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Environmental brief ~ EPA files 338-count complaint against Puerto Rico fruit farm

[JURIST] In Thursday's environmental law news, the EPA has filed a complaint against Puerto Rican agriculture company Martex Farms [corporate website] for violations of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) [text]. The complaint lists 338 counts of violations that include not properly posting information on pesticides being used and not providing adequate decontamination supplies and protective equipment for its employees. Read the EPA press release.

In other news,

  • The Vietnam government has ordered the culling of all ducks and pigeons raised for food yesterday in Ho Chi Minh city in an attempt to stop the spread of the avian flu [CDC factpage], or bird-flu, virus. The virus, H5N1, has killed 13 people over the past month and 45 in the past year. Reuters has more.

  • The British government is considering a proposal that would give tax breaks to oil companies that pump carbon dioxide from coal and gas power stations into nearly empty undersea oil and gas wells. The basic idea is that the carbon dioxide that is normally emitted into the air from power plants can be captured and then pumped under pressure (turning it into a liquid) into older wells. The liquid carbon dioxide would then force out any remaining oil from the wells, which would be resealed trapping the CO2 inside. The plan has been around for awhile, although there had not been economic incentives to pursue it. It is still unknown if the wells will be able to be resealed in such a way that the CO2 does not seep out. The Guardian has more.

  • The final Senate hearing [official hearing statements] on the Clear Skies Act of 2005 [official text] occurred yesterday before the Environment and Public Works Committee [official site]. The White House-supported bill appears to have evenly divided the committee members, with proponents saying it will help curb pollution emissions and improve the economy and opponents saying it is a rollback of current Clean Air Act statutes and a financial reward to utility companies. The bill's sponsor and Committee chairman Senator James. M. Inhofe promised to have a final version of the bill ready for a vote within two weeks. The New York Times has the more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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