MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico's top environmental official said Tuesday that a mining company lied about a spill of millions of gallons of acids and heavy metals that contaminated two rivers and a dam downstream.
Environment Secretary Juan Jose Guerra Abud said the mine falsely claimed the spill earlier this month was caused by unusually heavy rain. Officials say a construction defect at a holding pond allowed mining waste to flow out.
SYDNEY (AP) — BHP Billiton, the world's biggest miner, said Tuesday it plans to split off some of its smaller assets into a separate company, as it posted a $13.8 billion annual profit.
Melbourne, Australia-based BHP said the reorganization will allow it to concentrate on its mainstay iron ore, copper, coal, petroleum and potash businesses.
The new company, which will have BHP's current chief financial officer Graham Kerr as its CEO, will include some of BHP's assets from five countries, including aluminum, nickel, manganese, silver and coal.
MEXICO CITY (AP) — A civil defense official says a private mine in northern Mexico did not immediately report a massive acid spill, allowing it to flow into a river that supplies water to tens of thousands of people.
Carlos Arias, director of civil defense for the northern state of Sonora, said the spill at a copper mine near the U.S. border was caused by defects in newly constructed leaching or holding ponds.
Such ponds hold the overflow of acids used to leach metal out of crushed rock. But Arias said a pipe either blew out or became unseated on Aug. 7, allowing about 10 million gallons (40,000 cubic meters) of mining acids to flow downstream into a river.
WASHINGTON (AP) — In much of the world's oceans, levels of the metal mercury are double to triple what they were before the industrial revolution, a new study says.
Researchers found there's more mercury from human sources — mostly burning fossil fuels and mining for gold — than scientists had thought.
The study assessed inorganic mercury, which in the ocean gets converted into the toxic methylmercury found in seafood. When pregnant women, nursing mothers and young children eat too much methylmercury-tainted seafood, there's an increased risk of nervous system problems in the developing child.
Tribal advocacy group Nunamta Aulukestai is running an ad across Alaska for a week, targeting the state’s Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski for her support of the controversial Pebble Mine project in Bristol Bay, The Hill reports.
Even though debate about barring the proposed Pebble Mine in Alaska has gone all the way to the White House, the official recommendation to Environmental Protection Agency water officials about the project's future will come from EPA's Region 10 Administrator Dennis McLerran, E&E reports.
ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) — Twenty-two miners were killed in accidents during the first half of 2014, compared to 18 in the first half of 2013 and 19 for the same period in 2012.
The U.S. Department of Labor's Mine Safety and Health Administration on Monday released its mid-year summary of fatal accidents. The report shows eight coal miners died in the first half of the year. While that number is about on par with recent years, the number of workers killed in other types of mining, 14, prompted safety officials to launch a new training and enforcement effort in May.
House Natural Resources Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee hearing, "American Metals and Mineral Security: An examination of the domestic critical minerals supply and demand chain." Expert witnesses.
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed restrictions Friday that would essentially block development of a planned massive gold-and-copper mine near the headwaters of a world premier salmon fishery in Alaska.
The announcement came as the EPA was being sued by Pebble Limited Partnership, the group behind the proposed Pebble Mine, and the state of Alaska for allegedly exceeding its authority.
Plants would no longer be exempt from air pollution regulations when they’re starting up, shutting down or malfunctioning, under a new regulation from the Environmental Protection Agency, The Hill reports.
A series of major energy and environmental regulations will be published by federal agencies between June and August, including the Environmental Protection Agency’s rules limiting power plant carbon emissions, the Interior Department’s rule protecting streams from mountaintop removal coal mining, and the Obama administration strategy for cutting methane emissions, The Hill reports.
A group of senators - 17 Democrats and Independent Bernie Sanders - has written to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, asking her to stop Royal Dutch Shell or anyone else from drilling in the Arctic, Reuters reports.
The reaction in Washington to this week’s oil spill off the coast of Santa Barbara has been muted, National Journal reports, despite wishes expressed by environmentalists that the incident generate backing for policies moving the country away from fossil fuels.
A website set up by Sens. James Lankford, R-Okla., and Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., to collect grievances about federal regulation and bureaucracy has received complaints about a wide variety of the Environmental Protection Agency’s pending regulations, E&E reports.
Mississippi electric power cooperatives are backing away from a deal in which they would take 15 percent ownership of the Kemper County coal plant that will use carbon capture technology, because they said the power it generates would end up being too expensive, E&E reports.
A stronger dollar combined with the drop of only 1 oil rig in Baker Hughes’ weekly count sent crude prices sliding Friday. Benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude lost 1.6 percent, or $1, to settle at $59.72 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London, Brent was $1.17 , or 1.8 percent, lower, at $65.37, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Standard & Poor’s thinks oil companies that have managed to survive the slide in crude prices by borrowing more money may start running into trouble in the coming months, particularly if the price stays in the $50 range, FuelFix reports.
A new analysis concludes that wells in Mountrail and McKenzie counties in North Dakota’s Bakken Shale are productive enough to remain profitable even with oil prices around $60 a barrel, FuelFix reports.
With oil prices dramatically lower than a year ago, AAA predicts that more than 37 million people will travel more than 50 miles over the Memorial Day weekend - the most since 2005, The New York Times reports.