Tag Archives: Environmental Protection Agency

Harris County sues TCEQ over concrete plant permit

A good fight to pick. Harris County sued the Texas Commission on Environment Quality on Wednesday for approving a permit for a concrete crushing plant located near Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital in Houston’s Kashmere Gardens. The lawsuit – filed in … Continue reading

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Harris County gets “Solar for All” grant

Nice. Harris County will receive part of a $7 billion federal grant toward installing solar panels and battery systems in low-income and disadvantaged communities across Texas, part of President Joe Biden’s plan to expand access to solar energy nationwide. The … Continue reading

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“Solar For All” grant

From the inbox: Earlier this year, the Biden Administration announced a $7 billion national “Solar For All” grant competition via the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to help expand solar energy production across the country. Harris County leaders enlisted a coalition … Continue reading

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Watson Grinding explosion “could have been prevented”

I don’t know about you, but I favor there being fewer unplanned massive explosions. A deadly explosion that rocked northwest Houston in January 2020 could have been prevented with better planning and safety training, the federal agency responsible for investigating chemical … Continue reading

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EPA asked to investigate TCEQ’s water permitting process

Need to keep an eye on this. The Environmental Protection Agency says an informal investigation is underway after more than two dozen environmental advocacy groups submitted a petition against the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. The petition alleges that state … Continue reading

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Grassroots pollution monitoring

Great story about a problem that deserves mush more attention from the state. One by one, the residents filtered into the small community center and found seats in the rows of plastic chairs. Some were teenagers wearing yellow-and-black Galena Park … Continue reading

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The environmental attack on abortion

It’s ridiculous. Abortion opponents and their allies in elected office are seizing on an unusual strategy after suffering a wave of election defeats — using environmental laws to try to block the distribution of abortion pills. The new approach comes … Continue reading

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HISD to get funding for electric school buses

Some good news. Houston Independent School District is hopping on the city’s net-zero carbon emissions bus, so to speak, thanks to more than $6.2 million in funding from the Environmental Protection Agency. The funds are part of the EPA’s Clean … Continue reading

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The Corpus Christi desalination plant fight

This ought to be interesting. Texas regulators issued an environmental permit Thursday for the Port of Corpus Christi to build what could become the state’s first seawater desalination plant — but the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency may refuse to accept … Continue reading

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Texas will get a lot from the Inflation Reduction Act

Thanks, Biden! Texas’s clean energy sector is expected to be one of the largest beneficiaries of the climate and health care legislation President Joe Biden has signed into law, according to estimates released by the White House Wednesday. Over the next … Continue reading

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EPA to investigate TCEQ over concrete plant permits

Well, this ought to be interesting. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is the subject of an investigation by the Environmental Protection Agency following complaints that the state agency violated civil rights laws in its permitting of concrete batch plants. … Continue reading

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Our still-smoggy skies

We’re being called on the carpet for them. The Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday sought to list the Houston and Dallas metro areas as “severe” violators of 2008 federal ozone pollution standards, kicking off a process that will likely impose … Continue reading

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The Texas City explosion, 75 years later

Not the sort of thing you want your city to be known for. Saturday marked the 75th anniversary of what has come to be known as the Texas City Disaster, the deadliest industrial accident in United States history. All told, … Continue reading

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Consent decree to fix sewers finalized

All done. A federal judge on Wednesday signed off on a deal between Houston and federal regulators that will require the city to spend an estimated $2 billion over the next 15 years to upgrade its troubled sanitary sewer system. … Continue reading

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We also have to worry about water

Hopefully not for too much longer. On Friday, as the ice melted and lights flickered back on in homes and businesses across the state, Texans were melting snow into their toilet tanks and mopping up water from busted pipes. The … Continue reading

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A brief summary of what the next two years will be like

What will Republicans do without Trump? “The Republican Party is at a crossroads like it’s never been before, and it’s gonna have to decide who it is,” said Corbin Casteel, a Texas GOP operative who was Trump’s Texas state director … Continue reading

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A parting gift of pollution

Gee, thanks. Texas may soon get authority over the disposal of ash from coal-fired power plants, a change that could insulate coal companies from tougher rules expected under a Biden administration. A proposal introduced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency … Continue reading

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Still waiting on that sewer consent decree

Should be ready soon, once the federal court signs off on it. Help finally could be on the way in the form of an agreement between the city of Houston and the Environmental Protection Agency aimed at upgrading the city’s … Continue reading

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Mutant mosquito update

Keeping you informed on the news you can really use. Four years ago, the Zika virus became an issue. More than 300 people were infected in Texas. Zika can cause birth defects and fetal neurodevelopmental abnormalities in pregnant women. The … Continue reading

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What can Houston do about hazardous buildings?

