Environmental Headlines for the Houston Region: April 27, 2015


  1. Earth Day: Analyzing Houston’s Environmental Successes And Shortcomings (Syeda Hasan – Houston Public Media, 4/21/2015)
    “University of Houston professor Martin Melosi has been analyzing the city’s environmental issues for about 30 years. He says flooding has long been a concern for the region, but Houston has developed better responses like the bayous. ‘I do think that we have probably applied more modern technology and new modern approaches to dealing with it than we had 30 years ago,’ Melosi says. But he says Houston falls short in other areas, namely air quality. He says oil and gas and petrochemical operations contribute to the pollution. But as the growing population brings more vehicles, Melosi says Houston hasn’t kept pace with maintaining clean air.”
  2. EPA Chief in Houston: Some Neighborhoods ‘Overburdened’ With Pollution (Dave Fehling – Houston Public Media, 4/22/2015)
    “Manchester is a community about five miles southeast of downtown Houston. It’s right next door to a refinery and very near petrochemical plants along the Houston Ship Channel. It’s where the director of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Gina McCarthy, will meet Thursday with environmental activists, residents and property owners. The activists call Manchester a “vulnerability zone” for chemical disasters and pollution. The neighborhood was featured in a report by environmentalists: Who’s in Danger? Race, Poverty and Chemical Disasters. McCarthy’s visit comes on the heels of an EPA finding that emissions from the giant flares that plants often use to burn off excess chemicals release far more smog-causing pollution that previously estimated; up to four times more.”
  3. Texas to receive millions to restore coast (Matthew Tresaugue – Houston Chronicle, 4/20/2015)
    “Texas is likely to receive as much as $65 million to build nesting islands for brown pelicans, gulls and other birds and to protect critically endangered sea turtles as part of a larger campaign to restore the Gulf of Mexico, officials said Monday. The money is part of the latest round of funding for restoration projects after the largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history. State and federal trustees and BP made the announcement on the fifth anniversary of the disaster, which killed 11 men and sent millions of barrels of oil spewing into the Gulf. For the fourth round of funding, the company and trustees agreed to spend $134 million on 10 projects… Under the plan, Texas would receive $20 million to build three islands in Galveston Bay and one in Matagorda Bay from dredge spoil to increase nesting habitat for colonial waterbirds.”


