@earthjustice

Earthjustice

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earthjustice

class="content__text" The next time someone says that the oil industry has nothing to do with race, tell them Ironton’s story. In 2020, an Earthjustice attorney based in New Orleans read a phrase that made no sense. An oil company described finding “cultural resources” at the site of a planned export terminal. That seemingly empty phrase raised a HUGE red flag. Our attorney discovered the oil company’s secret: they’d excavated human remains from the site, very likely belonging to the formerly enslaved founders of Ironton, the neighboring all-Black community. Ironton locals grew up hearing about their founding Black ancestors, who were enslaved at a nearby sugar plantation before founding Ironton after Emancipation. Everyone knew their bones rested in the field down the road. “Our founders were freemen who bought this property with whatever money they earned,” recounts Ironton resident Andrea DeClouet. “They established Ironton for themselves, built their own homes, had their own businesses.” When Ironton locals heard what the oil company had done to their ancestors’ remains, they fought back. They spoke to local media, blasting the oil company and their supporters in local government for erasing Black history. Local leaders soon backed out. In the end, a combination of public shaming and intensifying hurricanes forced the oil company to abandon the project. In the words of Pearl Sylve, Ironton’s oldest resident, “It was too hard for them to deal with Black people in the end. We stood up for our rights.” #BlackHistoryMonth 📷: Ironton resident Wilkie DeClouet, the husband of Andrea, holds a family photograph. (L. Kasimu Harris for Earthjustice)

February 22, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" 📲 Text USPS to 43428 and tell the US Postal Service: It’s time to make mail delivery in this country 100% electric for our lungs and for our future.

February 21, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" UPDATE ➡ As a public health and environmental disaster unfolds following the derailment and explosion of a toxic-chemical cargo train in East Palestine, Ohio, advocacy groups renewed their challenge to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) 2018 repeal of a regulation requiring electronic brake systems for trains carrying hazardous and flammable material. In 2018, the federal agencies charged with regulating hazardous materials on trains actually removed safety rules requiring modern braking systems. But they failed to conduct mandated safety tests, used inaccurately low estimates of accidents and risks, and restricted public participation. Earthjustice, on behalf of Waterkeeper Alliance, Sierra Club, Riverkeeper, Washington Conservation Action, and Stand, appealed the rule, but the agencies failed to respond, siding with companies like Norfolk Southern, who lobbied against more stringent safety requirements. The DOT’s silence has meant more explosive tank cars with "Civil War-era braking systems” traveling through towns and neighborhoods. “It should not take another exploding train to get DOT’s attention,” said Earthjustice Attorney Kristen Boyles. “Communities can’t keep trains out, can’t get safety measures, can’t know what trains are carrying, and yet are left with the human health and environmental problems when there’s an accident.” Earthjustice’s appeal focused on trains carrying large amounts of volatile crude oil in long unit trains, and it is not clear whether the Norfolk Southern train carrying hazardous and cancer-causing chemicals in Ohio would have been covered by DOT’s repealed brake system requirement. What is clear, however, is that the agency has failed to require up-to-date, modern brake systems for most trains carrying explosively toxic materials. 📷: A man takes photos as a black plume rises over East Palestine, Ohio, as a result of a controlled detonation of a portion of the derailed Norfolk Southern train, Feb. 6, 2023. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

February 18, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" The EPA recently announced a new rule expanding protections for U.S. waterways under the Clean Water Act, but clean water is still on the chopping block. An upcoming Supreme Court decision could blow a hole in the Clean Water Act by limiting its scope. The Supreme Court is considering a case this term called Sackett v EPA, which examines which waters are protected by the Clean Water Act and may change the legal foundation of the new rule protecting our national waters. In the case, the plaintiffs (Sackett) are challenging the applicability of the Clean Water Act to thousands of wetlands. If the court sides with the plaintiffs, it will dramatically reduce the number of wetlands and streams protected by the Clean Water Act. Earthjustice filed an amicus brief to the Supreme Court in June on behalf of Native tribes seeking to defend existing water protections for the waterways they rely on for food, economy, and culture. We expect the Supreme Court to issue its decision soon and will continue fighting to uphold and strengthen the Clean Water Act.

February 17, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" ❗️A major environmental disaster unfolding in East Palestine, Ohio has prompted environmental organizations to call on Gov. Mike DeWine to declare a state of emergency after a train carrying hazardous and carcinogenic chemicals derailed and exploded, contaminating nearby waterways, soil, and the air residents are breathing.❗️

February 17, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" As we shift to clean energy, fossil fuel companies are turning to petrochemicals to protect profits. The transport of these chemicals is loosely regulated & until EPA reduces the allowable amount of these chemicals on the market, these disasters will unfortunately continue.

February 16, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" Bitcoin = Fossil Fuels

February 15, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" Two huge petrochemical facilities proposed to be built in Louisiana won’t move forward after Earthjustice worked with local residents to challenge the projects. ⚖ South Louisiana Methanol (SML) planned to build the largest methanol production facility in North America. It would have emitted more than 2 million tons of greenhouse gases per year and pumped toxic air pollutants into the neighborhoods adjacent to the project. SLM tried to claim the permits it already had for a smaller facility gave it the right to radically expand. Earthjustice helped RISE St. James, Louisiana Bucket Brigade, Healthy Gulf, and Sierra Club challenge SLM’s flawed logic. After this coalition raised environmental justice and land use concerns, the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality asked SLM to confirm that it still planned to go forward with its development plans. The company did not respond by the deadline the state agency set, so in September 2022, the agency withdrew its review of the proposal. ⚖ Days after the SLM victory, a Louisiana district court threw out air permits for the Formosa Plastics petrochemical complex, which would have doubled to tripled the levels of cancer-causing pollutants currently harming residents from existing industrial plants. Earthjustice represented RISE St. James, Louisiana Bucket Brigade, Healthy Gulf, No Waste Louisiana, Center for Biological Diversity, Earthworks, and the Sierra Club in an appeal challenging LDEQ’s decision to approve the air permits. On September 14, the court sent Formosa back to the drawing board.

February 15, 2023

earthjustice

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February 08, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" Text WESTERN to 43428 and help us tell the Biden Administration to pull the plug on this carbon bomb! Interior gave the Willow Project a preliminary green light. Now, President Biden has the chance to make a final call. It's not too late to stop this carbon bomb. If we don't, Willow will emit an estimated 280 million metric tons of climate pollution over the next 30 years.

February 08, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" Navahine and 13 other young people are fighting for their climate rights in court. We are partnering with Our Children’s Trust, the creators of this video, to ensure their voices are heard. With our support, 14 young people filed a lawsuit to ensure the Hawai’i Department of Transportation stops violating their constitutional rights.

February 08, 2023

earthjustice

class="content__text" The more you know...The 1972 Clean Water Act ensures our drinking water is safe and protects rivers, lakes, streams, and other water bodies from destructive pollution. One of the most popular environmental laws in U.S. history, it has contributed to steady progress in cleaning up our nation’s waterways. 🌊🌊🌊

February 08, 2023

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