Janet Phelan: long with generally unstable governments and economic woes, the developing world has another, somewhat insidious problem: plastic pollution.
Walker Foley: Elected officials seem to think there’s only one side of this property rights argument. The people who live in these communities have rights too, but the oil companies seem to have the jump on [the politicians’] side of the fence.
Margaret Flowers, M.D.: The refinery and export terminal may depress tourism, an important local industry. And the increase in cancer, disease and early deaths from the toxins released by the plant will place a financial burden on local families.
Lauren Windsor: If Obama really wanted to be a game-changer, he would mandate strong environmental protections within the TPP, not as an afterthought, but as a driver of the discussion in creating a new model for global trade.
Dan Bacher: For his continuing efforts to plunder California’s natural resources while posing as a “Green Governor” promoting “green energy” and addressing “climate change,” Gov. Brown gets the “Cold, Dead Fish Award” for the third year in a row.
Walter Brasch: Conservatives in Congress have once again proven they are un-American and unpatriotic. This time, it’s because of their fierce approval for the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.
Dan Bacher: The permission to pollute was granted because of the capture of the state’s regulatory apparatus by Big Oil and other corporate interests. In fact, the oil industry not only exerts its enormous influence by spending millions and millions of dollars on lobbying and campaign contributors, but is able to get its officials and allies placed on state and federal regulatory panels.
Walter Brasch: Long before the price of gas and oil began to plummet, socially conscious churches, universities, non-profit organizations, and local governments began to divest themselves of fossil fuel stock and shock the fossil fuel industry to understand the environmental and public health concerns.
Janet C. Phelan: Whatever may driving the autistic/Alzheimer’s diesel train, one thing is for certain: the spectre of half of our children coming into the world with significant brain damage constitutes a massive and undeniable wound to humanity.
Rosemary Jenkins: It is ironic that America, a country that loves to see itself as a leader in the world on progressive issues, is among the few nations worldwide which has not put restrictions on or banned outright the use of GMOs.
Dan Bacher: If things continue in the direction they are going, Delta smelt, longfin smelt, green sturgeon, Sacramento River winter-run and spring-run Chinook salmon, Central Valley sturgeon and other species WILL become extinct in the coming years.
Walter Brasch: Had the state imposed an extraction tax on each well, instead of a much-lower impact tax, there would have been enough money to fund road and bridge repair without additional taxes for motorists. Every state with shale oil but Pennsylvania has an extraction tax.
Dan Bacher: Reservoir storage does not equate to water supply,” said Jay Lund, lead author of the report and director of the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences. “Reservoirs cannot supply water without a water supply to fill them first.”