For more than a decade, a "dolphin safe" label on a can of tuna has guaranteed that, in the process of catching the tuna, no dolphins were chased or encircled with deadly tuna nets. However, in December, the Commerce Department weakened the labeling standards so that tuna caught by encircling dolphins may bear the dolphin-safe label if observers certify no dolphins were killed or seriously injured in the process. The Commerce Department has agreed to delay implementation of the new rules pending the outcome of a lawsuit filed by environmental groups. For more information, visit www.earthisland.org/immp/.
Medical Waste Bill Vetoed
Missing an opportunity to help clean up the state's air and water, before leaving office Michigan Governor John Engler (R) vetoed a medical-waste bill passed unanimously by the state legislature in December. Senate Bill 11 would have mandated a moratorium on permits for new medical-waste incinerators, lower limits on the amount of pollutants a medical-waste incinerator can release, and a study of the environmental impacts of different methods of sterilizing and disposing of medical waste. To learn more, read the February-April 2003 issue of The Mackinac at www.mackinac.sierraclub.org.
Dead in the Water
Plans for a controversial deep-water container port have been scrapped by Rhode Island Governor Don Carcieri (R). The Quonset Point project, long opposed by the Sierra Club, would have required dredging a deeper shipping channel in Narragansett Bay while bringing heavy truck traffic to North Kingston and the surrounding area. To learn more, visit www.sierraclub.org/currents/seaboard.asp.
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