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Water Pollution

December 16, 2010 | By Tony Barboza, Los Angeles Times
A state appeals court has ruled that Los Angeles and Ventura counties can enforce water-quality standards designed to protect the region's beaches from polluted runoff, regardless of the cost to local governments and contractors. The 4th District Court of Appeal on Monday reversed a 2008 ruling in favor of Arcadia, 20 other Los Angeles County cities and a building industry association, which sought to overturn the storm-water pollution regulations by the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board because the agency did not consider their economic effect on construction projects.
September 24, 2013 | By Joann Loviglio
Ruth Patrick, a scientist whose research on freshwater ecosystems led to groundbreaking ways to measure pollution in rivers and streams, has died. She was 105. Patrick, recipient of dozens of the nation's top science awards including the National Medal of Science, died Monday at a retirement community in Lafayette Hill, Pa., according to the Academy of Natural Sciences at Drexel University. The cause was not given. Patrick is credited with creating an approach that assesses the health of a lake, stream or river by evaluating the quantity, diversity and health of its plants, insects, fish and other organisms - not solely examining the chemistry of the water.
November 29, 2011 | By Jason Song and Tony Barboza, Los Angeles Times
For years, residents living near Ballona Creek and environmentalists have complained of mysterious sheens of oil and grease in the western Los Angeles County waterway, often blaming industrial dumping, urban runoff or other man-made causes for the pollution. One cause that apparently never crossed their minds: the La Brea Tar Pits. It turns out the tourist attraction and preferred field trip destination of seemingly every grade schooler in the region has sent oily wastewater spilling into the highly polluted creek.
August 8, 2013 | By Abby Sewell
A federal appeals court dealt Los Angeles County a blow on Thursday in a long-running lawsuit over storm-water pollution when it issued an opinion that the county is liable for excessively high levels. Environmental groups sued the county and its flood-control district in 2008 over pollution in the Los Angeles and San Gabriel rivers, saying the entities had violated storm-water permits based on high pollution readings at monitoring stations in the rivers. County officials argued that they are not primarily to blame, because dozens of cities discharge polluted runoff upstream from the monitoring sites.
April 7, 1988
Rep. Esteban Torres (D-La Puente) will conduct a community meeting on ground-water contamination in the San Gabriel Valley at 7 tonight at La Puente High School Theater, 15615 E. Nelson Ave. Torres said he has invited officials from the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency and state and regional agencies to report on what they are doing about contaminants in ground water.
May 19, 2000
A group of residents sued 19 defense contractors as well as manufacturing and oil companies Thursday, alleging that for decades they allowed toxic substances to leak into the drinking water supply beneath Baldwin Park, causing cancer and other health problems. In the lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, 23 people allege they were affected by contaminated ground water, and 23 others seek damages based on the deaths of nine relatives. Two plaintiffs make both claims.
September 14, 1988 | STEPHANIE CHAVEZ, Times Staff Writer
Environmental Protection Agency officials said Tuesday that they are looking for additional San Fernando Valley industrial firms that may be responsible for ground water pollution. The EPA will continue to send to Valley firms questionnaires seeking information on current and past chemical use and disposal.
March 22, 2002 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
A cattle ranch and its owner were ordered to pay $1 million for water pollution. Masami Ishida, 70, is accused of discharging manure waste water from feedlots and retaining ponds at Masami Cattle Ranch into local creeks. The creeks feed into the Sacramento River. Ishida was also sentenced to six months' home detention as part of one year's probation for violating the federal Clean Water Act, attorney John Vincent said.
September 20, 1996 | LESLIE EARNEST
Hoping to help clean the waters at local beaches, the Laguna Beach City Council this week approved a water pollution control plan for the city. The plan calls for the city to meet with representatives from the county and other agencies to discuss pollution-testing protocol for streams and beaches and to step up a campaign to educate residents about how to avoid polluting local waters, especially Laguna Canyon Creek.
September 19, 2008 | Carol J. Williams, Times Staff Writer
The Environmental Protection Agency is obliged by the Clean Water Act to protect the nation's waterways, beaches and drinking water from pollution caused by real estate development and should set standards for limiting construction runoff by the end of next year, a federal appeals court ruled Thursday. The ruling from the U.S.
