13. June 2010 · Comments Off on BP Stock Owners Dine and Ditch · Categories: Environment · Tags: ,

So here we are watching oil leak from the bottom of the gulf, BP stocks falling through the floor and blame-bullets flying all over the place.  I’m wondering if anyone else is thinking what I’m thinking… While BP was pumping oil to the market the investors were all in… you could almost hear the chant… “Make money, make money…” and a few words to anyone pointing out the dangers of deep sea drilling… “Get lost!”

But now that the danger has turned into disaster the investors want to pull out their money and disconnect from the problem. There’s a serious absence of character here. There’s no way the investors don’t look like slimy snakes. Their demand for return on their investments drove everything necessary to create the problem and now they’re ditching before the cleanup bill comes. Talk about dine and ditch…

I think anytime a disaster like this happens the SEC should immediately freeze all shares of the company involved. This way the same investments that drive these risky operations to start with will be held accountable for the disasters they cause. It brings a sense of responsibility to the world of investment which so far has been allowed to run around creating havoc in any way possible without any responsibility for what they do.

So kick BP all you want if it makes you feel better, but if you want to actually fix the problem then give some thought to where you put your money and who you vote for because ultimately, it was everyday Americans that invested in the energy sector (39% of BP stock is American owned) and voted for “free-market” politicians that caused the oil spill in the Gulf.

11. October 2004 · Comments Off on Chemical Assault on Americans · Categories: Environment, Politics · Tags: ,

What was the reason for invading Iraq..? Oh, yeah – they were developing and stockpiling weapons of mass destruction – well, we haven’t found any yet, but we are pretty sure they hid them somewhere and it’s better to be safe than sorry, after all, just because there has never been a single incident during the 24 years that Hussein was in power where Iraqi WMD was used against Americans, doesn’t mean it couldn’t happen… Especially if Hussein is willing to put these weapons in the hands of international terrorists, such as the type that killed 3,000 people on American soil on the morning of 9/11/01… Not that we have any proof that he did, or even that he had the intention to do so, but again, better safe than sorry. It seems then that with all these precautions and pre-emptive strikes, that Bush is doing a great job at keeping us safe from the danger of such weapons.

Doesn’t it seem ironic then how Bush is intentionally unleashing tons of toxic chemicals directly on Americans at home? Yes, this is an environmental appeal, but that doesn’t change the bottom line. Unnecessary toxins, approved by the Bush administration, is killing many more Americans every year than terrorism has ever killed in our entire history.

Power plants are emitting tens of thousands of tons of toxic air pollution like arsenic and lead, and will be allowed to keep doing so thanks to a giveaway buried in the fine print of the controversial Bush administration “mercury rule” under the Clean Air Act. In addition to weakened and delayed limits on mercury, the rule is written specifically to ignore more than 60 other power plant air toxics that threaten public health. The EPA estimates that 8,000 Americans will die every year as a direct result of this rule, which is only a small fraction of the 70,000 Americans that die every year from air pollution in general. But what makes the 8,000 significant is that this number comes directly from Bush’s command decision to allow these avoidable deaths to occur. That’s like allowing terrorists two-and-a-half 9/11’s every year. Here are just a few of the chemicals that the Bush administration is creating a release valve for and what they can do to us besides killing us.

Arsenic. Can result in nausea, diarrhea and abdominal pain, central and peripheral nervous system disorders, irritation of the skin and mucous membranes, lung cancer, skin cancer, cancer of the bladder, cancer of the liver, anemia, and kidney damage.

Dioxins. Chlorinated chemicals that cause toxic effects at very low levels causing damage to the immune system, learning behavior, and the reproductive system. Dioxins can also cause certain types of cancer. A well-known effect of dioxin is chloracne, a severe acne-like condition that develops within months of an exposure to high levels of dioxin. Dioxin-like compounds are one of the most well-known endocrine disruptors, potentially lowering human and animal fertility.

Acid Gases. Such as hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid, and hydrofluoric acid can cause damage to the respiratory tract. They are corrosive and can cause acute respiratory problems, as well as aggravate chronic respiratory ailments such as asthma and emphysema.

Lead. A very toxic element, causing a variety of effects even at low doses including brain damage, kidney damage, gastrointestinal distress reproductive effects, such as decreased sperm count in men and spontaneous abortions in women, effects on the blood, central nervous system, blood pressure, and kidneys. Children are particularly sensitive to the chronic effects of lead, with slowed cognitive development, reduced growth and other effects reported. The developing fetus is at particular risk from maternal lead exposure, with low birth weight and slowed postnatal neurobehavioral development noted.

Chromium. Certain forms of chromium can be very toxic to the respiratory tract. resulting in shortness of breath, coughing, and wheezing, perforations and ulcerations of the septum, bronchitis, decreased pulmonary function and pneumonia and lung cancer.

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) can damage the immune system and cause developmental and reproductive effects; many are known carcinogens in animals, and studies indicate a risk for people as well.

n-Hexane can cause polyneuropathy with numbness in the extremities, muscular weakness, blurred vision, headache, and fatigue observed.

Formaldehyde can result in respiratory symptoms and eye, nose, and throat irritation; limited human studies have reported an association with lung and nasopharyngeal cancer.

trimethylbenzene can affect the blood’s clotting ability and may cause bronchitis.

The Bush administration’s mercury plan was first leaked to the press in early December 2003 and formally released by EPA later that month. It became clear that the EPA had ignored its own stringent findings and also scuttled the recommendations of a years-long expert task force comprised of industry, environmentalists, and state officials. Then reports surfaced that utility industry lawyers had literally written portions of the rule that would affect their own clients.

