Environmental Headlines for the Houston Region: July 30, 2019

Houston unveils first draft of city climate action plan

(Houston, Chronicle, Perla Trevizo, Updated 07/25/19. Photo by Brett Coomer.)

“Houston has one of the largest per capita greenhouse emissions in the country…

Reducing the city’s emissions will not only help fight climate change, Turner said, it will lead to more resilient communities, reduce harmful pollution, cut energy waste and boost the local economy.”

houstonchronicle.com

Harris County faces long list of gaps identified after recent chemical fires

(Perla Trevizo and Dug Begley, Updated 07/29/19. Photo by Karen Warren.)

“More monitoring and manpower is needed for Harris County to better respond to chemical fires like the three that struck the region earlier this year, worrying residents and shutting the Houston Ship Channel, according to a study evaluating the county’s response to the fires.”

houstonchronicle.com

Houston’s Highway Mega-Plan: An Environmental Justice Disaster

(Streets Blog USA, Angie Schmitt, Updated 07/25/19. Photo provided by Google Maps.)

“Mass displacement, worsening air quality, wider segregation and more flooding are some of the outcomes experts are warning will result from the 25-mile widening known as the North Houston Highway Improvement Plan, which would enlarge Interstate 45 and adjacent highways, including I-69, over a 25-mile stretch.”

usa.streetsblog.org

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Environmental Headlines for the Houston Region: July 16, 2019

The city of South Houston wants to remove mercury limits from its wastewater plant permit. Residents are fighting to keep them.

(Houston Chronicle, Perla Trevizo, Updated 07/11/19. Photo by Perla Trevizo.)

“At a time when chemical plants are catching fire and federal officials are trying to clean up SuperFund sites in the Houston area, they argue that officials can’t be too cautious when dealing with a toxic chemical such as mercury and local waterways.”

houstonchronicle.com

Old Galveston drilling site reborn as nature preserve

(Houston Chronicle, Sergio Chapa, Updated 07/11/19. Photo by Elizabeth Conley.)

“…[W]ith the help of the Railroad Commission’s Brownfield Response Program, the old well site has been deemed safe, allowing the conservation group, Artist Boat, to move ahead with restoring the coastal prairie, planting native grasses.”

houstonchronicle.com 

Feeling the heat: Climate change could mean more extreme heat days for Houston and Texas, report concludes

(Houston Chronicle, Perla Trevizo, Updated 07/16/19. Photo by Juan Figueroa)

“If the number of extremely hot, humid days already seems like too many, a national study finds it’s likely to get worse.”

houstonchronicle.com

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Environmental Headlines for the Houston Region: July 9, 2019

When you couldn’t see the Arboretum for the trees

(Houston Chronicle, Allyn West, Updated 07/05/19. Photo by Houston Arboretum and Nature Center.)

“The death of almost half the trees at the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center might have saved the place.

A thicket — a combination of invasive plants and out-of-control natives — had swallowed the land. In the unbalanced ecosystem that had ermerged over the decades, bushes and vine-covered trees grew where they had no business growing.”

houstonchronicle.com

Houston, it’s up to us to tackle global warming

(Houston Chronicle, Brett Perlman and Andy Steinhubl, Updated 07/08/19. Photo by Scott Kingsley.)

“Could Houston — the world headquarters of the oil and gas industry — take the lead in solving the world’s global warming problems?”

Another unique opportunity for the Houston to lead involves our port: shifting marine operations to cleaner fuels, including hydrogen and liquefied natural gas, and continue electrifying port facilities.

houstonchronicle.com 

Approval of $2B consent decree could hike Houston’s water rates as early as next year

(Houston Chronicle, Mike Morris, Updated 07/09/19. Photo by Godofredo A Vásquez)

“The Environmental Protection Agency has long been concerned that Houston’s cracked, clogged or flooded sewer pipes spill waste… Eighty percent of area waterways fall short of water quality standards for fecal bacteria.

Turner said he is proud of the proposal, saying it is a targeted solution that will limit sewer spills, upgrade facilities, and help keep pace with the city’s growth.”

houstonchronicle.com

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