skip to main content

Friday, June 9, 2023

play newscast audioPlay

Former President Donald J. Trump first ever to face federal charges in 7 count indictment; the Supreme Court strikes down Alabama's Congressional Maps; Canadian wildfires affect the health of humans and wildlife.

play newscast audioPlay

The Supreme Court upholds a key provision of the Voting Rights Act over Alabama redistricting, smoky skies could spell EPA trouble for some states, and President Biden calls on Congress to pass LGBTQ+ protections.

play newscast audioPlay

Rural communities launch projects with funds from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, a study says rural transgender adults feel less supported than those in urban areas, and a summer road trip could mean majestic scenic byways or a sprinkling of donut shops.

GA Groups Fight to Stop Mine Near Okefenokee

play audio
Play

Friday, September 16, 2022   

Environmental groups are calling on Georgia's Environmental Protection Division to reject permits to build a titanium mine near an intact freshwater wetland system known as the Okefenokee swamp, which extends into Florida.

The up-and-down battle to protect the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge has perplexed many because of new murky U.S. wetland policies formed under the Trump administration.

Ultimately, Twin Pines Minerals Company successfully sued the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which dropped its federal protections of the swamp in a settlement.

Christian Hunt - Southeast program representative for Defenders of Wildlife - said he was shocked to see the Corps flip-flop, allowing the mining company to move forward with plans to mine on more than 500 acres at the edge of the largest U.S. National Wildlife Refuge east of the Mississippi, if it gets state approval.

"We think this is an inappropriate neighbor," said Hunt. "It's an inconsistent land use adjacent to this world-class wildlife refuge, and dozens of scientists have voiced such sentiments, so we're following science in that regard."

Twin Pines Minerals maintains the mine "poses no risk to the environment," and is fighting back claims from scientists that the mine would "drain the swamp."

Georgia's Environmental division announced it will continue considerations and the public will get to weight in soon - updates will be announced on the divisions website.

The mine has received bipartisan opposition even from agency scientists. In 2019, the Fish and Wildlife Service said the proposed mine could pose "substantial risks" to the swamp, including its ability to hold water.

Hunt said the mine poses a great danger to the swamp's Trail Ridge - a high ridge of sand running from Starke, Florida, to just southwest of Jesup, Georgia.

"Essentially like an earthen dam to the Okefenokee," said Hunt. "So it's very important in maintaining, and influencing water levels in the swamp in the fears that should mining operations break ground here they would essentially destroy the Okefenokee's ability to sustain itself."

The Refuge covers nearly 630 square miles and is home to alligators, bald eagles and other protected wildlife. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which manages the refuge, estimates the swamp draws around 600,000 visitors each year.




get more stories like this via email
Guns to Gardens volunteers in New Hampshire are working against what are considered among the weakest gun laws in the country. State law does not require background checks on all gun sales, or limit access to firearms by people in crisis. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

Community volunteers in New Hampshire are turning unwanted firearms into garden tools as part of a nationwide effort to reduce gun violence. Under …


Social Issues

play sound

Parents and educators in the Houston Independent School District said they are all for improving schools but do not believe a state takeover by an une…

Social Issues

play sound

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld a lower-court ruling on a 5-to-4 vote Thursday, deciding Alabama's 2022 congressional maps violated the Voting Rights …


Alaska has more than 322 million acres of public lands, more than three times the acreage of the entire state of California. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

The Bureau of Land Management has announced a $161 million investment in habitat and wildland restoration projects in 11 western states. Alaska is …

Social Issues

play sound

To fight such pressing issues as housing shortages and increasing crime rates in cities across the country, many of the nation's mayors are taking …

Receiving an early diagnosis may help lessen anxieties about why you are experiencing symptoms, according to the Alzheimer's Association. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

play sound

As part of Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month, mental-health advocates in Iowa are sharing information about Alzheimer's and say two new drugs …

Social Issues

play sound

Gov. Spencer Cox has announced a statewide initiative to increase awareness of the Affordable Connectivity Program, which aims to get more Utahns …

Social Issues

play sound

Most Illinois residents will soon be paying the one-percent state sales tax on their groceries again. Governor JB Pritzker's temporary tax relief is …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021