April 29, 2013 | By Bettina Boxall
Confidential surveys of water officials, water users and others involved with the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta offer some telling insight on why the delta is stuck in a perpetual quagmire. When it comes to fixing the hub of California's water system, most parties would prefer it if someone else made the sacrifices. The surveys, conducted last year by the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California and discussed in a new institute report , found that there was general agreement with scientists about the nature of the problems that have pushed several of the delta's native fish species to the brink of extinction: altered and diminished water flows, water pollution, loss of fish and wildlife habitat, invasive species and fishery management.
March 12, 2013 | By Abby Sewell, Los Angeles Times
Faced by widespread public opposition, the Los Angeles County supervisors on Tuesday sent a proposed parcel fee to combat storm water pollution back to the drawing board. The proposed fee would be levied on all property owners within the county's flood control district, raising an estimated $290 million a year to help cities and the county deal with widespread water quality issues stemming from polluted storm water and urban runoff and the need to comply with new state regulations.
January 16, 2013 | By Abby Sewell, Los Angeles Times
Facing overwhelming opposition to a proposed parcel fee to clean up storm water pollution, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors deferred a vote to place it on the ballot. The proposed fee would be levied on all property owners within the county's flood control district, raising an estimated $290 million a year to help cities and the county deal with widespread water quality issues stemming from polluted storm water and urban runoff - and the resulting threat of fines and litigation.
January 9, 2013 | Abby Sewell and David Savage
Los Angeles County got a reprieve in an ongoing dispute over who is responsible for pollution from storm water when the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday overturned a ruling won by environmentalists. However, the court's 9-0 decision did not deal with the larger question of how to regulate storm water and urban runoff flowing into the region's waterways. Gary Hildebrand, assistant deputy director of the county's Department of Public Works, said the court's decision "validates the approach the flood control district has been taking to deal with water management.
January 8, 2013 | By David Savage
WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court threw out a water pollution lawsuit against Los Angeles County on Tuesday that had been brought by environmentalists because of storm water runoff that had flowed into the Los Angeles and San Gabriel rivers after heavy rains. But the 9-0 ruling did not deal with the larger question of regulating storm water runoff, and it left open the possibility that better monitoring in the future would limit this pollution in waters off Southern California.   The case decided Tuesday illustrated the difficulty of monitoring and controlling pollution that results from storm water that runs off city streets into drains and eventually into rivers and the ocean.
December 4, 2012 | By David G. Savage, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court gave a skeptical hearing Tuesday to a Los Angeles lawyer who sought to absolve the county's flood control district of responsibility for polluted storm water that flows into the Pacific Ocean. "Doesn't common sense suggest" the flood control district is responsible? asked Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. "The storm sewer system in Los Angeles hasn't been shut down, right? You don't question that there was an actual discharge [of pollutants]. What is it monitoring if not discharges … for which you're responsible?"
March 30, 1999
A federal judge has approved a settlement in which the Environmental Protection Agency agrees to set pollution limits to make waterways and beaches safer in Los Angeles and Ventura counties. U.S. District Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong signed the agreement that ended a lawsuit filed by the environmental groups Heal the Bay and Santa Monica Baykeeper against the EPA.
October 16, 1988 | PAUL McLEOD, Times Staff Writer
Blond-haired Scott Daley has built his fearless reputation by slashing and ripping across the world's gnarliest waves. Monster surf? No problem. It's what is potentially in the waves that frightens him. "If we don't do something about the deteriorating conditions of our oceans, sooner or later our beaches will be closed," the Hermosa Beach local said. Daley is trying to deal equally fearlessly with what he sees as a mounting threat to the shores of America.
November 11, 2012 | By Cynthia Barnett
On an unseasonably hot morning this fall, my 11-year-old son and I set off for Hoover Dam, his first time to tour the American engineering wonder that draws nearly 1 million visitors a year. In recent years, I'd visited the dam and adjacent reservoir, Lake Mead, as a journalist who reports on water. But I hadn't been there as a tourist since my own childhood. I looked forward to hearing how the dam's minder, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, would tell such a big story to such a big audience.
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