Thursday, August 11, 2022

Play

A new report says Georgia should step up for mothers and infants, Oregon communities force a polluter to shut down, and we have an update on the FBI's probe of Trump allies, including Rep. Scott Perry, R-Pa.

Play

Inflation could be at a turning point, House members debate the expansion of the IRS, and former President Donald Trump invokes the Fifth Amendment in a deposition over his business practices.

Play

Infrastructure funding is on its way, ranchers anticipate money from the Inflation Reduction Act, and rural America is becoming more diverse, but you wouldn't know it by looking at the leadership.

Lawsuit Launched Over Piney Point Wastewater Leak

Play

Friday, May 21, 2021   

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Conservation groups say Florida's environmental regulators ignored a decade of warning signs - including advice from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers - and it ultimately led to the Piney Point wastewater leak. Now, they plan to file suit.

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection, HRK Holdings, and the Manatee County Port Authority have all been named in the Notice of Intent to Sue, after April's leak of a phosphogypsum stack, releasing about 215 million gallons of wastewater into Tampa Bay and prompting evacuations.

Jaclyn Lopez, Florida director and senior attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity, said the suit calls for permanent closure of the site and better solutions than dumping the remaining waste into Florida's groundwater.

"If we don't file this lawsuit," said Lopez, "our concern is that the DEP, the county and HRK is going to choose a path of least resistance for getting rid of the waste that they're left managing, and deep-well injection appears to be such a path."

In a statement, the Florida DEP says it's committed to holding all involved accountable, as well as ensuring permanent closure of the site. However, Lopez and other conservation groups say the suit highlights the state's negligence, which allowed the spill to occur.

The groups note DEP is the primary agency for granting permits for operations at the site, and allege that it ignored the advice of federal regulators to not use the site as a place to store dredge material. Lopez said all parties were aware of the risks.

"Piney Point is a well-documented example of the regulatory failures of an industry, but it's not the only one," said Lopez. "We have many other phosphogypsum stacks in Florida that are in various stages of failing or failure."

The groups want to see more effort on cleanup alternatives, such as the phosphate industry-backed use of reverse osmosis systems to clean and filter wastewater.

Other plaintiffs include the ManaSota-88, Our Children's Earth Foundation, Suncoast Waterkeeper and Tampa Bay Waterkeeper.


get more stories like this via email
Pictured in the center is Francine "Fran" Pace, one of 11 graduates of this summer's Youth Leadership Academy for Iowans with disabilities. (Photo courtesy of DD Council).

Health and Wellness

Nearly a dozen Iowa youths with disabilities are taking newly developed leadership skills out into the world. A summer academy wrapped up this month…


Health and Wellness

During National Health Center Week, health-care advocates are highlighting the work Community Health Centers are doing to improve access to care …

Health and Wellness

Health advocates are hailing the new Inflation Reduction Act, saying it would be the biggest health-care reform since the Affordable Care Act…


Excessive heat kills more Americans than floods, extreme cold, or lightning by far. (New Africa/Adobestock)

Social Issues

As parts of Southern California suffer with triple-digit temperatures, state lawmakers are set to vote today on two bills to study and mitigate heat …

Social Issues

While abortion care is in the headlines, a new report says accessing other health-care services is a challenge for many women in Georgia. Data from …

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks' update to the elk-management plan is expected to conclude in 2023. (Kyle T. Perry/Adobe Stock)

Environment

Hunters, landowners and wildlife managers are gathering in Montana to discuss the need for novel approaches to elk management. The 2022 Elk …

Environment

Next week, North Dakota landowners will get a chance to hear updates on a proposed underground pipeline for transporting and sequestering carbon …

Social Issues

With Virginia's Rent Relief Program ending, a flood of eviction cases has emerged. Established during the pandemic, the program was designed to help …

 

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