Environmental Public Health

  • Blogs

    November 14, 2014

    Two Companies Settle Over San Jacinto River Waste Pits, Jury Clears Lone Holdout of Liability

    Harris County's years-long legal battle to wring billions of dollars out of companies the county says are responsible for the San Jacinto River's toxic legacy ended with whimper Thursday. Following a four-week trial, Harris County Attorney Vince Ryan's office settled with two of three defendants jus ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 4, 2014

    The San Jacinto River Waste Pits Unleashed Toxins Into the River and, Residents Say, Their Bodies

    After a series of storms in March 2012, John Bonta is sorting through the wreckage on his Highlands ranch, 20 miles west of Houston. He's just gotten home from work when his wife, Pam, asks him to help her pick up a portion of the fence that had fallen during the night. He doesn't wait for her, thin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 22, 2014

    TCEQ Scientist Says the Smog is Fine Because Texans Stay Indoors

    The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has never exactly been on point when it comes to, you know, protecting the environment (this is Texas after all, land where the only good environmental regulation is a nonexistent one) but the state agency came out with a doozy this week. See, the feder ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 8, 2014

    Chikungunya-Positive Mosquito Confirmed in Harris County

    The Houston area has always been impressively swampy, so of course the first Texas mosquito carrying chikungunya, a disease that causes high fever and severe joint pain, has been found right here in our very own mosquito-plagued backyard. There have been rumblings about chikungunya in recent months ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 30, 2014

    Cut In Funding Followed Early Release of Air Quality Study

    Just in case you had any doubts on the matter, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is really not into sharing information with the public before it has been vetted by the folks over at the TCEQ. Shocking, we know. The Alamo Area Council of Governments -- a state council that oversees 13 ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 21, 2014

    Eagle Ford Shale is Causing Air Pollution -- Lots

    If you live around here and you haven't heard about the Eagle Ford Shale oil and natural gas play in the past few years, you just haven't been paying attention. The shale play that stretches from South Texas into Mexico is one of the key developments that has revitalized the U.S. energy sector after ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 27, 2014

    Texas Gets Ready to Rumble with the EPA. Again.

    You'd be hard pressed to find anything Texas officials love more than taking whatever the federal Environmental Protection Agency is trying to do and fighting against it. They've gotten a lot of mileage out of fighting against anything the EPA tries to do when it comes to air quality in recent year ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 15, 2013

    OSHA Fines Tomball's Pigs Unlimited International Inc. for 19 Violations

    A Tomball company's fat is in the fire with the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Health and Safety Administration, so to speak. The company, Pigs Unlimited International Inc., a foam and polyurethane pig manufacturer (we're talking about a piece of equipment sent up pipelines, not actual pig ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 11, 2013

    Don't Sweat Your Commute: H-GAC Asks Houstonians To Consider Alternatives

    You might think you spend a lot of time sitting in traffic, but did you know that the average Houstonian also spends $6,000 a year on commuting? That's not just gas. That includes everything from new tires, wear and tear on your car, and wasted productivity. That's why this month the Houston-Galves ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 1, 2013

    So That Was The Smell: San Antonio Fined For More Than 23 Million Gallons of Raw Sewage Dumped In Waterways

    Have you ever been strolling by the San Antonio River Walk and thought you smelled something a little, you know, funky? Turns out it may not have all been in your head, or nose. The San Antonio Water System was supposed to be taking care of the raw sewage coming into the plant but from 2006 to 2012 ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 29, 2013

    Oregon Judge Upholds $81 Million Judgment Against KBR in Toxic Chemical Case

    Poor KBR just can't get a break -- a federal judge in Oregon has affirmed an $81 million judgment against the Houston-based firm for exposing National Guard soldiers to a deadly chemical at an Iraqi water injection plant in 2003. The judgment was awarded to the first 12 veterans, out of hundreds sti ... More >>

  • News

    September 20, 2012

    New Cracks in the Frack

    Pesky little complaints like pollution, flaming water and abandoned homes continue to cast doubt on the argument that drilling into shale will benefit all.

  • Blogs

    April 25, 2012

    Breathe (Slightly) Deeper, Houston: Our Air Quality Improves a Little

    You may not have noticed, but Houston's air quality has gotten (slightly) better, according to the annual report by the American Lung Association. Don't get too happy, though: We're still the eighth-worst city for ozone pollution in the U.S. But when it comes to short-term particle pollution, we ar ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 5, 2012

    KBR Chemical Lawsuit: Soldiers' Lawyers Say They Found Smoking Gun

    When we wrote about American and European soldiers suing Kellogg, Brown & Root for allegedly exposing them to a cancer-causing chemical at an Iraqi water treatment plant, we thought the company's excuse -- it had no idea the chemical was onsite before boots were on the ground -- was pretty flimsy. A ... More >>

  • News

    February 16, 2012

    Blood Money

    More than 200 soldiers are suing KBR for knowingly exposing them to toxic chemicals in Iraq, whose effects started with nose bleeds and could end with cancer. KBR says that didn't happen. But even if it did, the company isn't responsible. Taxpayers are.

