pollution

The strange saga of how Los Angeles County’s stormwater pollution ended up in the Supreme Court

Tomorrow, the Supreme Court will hear oral argument in Los Angeles County Flood Control District v. Natural Resources Defense Council. This case involves a lawsuit by clean-water advocates to require our County Flood Control District to take responsibility for ensuring that polluted stormwater doesn’t impair our local water quality in two local rivers. The Ninth …

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Chinese environmentalist Ma Jun an awardee of the 2012 Goldman Environmental Prize

Ma Jun, one of China’s most effective environmentalists, is a recipient of the 2012 Goldman Environmental Prize.   The official release from the Goldman Environmental Prize had the following to say: Motivation While working at the South China Morning Post in the 1990s, Ma Jun had the opportunity to travel extensively in the country. He witnessed …

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China Vice-President Xi Jinping in America: some thoughts on US-China environmental collaboration

Some sobering developments confront us on the climate and environment front as Vice-President (and future head of China) Xi Jinping prepares to visit the United States this week.  Despite an unprecedented push to reduce pollution and develop cleaner energy sources, China’s emissions of greenhouse gases and traditional pollutants have continued to soar.  Chinese annual greenhouse …

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Twas Congressional Christmas

‘Twas Congressional Christmas, when all through the House Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse; The PACs were counting their money with care, In hopes that John Boehner soon would be there. Lobbyists nestled all snug in their beds, While veto-proof riders danced in their heads. Zasloff down south  and I on the …

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Ten of the Top Environmental Stories of 2011

Nuclear reactor meltdown in Japan. EPA issues new rules limiting mercury emissions by power plants. Durban climate summit produces modest progress, as developing countries begin to acknowledge the need for binding limits on their carbon emissions. White House kills scheduled new regulations of ozone. California adopts cap-and-trade system under AB 32. White House announces stringent …

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Apple’s China Problem

There has been an interesting confluence of stories in the press about Apple as the release of iPhone 5 approaches this week.  The New York Times recently ran a story, entitled “You Love Your iPhone, Literally,” about how test subjects looking at sounds and images of the iPhone exhibited heightened activity in the parts of …

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Murder, Pollution, Illegal Drugs & Our Public Lands

The murder this past weekend of Fort Bragg, California City Councilman Jere Melo puts an all-too-human face on a long-festering environmental crisis. Melo was shot and killed in a remote area in Mendocino County by a squatter who was reportedly growing marijuana on forest lands there. Councilman Melo, whose day job was to manage 150,000 …

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China and the Environment: Some Progress on Lead Pollution

It’s a pleasure to be joining the excellent group here at Legal Planet.  My focus will largely be on issues related to China and its environmental and energy challenges. I returned to the U.S. last month after seven years working in China on environmental protection and legal reform (mostly for the Natural Resources Defense Council).  …

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Scholastic, Inc. publishes pro-coal curriculum for fourth graders, apparently paid for by coal industry

Yesterday, I wrote about a satirical campaign in which anti-coal activists spoofed a Peabody Energy website in order to publicize the link between burning coal and childhood asthma.   The satirical campaign included fake child-oriented games and discounted asthma inhalers. But all satire aside, the coal industry really is marketing its product directly to children. The …

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Anti-coal satire (with My First Inhaler) punks Peabody Energy

Peabody Energy — last seen on this blog as the real party in interest whose proposal to mine more coal on Indian land in Arizona had to go back to the drawing board because of this UCLA environmental law clinic case , and immortalized in the John Prine song “Paradise”  — has been punked.  (I’ve …

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