October 7th, 2011 by Zachary Shahan
7 more good activism stories of the week we haven’t covered yet:
Environmental groups and the oil industry will square off in their final public showdown on Friday before Barack Obama renders a decision on a controversial pipeline carrying crude from the Alberta tar sands to refineries in Texas.
The encounter promises to be contentious, with one activist Whit Jones (@whitjones) tweeting that the Occupy Wall Street movement had come to the state department….
Over the course of October, we’ll unite our efforts with 100 actions across the country, creating a drumbeat of demand to move our campuses and communities to 100% clean energy solutions.
The coal mining industry coalition led by the National Mining Association received a ruling today in its favor from the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in its challenge to memoranda issued in 2009 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In these memoranda, the agencies had agreed to coordinate their review of 108 then-backlogged permit applications for mountaintop removal mine waste disposal that raised serious environmental concerns.
At the time of the court’s ruling, there were 21 permit applications covered by the 2009 coordination process, including 13 in Kentucky and 8 in West Virginia that remained pending under agency review. More than 50 miles of mountain streams are threatened with destruction by these pending permit applications if the Corps and EPA do not exercise their legal authority and responsibility to ensure compliance with the Clean Water Act. Today’s ruling has no effect on EPA’s Final Guidance or any other pending permit applications, which are not subject to the 2009 memoranda.
“While the coal industry may have succeeded in part of one lawsuit against government agencies, we will continue to support the EPA in their role protecting U.S. families, waters and local communities, and ensure that those protections become stronger,” said Ed Hopkins, Director of the Sierra Club’s Environmental Quality Program. “We will continue working to protect mountains and streams, even as the coal industry tries to continue destroying them.”…
In a public letter submitted today to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, health and environmental activists endorsed an agency proposal that would require pesticide manufacturers to disclose all the potentially hazardous contents of their products, including so-called “inert” ingredients.
Attorney Wendy Park of the public interest law firm Earthjustice filed the letter on behalf of the Center for Environmental Health (CEH). Park described in detail the risks that consumers currently face when using pesticides that are incompletely labeled. She writes, “… in most cases, the effects are truly unknown, and thus, pesticides may be registered before the effects of their formulations or inert ingredients on health and the environment are fully understood.”…
Today marks exactly one year since President Obama’s team promised we’d see solar on the White House — a promise that’s still unkept. So we were especially happy to hear of a bunch of San Francisco high school students who launched a fresh campaign today to remind Obama, and up the stakes!
The new ask: Make the whole White House building into a beacon of sustainability (through getting LEED certified). You can check out the campaign launch site at — and take action — at: www.turnthewhitehousegreen.org
Bill McKibben shared this quick enthusiasm from the road:
“History proves, unfortunately, that even when a promise gets made by a politician, it’s not quite like you or me promising to do something. You have to keep on them. Very glad to see this effort underway!”…
Our Climate Ride experience got off to a beautiful beginning on Sunday morning. After camping all together in Fortuna the night before, the 120 or so riders listened to the day’s briefing and launched down Hwy 101. There was a notable excitement in the air as people whooped and hollered at each wave of the staggered start. I have to admit that our group looked pretty awesome in the custom jerseys featuring wind turbines and the phrase “Ride your bike. Change the world.”
Image via 350.org
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