NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
Thursday's agenda for the panel's meeting in New Orleans includes a discussion of pending legislation for the session that starts next week.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A group of farmers and business owners sued the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Wednesday, saying the agency's decisions since 2006 have contributed to major flooding in five states.
The federal lawsuit said landowners should be compensated for the extensive damage they experienced — particularly during the extended 2011 flooding that devastated hundreds of thousands of acres of mostly farmland in South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas and Missouri.
The lawsuit filed by more than 200 landowners said the Corps has deemphasized flood control while deciding how to manage Missouri River reservoirs as part of an effort to restore habitat for endangered species, and it claimed that has contributed to more flooding.
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — The crack in a spillway pier at the Wanapum Dam has been downgraded to a "non-failure emergency," meaning the pier is no longer considered at risk of collapsing, the Grant County Public Utility District said Wednesday.
The downgrade is the result of engineering surveys conducted Monday and Tuesday that show the fractured area found on one of the dam's spillways was continuing to stabilize, the PUD said in a press release.
"This is still a serious issue," Chuck Allen, a public affairs officer for the PUD, said Wednesday.
Weeks of heavy rain have flooded parts of Britain this winter, as a study in the journal Nature Climate Change warns that such extreme weather is likely to become more common, The New York Times reports.
BEIJING (AP) — China's government pledged Wednesday to promote sustainable growth by opening state-dominated industries to private investment and making banks more market-oriented while keeping this year's economic expansion at a relatively robust 7.5 percent.
In his first annual policy speech as China's top economic official, Premier Li Keqiang said Beijing will promote consumer spending, ease exchange rate controls and improve access to credit for productive businesses.
He also vowed to address long-festering complaints about choking smog.
UNCERTAIN, Texas (AP) — Deep beneath the surface of Texas' only naturally formed lake there used to swim a massive, open-mouthed dinosaur-era fish with a long snout and prized caviar. Now, decades after the paddlefish was almost completely wiped out, it's coming back to Caddo Lake.
This time, the fish will be closely tracked by scientists, researchers and students in 20 schools as part of a broad collaboration between private, state and federal agencies attempting to revitalize a long-damaged ecosystem by changing the water releases from a nearby dam. Scientists believe if the paddlefish survive it will be a sign the ecosystem is recovering.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Federal wildlife officials Tuesday set aside nearly 1,200 square miles along the U.S.-Mexico border as habitat essential for the conservation of the jaguar, a species that hasn't been spotted in New Mexico in eight years and one that has made only fleeting appearances on wildlife cameras in Arizona's Santa Rita Mountains.
Jaguars have been on the federal endangered species list for nearly two decades, but it took a series of lawsuits filed by environmentalists to prompt the critical habitat designation.
NEW YORK (AP) — A federal judge on Tuesday blocked U.S. courts from being used to collect a $9 billion Ecuadorean judgment against Chevron for rainforest damage, saying lawyers poisoned an honorable quest with their illegal and wrongful conduct.
"Justice is not served by inflicting injustice. The ends do not justify the means," U.S. District Judge Lewis A. Kaplan wrote. The judge said it was a sad outcome to have to rule that the Ecuadorean court judgment "was obtained by corrupt means," because it will likely never be known whether there was a case to be made against the San Ramon, Calif.-based oil company.
Comments from Saudi oil minister Ali al-Naimi that OPEC would not cut production “whatever the price is,” triggered a fresh slide Monday. U.S. benchmark crude dropped 3.3 percent, or $1.87, to $55.26 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London Brent fell 2 percent to $60.11, Reuters reports.
Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz should not support legislation introduced by Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., to speed up approvals of LNG exports, a coalition of 114 environmental groups said in a letter Monday, The Hill reports.
For illegal waste disposal and causing a landslide that diverted streams, shale gas driller Vantage Energy Appalachia LLC has been ordered to pay a penalty of $999,900 by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports.
Arizona Corporation Commissioners didn’t approve, but didn’t object to plans for Arizona Public Service Co. to spend $28.5 million to put free solar on the roofs of 1,500 customers in order to test west-facing solar panels and voltage regulators, The Arizona Republic reports.
With continued mild weather and the fear of frigid cold receding, natural gas prices slumped 31 cents to the lowest level in nearly two years, at $3.144 per million British thermal units, FuelFix reports.
In Wyoming, Republican state Rep. John Patton is introducing legislation to upend a ban on using Next Generation Science Standards, the teaching of climate change science, seeking to leave the matter up to the state Board of Education to decide, National Journal reports.
The sale of Morgan Stanley’s oil trading and storage business to Russian oil giant Rosneft has been scuppered by failure to win approval from U.S. regulators, the companies announced Monday, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Joe Rodota, whose Forward Observer operation has worked environmental issues for years out in California – most recently in support of legislation banning single-use plastic bags – has had an office in Washington D.C. for the past two years, although he declined to tell E&E about his clients there.
Meteorologist Bob Simpson, who died last week aged 102, pushed for establishment of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, helped develop the Saffir-Simpson scale of hurricane intensity in use today, and also founded a Hawaiian observatory where carbon measurements were refined, among other accomplishments, The Washington Post reports.
Tokyo Electric Power Co., the operator of the ruined Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, says it has managed to remove fuel rods from the vulnerable No. 4 reactor building, and they are being placed in an undamaged storage pool, The New York Times reports.