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2015 Tianjin explosions

On August 12, 2015, a series of explosions killed 173 people and injured hundreds of others at a container storage station at the Port of Tianjin. The first two explosions occurred within 30 seconds of each other at the facility, which is located in the Binhai New Area of Tianjin, China. The second explosion was far larger and involved the detonation of about 800 tonnes of ammonium nitrate. Fires caused by the initial explosions continued to burn uncontrolled throughout the weekend, resulting in eight additional explosions on 15 August. Of the 173 fatalities, 104 were firefighters. The cause of the explosions was not immediately known, but an investigation concluded in February 2016 that an overheated container of dry nitrocellulose was the cause of the initial explosion. The final casualty report was 165 deaths, 8 missing, and 798 non-fatal injuries.

                                               

Aranmula International Airport

Aranmula International Airport was an airport project planned to be built at Aranmula, Pathanamthitta district of Kerala in India, at a cost of ₹ 20 billion. The airport never received the necessary clearances and the project was abandoned. The airport was proposed to be built on about 700 acres of land. The controversial project faced strong protest from environmentalists and opposition parties of Kerala. After the Supreme Court of India ratified an order of National Green Tribunal verdict declaring Aranmula Airport Project in violation of environmental requirements, the Govt of India withdrew its sanction for the Airport leading to the termination of the project.

                                               

Arctic Refuge drilling controversy

The question of whether to drill for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge has been an ongoing political controversy in the United States since 1977. As of 2017, Republicans have attempted to allow drilling in ANWR almost fifty times, finally being successful with the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. ANWR comprises 19 million acres 7.7 million ha of the north Alaskan coast. The land is situated between the Beaufort Sea to the north, Brooks Range to the south, and Prudhoe Bay to the west. It is the largest protected wilderness in the United States and was created by Congress under the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act of 1980. Section 1002 of that act deferred a decision on the management of oil and gas exploration and development of 1.5 million acres 610.000 ha in the coastal plain, known as the "1002 area". The controversy surrounds drilling for oil in this subsection of ANWR. Much of the debate over whether to drill in the 1002 area of ANWR rests on the amount of economically recoverable oil, as it relates to world oil markets, weighed against the potential harm oil exploration might have upon the natural wildlife, in particular the calving ground of the Porcupine caribou. In their documentary Being Caribou the Porcupine herd was followed in its yearly migration by author and wildlife biologist Karsten Heuer and filmmaker Leanne Allison to provide a broader understanding of what is at stake if the oil drilling should happen, and educating the public. There has been controversy over the methodology of the scientific reports and transparency of information during the Trump Administration. Although there have been complaints from employees within the Department of the Interior, the misleading reports remain the central evidence for those who argue that the drilling operation will not have a detrimental impact on local wildlife. The assumption that scientific knowledge is objective means that information in this platform formal reports from the federal government can be manipulated without losing its credibility. The emphasis on science as the most valuable and accurate system of knowledge also contributes to the fact that indigenous ways of knowing are excluded from formal discourse regarding these topics. In 2014, President Barack Obama proposed declaring an additional 5 million acres of the refuge as a wilderness area, which would put a total of 12.8 million acres 5.2 million ha of the refuge permanently off-limits to drilling or other development, including the coastal plain where oil exploration has been sought. In 2017, the Republican-controlled House and Senate included in tax legislation a provision that would open the 1002 area of ANWR to oil and gas drilling. It passed both the Senate and House of Representatives on December 20, 2017. President Trump signed it into law on December 22, 2017. In September 2019, the Trump administration said they would like to see the entire coastal plain opened for gas and oil exploration, the most aggressive of the suggested development options. The Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management BLM has filed a final environmental impact statement and plans to start granting leases by the end of the year. In a review of the statement the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said the BLMs final statement underestimated the climate impacts of the oil leases because they viewed global warming as cyclical rather than human-made. The administrations plan calls for "the construction of as many as four places for airstrips and well pads, 175 miles of roads, vertical supports for pipelines, a seawater-treatment plant and a barge landing and storage site."

                                               

Athirappilly

Athirappilly is a first grade Grama Panchayath with 489.00 km 2 area in Chalakudy Taluk, Thrissur district in Kerala, India. It is located 60 km from Thrissur city, 70 km northeast of Kochi city, 55 km northeast of Cochin International Airport, and 30 km from Chalakudy town.

                                               

Attorney General of Virginia's climate science investigation

The Attorney General of Virginias climate science investigation was a "Civil Investigative Demand" initiated in April 2010 by Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, who rejects the scientific consensus on climate change, for a wide range of records held by the University of Virginia related to five grant applications for research work by a leading climate scientist Michael E. Mann, who was an assistant professor at the university from 1999 to 2005. The demand was issued under the Virginia Fraud Against Taxpayers Act in connection with claims by Cuccinnelli that Mann had possibly violated state fraud laws in relation to five research grants, by allegedly manipulating data. No evidence of wrongdoing was presented to support the claim. Manns earlier work had been targeted by climate change deniers in the hockey stick controversy, and allegations against him were renewed in late 2009 in the Climatic Research Unit email controversy but found to be groundless in a series of investigations. Widespread concerns were raised by University of Virginias faculty and numerous scientists and science organizations that Cuccinellis actions posed a threat to academic freedom, and would have a chilling effect on research in the state. The university filed a court petition and the judge dismissed Cuccinellis demand on the grounds that no justification had been shown for the investigation. Cuccinelli tried to re-open his case by issuing a revised subpoena, and appealed the case to the Virginia Supreme Court. The case was defended by the university, and the court ruled that Cuccinelli did not have the authority to make these demands. The outcome was seen as a victory for academic freedom.

                                               

Black Hole (2015 film)

Black Hole is a feature-length documentary film about the blockade opposing the expansion of Whitehaven Coals Maules Creek coal mine in the Leard State Forest, New South Wales. It was directed and produced by Joao Dujon Pereira and premiered on 3 September 2015 at the Environmental Film Festival Australia in Melbourne. Interview subjects appearing in the film include Jonathan Moylan, an environmental activist responsible for the production and distribution of a fraudulent press release regarding the ANZ banks financial relationship with the coal mine in 2013.

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