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This Week in #MOwater: Utility and County block environmentalists, Viral sinkhole exposes new knowledge, and more

Posted in: News- May 28, 2015 No Comments


Blocking Environmentalists: legal challenges to coal ash landfill met by Ameren and Franklin County
Franklin County

With a state permit and approval from utility regulators already in hand, all that stands in the way of Ameren Missouri’s plans for a controversial coal ash landfill on the banks of the Missouri River are two lawsuits from environmentalists. But Ameren is banking on a zoning code change, endorsed this week by the Franklin County Planning and Zoning Commission, to derail those remaining legal challenges.

Sinkhole: May have exciting new find

Lost Canyon Cave does run near the course, and engineers say this new find could be a part of it.

“Water from the sinkhole drained down and went into the cave which is an indicator that there’s something there like a cavern might be there,” said Bass Pro Shops Conservation Director Martin MacDonald. “So we’re excited, and our founder is real excited that we may have found a new cave system.”

Silt Discharge: Sugar Creek group escalates complaints about school site

While the school district says it took several steps to correct the problem even before the letter was written and continues to be vigilant about improving it, the members of the Sugar Creek CDC contend that the problem isn’t getting any better and that the district is violating the federal government’s Clean Water Act.


Flood Deaths: Seventeen dead, thousands evacuated after floods
Texas and Oklahoma

Record rainfall slammed parts of the Midwest on Sunday, spurring violent flash floods and tornadoes that forced at least 2,000 people to flee and swept away hundreds of homes. In Oklahoma, a firefighter drowned while carrying out a rescue operation in high water, and another man’s body was found in a drain pipe, KOTV in Tulsa reported. Another man drowned on Sunday in San Marcos, Texas, according to city officials.

Oil Cleanup: Pipeline may be dug up soon
Santa Barbara

A section of oil pipeline that ruptured and spilled thousands of gallons of crude along the Santa Barbara County coast could be dug up by the end of the holiday weekend, authorities said, giving them the first opportunity to determine what caused the break. The rupture occurred on the inland side of U.S. 101 on Tuesday, spilling up to 105,000 gallons onto the coastal bluffs. An estimated 21,000 gallons ran down a culvert under the freeway and into the ocean at Refugio State Beach. Also, the AP reports that the pipeline was not equipped with automatic shut-off.

EPA Water Rule: Obama again takes action on the environment

Now, nearly a decade later, the Obama administration is seeking to clarify those ambiguities, and the effort is causing controversy of its own. This week, Environmental Protection Agency released a new rule to protect a significantly larger percentage of streams and wetlands that provide habitat for wildlife and sources of drinking water. In Ohio, voters support the law.