Desert Rock Power Plant to Be Reassessed in Light of Threat to Fish

David Cassuto


From the Things that Never Would Have Happened Under W Desk:

The Bureau of Indian Affairs has withdrawn its Biological Assessment and the  EPA has also withdrawn the air quality permit they respectively issued last summer for the Desert Rock coal-fired power plant sited for the Navajo Nation in the Four Corners region of New Mexico.  The reason(s): concerns about the impact of heavy metals on two species of endangered fish in the San Juan River.

Sometimes I have to read news like this a few times and remember that the long, savage assault on the natural environment that was 2000-08 has indeed come to a close.  Continue reading

Meat, Copenhagen and Climate Change

David Cassuto

Concerned citizens the world over have gathered in Copenhagen to hammer out a plan to arrest climate change and prevent a planetary apocalypse.  Many have written much about the talks (check out, for example, Andy Revkin’s blog) but at least as interesting is what’s being neither talked about in Copenhagen nor much covered elsewhere.  I refer, of course, to animal agriculture and the fact that no comprehensive emissions reduction plan can fail to address the reality that the world’s ever-growing demand for meat is barbecuing the planet.   Continue reading

Agriculture, Climate Change and the UNFCC

The International Federation of Agricultural Producers has produced a declaration addressing the role of agriculture in both causing and potentially mitigating climate change.  The document bears reading in its entirety both for what it says and for what it does not.  It advocates creating a framework for carbon sequestration and for increased access to and better technology for the most vulnerable members of the agricultural sector.  The declaration also acknowledges the significant role of agriculture as an anthropogenic source of greenhouse gases (13.5%).

It does not, however, mention industrial farming — a significant and worrisome omission — though it does discuss the need to make agriculture more efficient.  The latter statement, while true, sails perilously close to the deceptive rhetoric of Big Food.  Unless accompanied by specific recommendations, this type of assertion could send next December’s United Nations Framework on Climate Change (UNFCC) meeting in Copenhagen hurtling toward the abyss.

–David Cassuto