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Indiana Allows BP To Pollute Lake Michigan

kdawson posted about 7 years ago | from the because-we-can dept.

Power 490

An anonymous reader writes "Indiana regulators exempted BP from state environmental laws to clear the way for a $3.8 billion expansion that will allow the company to refine heavier Canadian crude oil. They justified the move in part by noting the project will create 80 new jobs. The company will now be allowed to dump an average of 1,584 pounds of ammonia and 4,925 pounds of sludge into Lake Michigan every day."

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Indiana Sounds worse than Iraq (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861601)

Globaltics []

Re:Indiana Sounds worse than Iraq (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862077)

Stop spamming for your shitty site. If spam is the only way you can think to get visitors, you are doomed to failure.

Lake Michigan (2, Funny)

yincrash (854885) | about 7 years ago | (#19861609)

The Great Lakes were never that great to begin with, but that's just gross.

Re:Lake Michigan (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861679)

Yeah, this is really disgusting. Amonia is going to wreak havoc on the local ecosystem. Sludge is full of heavy hydrocarbons. Belatrix Lestrange kills Ron Weasley. I really hope no cities of towns get their drinking water from Lake Michigan.

Re:Lake Michigan (5, Insightful)

Billly Gates (198444) | about 7 years ago | (#19861737)

As a former resident of the area I am outraged!

Yes our drinking water comes from Lake Michigan and northwest Indiana is where all the oil and steel refineries who have been heavily polluting the lake beyond recovery for years. Chicago is very close and less than an hour a way. This will certainly wreck the fishing, tourism, and health for millions of people.

I was thinking of going on vacation to great dunes national park in Indiana next summer which has great beaches on the lake. Now I think I will pass as I doubt anything will be left alive over there or least I do not want to swim in it. This pisses me off and I hope Chicago goes without water for a few months as they try to find a different source of drinking water just to make enough people outraged at whats going on. Why is this legal?

Re:Lake Michigan (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861771)

Why is this legal?

Because money buys law-makers. My question is, why do people feel the need to keep asking this question?

Re:Lake Michigan (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861973)

Total immunity!
No Greenpeace!
Dead fishes, death lake, environmental impact, etc.

Where is the world's law of "don't contaminate/pollute the environment"?

Re:Lake Michigan (2, Informative)

Optikschmoptik (971793) | about 7 years ago | (#19861975)

Indiana, jealous of Chicagoland, Wisconsin and Michigan, has decided to mount an ecological attack on us!

If only it weren't considered ridiculous to think about it that way. We can't really call it an attack for two reasons:

  1. We're part of the same country (then again, they are the only red state on the lake...).
  2. It's a long way off from the worst that has been done to Lake Michigan. The other states are in no position to throw stones.

This is just disgusting. But what's more disgusting is that it hardly qualifies as news.

Aquafina is bottled useing that water as well. (4, Funny)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | about 7 years ago | (#19862155)

Aquafina now with ammonia and sludge

Re:Lake Michigan (-1, Troll)

jkauzlar (596349) | about 7 years ago | (#19862189)

If you don't live there anymore, then why do you care? America became as powerful as it is because we have a strong corporate superstructure. If we don't make sacrifices, we're going to lose our edge on the world. So what if you don't have a place to swim. Eighty other people just found work and I'll bet the State of Indiana and surrounding states would love to hand out more money to a few large corporations to clean up the lake at the same time as BP is polluting it. Would you rather have a pristine environment and no job, or some extra cash and a less-than beautiful world? Keep in mind there are 300 million people that this gov't needs to support. No jobs, no resources == mass starvation.

Mmm, okay, I don't really think this way. I'm just in a pissy, devil's advocate sort of mood.

Re:Lake Michigan (1)

morari (1080535) | about 7 years ago | (#19861875)

It may be true that the lakes were pretty disgusting in the past, but they have recently (within the last decade or two?) been cleaned up quite a bit...

Re:Lake Michigan (-1, Troll)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | about 7 years ago | (#19862231)

As a Canadian, I want Americans dead. One and all. You fucking scumbags. You want pollution? Why don't we just pollute all the rivers here at the source for you, and you can all push up daises.

Fucking scumbags. God damn I hope some terrorist nukes you fucking bastards.

Why is this in HARDWARE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861619)

Kdawson should stop polluting Hardware with stories that don't belong there.

