Author Archives: Rory

Who pays BP’s disaster bill? You do

If you thought the multi-billion dollar costs of destroying refineries and oil rigs (and killing workers, ruining livelihoods and wrecking the environment in the process), might have a chastening effect on BP, you might need to think again. An entry in the blog of nationally syndicated US journalist Thom Hartmann notes: “It looks like the […]
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Cancer surge supports case against pesticides

A ‘dramatic’ increase in a range of occupational and childhood cancers has been linked to pesticide exposures. Public health researchers, writing in a new report for the Chemicals, Health and Environment Monitoring Trust (CHEM Trust), call on the UK government to step up action to ban the most harmful pesticides and to bring in a […]
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Workers see red at ‘green’ hotels

Hotel workers are paying a high personal price so their employers can claim they have gone ‘green’. Last year, US hotel staff complained they faced a back-breaking increase in workload as a result of a hotel chain’s move to reduce laundry and related energy consumption. While management claimed fewer bedding and towel changes were good […]
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UK government to adopt BP business model

John Browne, Tony Hayward’s predecessor as chief executive of BP, has been appointed by the UK government to oversee moves to make Whitehall “more businesslike.” Lord Browne was the architect of the much criticised BP cost- and safety-cutting strategy implicated in the Texas City refinery disaster, which killed 15, and a sequence of other safety […]
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Oil companies all fail the safety test

Members of the US Congress tore into the big energy corporations on 15 June for filing almost identical Gulf of Mexico oil spill response plans – which included contact details for a deceased scientist and steps to protect marine mammals not found in the region’s waters. Exxon-Mobil, Chevron, ConocoPhillips and Shell all have identical response […]
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Europeans get their say on green jobs

As oil laps on the US coast, there’s renewed energy in discussions of green jobs. And that means new opportunities and, potentially, new risks, the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) says. “New work situations bring new risks and challenges for workers and employers, which in turn demand political, administrative, technical and […]
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Competition: Spot the idiotic inconsistency

It’s a story that owes more to the ostrich than the oil covered pelican. The 14 June screen grab from the front page of the UK Prime Minister’s website shows David Cameron in a phone call to US President Barack Obama, discussing the Gulf of Mexico oil spill calamity. Cameron’s spokesperson commented: “The prime minister […]
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Don’t demonise BP bosses, jail them

Can you have serial crimes but no criminal? BP’s well-heeled directors have proved as slippery as the gulf’s oil smeared coastline, with none so far facing criminal charges relating to the Deepwater Horizon disaster or other deadly incidents. BP’s cavalier but usually profitable management practices have been implicated in a series of disasters. The company […]
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Rig explosion killed, spill made workers sick

A chemical dispersant being used to fight the gulf oil spill is making workers sick, recent reports suggest. The disaster, where BP has repeatedly failed to stem the oil gusher and which started with a 20 April explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig that killed 11 workers, has led to an increasing clamour for criminal […]
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Australian union bans nuke work

An Australian union has banned its members from working in uranium mines, nuclear power stations or any other part of the nuclear fuel cycle. The Electrical Trades Union (ETU) says other unions have expressed strong support for the campaign against uranium, which it has labelled the “new asbestos” of the workplace. “We’re sick of hearing […]
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