How is it that we can be so stupid? To allow our government to take our money and our children to fight a war against a threat that has claimed roughly 3,000 souls on American soil over the last 250 years while actually approving the deaths of 8,000 on American soil every single year?

 

check this out…
Beyond Mercury

21. February 2004 · Comments Off on It’s Only New Jersey · Categories: Environment, Politics · Tags: ,

So the latest I’m hearing, is that the Bush administration, is proposing that millions of gallons of untreated waste and processed sewage, be released into the New Jersey’s waterways during rain or snow storms.

EPA’s sewage plan get’s slammed

It seems to me that this is a case of not having the facilities to deal with waste product, and of taking the option to pollute over the option to fix the problem.

So, here is my perspective…

Imagine, an apartment with one bathroom. Okay, now imagine for some inconceivable reason, there are 140 people all trying to live there. Obviously, a case of urbanism. But imagine the problem of 140 people all sharing one freaking toilet!

So ya gotta build another toilet. Really, you need to build a lot of toilets, but who’s gonna pay for it? Well, for some inconceivable reason, none of the 140 people want to pay. The only other thing happens… 139 people are going to be crapping out the windows and on the porch. That’s gross.

When you start talking about the state of New Jersey…

You just gotta think about the choices being made. We could all pitch in and help pay for facilities, but that’s tax. We could go capitalist and take it from profits coming from what undersized facilities there are, but that would be unfair to business, especially if the other option of passing the cost to the consumer, isn’t feasible. The Bush administration has made it abundantly clear that they do not intent to raise tax, or enforce unfair regulations on industries. And now this…

What other option is there?

We all crap all over ourselves.

Nice choice.

28. January 2004 · Comments Off on Mercury Emissions and the EPA · Categories: Environment, Politics · Tags: ,

Just read about this on the NRDC site…

NRDC and other environmental groups leaked a draft Environmental Protection Agency proposal that would weaken and delay efforts to clean up mercury emissions from America’s coal-fired power plants. The article goes on to explain that those 1,100 facilities are the largest unregulated industrial sources of mercury contamination in the country, spewing 50 tons of the poison — roughly 40 percent of U.S. industrial mercury emissions — into the air each year.

EPA administrator Mike Leavitt defended the draft proposal as an emissions cap-and-trade program similar to the one that has reduced acid rain…

I don’t know much about the reduction of acid rain, but I can see the bullshit factor in the cap-and-trade program. I’ve read that when such programs were first installed some of the big polluters actually created small green energy companies that don’t make a lot of money but are real good for saving pollution credits that the parent companies can buy. I’m assuming the pollution credits are cheaper than the cost of actually cleaning up.

Apparently, the proposal is to downgrade mercury from being regulated as a “hazardous” pollutant to one that requires less stringent pollution controls. By doing so, the EPA’s “cap” would allow nearly seven times more annual mercury emissions over a period five times longer than current law.

NRDC points out that an emissions trading program would allow “hot spots” of mercury contamination in the lakes and rivers neighboring plants that buy pollution credits instead of reducing their mercury emissions. See what I mean?

I mean why is this not a big deal for conservatives? Check this out…

* According to the EPA, toxic mercury emissions from power plants put 300,000 newborns each year at risk for neurological impairment.
* Nearly 5 million American women of childbearing age have mercury in their blood above EPA’s “safe” level.
* Mercury pollution has contaminated 12 million acres of lakes, estuaries and wetlands — 30 percent of the national total — and 473,000 miles of streams, rivers and coastlines.
* Last year, 44 states and territories issued warnings about eating mercury-contaminated fish, a 63 percent jump from 1993.

* Seventeen states have mercury warnings for every inland water body, while 11 states issue warnings for mercury in their coastal waters.

I just don’t understand why people are so much more worried about terrorists when on average terrorists never manage to kill more than a handful of Americans a year. (The 3,000 on 9/11 was by far the largest killing ever by terrorists in 300 years of history, but even if 3,000 were killed every year, it still wouldn’t add up to millions, and pollution is a confirmed killer of millions every year.

Then I read things like this…

According to the Center for Responsive Politics ), the energy industry gave more than $48 million to the Republican Party in the 2000 election cycle; $3 million of that went to the Bush-Cheney campaign.

  • American Electric Power, Southern Co. ($1.6 million to GOP in 2000 cycle)
  • Reliant Energy (nearly $445,000 to GOP)
  • Dominion Resources ($560,000 to GOP)

    Along with the government-owned Tennessee Valley Authority, these corporations were responsible for one-third of all U.S. electric utility mercury emissions that year and American Electric Power alone released 10 percent of all power-plant mercury emissions. The above four companies also were among the beneficiaries of the recent EPA ruling that essentially repealed the Clean Air Act provision requiring power plants to install modern-day pollution controls if they increased emissions when upgrading their plants.

    I guess it’s all about money.

  • 02. December 2003 · Comments Off on Bush’s Clean Air Act = 30,000 death per year · Categories: Environment, Politics · Tags: ,

    Hannity was interviewing (or should I say cross examining) Robert Kennedy Jr on the show the other day and Kennedy mentioned that according to estimates by the National Academy of Science, over 30,000 people will die each year from increases in pollution as a result of Bush’s so-called Clean Air Act.

    Let’s see, 3,000 people died in the biggest terrorist attack in US history and Bush takes the country to war “to make the world safe”, yet he has no problem signing a bill with the potential to kill 30,000 people each year…? I’m not trying to downplay the 9/11 attacks, that was a horrible thing, but I just can’t get past the numbers. I mean if the objective is to make the world safe for American citizens then wouldn’t a threat to 30,000 American lives be a concern? Would those 30,000 deaths be more significant if they exploded in balls of fire instead of dying quietly in a hospital bed?

    Sometimes it’s hard for me to believe that our president is on our side.