Archive | December, 2013

(EnviroNews California) – The infamous accident at Pennsylvania’s Three Mile Island power facility is typically the first meltdown that comes to mind when people think about nuclear disasters in America. While journalists and editors at CNN have reported it was the worst nuclear meltdown ever in the United…

This entry is part 1 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

  While CNN calls Three Mile Island the worst nuclear disaster on American soil, the news agency completely overlooks the Santa Susana Field Laboratory meltdown in 1959 — a meltdown that occurred without a containment structure in place. No one knows how much radiation was released, because the…

This entry is part 2 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

The ocean waters around the Farallon Islands served as a nuclear waste dumping ground from 1948 until 1970. Just 30 miles from San Francisco, the Atomic Energy Commission threw almost 50,000 barrels of waste into the Pacific Ocean, along with other radioactive waste — such as the USS…

This entry is part 3 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

  The Salton Sea was created when irrigation routes were mishandled and allowed to run into the Salton Sink in southeastern California from 1905 to 1907. The inland sea has no outlet and is fed by agricultural runoff. The resulting high salinity is responsible for the deaths of…

This entry is part 4 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

  While our own EnviroNews USA Editor-in-Chief, in an off-the-cuff interview with Erin Brockovich, referred to the little-known and largely forgotten Lakeview Gusher Number One as probably the third or fourth largest oil spill in history, National Geographic gives it a different distinction: They crown it as the…

This entry is part 5 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

  This refinery has had two recent incidents, which should make anyone question the quest for petroleum over the health of people. In 1999, the refinery had an explosion and fire that sent more than 1,200 Richmond residents to the hospital. In 2012, history repeated itself as a…

This entry is part 6 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

The Chevron Refinery at El Segundo was fined $2.25 million for releasing about 4.5 million gallons of jet fuel into an aquifer that is not used for drinking water during the course of about a year from 1998 to early 1999. Rather than seeking forgiveness, company representatives expressed…

This entry is part 7 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

  In 1991, when a railroad tanker spilled its contents into the upper Sacramento River, Jim Pedri, supervising engineer for the California Regional Water Quality Control Board’s Central Valley office, called it “the worst chemical-environmental disaster inland in California history,” according to the New York Times. It killed…

This entry is part 8 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

  If you have ever experienced the majesty of giant redwoods in Northern California, you understand the peace and wisdom that these giants represent. Walking through a forest where these trees reign is more than a hike through the woods; it is a spiritual experience that can only…

This entry is part 9 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

When the Los Angeles aqueduct was opened in 1913, it diverted water from Owens Lake. Just 13 years later the lake, which once could float a steamboat, had dried up — to slake the thirst of a growing city in the desert. The drying of the lake created…

This entry is part 10 of 10 in the series Top 10 California Disasters

  We’re going to start off with a bad news–good news story. This way when you look at the rest of the list, you can always come back to this one and find some hope. Things can change. They can get better. Humans have been destroying the ecological…

(EnviroNews California) – Los Angeles – While speaking with Erin Brockovich, the topic of the worst environmental disasters in California history came up. The following list of the top 10 man-made environmental disasters that California has experienced contains some disturbing information about what the government and corporations have…