Weekly News Bulletin: Jul. 18-24, 2002


Bush Gives Go-Ahead To Yucca Mountain

President Bush has signed a resolution clearing the way for the burial of nuclear waste from across the nation in Nevada's Yucca Mountain. But Nevada lawmakers, citing the safety concerns of the region's 1.4 million people and the risk of terrorist attack, pledged to keep fighting the plan any way they can, both in court and in congress by slashing its funding. The resolution signed by Bush overrides Nevada's veto of the administration's plan to put the country's first permanent nuclear waste repository in the Nevada desert. The move clears the way for the U.S. Energy Department to apply to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to license the $58 billion project. The facility is scheduled to open in 2010 and hold 77,000 tons of radioactive material that must be isolated for 10,000 years...Read More »



Investigators Say Whitman Had No Conflicts of Interest

Independent federal investigators concluded there is no basis for an ombudsman's claims that Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Christie Whitman had a conflict of interest in three large-scale cleanups, including the World Trade Center. Investigators from the EPA and the Justice Department spent seven months looking into claims by former EPA ombudsman Robert Martin that Whitman had a personal financial interest influencing decisions at the cleanup in New York and two Superfund toxic waste sites, Shattuck Chemical Co. in Denver and Marjol Battery and Equipment Co. in Throop, Pa. Martin had alleged that Whitman crafted deals that benefited Citigroup, which had a financial interest in the cleanup projects. Whitman's husband, John, worked for Citigroup and had stock holdings in the company...Read More »



TSP's Texas Landfill Plans May Have Hit Snag

TSP Development Limited's efforts to create what would be Texas' largest industrial waste landfill may not get the needed state permit. Citing health and environmental concerns, Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission Executive Director Jeff Saitas says he probably won't support a permit for TSP's landfill. Saitas said the application doesn't comply with all of the standards for municipal waste landfills, nor does it comply with all of the standards for hazardous waste landfills. A judge in May granted a preliminary injunction against the proposed 800-acre site in Chambers County near Galveston...Read More »



EPA Releases Funds For More Superfund Cleanups

The Environmental Protection Agency has cleared payments to clean up a third of the toxic waste sites for which financing had been delayed this year. Agency officials said $27 million was made available in June to clean up 11 of 33 Superfund sites in 18 states that an EPA inspector general's report identified as having received no money as of May. The 11 sites that received the latest money are the Combe Fill South Landfill site, Chester Township, N.J., $1.4 million; the GCL Tie and Treating site, Sidney, N.Y., $2.5 million; the Tutu Wellfield site, Tutu, V.I.; $5.6 million; the American Creosote Works site, Pensacola, Fla., $2.7 million; the Ross Metals site, Rossville, Tenn., $3 million; the Aircraft Components site, Benton Harbor, Mich., $1.5 million; the Hudson Refinery site, Cushing, Okla., $3 million; the Sprague Road site, Odessa, Texas, $4 million; and the 10th Street site, Columbus, Neb., $1 million; and two mining areas in Montana, one near Basin, $1.3 million, and the other, Upper Ten Mile Creek, near Helena, $1 million. Another five of the 33 sites do not currently need more money, EPA officials said...Read More »



Clean Harbors Releases Second-Quarter Results

Clean Harbors, Inc. has announced results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2002. The company reported second-quarter revenues of $60.1 million, compared with $62.3 million for the same quarter of 2001. Clean Harbors recorded net income of $483,000, or $0.03 per diluted share, for the second quarter of 2002 compared with net income of $2.4 million, or $0.18 per diluted share, for the second quarter of 2001. Included in second quarter 2002 net income are expenses of $1.1 million relating to the acquisition of the Chemical Services Division of Safety-Kleen Corp...Read More »



Laidlaw, Safety-Kleen Settle Differences In Mediation

Laidlaw Inc. and Safety-Kleen Corp. have settled all claims against each other through a court-approved mediation process. The companies said the settlement resolves Laidlaw's $6.5 billion claim against Safety-Kleen, as well as Safety-Kleen's $13.8 billion claim against Laidlaw. Also resolved are $6.3 billion of claims by secured lenders of Safety- Kleen against Laidlaw, and claims by certain officers and directors of each company against the other company...Read More »



Santa Monica Settles MTBE Suit With Two Companies

ChevronTexaco Corp. and Exxon Mobil Corp. have agreed to build a water treatment plant to clean up polluted groundwater in wells owned by the city of Santa Monica, California at a cost of up to $200 million. In a tentative settlement to a two-year-old lawsuit, ChevronTexaco and ExxonMobil agreed to pay $30 million in cash and foot the full cost of building and running a water treatment facility to clean the gasoline additive MTBE and other contaminants from the wells. In return, Santa Monica will drop the companies from its lawsuit, filed in 2000 against a group of oil manufacturers, suppliers, refiners and owners and operators of pipelines and other facilities for allegedly contributing to the pollution. The tentative agreement also states that the two companies may be repaid a portion of those costs if the city settles with any of the other companies named in the suit...Read More »


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