I learned the discouraging news that one of the slipperiest centrists in the Democratic Party has reconsidered his decision regarding the US Senate seat now held by the retiring Ben Nelson of Nebraska. Here’s the news: “Former senator Bob Kerrey (D-Neb.) has changed his mind and plans to run for the open Senate seat in Nebraska, according to a senior Democratic aide.”
|By: Teddy Partridge Monday February 27, 2012 7:15 pm|
|By: Teddy Partridge Monday January 2, 2012 6:30 pm|
Writing an opinion piece for the Lincoln (NE) Journal-Star, civil engineer Mike Klink calls TransCanada’s predecessor Keystone XL pipeline, for which he was a construction quality inspector, a “lemon” and a “proven loser.” Klink was fired from his job and is seeking Department of Labor whistleblower protection.
|By: David Dayen Tuesday November 15, 2011 4:24 pm|
TransCanada, the company in charge of the Keystone XL pipeline, has announced that they would re-route the pipeline away from the Nebraska Sand Hills, where it would pass over an aquifer that provides a good deal of water for much of the Great Plains.
|By: David Dayen Wednesday November 2, 2011 7:40 am|
President Obama, asked about the Keystone XL pipeline in a local news interview, took full responsibility for making the decision. He related a full understanding of the public health risks, though he limited that to the immediate risks of a pipeline spill, rather than the extraction and burning of tar sands oil in general.
|By: David Dayen Monday October 31, 2011 9:00 am|
There are two flashpoints coming up on the Keystone XL pipeline: Nebraska is holding a session today to consider how it might force the pipeline sponsors to reroute the pipeline away from the giant Agallala Aquifer. On November 6, Bill McKibben’s group has organized an effort to surround the White House in protest.
|By: David Dayen Wednesday October 26, 2011 2:55 pm|
There have been only a few Democrats expressing concerns about the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, despite lots of concerns raised about the State Department’s handling of the environmental review. But now it’s possible State may delay the decision to give it more time to review public comments.
|By: mzchief Friday September 9, 2011 9:45 am|
Nine recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize including the Dahli Lama and Archibishop Desmond Tutu have written a letter to President Obama. They urge him to reject the proposed Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline which will affect “millions of people whose lives and livelihoods will be affected by construction and operation of the pipeline in Alberta, Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas” and risks “contaminating the Ogallala Aquifer, the main source of fresh water for the Great Plains.”
|By: Peterr Saturday September 3, 2011 9:00 am|
While most of the media watches the terrible flood waters spawned by Irene begin to recede, and wonders about Tropical Storm Lee’s rain around New Orleans, those of us along the Missouri River continue to deal with record flooding. It’s been over two months since portions of Interstate 29 in NW Missouri were closed, and they’re still under water.
Iowa Republican Congressman Tom Latham came back and viewed the damage in Council Bluffs, and was surprised by what he saw.
It’s no surprise to those of us along the river, Congressman. We’ve been looking at it all summer, and we’re just hoping it’s gone by Halloween.
|By: David Dayen Wednesday August 31, 2011 9:45 am|
Nebraska is one of the states most powerfully affected by the Keystone XL pipeline. The proposed route cuts through the Sand Hills region and the Ogallala Aquifer, which carries the potential for serious environmental damage in the event of a spill. Nebraska residents have been high-profile participants in the ongoing tar sands actions in front of the White House. But I’ll bet even they never expected their Republican governor to sign on to their cause.
I can’t remember any other GOP politician coming out against the tar sands pipeline.
|By: OMB Tuesday August 23, 2011 3:20 pm|
First, the disclaimer. I’m an ecosystem researcher and I’ve been working in the Nebraska SandHills for 10 or so years. The SandHills are the major recharge zone for the Ogallala (or High Plains) aquifer. That’s where water goes into the system to (hopefully) replace what we take out via wells.
The SandHills are also the largest “grass stabilized” dune field in the world, and without the grasses, they would be the largest sand dune field in the Western Hemisphere. The soils are very very sandy and porous, allowing quick and efficient infiltration of any fluids that happen to impinge upon them.
My colleague and I have just made the first measurements of the recharge rate (although only at a single point) in the region and I have a pretty good idea of how easily things can work their way down to the water table (i.e. the aquifer).