Re:Why is this in HARDWARE? (1)

NonSequor (230139) | about 7 years ago | (#19861663)

Well they probably have to use some pretty serious hardware to move all of that sludge and ammonia.

also (0, Troll)

eneville (745111) | about 7 years ago | (#19861623)

in INDIA many companies pollute their local river. This should really be stopped, but generally its acceptable in some countries.

Re:also (1)

mcpkaaos (449561) | about 7 years ago | (#19861821)

You came pretty close to almost kinda giving a shit for a second.

Re:also (1)

hey! (33014) | about 7 years ago | (#19861841)

In India, lots of people and companies pollute the Ganges. For some, the thought of the Ganges being polluted is so unthinkable that for them the pollution does not, effectively, exist.

Linus is right (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861627)

I am with Linus on this one.
Freedom is not defined by RMS. Linus is right on again.
GPL v3 does not respect our freedom.

Why is this on slashot? (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861651)

And what does this have to do with computer news?

Just because The editorial staff discovered politics doesn't mean that the slashdot readership suddenly turned into the crwod at dailykos,

That's pretty bad... (1)

Baron von Pilsner (1115373) | about 7 years ago | (#19861661)

Sounds like what they are doing is legal, but it seems to be a pretty crappy way to create 80 new jobs! Our natural resources are really not ours anymore (if they ever were). I think that to many people oil is more important than clean water.

FTFA: The refinery will still meet federal water pollution guidelines. But federal and state officials acknowledge this marks the first time in years that a company has been allowed to dump more toxic waste into Lake Michigan.

Is it worth it? (5, Funny)

solar_blitz (1088029) | about 7 years ago | (#19861669)

80 jobs.
6500 lbs of waste each day.
The environment.

There are some things money can't buy...

Re:Is it worth it? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861775)

For everything else there's Government Abuse.

Re:Is it worth it? (4, Insightful)

WIAKywbfatw (307557) | about 7 years ago | (#19861791)

...and local government in the state of Indiana isn't one of them.

This is ridiculous. A $3.8 billion expansion and they can't afford to clean up the mess that they're creating?

At which point will the Indiana legislators start realising that their duty is to all the people of Indiana, not just the few that work for BP?

I bet if you asked people if they would want their laws bent or even waived to allow a polluter to pollute their water even more that 99 percent of them would say no. So how the hell does the Indiana Department of Environmental Management have the balls to try to justify and defend their decision?

What's next? Indiana cops giving drug dealers the green light to push crack in schools?

Re:Is it worth it? (3, Insightful)

mi (197448) | about 7 years ago | (#19861989)

A $3.8 billion expansion and they can't afford to clean up the mess that they're creating?

Cleaning completely is not possible. There may be one or three people on the entire Slashdot, who know, what can and can not be done with this waste... The rest are just venting.

The article's numbers are weird. They assert, the amount of "industrial sludge" will increase by 35% (non-toxic ammonia by even more), but the refinery's output — by only 15%.

It would seem, they are better of allowing another refinery — just like the existing one — it would double the pollution, but also double the output...

I think, the problem comes from the switch to heavy oil [] , which largely comes from friendly Canada is much harder to process (although companies like Ivanhoe [] are coming up with revolutionary methods).

We all want "energy independence", but the sales of big SUVs are only growing [] .

Financing unwholesome governments and terrorism abroad, or polluting your own lakes (or air, if you add ethanol to your fuel). Make your choice...

There is hope — if the Republican candidates agreed with each other on anything during their most recent TV-debate, it was that we need to build (much) more nuclear stations. That should ease the strain considerably...

Re:Is it worth it? (2, Informative)

piper-noiter (772438) | about 7 years ago | (#19862303)

I'm a citizen of Indiana and I was furious when I read it in the paper this morning. A measly eighty jobs in exchange for further ruining of our lake front! It's unconscionable. Our free lake front swimming is one of our state treasures. Miles of sand, trails, and surf.

That said, I imagine there was a lot of pressure on the state legislatures at a federal level. They see it as a chance to decrease Middle Eastern dependence. The whole idea makes me furious.

Politics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861671)

If you say no to 80 new jobs you can kiss your political career goodbye. Unless the voters decide they like the lake, then its time to flip flop the other way... Live life by the polls, just like Billery.

