Sustainability Science
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Sustainability Science
How might we keep the lights on, water flowing, and natural world vaguely intact? It starts with grabbing innovative ideas/examples to help kick down our limits and inspire a more sustainable world. We implement with rigorous science backed by hard data.
Curated by PIRatE Lab
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Rescooped by PIRatE Lab from Coastal Restoration
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Oroville Spillway Failure Flyover and Explanation 10 Feb 2017

Take a flight in the Luscombe over the Oroville Spillway just prior to overtopping.

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PIRatE Lab's curator insight, February 12, 1:10 PM
Climate change is giving us both increased droughts and increased rainfall events in climate crazy California.  Both of these situations have been long predicted, driven by the unprecedented anthropogenic greenhouse gas build-up in our atmosphere.  

Oroville is the tallest dam in the United States and (thanks to the intense precipitation this year) the focus of national attention and concern over infrastructure in the wake of a climate changed world.  The most recent estimate pegs the repair of the eroding concrete channel at perhaps $100-200 million (and we are only in early February).

See also these refs:

nice overview/explanation of the current conditions at the dam: https://youtu.be/jIzldNLv8ww
Construction of the Oroville Dam: https://youtu.be/p_5udzKfLQM
Rescooped by PIRatE Lab from Coastal Restoration
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Exide ordered to clean up toxic substances near Vernon plant

Exide ordered to clean up toxic substances near Vernon plant | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
The state Department of Toxic Substances Control has issued an emergency order directing a Vernon battery recycler to clean up lead and other metals that have been deposited near the Exide Technologies plant.
PIRatE Lab's insight:

As I have posted before, this particular situation in Boyle Heights (a traditionally poor, hispanic neighborhood in Los Angeles) appears to be a pretty clear example of environmental injustice.  

 

Having worked on instances of materials/waste stored too close to a waterway/floodplain, I can say that the potential water contamination issue is a relatively simple one to remedy and should be something correctable over the course of a few days/weeks.  The aerial emissions is a different story and is a case of needing to expend much money and enact various engineering/design modifications.  That is likely to be a substantial cost to Exide and take on the order of many, many months (if not a year or more) to complete.

 

I am very sensitive to the regulatory burdens our heavy industries here in California are subjected to.  They are often onerous and not necessarily the most efficient/effective wayd to achieve an environmental or public health benefit.  And regulators not infrequently turn a deaf ear to the plight of heavy industries in a global marketplace.  But having said that, this case does indeed appear to be an example where regultory enforcement should proceed forthwith.  The apparent foot dragging here by the company is disappointing.

 

The classic proverbial environmental justice question here is; "Would Exide be allowed to be operating this way in L.S.'s tonier locales of Santa Monica, Malibu, or Pacific Palisades?" 

 

It is also important to note that I like the Exides of the world operating here in the U.S. and California in particular.  I believe it is the height of hypocracy to allow this work to happen in Inda, China, Nigeria, etc. when the users/consumers of these products are in the developed, affluent world.  We should bear the burden of these industries and assure that they operate under our laws and pass on the cost to we the consumers, not our poorer friends around the world least able to manage such industrial activities.  The goal here should be justice both for responsible industries and the airshed/people/ecosystems where they operate.  Beware the siren song of the folks who would simply have us drive this producer permanental away, out of sight and out of mind.

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PIRatE Lab's curator insight, December 19, 2013 2:02 AM

As I have posted before, this particular situation in Boyle Heights (a traditionally poor, hispanic neighborhood in Los Angeles) appears to be a pretty clear example of environmental injustice.  

 

Having worked on instances of materials/waste stored too close to a waterway/floodplain, I can say that the potential water contamination issue is a relatively simple one to remedy and should be something correctable over the course of a few days/weeks.  The aerial emissions is a different story and is a case of needing to expend much money and enact various engineering/design modifications.  That is likely to be a substantial cost to Exide and take on the order of many, many months (if not a year or more) to complete.

 

I am very sensitive to the regulatory burdens our heavy industries here in California are subjected to.  They are often onerous and not necessarily the most efficient/effective wayd to achieve an environmental or public health benefit.  And regulators not infrequently turn a deaf ear to the plight of heavy industries in a global marketplace.  But having said that, this case does indeed appear to be an example where regultory enforcement should proceed forthwith.  The apparent foot dragging here by the company is disappointing.

 

The classic proverbial environmental justice question here is; "Would Exide be allowed to be operating this way in L.S.'s tonier locales of Santa Monica, Malibu, or Pacific Palisades?" 

 

It is also important to note that I like the Exides of the world operating here in the U.S. and California in particular.  I believe it is the height of hypocracy to allow this work to happen in Inda, China, Nigeria, etc. when the users/consumers of these products are in the developed, affluent world.  We should bear the burden of these industries and assure that they operate under our laws and pass on the cost to we the consumers, not our poorer friends around the world least able to manage such industrial activities.  The goal here should be justice both for responsible industries and the airshed/people/ecosystems where they operate.  Beware the siren song of the folks who would simply have us drive this producer permanental away, out of sight and out of mind.

Scooped by PIRatE Lab
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Duke Energy Coal Ash Spill in North Carolina Pollutes Dan River, Test Results Differ on Toxicity

Duke Energy Coal Ash Spill in North Carolina Pollutes Dan River, Test Results Differ on Toxicity | Sustainability Science | Scoop.it
Groups are battling over just how toxic the Dan River's waters have become.
PIRatE Lab's insight:

Mmmmmmmm.....coal ash.

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