The Obama Administration is blocking a comprehensive environmental study on the impact of exporting massive quantities of liquefied natural gas, or LNG, on the grounds that new gas drilling induced by the exports is not “reasonably foreseeable.”
Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Energy is resisting calls by Dow Chemical and other manufacturers for a more clearly defined and transparent DOE process for determining whether proposed LNG export projects serve the “public interest.”
Aiken, S.C. – Tons of weapons grade plutonium and other nuclear materials, a target for terrorists, are not being properly protected by the National Nuclear Security Administration at the Department of Energy’s sprawling Savannah River Site, according to security consultants and U.S. counterintelligence officials.
A secret security review underway at DOE and other government agencies after an elderly nun last summer breached a NNSA bomb-grade-uranium facility at the Oak Ridge Tennessee Y12 area reveals “harrowing problems in site management and control at other DOE sites,” said a Homeland Security official who requested anonymity. The official said that the Savannah River Site was of concern because “SRS does not have the staffing or the facilities to protect the huge amounts of plutonium that have been brought to SRS in recent years.” Continue reading The Bomb Plant: America’s Three A.M. Nightmare
Billboard in Tioga County, New York; "Drill a Gas Well. Bring a Soldier Home."
Five years ago, the United States did not produce enough natural gas to meet its own needs and was resigned to its status as a long-term gas importer.
Now that has all changed, thanks to the widespread use of high-volume hydrofracking to extract gas from shale formations. Today domestic gas supplies are so high and prices so low that energy companies are scrambling for clearance to export it to countries that will pay three or four times as much for it.
But granting export permits to all who seek them could be a dangerous mistake. The U.S. Department of Energy, among others, suspects that rampant exporting would trigger domestic price spikes that would hurt consumers, electric utilities and manufacturers. Over time, more expensive gas would undercut the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturing worldwide. Continue reading The Elusive Promise of Cheap Energy
The old Atomic Energy Commission did not give much thought to where they were going to put their new nuclear weapons processing plant in the 1950s other than it needed to be on the other side of the country from their World War II era facility in Hanford, Washington. The military planners wanted the two campuses as difficult as possible for Soviet bombers to attack simultaneously. The location picked during the Truman administration ended up being in the heart of the segregated South, near Aiken, South Carolina, and Augusta, Georgia, because the site was large and had access to water for cooling the massive new reactors.
Uncle Sam gets Nothing
The U.S. government controls an enormous amount of land, particularly in the western half of the country. The Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages an estimated 700 million acres of public lands, with much of it open for development by oil, gas, mining, and renewable energy development. When these various industries come into conflict, hardrock mining interests – gold, silver, copper, and other minerals » read more
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On DCBureau are a story and timeline about the history of the Clean Water Act and the efforts to undermine it. Together they show an incremental, well-funded, organized campaign to weaken the law. On the 40th Anniversary of the Act, it is important to remember that environmental laws enjoyed bipartisan support for years. Weakening environmental regulations through the Congress and courts will have lasting, irreversible results.
Read in The New York » read more
A new web documentary quotes security experts as saying the Savannah River Site, where massive amounts of weapons-grade plutonium and other dangerous substances are stored, is vulnerable to a terrorist attack that could have dire consequences for the entire southeastern United States. The documentary reveals the Site is guarded by a foreign-owned firm with a checkered security record. The radioactive material is stored in aging buildings. The small private guard force » read more
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