to uses at least as beneficial as their previous incarnation.”  Right now local legal action has been undertaken “that seeks a federal takeover of mining oversight in Illinois”.  This will have particular impact on ExxonMobile Coal USA.

*MI.  DTE Energy Co. will demolish it’s last “800-foot concrete stack” in Monroe next year, signaling its conversion from “billowing out plumes of [harmful] smoke in its heyday” to having “four selective catalytic reduction units working to remove 90 percent of nitrogen oxide emissions” with other technological improvements removing 97% of sulfur dioxide, and 80% of mercury emissions.  14 years and $2 billion in the making!

*MO.  Cyprus Amax Minerals and Missouri Lead Smeling will pay $7.3 million “to the state of Missouri over pollution damage from a lead mine, mill and smelter.”  The two firms owned Buick Mine in Iron County between 1968-1986.  Both companies “also settled with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the U.S. Forest Service.” (more…)

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