The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Big Victory for Bad River Tribe Spells Big Implications for Proposed Mine
In a move that could have massive implications for the proposed iron mine in northern Wisconsin, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently approved the Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indian Tribe’s request to regulate water quality in tribal waters.
These regulations allow the Bad River Tribe to impose limits on water uses upstream from their land—including the headwaters of the Bad River, where Gogebic Taconite, a subsidiary of the West Virginia-based Cline Group mining corporation, proposes to build a massive open pit iron mine.
The new standards will ensure that water remains clean and plentiful enough to protect native wild rice crops in the Bad River Watershed and regulate sulfide content which can leech into water from waste rock, according to an article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Members of the Bad River Tribal Council traveled to Madison last month to meet with Gov. Scott Walker and express their opposition to the proposed mine, and to outline ten principles that any new mining legislation should include.
"This is where we live,” said one Tribal Council member during a press conference. “We can’t just pack up and move. Our land is our culture, our history which runs deep. We came here today to protect it.”
While the Bad River Tribe will have the authority to set the standards, the standards cannot be more restrictive than the Clean Water Act, and will be enforced by the EPA, not the Tribe.
This news comes just weeks after Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald announced the formation of a special Senate committee to review mining legislation.
Weaken Wisconsin’s mining laws by signing the Bad River Watershed Association’s petition here.
For more information, click here.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Emily Deanne
Shower shoes? Check. Extra-long sheets? Yep. Energy efficiency checklist? No worries — we've got you covered there. If you're one of the nation's 12.1 million full-time undergraduate college students, you no doubt have a lot to keep in mind as you head off to school. If you're reading this, climate change is probably one of them, and with one-third of students choosing to live on campus, dorm life can have a big impact on the health of our planet. In fact, the annual energy use of one typical dormitory room can generate as much greenhouse gas pollution as the tailpipe emissions of a car driven more than 156,000 miles.
By Lorraine Chow
Kokia drynarioides is a small but significant flowering tree endemic to Hawaii's dry forests. Native Hawaiians used its large, scarlet flowers to make lei. Its sap was used as dye for ropes and nets. Its bark was used medicinally to treat thrush.
States that invest heavily in renewable energy will generate billions of dollars in health benefits in the next decade instead of spending billions to take care of people getting sick from air pollution caused by burning fossil fuels, according to a new study from MIT and reported on by The Verge.
Hawaii's Kilauea volcano could be gearing up for an eruption after a pond of water was discovered inside its summit crater for the first time in recorded history, according to the AP.
By Kristin Ohlson
From where I stand inside the South Dakota cornfield I was visiting with entomologist and former USDA scientist Jonathan Lundgren, all the human-inflicted traumas to Earth seem far away. It isn't just that the corn is as high as an elephant's eye — are people singing that song again? — but that the field burgeons and buzzes and chirps with all sorts of other life, too.
Humanity faced its hottest month in at least 140 years in July, the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said on Thursday. The finding confirms similar analysis provided by its EU counterparts.
By Hans Nicholas Jong
Indonesia's president has made permanent a temporary moratorium on forest-clearing permits for plantations and logging.
It's a policy the government says has proven effective in curtailing deforestation, but whose apparent gains have been criticized by environmental activists as mere "propaganda."