Author Archives: Carissa Ries

DOT issues new guidelines for shipping crude oil by rail

In response to recent crude oil tank car derailments in North America, the US Department of Transportation (DOT), the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) issued new actions this week. The DOT issued … Continue reading

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Railway accidents involving crude oil raise alarms

The Bakken area is one of the largest crude oil producing regions in the United States. The recent surge of production in the Bakken region is due to the increased use of hydraulic fracturing to access oil and gas from … Continue reading

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Keystone Pipeline review process extended

On April 18, 2014 the State Department extended the length of time the eight federal agencies have to submit their views on the Keystone Pipeline permit application. Since the pipeline crosses an international boundary, the State Department ultimately decides whether … Continue reading

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Galveston oil spill threatens wildlife

On Saturday, March 24, 2014, two vessels collided in the Houston Ship Channel spilling approximately 168,000 gallons of heavy fuel oil into Galveston Bay. The Houston Ship Channel was closed for three days as cleanup efforts began by the US … Continue reading

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Keystone XL Pipeline Environmental Impact Statement released

The US Department of State issued an environmental impact assessment on the Keystone XL pipeline last week. The assessment includes a comprehensive review of the revised route including an environmental impacts analysis. The White House does not have a deadline … Continue reading

Posted in Energy, Environmental data, EPA, Industry news, Oil & gas, Regulatory issues | 3 Comments

EPA final rule includes E1527-13 as AAI compliant

On December 30, 2013 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) took final action and amended the “All Appropriate Inquiries Rule” (AAI) to reference ASTM E1527-13. This amendment clarifies that the new standard should be used to comply with the AAI rule. … Continue reading

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ASTM E 1527-13 has landed

The revision to ASTM E1527 standard was published this month putting a few new immediate changes into effect. ASTM standard E1527-05 is now listed as a historical standard; it is superseded by the 2013 revision. In a previous blog post, … Continue reading

Posted in Environmental data, Phase I ESA | 1 Comment

SXSW Eco 2013 – Shark tank for environmental innovators

The third SXSW Eco took place this past week in Austin. The mission of the annual conference is to bring together “thought leaders and decision makers” who are “working to solve the complex challenges facing civil society, the economy, and the natural … Continue reading

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TCEQ proposes weakening surface water quality standards

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) has proposed revised surface water quality standards. The proposed rule language was published in the September 13, 2013 edition of the Texas Register. The revisions would create a new category for recreational waters, … Continue reading

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The end of coal? EPA announces carbon emission limits for new power plants

The Environmental Protection Agency has announced the first-ever carbon limits on new power plants in the United States. The move is an executive action as President Obama acts to bypass Congress. House Republicans have denounced CO2 limits as a “war … Continue reading

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ASTM E-1527 revisions open for public comment

  The EPA has issued a Federal Register notice indicating that the proposed changes to ASTM 1527 are open for public comment until September 13, 2013. The revised standard (E1527-13) will be effective 90 days from the close of the … Continue reading

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Determining the social cost of carbon emissions

In 2009, the Obama administration formed the Interagency Working Group on Social Cost of Carbon. The group draws on the latest science and data models to calculate the costs and benefits of reducing greenhouse gas emissions through federal regulations. According … Continue reading

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Introducing new and improved environmental database reports!

  We are pleased to announce the launch of our new and improved ASTM/AAI Database Reports. We’ve spent over a year developing this new reporting tool with one goal in mind: To make environmental regulatory reporting easier for you. Less … Continue reading

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Gulf Coast Restoration Plan available for public comment

Photo Credit: Kris Krug via Compfight cc In the wake of the Deepwater Horizon well blowout and oil spill of 2010, the Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council was established by the Resources and Ecosystem Sustainability, Tourism, Opportunities Revived Economies (RESTORE … Continue reading

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Revised BLM rules for fracking on federal and tribal lands

The Department of Interior’s (DOI) Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has released an updated draft of the proposed new rule governing fracking on federal and tribal lands: oil and gas, well stimulation, including hydraulic fracturing, on federal and Indian lands. … Continue reading

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