That is some twisted logic (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861677)

Not that I would, but I'm pretty sure shooting the president would create at least 80 jobs. Anybody wanna get on that? I'm sure the state of Indiana will have your back.

Great (5, Insightful)

wolfgang_spangler (40539) | about 7 years ago | (#19861681)

We already can eat only a limited amount of fish that come from the Great Lakes, how about we just dump more heavy metals into the lakes. Garg.

It is very frustrating that the federal government refuses to do things to protect the Great Lakes. Heck, they even refuse to stop ships from wherever from coming in and dumping bilge water contaminated with all sorts of invasive species into the lakes. These resources must be protected.

Look at what invasive species such as the emerald ash borer have done to MI and other surrounding states. When we people learn?


Re:Great (1, Redundant)

Sawopox (18730) | about 7 years ago | (#19862033)

The emerald ash borer? I always thought they were only found in Upper Blackrock Spire...

Re:Great (4, Funny)

Duhavid (677874) | about 7 years ago | (#19862039)

"When we people learn?"

About 5 minutes before it kills them?

I am glad I am not human.

If it's good for the canadians (1)

phrostie (121428) | about 7 years ago | (#19861689)

If it's good for the canadians then it must be ok.

Re:If it's good for the canadians (1)

Scrameustache (459504) | about 7 years ago | (#19861859)

If it's good for the canadians then it must be ok.
It's good for Alberta, it's bad for the Canadians out east who'll be getting the flow from the polluted lake.

Re:If it's good for the canadians (2, Interesting)

pokerdad (1124121) | about 7 years ago | (#19862291)

It's good for Alberta,

Ironically this deal and others like it have gotten an enormous amount of bad press in Alberta - you'd think we'd be happy to export this crap, but the local media can only see the $$$ lost in not refining it ourselves.

Free trade and multinationals (4, Insightful)

ClaraBow (212734) | about 7 years ago | (#19861709)

Well I live in Indiana, a state that has seen a lot of industrial job lost due to NAFTA and a general decline in U.S. auto manufacturing. So the state is doing everything possible to get jobs backs. Unfortunately, they are doing it at the cost of the environment. This is what happens when we open markets and start competing with 3rd world countries. We have to relax our standards so that we can win contracts from multinationals. The only winners are the corporations.

Re:Free trade and multinationals (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861837)

>The only winners are the corporations.

Well, if you don't like it, why don't you move to hippie-land where the grass is green instead of brown, the fish in the rivers are edible and everyone starts singing around the campfire when they can see the stars through the clean air. Yeah, I thought so...

Re:Free trade and multinationals (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862095)

Sorry, we're full. Try Oregon instead.

From CA

Re:Free trade and multinationals (4, Informative)

zig007 (1097227) | about 7 years ago | (#19861845)

Well, regulating markets is financial suicide in the long run, so you can't keep them(the regulations) forever.
At some point you must open up(when it will cost too much), and if you wait for too long, your industry will be dangerously uncompetitive due to a long time lack of..yes, competition.
This has already happened to your steel and car industry. Probably others as well. Wasn't paper hit as well?

Wouldn't a better way be to legislate that all fuel(this may of course be applied to other goods) sold in the U.S. must have been produced using methods that meet certain environmental and humanitarian requirements? Like the ones in the U.S.?

This would level the field in a kind of fair way. Sort of. Don't you think?

Re:Free trade and multinationals (1)

ClaraBow (212734) | about 7 years ago | (#19861919)

Wouldn't a better way be to legislate that all fuel(this may of course be applied to other goods) sold in the U.S. must have been produced using methods that meet certain environmental and humanitarian requirements? Like the ones in the U.S.?

You make a great point here. What I was trying to say is that if the 3rd world countries aren't forced to raise their standards, than we are going to be forced to lower ours in order to compete, which is bad for our country and environment. It's a big problem that just keeps getting bigger and the only people that seem to be above it is the multinational corporations which are using their advantage to get what they want from whatever country that gives it to them.

Re:Free trade and multinationals (1)

John3 (85454) | about 7 years ago | (#19862037)

Government could require that any product imported be made using the same environmental standards as required in the states. We already restrict import of products from endangered species...ivory tusks for example. If the US banned imports of materials made in plants that violate US EPA standards then that would put pressure on the corporations to raise the standards overseas.

