Late Night: Boomtown USA

By: Tuesday October 14, 2014 8:00 pm

At 9 p.m. on that August night, when I arrived for my first shift as a cocktail waitress at Whispers, one of the two strip clubs in downtown Williston, I didn’t expect a 25-year-old man to get beaten to death outside the joint. Then again, I didn’t really expect most of the things I encountered reporting on the oil boom in western North Dakota this past summer.

“Can you cover the floor?” the other waitress yelled around 11 p.m. as she and her crop-top sweater sidled behind the bar to take over for the bouncers and bartenders. They had rushed outside to deal with a commotion. I resolved to shuttle Miller Lites and Fireball shots with extra vigor. I didn’t know who was fighting, but assumed it involved my least favorite customers of the night.

 

Mining The Earth: 14 Oct 2014

By: Tuesday October 14, 2014 5:12 pm

*USA. Use of sand for fracking may be all the rage right now, but concerns about “the health impacts of breathing silica dust” are mounting, too. One sand miner’s stock increased 400% over the past year and a half, and another is adding 3.8 million tons “of frac sand mine and plant capacity in Wisconsin and Missouri.” But health experts and local governments are increasingly very concerned about the major effects of sand mining on health.

Study: Earth Lost 50% of Its Wildlife in Last 40 Years

By: Tuesday September 30, 2014 10:25 am

According to a new study from the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF) and the Zoological Society of London, planet Earth has lost 50% of its wildlife in the past 40 years. The metric used to make the determination was the Living Planet Index (LPI) which has declined by 52% since 1970. The LPI measures more than 10,000 representative populations of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish according to the WWF website.

A Lively Atmosphere at the People’s Climate March

By: Tuesday September 23, 2014 2:27 pm

The People’s Climate March featured a diverse amount of people and groups with major themes scattered throughout the march under the banner of environmentalism.

With the United Nations General Assembly occurring two days later, organizers hoped to create an event to raise awareness through the efforts of those in attendance.

Bautista, Crisp-Sauray, and McKibben: A Future to March For

By: Monday September 15, 2014 4:04 pm

It was June 12, 1982. My daughter was still in her stroller, my son as yet unborn, when my wife and I, six friends, and another child in a stroller joined an estimated million people in New York City at the largest antinuclear protest in history. All of the adults in our party had grown up in a world unsettled in a unique way: Armageddon had, for the first time, potentially become a secular event. End times were no longer God’s choice for us, but ours for ourselves.

It seemed no mistake that, three decades into the Cold War, the nuclear readiness of the two superpowers was referred to as “mutual assured destruction,” about as graphic a phrase as you could find for the end of civilization; and, of course, it had its own acronym which, to us at least, seemed less like an abbreviation than sardonic commentary: MAD.

Report: CO2 Rising At Record Breaking Speeds, Planet Not Absorbing Excess Carbon

By: Wednesday September 10, 2014 6:52 am

Remember that actual threat whose solution does not put money into the hands of politically-connected defense contractors? A new UN report shows that carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere rose faster than even many climate scientists had predicted providing more evidence that current strategies by governments around the world to combat climate change is failing.

Late Night: Mining the Earth

By: Monday September 1, 2014 8:00 pm

“Federal officials are looking for train cars to haul nuclear waste towards its final resting place. Too bad they have no idea where that train will actually go.”

Documents: Cheniere Fuels ALEC’s New Push for Fracked Gas Exports

By: Friday August 1, 2014 1:59 pm

Thursday, legislative and lobbyist members of the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) voted on model legislation promoting both exports of gas obtained via hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) and vehicles powered by compressed natural gas (CNG).

Dubbed a “corporate bill mill” by its critics, ALEC is heavily engaged in a state-level effort to attack renewable energy and grease the skids for exports of U.S. oil and gas. Today’s bills up for a vote — as conveyed in an ALEC mailer sent out on June 25 by ALEC’s Energy, Environment and Agriculture Task Force — are titled “Resolution In Support of Expanded Liquefied Natural Gas Exports“ and “Weights and Measures and Standards for Dispensing CNG and LNG Motor Fuels.”

Late Night: When The Music’s Over

By: Saturday July 26, 2014 8:00 pm

Recently I’ve been exploring the deep, dark and dirty business of extracting substances from the earth for profit, and have written a few articles for you, sharing the results. Throughout that time, one particular poem has been rumbling around in my head. It’s embedded in a wonderful musical experience to enjoy, or most likely re-enjoy, with you.

Battle Lines Drawn on New Coal Industry Rules

By: Thursday May 29, 2014 11:45 am

Implementing proposed EPA rules could cut carbon emissions from the coal-fired plants by up to 20%. A considerable reduction given how ubiquitous coal is, even in 2014, to America’s energy system. Part of Obama’s plan is reportedly based on a cap-and-trade system that he was unable to pass through Congress.

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