ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT

Will Texas become final resting place for high-level nuclear waste?

Large quantities of radioactive materials stored in a single location, like these at an oil well-logging storage site, are particularly vulnerable to theft for use in a dirty bomb, the Department of Energy and the Government Accountability Office determined in 2014, yet the Nuclear Regulatory Commission still allows the practice.
Large quantities of radioactive materials stored in a single location, like these at an oil well-logging storage site, are particularly vulnerable to theft for use in a dirty bomb, the Department of Energy and the Government Accountability Office determined in 2014, yet the Nuclear Regulatory Commission still allows the practice.

A controversial radioactive waste dump in far West Texas is one step closer to being able to accept high-level nuclear waste.

In West Texas, abandoned well sinks land, sucks tax dollars

The land is sinking three-fourths of an inch every month around this abandoned well outside of Imperial in Pecos County, and huge cracks have opened in the area. The Texas Department of Transportation paid most of the $315,000 bill to plug the well in 2009 and has spent at least $1 million fixing a nearby farm-to-market road.
The land is sinking three-fourths of an inch every month around this abandoned well outside of Imperial in Pecos County, and huge cracks have opened in the area. The Texas Department of Transportation paid most of the $315,000 bill to plug the well in 2009 and has spent at least $1 million fixing a nearby farm-to-market road.

Land around a West Texas roadway used to be flat. Now, it’s fissured, sinking and has cost taxpayers more than a million dollars — all because of a water well that was left unplugged. 

 

At confirmation hearing, Rick Perry vows to pursue "sound science" on climate change

Former Gov. Perry is sworn in before testifying at a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on his nomination to be Energy secretary on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on January 19, 2017.
Former Gov. Perry is sworn in before testifying at a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on his nomination to be Energy secretary on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., on January 19, 2017.

Testifying before a U.S. Senate committee on Thursday, Secretary of Energy nominee Rick Perry said he believed humans contributed to climate change and that he no longer supported the dissolution of the Department of Energy. 

Rick Perry prepares to re-enter political arena with confirmation hearing

Former Gov. Rick Perry gives the closing keynote address at the the Texas Public Finance Conference in Austin on Feb. 3, 2016.
Former Gov. Rick Perry gives the closing keynote address at the the Texas Public Finance Conference in Austin on Feb. 3, 2016.

More than five years after his infamous "oops" moment, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry is facing another high-pressure moment in the national spotlight this week: his confirmation hearing to be the next U.S. Secretary of Energy.

New in Trib+Water: TWDB looks back at 2016

In this week's edition of the Trib+Water newsletter: The TWDB reviews its challenges and accomplishments in 2016, a Travis County utility deals with the aftermath of its contamination of a nature preserve and an interview with L'Oreal Stepney of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

Texas electric generators bash EPA over proposed clean air rule

A view of northern Mexico from the South Rim of the Chisos Mountain in Big Bend National Park. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing a new clean air rule aimed at easing hazy conditions in Big Bend and other national parks and wilderness areas in Texas and surrounding states. It is pursuing the so-called BART rule after Texas successfully challenged a similar regulation in court.
A view of northern Mexico from the South Rim of the Chisos Mountain in Big Bend National Park. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing a new clean air rule aimed at easing hazy conditions in Big Bend and other national parks and wilderness areas in Texas and surrounding states. It is pursuing the so-called BART rule after Texas successfully challenged a similar regulation in court.

Environmental groups praised and power generators bashed a proposed federal environmental regulation on Tuesday aimed at improving visibility in national parks and wilderness areas in Texas and surrounding states.

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