It's a dream of course. :(

Re:Free trade and multinationals (1)

cdrguru (88047) | about 7 years ago | (#19862295)

But then we would be interfering with other nation's soverign rights to do things the way they want to. The WTO would hardly allow a tariff to be introduced that blocked trade based on environmental or wage standards, so it isn't going to happen.

How do Japan and China work around this? They decided they don't care if anyone imports stuff to them at all and nobody can refuse to buy their stuff. The US, on the other hand, is prett dependent on keeping some kind of trade balance with EU and other countries.

Re:Free trade and multinationals (1)

MikShapi (681808) | about 7 years ago | (#19861921)

Maybe not fair, but at least in a morally defendable one, and one that serves as a positive force elsewhere (pulling countries like China UP - better human rights - rather than pushing the US down).

Re:Free trade and multinationals (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | about 7 years ago | (#19862135)

Well, regulating markets is financial suicide in the long run, so you can't keep them(the regulations) forever.

That's just not true. One, you're equating regulated markets with protectionism (the latter being merely an extreme level of the former), and two, you certainly can keep those regulations in place forever. For that matter, you can refuse to trade with certain nations entirely, if such trade is detrimental to you. You've made the basic assumption that the global economy is good for everyone, and that everyone should be required to compete in it. You're also forgetting that corporations compete with each other within the confines of their home country (whatever that means anymore), and don't necessarily become "dangerously uncompetitive".

America was a downright isolationist place at one time, and a lot of us liked it that way. It was how the Founders wanted us to be ... free and independent. Then we started heavy trade with the rest of the world ... and look where we are now. From Japan decimating our electronics manufacturing sector using a variety of illegal tactics to China finishing the job with, well, pretty much everything else, I must say I'm at a complete loss to explain how the current state of affairs can be considered "good" from the perspective of the U.S. worker. Those of us who are still working, anyway.

I'd rather work for a crappy, inefficient protected industry than not work at all, which is the direction we're heading with this "global economy". I mean, if you're a First-World nation that is just itching to achieve Third-World status, why, Free Trade is a marvelous idea. That's because the result of all this openness is a massive transfer of wealth to other countries (notably China) and concomitant destruction of domestic industries. That's just great, if you happen to be on the receiving end of all that American wealth. Not so good if you're among those who used to create it, once upon a time.

Just for grins, let's take a look at how China and Japan operate, from an openness perspective: Japan doesn't want to buy anything but raw materials from anyone else, period (so much for free trade), whereas China is perfectly happy to have you come and set up shop there, so long as you partner with a Chinese company and make them a gift of all your hard-won technology and manufacturing technique. Really, if you were looking to use your economy as weapon I can't think of a better way to do it, short of an actual war.

Personally, I'd say a little "protectionism" is long overdue, although it is likely far too late.

Re:Free trade and multinationals (3, Insightful)

Scrameustache (459504) | about 7 years ago | (#19862139)

This is what happens when we open markets and start competing with 3rd world countries. We have to relax our standards so that we can win contracts from multinationals. The only winners are the corporations.
The proper way to do this would have been to raise the standards elsewhere, rather than exploit them and then be forced to compete with their slave-wage standards.

They key isn't to close up the borders in some protectionist ostrich stunt, but to demand high standards at home and abroad.
But I guess very few people are interested on competing on a level playing field.

Re:Free trade and multinationals (1)

cdrguru (88047) | about 7 years ago | (#19862261)

Unfortunately, those other nasty low-standards places are soverign nations. They don't like other people telling them what their rules should be.

So we should just not trade with people with lower standards? That would be illegal now. Against the WTO practices. So it isn't likely to happen unless the rest of the world gets behind the idea.

This is bad? (-1, Flamebait)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | about 7 years ago | (#19861715)

Ammmonia [] isn't bad! It's our friend! Besides, I don't see how this dumping of ammonia is all that different from all the humans, animals, and fish that are already peeing in Lake Michigan. Are we going to stop the fish from peeing in the water?

Re:This is bad? (1)

drooling-dog (189103) | about 7 years ago | (#19861749)

And don't forget the health benefits of sludge, either!

Re:This is bad? (4, Funny)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | about 7 years ago | (#19861967)

Exactly! People shouldn't be complaining! They should be opening up spas on Lake Michigan and offering sludge facials. It's well known that toxic elements and compounds will tighten the pores, slough off dead skin, and leave your face feeling invigorating. That tingling? That means it's working!

