Did the EPA misread its own fracking study? If you didn’t already mistrust the Environmental Protection Agency, how’s this for a story: In June, the EPA released a report on a fracking study that found no “wide, systematic impacts on drinking water.” Yet this week, the EPA’s Science Advisory Board came out swinging against the fracking study findings.
I keep hearing pro-fracking ads on my local NPR radio station. And although I’m all in favor of freedom of the press, the whole slimy business just makes my skin crawl. On my station, it was some sweet-voiced farmer soft-selling fracking as an answer to the recession. So when I learned that there’s a new petition taking off through Environmental Action that demands NPR radio affiliates be frack free, I signed up. Want to join me?
“I don’t even live in California. Why should I worry about the drought?” Here’s one reason why we should all be worried about California drought: Farmers in the state grow most of the food that Americans eat, such as 90% of the grapes, and 95% of the broccoli. And that’s just the biggest crops. Here’s another: The problem isn’t just limited to California drought, it’s also affecting the states of Oregon and Washington–Portland and Seattle both announced drought status in July. And finally–not to freak you out or anything–according to EcoWatch, the California drought has lead to an increase in mosquito borne illnesses like West Nile Virus, and a decrease in populations of…
After a seven-year review, last month New York formalized a state-wide ban on fracking. “After years of exhaustive research and examination of the science and facts, prohibiting high-volume hydraulic fracturing is the only reasonable alternative,” Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens said to the Associated Press. “High-volume hydraulic fracturing poses significant adverse impacts to land, air, water, natural resources and potential significant public health impacts that cannot be adequately mitigated.” You’d think other mega-states like California might follow suit, right? Wrong.
Last week, the Senate approved the Fast Track Trade Promotion Authority, prohibiting trade deals from addressing climate change and accelerating the still-under-wraps Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade pact that jeopardizes state’s rights to label GMOs and ban fracking.
Does the earth shake where you live? As a native Californian, I never thought twice about earthquakes. But a recently released United States Geological Survey surprised me: Because of fracking, people in Oklahoma now experience more earthquakes than those who live in my state.
I live in Los Angeles, where nature is hard to come by. Yes, there’s a large park nearby where I spend a lot of time sitting on the soccer game sidelines. And our quiet street has a lot of trees, which my dog and I examine on our daily walks. But the real wilderness—the kind where you don’t hear cars and could actually get lost? That’s not something I experience every day. And I miss it. I grew up going to national parks—hiking in the summer and cross-country skiing in the winters. I backpacked for seven days in the Sequoias when I was six years old. I wore my Yosemite…
What is fracking? Here’s the short answer: Hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, is a drilling practice that calls for injecting millions of gallons of a toxic mixture of chemicals, water and sand into the earth in order to create enough pressure to cracks open rocks and release oil or natural gas. And here’s what you need to know: 1. The nearly 600 chemicals used in fracking include known carcinogens such as benzene, toluene, ethyl benzene and xylene, among others, which can leach into drinking water.