With summer in full swing, water pollution can close Virginia beaches or put swimmers' health at risk. Last year, bacteria levels at 29 Virginia beaches indicated that water was potentially unsafe for swimming there on least one day, according to the new report Safe for Swimming? by Environment Virginia Research and Policy Center. The report comes as Congress is set to vote tomorrow on a major spending bill that includes an additional $11 billion for water infrastructure.
Dominion Energy and Duke Energy announced on Sunday that they are pulling the plug on the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. After numerous legal setbacks and delays, the companies will abandon the heavily opposed 600-mile pipeline, which would have been built through some of Virginia's most iconic landscapes, including our farmland, mountains and forests.
The environmental dangers posed by offshore oil spills, such as the 2010 Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico, are well known. The damage to the environment, communities and public health from the onshore infrastructure needed to support offshore drilling is less well known, but no less real.
I recently spent a week in (mostly) coastal Virginia, working alongside four Environment Virginia Research & Policy Center fellows to make sure the voices of Virginians opposed to offshore drilling could be heard, loud and clear.
Environment Virginia Research and Policy Center is part of The Public Interest Network, which operates and supports organizations committed to a shared vision of a better world and a strategic approach to social change.