Archive for the ‘oil spill’ tag
Supreme Court hears Arizona’s controversial ‘papers’ argument, Occupy interrupts shareholder meetings
Allison and Jamie talk about the Occupy/ACT UP protest in New York, the Supreme Court appears to favor Arizona on its controversial immigration law, Occupy protesters disrupt corporate shareholder meetings, Netroots decides to play nice with President Obama, the feds make the first arrest following the BP oil spill tragedy, the UK slips into a double dip recession – is the US far behind?, Minnesota’s state GOP gets evicted from its headquarters, Jamie recommends good sources of iron for vegans, and Kthug writes about another controversial issue: Zionism.
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Hurricane hysteria, the MLK monument and the censoring of King’s legacy, Allison plots to steal a dinosaur fossil, Jamie explains why horse-drawn carriages are a bad thing. Also, surprise! BP continues to lie about the Gulf oil spill.
Special guest: The Republican baby
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Journalist Mike Elk joins the show to talk about his exclusive report on how Koch tells its employees which way to vote. Also, Paul Ryan’s base turns against him, the mental toll of BP’s oil spill lingers, and surprise! Another Republican mailed out a horribly racist photo of President Obama.
Allison continues to blog at The Nation. Share her articles on Facebook and Twitter! Latest post: Town Hall Meltdowns, Hundreds Protest Cuts.
Singer-songwriter and lead vocalist of Otep, Otep Shamaya, visits Citizen Radio to talk about vegetarianism, coming up in the metal scene, recording an album in post-Katrina New Orleans, her disappointment with President Obama, and how much she loves laughing at crazy Republicans. Check out Otep’s awesome body acceptance campaign: All Shapes And Sizes.
It’s the one-year anniversary of BP’s disastrous oil spill, and things are still very bad in the Gulf. During a time of economic austerity, the government still hugely subsidizes the industry. Allison talks about how doing away with some oil subsidies could bring in $45 billion in the next ten years and save countless essential social services.
Also, interviews with the glorious governor of Arizona, Jan Brewer, and Negotiator-in-Chief, Obama himself.
Allison continues to blog at The Nation. Share her articles on Facebook and Twitter! New post: Thousands Protest Snyder’s Authoritarian Power Grab.
It’s been a hell of a week at Citizen Radio (which you can hear by subscribing for free at wearecitizenradio.com)
We talked full-body scanners and racial profiling, celebrated our 200TH EPISODE and interviewed Mother Jones‘ Kate Sheppard about environmental politics, Halliburton, and BP, and Daniel Burke about Australia’s refugee prisons.
It’s time to call sabotage, sabotage. Republicans have repeatedly undermined Democratic-led efforts — not for the sake of easing the recession, fixing unemployment, or stemming the foreclosure crisis — but for the expressed purpose of making Obama a one-term president.
The IMF is pressuring Ireland to cut unemployment benefits and the minimum wage, and USA Today reports that in the last 5 years fully body scanner firms have doubled their lobbying efforts..
Mother Jones‘ Kate Sheppard explains Cap and Trade, dissects Obama’s progress on environmental issues and also the global warming deniers within the GOP, Halliburton’s role in BP and hydraulic fracturing, and the environmental legacy of BP’s toxic dispersants.
The Oracle AKA Daniel Burke then gives some updates on the refugee prisons in Australia, including another tragic suicide and his rough encounter with police during a protest.
Also, Jamie shares his experience taping for Joy Behar’s show, including surviving the taunts of a demon child, witnessing the glorious Joan Collins, and -why not?- encountering the grandmother from Everybody Loves Raymond.
And as always, Citizen Radio answers a ton of your Listener Mail! Questions/comments this week include: how Christians aren’t a monolith and talking to your apathetic hipster douche bags.
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I’d love to know what kind of bet Robert Wine lost where he ended up having to explain the actions of his company to a lowly blogger.
Robert’s official title is “press officer,” and from the tone of his emails, he didn’t really appreciate a no-name busybody asking questions about the actions of the paycheck dispensary.
My favorite aspect of this exchange is how we both start off with our bestest smiles on, and adopt pristine tones of civility.
Yeah, that ends about halfway through the email convo.
Some background: I wrote BP as a follow-up to their official statement on the sand dumping allegations. BP claims the gathering and dumping of sand into piles are part of the cleaning process.
It’s possible that sand keeps washing in from the ocean and redepositing atop the oil. However, if that’s the case, then this kind of video does not bode well for BP’s overall clean-up effort.
Are they just removing some of the oil, then leaving once the sand washes back over the remaining pollution?
Like I’ve said, I contacted BP about this, and I’m still waiting to hear back from them.
Update: The ever-excellent Karen Dalton-Beninato has posted an update on the story here with a response issued today from the Coast Guard. They claim that the gathering, relocating, and dumping of sand are all part of a cleaning process that includes the temporary storing of sand in piles for “later cleaning”:
“There is a long-term treatment plan for Grand Isle which includes the collection and washing of oiled sand including buried oil. Part of this plan includes collecting and storing oiled sand in piles for later cleaning. At no time has clean sand been used by clean-up crews to cover or bury oil or oiled sand,” said Don Ballard, operations director for the Grand Isle branch.
