The Ebola Panic

Some politicians encourage panic about a small outbreak in Texas, while thousands in Africa are dying.

The National Lampoon once put out a mock edition of a newspaper from the fictional city of Dacron, Ohio.  There was a screaming headline reading: TWO DACRON WOMEN MISSING.  A much smaller subheading read: Japan destroyed by tidal wave.  We are now seeing something similar in the U.S. reaction to Ebola.  So far, only three cases […]

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After November, the Deluge?

State Capitol, Sacramento, California

What will the Republicans do if they take control of the Senate? Will this be Armageddon for Obama’s environmental policies, as both Democrats and Republicans insist?  The truth is likely to be less dramatic, though still bad from an environmental perspective. Greenwire had a very interesting piece about that on Friday. Both Republican and Democratic […]

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Should Environmental News Coverage Be In The Science Section?

A whiles back I wrote about how the New York Times’ environmental coverage had been in decline. The public editor at the Times has a new article stating that environmental coverage has recently increased substantially. I think that is a great thing. But I want to focus on another element of the public editor’s article. […]

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California’s New Groundwater Law: An Interactive Timeline

Groundwater irrigation

What are the major deadlines for local groundwater management agencies, and when can—or must—state agencies act?

Many (including Legal Planet’s own Rick Frank) have examined the pros and cons of California’s new locally-focused groundwater management law.  Such analyses will continue to be critically important as state and local players move forward with the nitty-gritty of actual implementation, and the legislation’s practical, on-the-ground (and under-the-ground) implications become clearer. In this post, however, my goal […]

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Political systems and environmental law

The other day I posted about Australia’s repeal of its carbon tax. Australia is not the only country that is going through some retrenchment in environmental law. In Canada, the government made some substantial alterations to the requirements for environmental review for government projects (reducing the scope of the requirement and limiting it to certain […]

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Lessons From an Epidemic

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Ebola’s natural reservoirs are animals, if only because human hosts die to too quickly. Outbreaks tend to occur in locations where changes in landscapes have brought animals and humans into closer contact.  Thus, there is considerable speculation about whether ecological factors might be related to the current outbreak. (See here).  At this point, at least, we […]

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Australia’s repeal of its carbon tax

A lot of (bad) environmental law news has been coming out of Australia recently. The new Liberal government has attempted to dump dredging spoils on the Great Barrier Reef and open up protected Tasmanian forests to logging. But most importantly, the government has repealed the carbon tax enacted by the prior Labor government. The Australian […]

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Solar Plus Storage May Be a Good Deal for Some

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One company says that photovoltaics with battery storage are cost-competitive for some businesses now.

A battery company called Coda Energy says that a combination of solar photovoltaics and onsite storage can be cost-competitive with utility electric service for some larger customers. That is according to an online article on greentechgrid. Solar is still a more expensive option for power production than fuels such as natural gas, and various energy […]

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Working-class Environmentalism

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New JAH Article Points to Labor Support of Environmental Justice

Traditional histories of the environmental movement consider it to be a middle-class or upper-middle-class concern, removed from the grittier kitchen table issues of concern to working people. Not so, says Josiah Rector, in an article in the new Journal of American History, entitled “Environmental Justice at Work: The UAW, the War on cancer, and the Right […]

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California Becomes First State to Ban Disposable Plastic Bags

Other Single-Use Shopping Bags Also Restricted Under New Law

California has become the first state in the nation to ban major retail stores from providing single-use carryout plastic bags to their customers.  The new legislation similarly prohibits stores from selling or distributing recycled paper bags unless the store makes such bags available for purchase for no less than 10 cents per bag. The new law, […]

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2014 Senate Races and the Environment: Alaska and Colorado

(Photos: Courtesy GOP.org, Democrats.org)

Two anti-environmental Republicans versus a moderate and an environmental advocate.

Alaska and Colorado may both think of themselves as having a link to the frontier, but they’re also very different in terms of demographics and dependence on the oil industry.  The Senate races in the two states are also similar in some ways but not others, perhaps reflecting the more diverse economy of Colorado. In […]

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