Updates

Alliance Launched To Save Bees

Sixty-five chefs, restaurant owners and other culinary leaders joined us to launch the Bee Friendly Food Alliance. Through the Alliance, chefs and restaurateurs are calling attention to the importance of bees to our food supply, the dramatic die-off of bee populations, and the need to protect our pollinators. LEARN MORE.

News Release | Environment Texas

Beach Warnings Increase in Texas

As millions of Americans flock to beaches around the country, Environment Texas reported that beach closings and warnings due to pollution went up last year in Texas, according to the Natural Resource Defense Council’s 18th annual beach water quality report.  The group called for increased federal funding and faster testing for beachwater pollution and decried efforts to open protected coastlines to offshore drilling. 

Using data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the report, Testing the Waters: A Guide to Water Quality at Vacation Beaches, tallied 532 beach closing and health advisory days in 2007 in Texas, an eleven percent jump from the year before. In Texas, 49 percent of the closing and advisory days were caused by high bacteria levels resulting from storm water run-off. Another 49 per cent were high bacteria levels from unknown sources.

“Some families can’t enjoy a day at the beach because the water is polluted and kids are getting sick,” said Brittany Ballard, Citizen Outreach Director for Environment Texas. “Texas beachgoers should not be swimming in human and animal waste.”

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News Release | Environment Texas

New Rules on Environmental Reviews and Fishing Could Help Gulf of Mexico and Fish Rebound

Houston, Texas— Federal data show that in 2007 nearly three out of ten Gulf of Mexico fish species for which there is adequate information were overfished or were caught faster than they can reproduce, a condition known as overfishing. For 67 percent (36 out of 54) of the species in the Gulf that the federal government oversees there is not enough information to know whether the populations are healthy or not, according to a report released by Environment Texas today.

“With depleted numbers of red snapper and great amberjack, declining loggerhead sea turtle populations, and an annual dead zone, the Gulf of Mexico is in trouble,” said Luke Metzger, Director of Environment Texas. “It’s very troubling that almost thirty percent of the Gulf’s fish species are overfished. But even worse news is that we only know how healthy a third of our fish are at best. We are fishing blind on the other two thirds.”

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News Release | Environment Texas

Businesses, Environmental Groups Join To Protect Menhaden

The Save the Bait Coalition today called on the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission (TPW) to protect what has been called “the most important fish in the sea” in Texas’ coastal waters.   A diverse coalition of businesses and advocacy groups is seeking a science-based catch limit, observers to document wasteful fishing practices, and accountability measures to make sure catch limits are not exceeded for menhaden, a primary prey fish for finfish, seabirds, and dolphins.

The coalition is also asking the Texas state government to push for a Gulf-wide scientific assessment of menhaden that includes the important role the fish plays as prey for predators and as a “dead zone” fighting filter feeder.  “With this assessment Texas can set a science-based catch limit that ensures enough menhaden are left in the water to feed predators and Texas’ bays and estuaries have clean water,” said Luke Metzger the Director of Environment Texas.

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News Release | Environment Texas

Environmental Groups Sue Shell Oil for Clean Air Act Violations at Deer Park Refinery and Chemical Plant

HOUSTON – Sierra Club and Environment Texas filed a lawsuit today in federal district court against Shell Oil Company and several affiliates. The suit – the first case in Texas in which citizen groups are suing to stop illegal air emissions arising from so-called “upset” events – claims that Shell has repeatedly violated the Clean Air Act at its Deer Park, Texas, oil refinery and chemical plant, resulting in the release of millions of pounds of excess air pollutants over the past five years, including toxic chemicals such as benzene and 1,3-butadiene.

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Report | Environment Texas

Troubled Waters 2007

October 18, 2007 marks the 35th anniversary of the Clean Water Act, a landmark law intended to restore and maintain the physical, chemical and biological integrity of the nation’s waters. In passing the Clean Water Act, Congress set the goals of eliminating the discharge of pollutants into the nation’s waterways by 1985 and making all U.S. waterways fishable and swimmable by 1983. Although we have made significant progress in improving water quality since the passage of the Clean Water Act, we are far from realizing the Act’s original vision.

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