Re:This is bad? (1)

wolfgang_spangler (40539) | about 7 years ago | (#19861811)

Too much ammonia causes algae blooms which kill.

If you noticed also, sludge containing heavy metals will also be dumped. mmm....mercury

Re:This is bad? (1)

qeveren (318805) | about 7 years ago | (#19862061)

Sweetest of the transition metals!

Proper disposal? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861725)

Call me ignorant, but really, how much would it cost to properly dispose of this material in drums, or whatever, to a proper storage/refuse location? Instead of exempting them from the environmental laws, maybe they could get a tax credit for the equivalent amount it costs to safely dispose of these chemicals?

Ohhhh, my bad, they probably don't pay any taxes already...

Re:Proper disposal? (1)

Basehart (633304) | about 7 years ago | (#19862003)

Why don't they just put all the waste materials into bottles and float it out into the lake. That way they get rid of the chemicals and stuff without polluting the lake.

Lifetime hoosier here (3, Insightful)

waspleg (316038) | about 7 years ago | (#19861733)

this is a red state people, they care about money, jesus, nascar and guns here; Mitch Daniels (current governor) is almost certainly behind this as he has been behind every other major retarded deal to net himself favor and money with the rich assholes here (aka selling out all our toll roads to foreign companies and contracting ot build new ones which they will own forever after paying some fee).

this doesn't surprise in teh least, he's also behind the attempts to mirror new york's city wide smoking bans on virtually everything (hint: we have a fuck of a lot of smokers here, probably more than average, no i'm not one of them however i'm surprised that in a republican state where republicans are supposedly for less gov't involvement in everything shit like this flies every time)

he's pro-roadblock checkpoints etc etc

life in naptown sucks, anyone whose not from here is always trying to go back home and most of hte (smart?) people from here leave or try to (they're always bitching about the "brain drain" here, they actually think this will be some tech mecca and have been trying to cement that position for awhile now, HELLO Chicago ain't that far, but they dont' care)

in addition to these they make no effort to keep the large manufacturing jobs open etc, and tout a handful of high level investment jobs as some massive coup that will save us all while thousands of people here get laid off who dont' have a degree and healthcare is virtually unavailable and gas prices continue to skyrocket well over national averages (which Daniel's shot down an investigation into, ps this is one of the only states in teh nation that had actual sanctions against gas stations post 9/11 because on that day some stations were selling gas at $5-7/gal for panic profit - while I'm sure GWB would approve some angry people somewhere did not.)

this country sucks worse every day and this city (indianapolis) and the state are focused, concentrated microcosm.

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (1)

clubhi (1086577) | about 7 years ago | (#19861819)

I often get embarrassed by the stereotype that conservatives have, which you tried to describe. But I must say that you certainly have something about your writing styles that would make it not so hard to believe that you are a Nascar fan yourself. While your points may be valid, you are only bringing harm to your position by talking about it. Why don't you leave the writing to the east coast far left liberals that often challenge my personal conservative positions.

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (1)

bhodikhan (894485) | about 7 years ago | (#19861839)

Indiana polluting rivers and Lake Michigan isn't anything new. For as long as I can remember they seem perfectly happy to dump all sorts of shit into the lake and rivers and laugh as other states have deal with it. We have much stricter laws in Michigan but what's the point of not polluting a Michigan river once Indiana has already destroyed it?

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (5, Insightful)

wolfgang_spangler (40539) | about 7 years ago | (#19861855)

this is a red state people, they care about money, jesus, nascar and guns here;
That is a pretty unfair assessment of "red state people". I think you will find that many, many "red state people" are more avid supporters of protections for the environment than many "blue state people" who generally reside in cities. Most of the "red state people" hunt, fish and enjoy spending time in the outdoors and don't want to see it sludged and destroyed.

Some people, like the people who made this deal, aren't "red staters" or "blue staters" they are bastards looking out not for the people or the country or anyone else but themselves. That is who they care about.

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861937)

You must be new here. Logic and truth has no place here. The only posts that are god are those blasting the "I Hate George Bush" message.

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (1)

wolfgang_spangler (40539) | about 7 years ago | (#19861977)

You must be new here. Logic and truth has no place here. The only posts that are god are those blasting the "I Hate George Bush" message.
*Checks his own UID* Nope, been here for a bit, but I understand why your sarcastic joke is phrased that way.

