July 16 News: Chevron Grabs Enviro Advocates’ Personal Data To Fight Lawsuit Over Oil Waste In Amazon

Chevron was indicted for dumping 18.5 billion gallons of oil waste in the Ecuadorean Amazon, and to fight off the lawsuit, a U.S. court is granting it broad subpoena power to grab personal information about environmental activists. [Sustainable Business]

After a 20-year battle, Ecuador’s court ruled against Chevron in the world’s biggest environmental lawsuit, but the company isn’t giving up and has indeed settled on a new strategy to avoid paying $18.2 billion in damages for 30 years of pollution in the Amazon.

Chevron is attempting to fight back by claiming it is a victim of conspiracy and incredibly, a US federal judge has given the company access to email and internet use by environmental advocates in order to build its case.

A federal judge ruling enforces Chevron’s subpoena for Microsoft to provide IP usage records and identity information for email accounts owned by over 100 environmental activists, journalists and attorneys. Chevron has also subpoenaed Yahoo! and Google.

Gina McCarthy’s cloture vote is today, amid the swirl of possibilities of filibuster reform. [New York Times]

Meanwhile, the conservative group CEI is suing Gina McCarthy for her text messages. [The Hill]

If you write a story about the Koch Brothers that they don’t like, you might get a Facebook ad attacking you for writing the story. [Washington Post]


More than 5,000 people are still missing after floods and mudslides devastated northern India last month. [Wall Street Journal]

After massive rainstorms, mudslides, and a typhoon in southern China, nearly 300 people are either dead or missing. [AFP]

The Colorado Black Forest Fire, which began in June, cost $292.8 million and ruined 486 structures, making it the second-costliest fire in Colorado’s history. [Bloomberg]

Severe drought in the western U.S. has prompted federal agencies to ship thousands of gallons of water each day to wild horse herds. [LA Times]

It’s so hot you can fry an egg on the sidewalk in Death Valley during a heat wave, but National Park rangers are asking visitors to stop doing so because it leaves a gooey mess. Really. [AP]


The state of California has fined nine companies, including Exxon Mobil Corp., for filing late or inadequate greenhouse gas emissions reports. [LA Times]

The tragic train crash in Quebec is not a reason to build pipelines like Keystone XL, it is a reason to strengthen safety laws and stop pumping tar sands oil. [The Hill]

The petroleum industry is running ads opposing a rule requiring increased use of biofuels in regular gasoline. [Fuel Fix]

The American Energy Alliance, a conservative energy group, has launched an anti-carbon tax campaign aimed at targeting members of congress who have been “soft on the carbon tax issue.” [The Hill]

BP looks to save $1.7 billion off the fine it owes for the Deepwater Horizon spill because it was “dispersed” into the sea before it reached the surface. [Fuel Fix]

Greenland is getting darker, partially because of black carbon (soot), doubling its melting rate. [Ensia]

Australian opposition leader Tony Abbott adopts climate denier talking points when criticizing a price on carbon, saying it’s “not a true market … the non-delivery of an invisible substance to no-one.” This on a continent dealing with the externalities of climate change on a daily basis. [Renew Economy]

The Safe Climate Caucus asked Speaker Boehner to schedule a floor debate on climate change. [The Hill]

Two 20-megawatt solar farms in California have reached commercial operation. [Green Building Elements]

Women-owned businesses receive just one percent of Department of Energy direct contracts. [Bloomberg]

A European vote today could establish a large marine sanctuary in the Antarctic, but Russian and Ukrainian fishing interests could derail the proposal. [Guardian]