  • Blogs

    February 15, 2012

    Cover Story: Soldiers Say KBR Exposed Them to Dangerous Chemical

    In 2003, just weeks after the U.S. declared war on Iraq, workers for Houston-based KBR were busy trying to restore the invaded nation's oil industry. Under a contract with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, part of KBR's job was to restore a dilapidated water-injection facility in the south. America ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 20, 2011

    Sourdough Bread: A Starter (Part Four)

    Photo by Nicholas L. HallThe other, other Boleyn Girl.​The problem with complacency is that it's a lie. Invariably, the moment you decide you have everything under control, and you can coast to whatever particular finish line you have in mind, you trip over a rock and fall flat on your face. O ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 8, 2011

    FBISD Says Don't Worry, We Took Care of That Austin High Mold

    A spritz here, a spritz there.​One of the lesser joys of getting ready for a new school year comes when teachers return to the classroom and flip on a switch. At Austin High School in the Fort Bend ISD, last week a few teachers were greeted with the unwelcome discovery of what one person des ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 14, 2010

    ExxonMobil's Baytown Refinery Sued For Being So Damn Leaky

    Headed to court​Following in the footsteps of Shell and and ChevronPhillips, ExxonMobil has been sued by environmental groups who say its refinery routinely violates clean-air regulations and doesn't really do anything about it. The Sierra Club and Environment Texas announced their lawsuit to ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 26, 2010

    Greg Abbott Sues Obama Administration Over Clean-Air Rules

    Dumb bureaucrats........‚ÄčThe Texas regulations on clean air, such as they are, have done a marvelous job for years, and we don't need the feds messing with our pristine environment, Texas attorney general Greg Abbott said today in a suit filed against the Obama administration.Texas' (notorious) Fl ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 15, 2010

    TCEQ, State's Clean-Air "Watchdog," About To Be Sued Over A Local Plant

    Austin's power supplier a major polluter, groups say‚ÄčAs the Houston Press has written about, and as the Obama administration has determined, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality is a pretty lax watchdog.Now they're going to get sued over it.A coalition of clean-air groups has served forma ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 9, 2009

    If You're Going to Smoke, Stay Away From Siamese Cats

    Texas A&M's College of Veterinary Medicine has tackled the question of whether second hand smoke can give heart disease or cancer to your pets - and comes up with a profound maybe. "Laboratory studies using dogs trained to smoke cigarettes have shown that they develop typical lung pathology similar ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 19, 2009

    BP Pays Big (Kinda) To Settle Texas City Pollution Claims

    Good news and bad news for Texas City: The good news is that BP will be spending $167 million to reduce pollution in its plant there.The bad news is that they were polluting the area so bad it's going to take $167 million to do something about it.The Environmental Protection Agency announced today t ... More >>

  • Blogs

    February 11, 2009

    Pearland Gets The State's Newest Superfund Site! Take That, Pasadena!

    There's an ugly mess of chemicals in the groundwater on the south side of Pearland. The contamination is severe enough that the abandoned tank farm has become the latest addition to the state's Superfund Registry.This is no surprise to nearby residents, some of whom are being given bottled water bec ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 2, 2008

    Ozone Levels Getting Nasty

    This doesn't sound too good. Patricia Tinoco-Perez of Harris County's Public Health & Environmental Services department says don't go around doing too much breathing right now: Harris County Public Health & Environmental Services (HCPHES) is issuing an "Air Quality Warning/Health Advisory" for the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 2, 2006

    No, Seriously, It Really Is Falling

    Rice University There's hope underneath that tough facade. Homeless folks now have an option besides aluminum-can recycling and panhandling to earn a little extra cash. The good neighbors at Rice University are dropping Styrofoam boxes all over the city — not filled with beer, which would' ... More >>

  • News

    March 4, 2004

    Lead Astray

    Inspectors are fined after the Press uncovers faulty reports on low-income housing

  • Best of Houston

    September 26, 2002

    Best Installation

    Slumber House

  • News

    May 29, 1997
  • News

    April 24, 1997

    "A Flaky Deal"

    To snare a federal grant, the city of Houston overstated the extent of lead poisoning among children in poor neighborhoods. But now that it's got the money, the city can't figure out how to help those who need it most

  • News

    December 14, 1995

    Getting the Lead Out

    A Mexican folk remedy stymies attempts to cleanse Houston of a heavy metal

  • News

    December 14, 1995