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CHINA: Earth-Friendly Elements, Mined Destructively
by Keith BradsherNew York Times
December 26th, 2009
Some of the greenest technologies of the age, from electric cars to efficient light bulbs to very large wind turbines, are made possible by an unusual group of elements called rare earths. Most of these come from China. “In many places, the mining is abused,” said Wang Caifeng, the top rare-earths industry regulator at the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology in China.

US: Monsanto's dominance draws antitrust inquiry
by Peter WhoriskeyWashington Post
November 29th, 2009
For plants designed in a lab a little more than a decade ago, they've come a long way: Today, the vast majority of the nation's two primary crops grow from seeds genetically altered according to Monsanto company patents. Now Monsanto -- like IBM and Google -- has drawn scrutiny from U.S. antitrust investigators.

IVORY COAST: Trafigura offers deal to 31,000 Africans over dumped waste
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/africa/article6837795.ece
October 17th, 2009
British oil trader Trafigura has offered to settle a court case brought by 31,000 Africans who say that they were injured in the largest personal injuries class action mounted in an English court. The action resulted from the dumping of 400 tonnes of waste in the Ivory Coast by an oil tanker, the Probo Koala, in 2006 — one of the worst pollution disasters in recent history.

IVORY COAST: Trafigura offers deal to 31,000 Africans over dumped waste
by Frances GibbThe Times (London)
October 17th, 2009
British oil trader Trafigura has offered to settle a court case brought by 31,000 Africans who say that they were injured in the largest personal injuries class action mounted in an English court. The action resulted from the dumping of 400 tonnes of waste in the Ivory Coast by an oil tanker, the Probo Koala, in 2006 — one of the worst pollution disasters in recent history.

IVORY COAST: Toxic waste: company to pay
by AFPTimes Live
September 17th, 2009
Victims will receive compensation after seeking legal action in Britain against Trafigura oil company. Waste from a ship the company chartered was illegally dumped in Abidjan, killing 17 people and causing more than 100,000 to seek medical help in 2006.

US: Clean Water Laws Are Neglected, at a Cost in Suffering
by Charles DuhiggNew York Times
September 12th, 2009
Violations of the Clean Water Act have risen steadily across the nation, an extensive review of water pollution records by The New York Times found. Polluters include small companies, like gas stations, dry cleaners, and shopping malls. They also include large operations, like chemical factories, power plants, sewage treatment centers and one of the biggest zinc smelters, the Horsehead Corporation of Pennsylvania.

US: Chevron annual meeting heats up over Ecuador suit
by Jordan RobertsonWashington Post
May 27th, 2009
In a combative and sometimes colorful annual meeting, Chevron's CEO and chairman exchanged barbs with activists over pollution in the Amazon rain forest and the company's human rights record. The nation's second-largest oil company is awaiting a verdict from a judge in Ecuador that could come with a $27 billion price tag.

US: Board cancels hearing under Bayer pressure
by Ken Ward, Jr.The Charleston Gazette
February 25th, 2009
The U.S. Chemical Safety Board has canceled a public meeting to brief local residents on its investigation of an August 2008 explosion that killed two Bayer Institute plant workers. Chemical plant security activists expressed shock; the meeting was also to discuss concerns about a methyl isocyanate tank located near the site of the deadly blast.

SWITZERLAND: Davos Scales Back Glitz
by Associated PressNew York Times
January 25th, 2009
The economic crisis that emerged out the collapse of securities based on shaky U.S. mortgages poses challenges for the Davos World Economic Forum, an arena that has championed market-driven approaches.

VIETNAM: Vietnam Cracks Down on Polluters
by Martha Ann OverlandTIME
October 17th, 2008
Long before a government report confirmed it, villagers living along the banks of the Thi Vai river in the Mekong Delta knew full well that the waterway was dead. They had complained for years that industrial waste discharged into the Thi Vai had poisoned their wells, killed all the fish and was making them sick. Yet it wasn't until cargo companies refused to dock at the river's main port — saying that the toxic brew was eating through the ships' hulls — that Vietnam officials were willing to get tough on polluters.

IVORY COAST: Ivory Coast workers can't sue firms in U.S.
by Bob EgelkoSan Francisco Chronicle
September 25th, 2008
Ivory Coast plantation workers who claim they were sterilized by a U.S.-made pesticide can't sue the manufacturers and distributors of the chemical in the United States because they can't show the companies intended to harm them, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday.

INDIA: Decades Later, Toxic Sludge Torments Bhopal
by Somini SenguptaNew York Times
July 7th, 2008
Residents of Bhopal, India continue to suffer from Union Carbide's toxic legacy, this time in the form of toxic waste that still languishes inside a shoddy warehouse on the old factory grounds. Ailments such as cleft palates and mental retardation are appearing in numbers of Bhopali children, raising questions about contaminated soil and groundwater, clean-up, and liability.

EUROPE: Chemical Law Has Global Impact
by Lyndsey LaytonWashington Post
June 12th, 2008
Europe this month rolled out new restrictions on makers of chemicals linked to cancer and other health problems. The changes follow eight years of vigorous opposition from the U.S. chemical industry giants like DuPont, and the Bush administration.

CHINA: In China City, Protesters See Pollution Risk of New Plant
by Edward WongNew York Times
May 6th, 2008
Residents took to the streets of Chengdu to protest a $5.5 billion ethylene plant under construction by PetroChina, reflecting a surge in environmental awareness by urban, middle-class Chinese determined to protect their health and the value of their property.

GLOBAL: 2 Reports At Odds On Biotech Crops
by Rick WeissThe Washington Post
February 14th, 2008
Dueling reports released yesterday -- one by a consortium largely funded by the biotech industry and the other by a pair of environmental and consumer groups -- came to those diametrically different conclusions.

US: Uranium Exploration Near Grand Canyon
by FELICITY BARRINGERThe New York Times
February 7th, 2008
With minimal public notice and no formal environmental review, the Forest Service has approved a permit allowing a British mining company to explore for uranium just outside Grand Canyon National Park, less than three miles from a popular lookout over the canyon’s southern rim.

PERU: For Peru's Indians, Lawsuit Against Big Oil Reflects a New Era
by Kelly HearnThe Washington Post
January 31st, 2008
Oxy is Occidental Petroleum, the California-based company that pulled a fortune from this rain forest from 1972 to 2000. It is also the company that Maynas and other Achuar leaders now blame for wreaking environmental havoc -- and leaving many of the people here ill.

CHINA: Tainted Drugs Tied to Maker of Abortion Pill
by JAKE HOOKER and WALT BOGDANICHThe New York Times
January 31st, 2008
A huge state-owned Chinese pharmaceutical company that exports to dozens of countries, including the United States, is at the center of a nationwide drug scandal after nearly 200 Chinese cancer patients were paralyzed or otherwise harmed last summer by contaminated leukemia drugs.

GLOBAL: False 'Green' Ads Draw Global Scrutiny
by Tom WrightWall Street Journal
January 30th, 2008
With companies eager to tout their "green" credentials to consumers, advertising watchdogs are stepping up efforts to rein in marketers that make false or exaggerated claims.

US: Protests Greet Nuclear Power Resurgence in US South
by Matthew CardinaleIPS
January 14th, 2008
Residents and environmental activists are in a bitter dispute with large U.S. energy corporations and the federal government over the safety of nuclear power, as more than a dozen corporations plan to, or have filed, paperwork to open new nuclear power plants, primarily in the U.S. South.

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