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New Press Releases

October 17, 2014

Press Releases : United Nations Officials Visit Detroit to Investigate Violations Human Right to Safe Drinking Water

Officials from the United Nations (UN) will arrive in Detroit this weekend for a three-day fact-finding mission that was spurred by the denial of water and sanitation services to thousands of residents.

October 15, 2014

Press Releases : Albuquerque, Santa Fe Stand Up for Public Health

“Twenty-three thousand people die each year in the United States from antibiotic resistant infections,” says Eleanor Bravo, Food & Water Watch Southwest organizer. “The public and elected leaders must take action to keep antibiotics working for people. I commend the Santa Fe and Albuquerque City Councils for recognizing the urgency of this situation and taking the lead in in the Southwest.”

New Fact Sheets

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New Issue Briefs

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New Reports

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New Blogs

October 17, 2014

Blogs : The New Face of Green Energy: Profiting From Pollution in the Alberta Oil Sands

On September 29, Genalta Power of Alberta, Canada announced that it generated 8,208 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) carbon offsets from its Cadotte Peace River Power Generating Facility in 2013. The credits were created by converting waste gas — a byproduct of bitumen extraction in the oil sands — that is typically flared, or burned, into electric energy. This superficial, “environmentally-friendly” initiative is a sham, and here’s why: First, offsets of any kind are a shell game. They allow a polluter to purchase emissions reduction credits instead of reducing their own emissions at the source. In the United States, for example, an oil refinery in California is allowed to meet a portion of its required emissions reductions by purchasing offsets from a landowner in Arkansas who has agreed to not cut down the forest on their land. Cutting down trees releases CO2 emissions, so the act of refraining from cutting them down counts as an “avoided emission,” and can be sold as an offset.

October 15, 2014

Blogs : The Global Frackdown 2014: A Recap

Last Saturday, thousands of people across the world gathered to participate in the Global Frackdown: an international day of action to demand a ban on fracking and other dangerous forms of oil extraction. By almost any measure, this year’s collection of rallies, performances, public speaking events and educational opportunities was the biggest and most powerful day of action yet — a reflection of the growing movement against fracking, fueled by mounting scientific evidence that this dangerous practice not only poses a significant threat to water, air, health and our communities, but also threatens the climate on which we all depend.

October 14, 2014

Blogs : California Carbon Offsets: Valid Until Proven Faulty

With the release of the EPA Power Plant Rule in June, California’s carbon cap-and-trade program has been held out as a model for other states to follow, making it remarkable that it could shortly invalidate almost a quarter of a million of its offset credits. On May 29, 2014 the California Air Resources Board (CARB) began an investigation into the validity of 4.3 million carbon offsets, and last week the CARB Executive Officer issued a preliminary determination that 231,154 of these offsets face invalidation. If they become void, it will show just how tenuous and mercurial the California market is. A mechanism meant to create permanent emissions reductions can easily be undone. How will this “solution” ever achieve anything if its supposed emissions reductions can be invalidated at a moments notice? As I wrote in a blog last year, offsets offer polluters in California a cheaper way to meet up to 8 percent of their required emissions reductions under the state’s cap-and-trade system. In effect, an offset allows a polluter to purchase emissions reductions that happen elsewhere — a landowner in Oregon avoids emissions by not cutting down her forests (cutting down trees releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere) and can then sell these “avoided” emissions as offsets to an oil refinery, or other polluter, in California. The oil refinery counts these offsets as part of their emissions reductions, while their pollution continues onsite. It’s a pay-to-pollute scam.