It’s a good question, but there’s another question that has to be considered alongside it. For the first time, Houston City Council members publicly floated proposals Wednesday for how the city can better protect its residents from explosions like the … Continue reading

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A little national press for the Railroad Commissioner race

Bloomberg News notes that the Texas Railroad Commission could have a significant effect on climate change, if it wanted to. Booming oil and gas production across the Permian Basin of West Texas has made this little-known regulator, with three voting … Continue reading

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How many explosions is too many explosions?

Unfortunately, we’re on track to find out. It’s a scene that’s all too familiar to Houston residents. Explosions, flames reaching into the sky, plumes of black smoke, calls to shelter in place, evacuations, injuries and deaths. The explosion early Friday … Continue reading

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Consent decree to fix sewers approved

As we have discussed before, there are concerns about how the extra cost of this decree will affect low-income residents. Houston is facing a federal mandate to upgrade its embattled sanitary sewer system, stirring concerns among advocates and civic leaders … Continue reading

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We have a consent decree

It appears to be a done deal. Houston would add $2 billion to its planned sewer system improvements over the next 15 years under a proposed deal with state and federal regulators that is expected to produce higher water bills … Continue reading

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Another view of pollution enforcement

The state has its role, but it’s not all on them. Almost two months before a massive chemical fire erupted in Deer Park, sending a dark plume of smoke over much of Harris County, Precinct 2 Commissioner Adrian Garcia asked … Continue reading

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We’re about to find out how much we’ll pay to fix Houston’s sewer system

Be prepared. Houston would ramp up spending on its sewer system by $2 billion over 15 years under a proposed deal with state and federal regulators that is expected to produce higher water bills as soon as next year. The … Continue reading

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Now how much would you pay to fix Houston’s sewer system?

We may be about to find out. Federal and state authorities sued the city of Houston over its long-running struggle to limit sewage spills on Friday, marking the beginning of the end of a years-long negotiation that could force the … Continue reading

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Hog apocalypse update

The poison plan for controlling feral hogs is set to be put on pause by the Legislature. A bill poised to pass the Texas House would amend the Texas Agriculture Code to prohibit the Department of Agriculture from registering, approving … Continue reading

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Let’s use mutant mosquitoes to fight Zika

What could possibly go wrong? The Bayou City’s teeming mosquito population spawns in dark, wet nooks and carries a slew of deadly tropical diseases that could ravage the region. So Houston is pondering a sneak attack, something akin to a … Continue reading

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Let’s have a study of that hog apocalypse first

Maybe we should figure out what the effects of poisoning feral hogs might be before we start poisoning them. Two bills from Texas lawmakers — state Rep. Lynn Stucky, R-Denton, and state Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin — would require state … Continue reading

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If you can’t porkchop ’em, poison ’em

The war on feral hogs enters a new phase. At a Feb. 21 news conference in Austin, Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller announced the agency had issued a rule that would allow Kaput Feral Hog Bait, a pesticide containing the … Continue reading

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Texas gets VW lawsuit settlement money

Not bad. Texas will receive more than $190 million for environmental mitigation under a multibillion-dollar settlement in the Volkswagen emissions cheating scandal approved by a federal judge in San Francisco on Tuesday. Volkswagen buyers will have the option of buybacks … Continue reading

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Clean Power Plan’s day in the DC court

We’ll see how it goes. Dozens of lawyers from the government, industry and public interest groups packed the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, to hear the divisive case that comes just weeks before a heated presidential election … Continue reading

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Want to know how close you live to a polluter?

There’s an app for that. More than two million Texans live within a half-mile of an oil and gas facility, putting them at risk of exposure to toxic fumes, according to a new app released Wednesday by national environmental groups. … Continue reading

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