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April 12, 2013 | By Matt Pearce
The images from Mayflower, Ark., after a March 29 oil spill were particularly repulsive: A river of black goo running through yards and down the street of a subdivision, and hundreds of workers arriving to clean up an industrial mess in a peaceful burg. But the Exxon Mobil pipeline spill, initially estimated to have released at least 157,000 gallons of crude oil and driven more than 20 families from their homes, represents only a fraction of the regular oil losses from the huge network of pipelines stretching across the United States.
April 6, 2013 | By Neela Banerjee, Los Angeles Times
This year President Obama will decide whether to allow construction of the Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta, Canada, to the Gulf of Mexico. Few environmental issues in recent years have engendered so much passion and debate. The pipeline would facilitate the transportation of a particularly thick type of oil, oil sands crude, from Canada to U.S. ports. What is oil sands crude? It is a tar-like substance containing bitumen, extracted from the boreal forests of western Canada by strip mining.
April 4, 2013 | By James Hansen
In March, the State Department gave the president cover to open a big spigot that will hitch our country to one of the dirtiest fuels on Earth for 40 years or more. The draft environmental review of the Keystone XL pipeline acknowledges tar sands are nasty stuff for the environment, but concludes that the project is OK because this oil will get to market anyway - with or without a pipeline. A public comment period is underway through April 22, after which the department will prepare a final statement to help the administration decide whether the pipeline is in the "national interest.
March 26, 2013 | By Lisa Dillman
CHICAGO -- Kings captain Dustin Brown already had his semi-private talk with President Obama, shortly after the Kings won the Stanley Cup in June. So what will be on his mind if he gets the chance to chat with the president later today when the Kings and MLS champion Galaxy visit the White House? “I'll keep it pretty simple,” Brown said. “I'll just go there and enjoy it. Hopefully it won't be a once-in-a-lifetime experience. But you've got to treat it like that.” Brown was talking shortly after the Kings' biggest win of the season, a 5-4 victory on Monday night here over the Blackhawks in which he scored the game-winning goal with just under a minute and a half remaining.
March 11, 2013 | By Alex Rodriguez
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan -- Work formally began Monday on a controversial pipeline that would feed energy-starved Pakistan natural gas from Iran, a project that has drawn stern warnings from the U.S. of possible sanctions against Islamabad if the South Asian nation doesn't reverse course. President Asif Ali Zardari led a 300-member delegation from Islamabad to Iran, where officials from both countries attended a ceremony inaugurating the project. The 1,244-mile pipeline would each day transport more than 750 million cubic feet of natural gas to Pakistan from Iran's South Pars gas field in the Persian Gulf.
March 1, 2013 | By Neela Banerjee, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - A long-awaited State Department review of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline released Friday concludes that he project would have minimal impact on the environment, increasing the chances it could be approved in the coming months. The State Department underscored that the study, a supplemental environmental impact statement, is a draft and that it does not offer recommendations for action on the $7-billion project, which would bring petroleum from the oil sands of Alberta, Canada, to refineries on the Gulf Coast of Texas.
March 1, 2013 | By Neela Banerjee
WASHINGTON - The State Department issued a long-awaited environmental review of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline that concludes it would have a minimal impact on the environment, increasing the chances that the project might be approved in the coming months. The State Department underscored that the supplemental environmental impact statement is only a draft and does not offer recommendations for action on the $7-billion project, which would bring petroleum from the oil sands of Alberta, Canada, to refineries on the Gulf Coast of Texas. Nonetheless, the review says “the analyses of potential impacts associated with construction and normal operation of the proposed project suggest that there would be no significant impacts to most resources along the proposed project route.” Because Keystone XL crosses a U.S. border, it needs a permit from the State Department.
February 9, 2013 | By Charles Perry
Beer made with roasted malts is going to remind you of other roasted flavors such as coffee. Some brewers actually throw in some coffee to punch up that quality, but the combination doesn't necessarily work. Here's a case in which it really does, and I don't think the reason is some beer equivalent of terroir (the brewery is in Kona, Hawaii, and uses local Kona coffee). The brewers just had a larger effect in mind than extra roastiness. Like any porter, it pours very dark brown with a high tan head.
December 31, 2012 | By Emily Alpert
As a devastating year in Syria drew to a close, armed rebels and government forces continued to battle over the bloodied country, state media and opposition activists reported Monday. Government forces have seized weapons and killed and arrested “a number of terrorists” in the province of Homs, the official Syrian Arab News Agency reported , using its usual term for the armed rebels. State media also carried a military statement claiming that army units had killed “huge numbers of terrorists” in the Damascus countryside and the areas surrounding the Aleppo airport, stressing “its resolve to continue cracking down on the terrorists.” The agency did not offer an estimated count of the number killed.
December 14, 2012 | By Michael McGough
Four thoughts about Susan Rice's decision to withdraw as a possible nominee for secretary of State: 1) Rice should not have been disqualified because of her now-notorious talk-show comments about the attack in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans. As The Times observed in an editorial, her comments “faithfully tracked 'talking points' that were assembled by intelligence officials and only slightly edited by the White House and State Department.”  The excision of references to a possible Al Qaeda connection were apparently made by intelligence officials, not the White House, and while Rice has been criticized for saying in one interview that Al Qaeda had been decimated, she also said: “Whether they were Al Qaeda affiliates, whether they were Libyan-based extremists or Al Qaeda itself, I think is one of the things we'll have to determine.
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