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Environmental 822 articles

Concern for environmental issues is not new to Beasley Allen. While serving as Lt. Governor for the State of Alabama, in 1971 the firm’s future Principal & Founder Jere Beasley vowed to take control of pollution laws out of the hands of big utilities and special interest groups, and put it back into the hands of the average citizen.

Protection of people and their property from large corporate polluters is still our top priority. A unique feature of our growing environmental toxic tort practice is the ability to represent a large number of people harmed by damage to their property. Our attorneys are fighting to make a difference in the lives of those threatened by environmental toxins that contaminate waterways, soil and wildlife, endangering human health and life.

Months-old Gas Station Leak Continues To Pollute Western NC Waterways, Officials Say

leaking underground storage tank LUST

Cleanup efforts continue on a major gasoline leak from an underground storage tank behind a North Carolina service station. According to The Graham (North Carolina) Star, a leak was first detected in a fuel tank storing premium fuel at the Crown gas station in the western North Carolina town of Robbinsville in mid-August. Since then, remediation efforts have removed 2,600 gallons of gasoline from the ground, “enough to fill a 15-gallon vehicle gas tank 173 times,” the Graham Star noted. The cleanup and abatement operations remain ongoing. The leak has contaminated the nearby Tallulah Creek and Cheoah River. “The section ... Read More

Ethanol Spill In Iowa Creek  Underscores Need For Better Railroad Safety, Critics Say

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Iowa environmental groups are calling on lawmakers for better legislation and regulation of the railroad industry after a Union Pacific freight train hauling ethanol derailed near the town of Graettinger, Iowa, March 10. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) continues to investigate the derailment, which caused some of the train’s ethanol-laden cars to topple into the Jack Creek in the northern part of the state. Fifteen of the cars caught fire and some of them continued to burn two days after the 1 a.m. crash. The derailment and fire also destroyed a bridge running over the creek. Authorities say the ... Read More

Oil Spill From Chevron Pipeline Failure Discovered in NW Colorado

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Chevron Corp. and Colorado authorities are investigating the rupture of a six-inch pipeline that released about 4,800 gallons of oil into a northwestern Colorado stream. A consultant working for Chevron reportedly discovered the oil spill March 5. The spilled oil, which was initially reported to be about 50,000 gallons in volume, traveled about two miles downstream along and intermittent, unnamed tributary of Stinking Water Creek in Rio Blanco County near the Utah border. The oil stopped at a small dam that had been built downstream of the pipeline as a preventative measure to contain oil spills, the Associated Press reported. ... Read More

Oregon Lawmakers Confront Future Oil Train Disasters With New Safety Bills

oil train derailment, Oregon, Photo courtesy ODOT

Two new bills intended to protect the environment and communities from oil train disasters have been introduced in the Oregon legislature with strong support among environmentalists, Native American leaders, and others who believe not enough is being done to prevent or at least limit oil-train derailments and spills. Support for the bills has been fueled largely by the June 3 Union Pacific oil train derailment near Mosier, Oregon, which contaminated pristine forested areas with highly toxic and volatile crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken region. The spill and fire occurred alongside tracks paralleling the Columbia River, a swift-moving, cold-water salmon ... Read More

Tractor-trailers carry nuclear bombs across country

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When driving down the interstate next to an unmarked 18-wheeler, drivers may want to think twice before weaving in and out of traffic. The Los Angeles Times reports that those unmarked 18-wheeler could contain nuclear bombs. The Times reports the Office of Secure Transportation is so covert that few people know of its existence (until now), but the office manages 42 tractor-trailers used to carry nuclear cargo across the country each day. The Times found the office is 48 agents short of its planned 370 staff members, has a history of employees with alcohol problems, and a truck fleet that ... Read More

Scientists Link Fracking to Injured Texas Family’s Exploding Well

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A Texas family who was severely burned when methane gas rushed up their water well and exploded in a fireball has reportedly gathered strong evidence that the blast was the direct result of nearby fracking operations. The Murray family of Palo Pinto County, Texas, commissioned four top scientists to analyze their well water after the 2014 explosion that severely burned Cody Murray, his father, and his young daughter, who was 30 feet away at the time. The fracking industry has steadily maintained there are no provable cases of underground water contamination resulting from hydraulic fracturing operations (commonly known as fracking) ... Read More

EPA Proposes Regulations Requiring Natural Gas Facilities to Report Toxic Chemical Release, Including Benzene

smokestacks - Wiki

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released proposed regulations that require U.S. natural gas processing facilities to report their toxic chemical releases. The regulations would affect about 281 to 444 processing facilities, and would allow the agency to closely monitor chemicals released into the air. The chemicals include xylenes, linked to breathing problems, headaches and neurological issues; formaldehyde, a carcinogen that inflicts damage on the respiratory system; and benzene, which has been linked to blood diseases and cancers such as Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML), Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), lymphomas and aplastic anemia. The proposition was in response to a petition by 19 environmental groups, including the Environmental ... Read More

Feds Order Hilcorp To Fix Ruptured Alaskan Pipeline or Shut it Down

Oil Rig, daylight

Federal regulators gave Hilcorp Energy an ultimatum March 3: Either repair its leaking methane gas pipeline in Cook Inlet, Alaska, by May 1 or shut the line down completely. Digital Journal reports that the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), an office of the U.S. Department of Transportation, issued the directive to oil and gas driller Hilcorp after discovering that the broken pipeline continues to release about 300,000 cubic feet of gas into Cook Inlet, southwest of Anchorage, daily. The leak was first discovered Feb. 7 even though company data indicated its presence as early as December 2016. Federal ... Read More

Pawnee Tribe Sues Oil Companies In Tribal Court For Earthquake Damage

earthquakes, Oklahoma - image courtesy KOTV6

The Pawnee Nation filed a lawsuit in its tribal court March 3, accusing several oil companies actively drilling in Oklahoma of causing that state’s largest-ever recorded earthquake and damaging historical tribal buildings that are nearly a century old. The lawsuit represents the 3,200-member Pawnee tribe in north-central Oklahoma. According to the complaint, the oil companies named as defendants triggered the earthquake by injecting wastewater into wells and destabilizing subterranean layers of bedrock and faults, causing the earth to shift. The complaint is the first earthquake-related litigation to be heard in a tribal court. If it goes to trial, it will ... Read More

BNSF Pays Illinois $50,000 Civil Penalty For 2015 Oil Train Derailment

oil train derailment, Illinois, BNSF 2015

Railroad giant BNSF has agreed to pay $50,000 in civil penalties for a 2015 oil train derailment in Galena, Illinois, that released several thousand gallons of oil , triggered a  massive fire that burned for days, and forced the evacuation of area residents. Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan said the settlement resolves environmental concerns triggered by the March 2015 derailment and spill, which Delaware-based BNSF was court-ordered to clean and monitor. Nobody was injured by the derailment, but the accident released about 30,000 gallons of crude oil, contaminating the ground and threatening local water sources, including the Galena and Mississippi ... Read More