Pollution

Take ENN Reader Survey by June 15, Enter in the Drawing for a Free iPad!!
June 4, 2010 03:50 PM - David A Gabel, ENN

The June 15 deadline for taking the ENN Reader Survey is rapidly approaching. Don't miss out on the chance to make your voice heard, tell us what you think, and win a new iPad! ENN is looking at ways we can improve our website to better serve you. Please take 5 minutes to complete a user survey to help us. The results of our user survey will help us see which parts of our current site are most valuable to you, and which ones you may find less useful. Going forward, we will keep what is working, and make some changes to incorporate new elements that people want. We appreciate that your time is very valuable, and are giving away an Apple iPad as a thank you to one lucky person who completes the survey. The lucky winner can use the iPad to check the news on ENN from any wi-Fi hotspot. It may also be useful for other tasks. The survey will conclude on June 15, and the winner will be announced shortly after the end of the survey period. Click on article link to find link to survey

How to Contain an Oil Spill
June 4, 2010 01:19 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

At present there is a large oil release in the Gulf of Mexico. It is not the first of its kind. Obviously one must try to confine it and then clean it up but what it is the right and effective way? What is a waste of time and resources and what works? Ixtoc I was an exploratory oil well being drilled in the Bay of Campeche of the Gulf of Mexico, about 62 northwest of Ciudad del Carmen, Campeche in waters 160 feet deep. On 3 June 1979, the well suffered a blowout resulting in the third largest oil spill and the second largest accidental spill in history. What was effective then? Under pressure from the Louisiana Governor and other state and local officials, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued an emergency permit on May 27 authorizing the state of Louisiana to construct 45 miles of artificial berm — 300 feet wide at its base and rising six feet out of the gulf — in an attempt to protect delta wetlands and barrier islands from the encroaching oil. How effective will this be?

New Study Examines the Effects of Development Intensity on Stream Health
June 4, 2010 10:52 AM - David A Gabel, ENN

The health of a waterway is entirely dependent on the status of its riparian zone, the area of land from which storm water flows. In urban environments, which are typically found along a waterway, that land is altered, and the flow of water to the stream or river is affected. These changes can have a devastating effect on the populations of aquatic life that reside there.

BP puts containment cap on gushing Gulf well pipe
June 4, 2010 06:24 AM - Anna Driver, Reuters

BP made promising strides in its latest bid to capture some of the oil spewing from its ruptured deep-sea well in the Gulf of Mexico, while President Barack Obama called off an overseas trip and prepared for another visit on Friday to the spill-stricken U.S. Gulf Coast. After failing days ago to plug the well, BP Plc managed on Thursday to shear away the gushing well pipe a mile below the ocean surface, then lowered a containment cap over the jagged hole left atop the crippled wellhead assembly in its latest bid to curtail the oil flow.

The Spreading No Fishing Zone in the Gulf Of Mexico
June 3, 2010 03:38 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has expanded some boundaries of the closed fishing area in the Gulf of Mexico to capture portions of the slick moving beyond the current boundaries – the most significant expansion includes an area off southwest Florida that covers waters just to the west of the Dry Tortugas. Additionally, the agency reopened a 2,637 square mile area of the western most boundary south of Louisiana. Oil was projected to be in this area, but was never actually observed there.

EPA Takes a New Stance on Sulfur Dioxide in Final Rule
June 3, 2010 02:36 PM - David A Gabel, ENN

Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) is a highly reactive gas that is produced from the combustion of fossil fuels. The largest sources of SO2 are power plants (73 percent) and other industrial facilities (20 percent). The gas is strongly linked to negative effects on the human respiratory system such as asthma. Children, the elderly, and those already with asthma are particularly vulnerable to its effects. The US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) says the new one-hour health standard will protect millions of citizens from short-term SO2 exposure.

D.C. Circuit Upholds EPA Revisions to Air Quality Criteria and Standards for Lead
June 3, 2010 09:46 AM - Dan Mach , Sive Paget & Riesel, P.C.

In Coalition of Battery Recyclers Association v. EPA, 2010 WL 1929879 (May 14, 2010), the D.C. Circuit recently upheld an EPA rule revising the primary and secondary National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for air-borne lead (Pb) pollution against challenges by industry representatives. The case arose from consolidated petitions for review under the Administrative Procedure Act filed by two industry representatives alleging that the revised standards were overprotective. The circuit panel, Judge Rogers writing, rejected the petitions, holding that the new standards were supported by substantial record evidence and were not arbitrary and capricious.

Electric ash found in Eyjafjallajokull's plume, say UK researchers
June 3, 2010 09:33 AM - Joe Winters, EurekAlert

In the first peer-reviewed scientific paper to be published about the Icelandic volcano since its eruption in April 2010, UK researchers write that the ash plume which hovered over Scotland carried a significant and self-renewing electric charge. The volcano-chasing researchers argue this adds a further dimension to understanding the detailed nature of volcanic plumes and their effects on air travel.

Oil begins hitting Alabama's Dauphin Island
June 3, 2010 05:57 AM - Verna Gates and Kelli Dugan, Reuters

Teams of workers in protective boots and gloves scoured Alabama's Dauphin Island on Wednesday for washed up tar balls and tar patties that have put the 14-mile-long resort in the front line of the state's fight against the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. The invading oil debris, heralding the arrival on Alabama's coast of parts of the huge, fragmented oil slick spewing from BP's blown-out undersea well, started coming ashore late on Tuesday on the inhabited barrier beach island. Dauphin Island residents, who are used to hurricanes roaring out of the Gulf, were waking up to the reality that they would not escape the impact of the six-week-old spill which had so far mostly affected Louisiana to the southwest.

The New Airplane
June 2, 2010 12:58 PM - Andy Soos, ENN

There has been much said about how large a carbon footprint a plane ride does. There is also the annoyance of waiting in an airport or on a security line. At least the carbon footprint may be reduced in the future. In what could set the stage for a fundamental shift in commercial aviation, an MIT led team has designed a green airplane that is estimated to use 70 percent less fuel than current planes while also reducing noise and emission of nitrogen oxides.

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