  • 25 April
    • Oil, gas, power, prices: big themes from energy meeting (Jonathan Fahey – Times Union)
  • 24 April
    • Texas Nature Challenge 2015: Get Outside and Start Exploring (Texas A&M Forest Service)
    • Recycling: Add cartons to items you can now recycle (Nan Kirlin – Gaston Gazette)
    • TCEQ cleans up contaminated soil (KGNS)
    • Key facts about the drought that’s reshaping Texas (The Fabius Maximus Website)
    • Justices Prolong North Texas Fracking Battle (Jim Malewitz – The Texas Tribune)
    • Keep track of BP oil spill restoration projects with new web database (Mark Schleifstein – The Times-Picayune)
    • 2 conservation dogs from Texas sniff out invasive giant snails in Ecuador’s Galapagos (FOX News)
  • 23 April
    • EPA Chief in Houston: Some Neighborhoods ‘Overburdened’ With Pollution (Dave Fehling – Houston Public Media)
    • Houston billionaire couple pledges $10 million for Bayou Greenways project adding more park space and trails (Shelby Hodge – Culture Map Houston)
    • Lone Star Land Steward Program Celebrates 20th Anniversary (Texas Parks & Wildlife)
    • Texas Parks and Wildlife Applauds “Land Stewardship: Providing Water for Texans” Week April 26-May 3 (Texas Parks & Wildlife)
    • Legislation Aims to for More Oversight of Scrap Metal Recycling in Texas (StateImpact)
    • Carbon rules in spotlight on power day at CERAWeek (Matthew Tresaugue, Houston Chronicle – San Antonio Express)
    • CERAWeek: Texas moving away from coal without federal mandates (Rhiannon Meyers – Fuel Fix)
    • CERAWeek: Transition away from coal power is “inevitable,” EPA boss says (Matthew Tresaugue, Houston Chronicle – Fuel Fix)
    • CERAWeek: EPA should expect litigation deluge over carbon emissions rules (Matthew Tresaugue – Fuel Fix)
    • Austin Nonprofits Crowdfunding Power to the People (Jim Malewitz – The Texas Tribune)
      EPA Recognizes Memorial Hermann with 2015 ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award (San Antonio Business Journal)
  • 22 April
    • EPA Chief To Tour Houston Neighborhoods Near Oil Refinery And Chemical Plants (Dave Fehling – Houston Public Media)
    • NOAA Establishes Separate Gulf of Mexico Red Snapper Recreational Quotas for Private and For-Hire Fishermen (Wakulla)
    • Dr. Cheryl Martin, former Acting Director of ARPA-E, joining as non-resident Fellow (Center on Global Energy Policy)
    • Jackie Speier: Don’t forget how Earth Day came about (San Jose Mercury News)
    • “Famous Trees of Texas” authors to hold book presentation in College Station (Texas A&M Service)
    • Oil, Gas Mining Operations Cited in Okla., Texas Earthquakes (John Blosser – NewsMax)
    • SFA environmental science program ranks top 50 in U.S. (The Pine Log)
    • EPA Awards Clean Diesel Grants to US Ports (Eric Haun – Marine Link)
  • 21 April
    • Earth Day: Analyzing Houston’s Environmental Successes And Shortcomings (Syeda Hasan – Houston Public Media)
    • How BP Gulf Disaster Is Potential Windfall For Habitat Restoration (Dave Fehling – Houston Public Media)
    • $134M Proposed For 10 BP-Funded Oil Spill Recovery Projects (Jeff Amy and Janet McConnaughey – Houston Public Media)
    • EPA reviews accurate flare emission levels (Matthew Tresaugue – Houston Chronicle)
    • What Could Reduce The Risk Of Another Catastrophic Oil Well Blowout? (Dave Fehling – StateImpact)
    • Water, water everywhere — especially in Gulf of Mexico (John Austin – Jacksonville Progress)
    • Earth Day celebrates birth of environmental movement (Cathy Mounce – Gainesville Daily Register)
    • Base members educate students about Earth Day (Sheppard Air Force Base)
    • Study: Gas Activities “Most Likely” Caused Texas Quakes (Jim Malewitz – The Texas Tribune)
    • Texas One Step Closer To Ending Local Fracking Bans (Andy Szal – Chem Info)
    • Study Links Swarm of Quakes in Texas to Natural Gas Drilling (NBC News)
  • 20 April
    • Texas to receive millions to restore coast (Matthew Tresaugue – Houston Chronicle)
    • Galveston beach parks to get $41 million face-lift (Harvey Rice – Houston Chronicle)
    • County Attorney Vince Ryan comes to aid of endangered species in Friend of Court brief (Guidry News)
    • Next stop for Cigna Sunday Streets is the Heights (The Leader)
    • Issues with Houston’s Bike Facilities (Bike Houston)
    • Lawmaker Urges Colleagues to Act on Climate Change (Jim Malewitz – The Texas Tribune)
    • Texas House of Representatives approves ‘ban on fracking bans’ (James Perkins – Shale Energy Insider)
    • Five years after BP oil spill, some Gulf oystermen are losing hope (Eagle Ford Texas)
    • What Could Reduce The Risk Of Another Catastrophic Oil Well Blowout (Dave Fehling – Houston Public Media)
    • Will Texas Ever Change Railroad Commission Name? (Jim Malewitz – The Texas Tribune)
    • TPWD Taking Public Comment on Shrimp and Oyster Regulation Proposals (Texas Parks & Wildlife)
    • Deepwater Horizon Trustees Announce Agreement in Principle for Next 10 Early Restoration Projects (Texas Parks & Wildlife)
  • 19 April
  • 18 April
  • 17 April
    • BP prez ready for his ninth year to bike to Austin (Houston Business Journal)
  • 15 April
    • San Marcos watching water well level as summer nears (Brett Thorne – Community Impact)
    • Protests and regulatory changes arrive with Deepwater Horizon anniversary (Jordan Blum – Houston Business Journal)

Texas Campaign for the Environment seeks Community Organizers

Texas Campaign for the Environment is hiring community organizers to join their campaign staff this summer. Organizers gain extensive knowledge about the issues TCE advocates on and have the opportunity to get the public involved in campaigns to protect the environment. Contact Katy at 713-337-4192 or katy@texasenvironment.org to apply, and visit our website at www.texasenvironment.org/jobs.cfm for a full job description.