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Aug 28, 2015

Waters off second Hawaii beach fouled by partially treated sewage

By Steve Gorman

(Reuters) – Hawaii health authorities have posted warnings of a sewage spill at a popular beach once proposed to be renamed after President Barack Obama, marking the second time this week that a well-known stretch of Oahu’s shoreline has been hit by such a mishap.

About 1 million gallons of wastewater that ran through a treatment plant without being disinfected flowed into the ocean on Tuesday off Sandy Beach, a favorite spot for body surfers on the east end of the island, roughly 15 miles from Honolulu.

Aug 21, 2015

Faux candidate Deez Nuts polls nine percent in Clinton-Trump match-up

By Steve Gorman

(Reuters) – A fake U.S. presidential candidate named Deez Nuts, reported to be the creation of an Iowa teenager, has stirred a social media frenzy by polling nearly 10 percent of registered North Carolina voters in a hypothetical match-up against Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

A statement of candidacy on behalf of the fictional 2016 White House hopeful, listing him as an independent, was filed on July 26 with the U.S. Federal Election Commission by 15-year-old Brady Olson, a high school student from Wallingford, Iowa, according to the Daily Beast.

Aug 11, 2015

Restrictions to remain for rivers hardest hit by Colorado mine waste spill

Aug 11 (Reuters) – New Mexico officials joined Colorado on
Tuesday in declaring an emergency due to toxic wastewater
spewing from an abandoned gold mine, a spill that prompted
authorities to close two rivers to drinking water and irrigation
intakes for at least another week.

The San Juan River and its northern tributary, the Animas
River, have been fouled by the release of more than 3 million
gallons (11.3 million liters) of acid mine drainage
inadvertently triggered by a team of Environmental Protection
Agency workers last Wednesday.

Aug 11, 2015

Rivers hardest hit by Colorado mine waste spill to stay closed until Aug. 17

By Steve Gorman

(Reuters) – Two rivers in Colorado and New Mexico hardest hit by contamination from toxic wastewater spilled from a defunct gold mine will remain closed to drinking water and irrigation intakes for at least another week, U.S. environmental officials said.

The San Juan River and its northern tributary, the Animas River, have been fouled by the release of more than 3 million gallons (11.3 million liters) of acid mine drainage inadvertently triggered by a team of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) workers last week.

Aug 10, 2015

Wastewater spill from Colorado gold mine triples in volume: EPA

By Steve Gorman

(Reuters) – Some 3 million gallons of toxic wastewater, triple previous estimates, have poured from a defunct Colorado gold mine into local streams since a team of Environmental Protection Agency workers accidentally triggered the spill last week, EPA officials said on Sunday.

The discharge, containing high concentrations of heavy metals such as arsenic, mercury and lead, was continuing to flow at the rate of 500 gallons per minute on Sunday, four days after the spill began at the Gold King Mine, the EPA said.

Aug 6, 2015

U.S. agencies petitioned to inspect offshore California pipelines

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – An environmental group petitioned
the federal government on Thursday to immediately inspect more
than 200 miles (320 km) of undersea oil pipelines off
California’s coast.

The Center for Biological Diversity cited extensive
corrosion that is believed to have caused an onshore pipeline to
burst in May west of Santa Barbara, unleashing the biggest oil
spill to hit that region in more than four decades.

Aug 6, 2015

Firefighters turning corner in northern California’s big Rocky blaze

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – The battle to tame California’s fiercest wildfire this year, the big Rocky blaze north of Napa Valley wine country, neared a turning point on Thursday as ground crews fighting the flames for an eighth day steadily extended their control lines.

The containment level for the blaze, a measure of how much of its perimeter has been firmly enclosed within fire breaks hacked through unburned vegetation by firefighters, rose to 40 percent on Thursday – double what it was two days earlier.

Aug 6, 2015

Bill Cosby ordered to give deposition in sexual abuse lawsuit

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Bill Cosby has been ordered to give a sworn deposition in a lawsuit brought by a woman accusing the comedian of plying her with alcohol and sexually abusing her at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles when she was 15 years old.

The order, entered by a Los Angeles Superior Court judge on Tuesday and made public on Wednesday, states that Cosby will submit to questions under oath from the lawyer of his accuser, Judy Huth, on Oct. 9, and that she will answer questions from his attorneys on Oct. 15.

Aug 5, 2015

Property losses from northern California wildfire nearly double

By Steve Gorman and Ian Simpson

(Reuters) – The tally of property losses from California’s most destructive wildfire this year nearly doubled on Wednesday as the week-old blaze raged on through dry scrubland north of Napa Valley wine country.

The higher damage figures from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Prevention (Cal Fire) coincided with an ominous U.S. Forest Service report that more than half its total budget is, for the first time, being spent on fire suppression across the country.

Aug 4, 2015

Northern California wildfire grows further after jumping highway

By Steve Gorman

(Reuters) – California’s biggest and fiercest wildfire of the year grew larger as it raged for a seventh day through drought-parched chaparral and ranch lands north of Napa Valley wine country after jumping a highway that authorities hoped would slow its advance.

The blaze, dubbed the Rocky Fire, has charred some 65,000 acres, destroyed more than 50 buildings and displaced thousands of residents since erupting last week in the rugged canyons and foothills east of the town of Clearlake, about 110 miles north of San Francisco.

    • About Steve

      "Joining Reuters in 1994 as a member of the broadcast/online desk in Washington, Steve later moved to Los Angeles, where he spent 10 years covering the entertainment industry, and the past two years as a general news correspondent. Steve began his career at United Press International in Washington. He also spent three years on Capitol Hill as editor of a weekly news journal published by a congressional caucus, the Environmental and Energy Study Conference."
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