Jim Blackburn

  • Blogs

    July 1, 2014

    Appeals Court Rules Texas Not at Fault in Whooper Deaths

    Back in the 1940s, there were only 16 whooping cranes left in the world. The birds, hunted for their white feathers (used for ladies hats, of all things) and shot for sport, were on the brink of extinction, but they didn't go the way of the Dodo. Instead, years of conservation efforts brought the ... More >>

  • News

    January 9, 2014

    Fighting for Control: Can Buffalo Bayou Survive the Latest Plan to Save It?

    Plans to reroute Buffalo Bayou will rescue an unstable waterway. Or they will destroy one of the last natural stretches of riparian forest on the bayou. Consensus seems to have taken a hike.

  • Blogs

    January 9, 2014

    Cover Story: Fighting for Control

    Buffalo Bayou has been a controversy that hits at the very heart of Houston for decades. It all started in the 1960s, when a group of concerned citizens, mostly wealthy and well-connected, learned that the Harris County Flood Control District planned to cement and channelize a vein of Buffalo Bayou ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 6, 2013

    Neal Robbins: Serving Life for a Homicide -- Only Now There is No Official "Homicide."

    In 1998, a Harris County associate medical examiner ruled that 17- month old Tristan Rivet died as a result of homicide, and a Montgomery County jury decided that Neal Robbins killed her. In 2007, the same medical examiner decided she made a mistake, and that the cause of death should have been "un ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 18, 2013

    Judge Finds State at Fault for Whooping Cranes' Deaths, But Abbott Seeks Stay

    In the mid-1940s, only 16 Whooping Cranes remained in the wild. Hunted for their cream-colored plumage, shot and killed for pure sport, the largest bird in North America stood all but extinct. Presaged by Passenger Pigeons and the Carolina Parakeet, it seemed that American frontiersmen would once mo ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 29, 2012

    Federal Judge Agrees Threatened Dams Near Grand Parkway Project Need More Study

    Back in June, we looked at how extensive new development along the Grand Parkway is contributing to a scary scenario where the Addicks and Barker dams could fail with Katrina-like effects. Now a federal judge has agreed with us, kinda. U.S. District Judge Keith Ellison has issued a 42-page memora ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 27, 2010

    Hurricanes: Rice Says Ike Was Nothing

    Just a fresh seabreeze compared to what could have been​Just in time for hurricane season, a group created in the wake of Ike has issued a report that should be entitled "The Bejesus, And Scaring It Out Of You."Remember Ike and how much that sucked? Destruction in Galveston, no electricity in Hous ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 10, 2009

    Sierra Club Sues Over Grand Parkway

    The Grand Parkway, that expansive road to nowhere in the middle of nowhere, is headed to court.The Sierra Club has filed a federal suit against the project, saying that environmental-impact studies have been inadequate.Brandt Mannchen of the group appeared before Commissioners Court today to explain ... More >>

  • News

    November 3, 2005
  • News

    October 13, 2005

    Switch Hitter

    A book tour stirs up some dust over Jim Blackburn and an old environmental deal

  • News

    January 13, 2005

    Draining the Swamp

    A scorched-earth management philosophy is sucking the life out of our region's wetlands

  • Best of Houston

    September 23, 2004
  • News

    July 10, 2003

    Back Door to History

    Thank J.R. Quinn for the gay celebrations

  • News

    July 3, 2003

    Mixed Messages

    Casualties aren't easy to count in the continuing battle of Bayport

  • News

    December 12, 2002

    Taking a Toll

    A bridge to Bolivar might be good for business -- but not for the birds

  • News

    December 20, 2001

    Out of Control

    The City of Houston requires developers in the floodplain to elevate and mitigate -- build houses on higher ground and dig detention ponds for runoff. Except, not always.

  • News

    December 6, 2001

    Purging a Dirty Past

    The state's own regulators want to ignore its records on polluters

  • News

    September 13, 2001

    Not Worth A Dam

    Clear Creek is on the rise, and local flood-protection methods have been helpless against it. Soggy residents, tired of being perpetual victims, are ready for a fight.

  • News

    August 30, 2001

    Winging It

    For business or pleasure, here comes the Great Butterfly Chase

  • News

    June 21, 2001

    Unstable Ground

    Businessman Michael Shelton thought he had beaten the system. Then he learned the legislature can be as unpredictable as the salt domes where he wants to store toxic waste.

  • News

    May 3, 2001

    Green Port?

    A Port suit accuses several companies of contaminating its land for decades

  • News

    April 19, 2001

    Immodest Proposals

    The solution to Houston's image problems? Spin them away.

  • News

    June 29, 2000

    A Yenne for Your Thoughts

    Brazoria's D.A. raises privacy issues over DPS emissions tests

  • News

    June 8, 2000

    The Long Haul

    Immigrant shrimpers survived Vietnam and the wrath of Texas rednecks. Can they do the same with new fishing restrictions?

  • News

    December 2, 1999

    Gag Me with a Suit!

    Exercising rights in Seabrook can land you in court

  • News

    October 28, 1999

    Promises, Promises

    Skeptics say the Port could break more pledges involving Bayport

  • News

    September 30, 1999


    Has the fight over port expansion turned a bay watchdog group into a rubber duck?

  • News

    September 9, 1999

    Cash Box

    The Port referendum means lots of jobs -- for consultants

  • News

    March 4, 1999
  • News

    February 18, 1999

    Blowing Smoke

    Government and civic boosters know the way to clean up the air in polluted southeast communities: add another chemical plant

  • News

    January 21, 1999

    Looking for Answers Down Below

    The city doesn't seem to care that a Houston developer's plans for high-density apartments and a supermarket rest atop abandoned oil fields and possible contamination

  • News

    August 27, 1998

    Wetlands Maul?

    The Sierra Club got paid off, but a developer's bizarre problems continue

  • News

    July 2, 1998

    Rocky Landing

    Residents of this seaside neighborhood are about to be joined by a 1,000-acre port facility

  • News

    March 12, 1998

    Waste Not, Want Not

    Local residents unite to fight the mountain of landfill trash headed their way

  • News

    September 11, 1997

    The Airport That Wouldn't Die

    Last fall, environmentalists thought they'd finally put a stake through the heart of the West Side Airport. But the mayoral race seems to have given it a new lease on life.

  • News

    May 23, 1996

    Down the Drain

    Encroaching development and bureaucratic inertia are jeopardizing Sheldon Reservoir, one of east Harris County's last natural outposts

  • News

    February 1, 1996

    Make It Ugly, By All Means

    Montrose-area neighborhoods broach a novel idea: Let freeway expansion improve the inner city

  • News

    May 19, 1994

    The Battle for Lavaca Bay

    Diane Wilson asked only that her home bay be allowed to live. She says she was told no. So she went to war.