The press release also states that, “Coast Guard crews throughout the Deepwater Horizon response branches in Louisiana are checking deployed boom and surveying for additional oil deposits after heavy weather moved through the area beginning Sunday, June 27. Heavy winds and waves have blown sand across beaches, burying oil and boom. Reports of damaged and stranded boom have been received from Plaquemines, Terrebonne, Iberia, Jefferson and Lafourche parishes. Crews are beginning a systematic effort to repair any boom that has been damaged. Heavy waves have eroded sand along beaches exposing oil that had been buried by natural sand build-up along the coasts. Beaches in Grand Isle, La., in particular, have had sand eroded away exposing buried oil.”
If this is true, it certainly would have been easier to ascertain had the infamous 65-foot rule never been implemented. The Coast Guard obviously concurs, since they lifted the “no journalists allowed” rule for a special one-day only bonanza in which the media could observe the Grand Isle team up close.
On this Independence Day, let’s remember that journalists remain crouched 65-feet away from the worst environmental tragedy in the country’s history, while the government permits a private corporation to suspend the First Amendment because it may damage its stock value.
Update 2: Today BP dropped their official explanation, which is virtually identical to the previous statement (or I should say, the Coast Guard is parroting the BP line):
There is a long-term treatment plan for Grand Isle which includes the collection and washing of oiled sand including buried oil. Part of this plan includes collecting and storing oiled sand in piles for later cleaning. At no time has clean sand been used to cover or bury oil or oiled sand.
Beaches naturally pass through a series of growth and degradation depending on the sea conditions. Storms that have passed through the area have deposited sand on the beach and eroded it again exposing oil buried by sediments brought in by the weather.
Now that the bad weather has moved through the cleanup area, crews are able to return to the water and beaches and renew the process of removing the oil.
As you might imagine, it’s impossible to secure a BP official right now for an extensive interview about this, but I keep emailing their offices with my questions. The sand in the videos don’t appear to be in piles, but rather matted down. Of course, that could very well be from the ocean washing against the piles, and flattening them, as BP says in this latest release. But in that case, how does BP discern what areas are “clean” and what areas are “contaminated?” There are no visible markers anywhere (at least that are clear in the videos).
Yesterday, I contacted a friend of mine, C.S. Muncy, who is a photojournalist currently raising all kinds of hell down in southern Louisiana.
C.S.’s original goal was to gain access to some of the areas being guarded by BP contractors and deemed “off limits” to reporters, but yesterday he, along with Save Our Shores‘s Judson Parker, made an unexpected discovery.
They believe that BP has been dumping sand on the beaches in order to cover up oil. You can view some video Judson shot of the beach over here.
I called C.S. to ask him about the alleged cover-up.
AK: Is it true that BP has been covering some of the oil on the beach with sand?
CM: Yeah. Yeah, this is interesting…We went down onto the beaches, and we started inspecting them. There were tar balls, tar residue, and there was some oil on the beach. Apparently, the day before there was a lot of tar balls, and BP was working in the area pretty heavily, and we started noticing there was a different consistency in the sand.
Surely, the BP disaster deserves the obsessive coverage it has received (thus far). But at the risk of missing some other important stories, I want to briefly address two somewhat overlooked catastrophes – one that has already taken place, and one that possesses the potential to be horrific, but we still have time to stop.
Many Americans would be surprised to hear there’s another domestic oil spill – in Salt Late City. (via)
Chevron says a hole the size of a quarter caused their pipeline to rupture around 33,000 gallons of oil into the creek.
The manager of Chevron’s refinery in the Salt Lake City area said Monday that the company believes the rupture in the 10-inch pipeline was caused by an electrical arc that traveled through a metal fence post. Mark Sullivan says the arc acted like an electrical torch, causing the hole.
Sullivan couldn’t say how long the pipeline was leaking before Chevron was notified of the problem Saturday morning. But Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker says residents could smell the odor of petroleum overnight Friday.
The spill has coated about 300 birds at area creeks and ponds, and the oil is possibly threatening an endangered fish.
Chairman of the Salt Lake City Council, J.T. Martin, calls the event a horrible tragedy.
Though President Obama has asked the media to place the burden of responsibility on his shoulders, it’s clear BP was woefully unprepared for a disaster of this magnitude (even though they told the government they could handle a spill 60 times larger than Deepwater Horizon). The truth is the company really didn’t have a contingency plan for something of this scale.
A blowout like this one apparently wasn’t expected, although it should have been. One of the most stunning examples of BP’s lack of preparation is evidenced in the emergency-response strategy report it prepared in accordance with federal law. The report runs 583 pages, but is alarmingly short on how to stop a deep-sea spill.
Perhaps BP’s disaster management was a bit light on the details because the government wasn’t asking tough questions. The MMS, the agency charged with overseeing offshore drilling, is disastrously managed. A report issued recently by the IG outlines the same familiar type of cronyism and corruption that has become a systemic rot in Washington.