Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Headlines from shorelines all over

Grand concerns for the Grand Canyon
I saw a couple of reports today regarding the health and future well-being of Grand Canyon National Park. One came from USA Today (click here to read that version), and another came from Summit County Citizens Voice, a website within the affected area (click to link).

Seafood from the Gulf
In the aftermath of the biggest environmental calamity in history, fishermen and shrimpers are pulling the first harvest of seafood from the Gulf of Mexico since the BP oil spill. A story in USA Today today poses the simple question: Will it be safe for consumption? (Click here to read the USA today story.) I, for one, am among the thousands of people who hope Gulf seafood gets the green light; the people in this region have been through enough! But from the crude oil to the chemicals used to disperse the mess, there is good reason to do some testing, as well as tasting. (I hope the lesson that greater care and oversight are required in deep water drilling has been learned by everyone involved… and I hope the speedy recovery in the Gulf continues.)

Getting bigger before getting it right?
I read an article in the Wall Street Journal today about the expansion of crude oil pipelines and delivery systems for a company called Enbridge. (Click here to read the WSJ.com story.) The pipeline runs from Tioga, North Dakota or Cromer, Manitoba. The story didn’t just catch my eye because I was born and raised in North Dakota. It caught my eye because the name Enbridge sounded very familiar. While most of the world was fixated on the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico this summer, Enbridge was involved in another spill catastrophe involving the Kalamazoo River in Michigan. The spill began on July 25th, according to this timeline from the Michigan Messenger. According to an AP report, the company had been warned about problems related to their pipeline network, including the line involved with the spill. (Click here to see the version of the story run by MS-NBC.)

Staying on top of water quality issues, with direct access to the EPA
I first learned about the Enbridge spill because the EPA sent me an email. Not that I’m all that important… but I had signed-up for newsletter notifications from the agency by visiting this page on their website. If you’re interested in this kind of thing, don’t take it from me. Get it directly from the Environmental Protection Agency by email. (Click here to sign up.)

Fracking is freaking some folks out
The practice of extracting natural gas from deep shale beds by using water and chemicals to fracture the rock has been getting a lot of attention, lately. The technique, known as “fracking,” is the subject of a recent HBO documentary, suggesting that the practice can compromise water supplies in adjacent lands. Fracking was also the focus of a story today in USA Today. (Click here to read the story.) Or, to see the trailer for the HBO feature film, see below.

If you have a water-quality story to share--especially of the "good news" variety--drop me an email, okay?

Mike Anderson

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