There are intelligent people here. They are just swarmed under.

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (1)

stinerman (812158) | about 7 years ago | (#19862129)

And, IIRC, the Indiana legislature is controlled by the Democrats. At the very least it was a few years ago, because my conservative stepfather was complaining them.

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (5, Insightful)

Speare (84249) | about 7 years ago | (#19862251)

I dunno about that. In the city, I've never seen a rusting Chevy left to rot and leak oil in the yard for a decade. In the city, I've never seen people burning their own garbage out behind the shed, permits or not. In the city, I've never seen a barn that is just left to rot and collapse for a few winters, leaving a fire hazard that's filled with tetanus-risky nails and whatever else was in there.

I understand what you're saying, and the city definitely has its own issues that aren't ideal, but saying that the folks in the countryside are all pure and proactive about saving the environment is not realistic.

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (2, Insightful)

andy314159pi (787550) | about 7 years ago | (#19862277)

Some people, like the people who made this deal, aren't "red staters" or "blue staters"
No that isn't accurate. Conservative lawmakers in Indiana are definitely "red staters" and in fact they really define what it means to be in a red state. "Red state" means that the politics tends to be conservative and the Republicans are in power, which is exactly what you have in Indiana. The "red state" / "blue state" arguments sound trite, but there is some truth to it.

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862281)

That is a pretty unfair assessment of "red state people". I think you will find that many, many "red state people" are more avid supporters of protections for the environment than many "blue state people" who generally reside in cities.

The best way to protect the environment is to stay the heck out of it most of the time. No construction, less traffic. Higher energy efficiency. Almost everyone living in cities would leave the countryside available for tourism and wildlife conservation. If you really like the country the best thing you can do it move the hell out of it.

Meanwhile in the Blue State (1, Insightful)

tjstork (137384) | about 7 years ago | (#19861945)

Left up to the blue state environmental types, the USA would have no jobs at all. We'd all be selling beads to each other, until they banned glass blowing because it was too dangerous.

But, let's ask ourselves? How many cubic miles of trash come out of NYC? How much recycling really goes on in Boston? Where's the big green farms in Trenton, NJ? Does the city of Philadelphia even make enough biofuels for its own cars?

It's really easy to live in a city and decry everyone else's environmental practices but cities are the filthiest places on the planet, and yet, in the United States, they produce no food, no manufactured goods, nothing but a bunch of lawyers pushing lawsuits back and forth and selling insurance to each other. Yeah, that's some economy.

Red staters might be polluters, but at least they aren't useless.

Re:Meanwhile in the Blue State (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862105)

Actually, NYC citizens use less energy and create less waste on a per-capita basis than anyone else in the country. We're more efficient than you are. Smarter, too. Sucks, doesn't it?

Nothing new (3, Interesting)

meburke (736645) | about 7 years ago | (#19861997)

Sorry, it isn't whether the state is red or blue. The politicians are giving the voters what the voters ask for, and the voters have irrational wants. Every Democratic candidate runs on the promise of more jobs. (What would happen to the candidate who said, "Elect me and we will have the cleanest water in the world, even though it will cost us 100,000 jobs!"?) Some candidates run on "pro-business" platforms. Why? Because business brings "prosperity" (read "jobs") to the area. Same promise, different spin. All false.

Here's an interesting little essay on "The Myth of the Rational Voter". WARNING!!!! Intelligence and open-mindedness required! n/the-myth-of-the-rational-voter/ []

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (1)

labnet (457441) | about 7 years ago | (#19862013)

this is a red state people
And I thought you meant communist... my bad

Re:Lifetime hoosier here (1)

andy314159pi (787550) | about 7 years ago | (#19862049)

I grew up in Indiana and I have a Ph.D. I also left Indiana a long time ago for the reasons you mentioned. (Yes the 'brain drain' is real.) The state has been trashed by its own people; the urban sprawl is as bad there as anywhere else, save possibly Atlanta. I am only sorry that they can affect everyone else by polluting the Great Lakes.

Big Setback (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861741)

This is just wonderful... my municipality and others in the Lake Michigan watershed have gone through great lengths (read: expense) since the creation of the EPA and Clean Water Act to clean up our own backyard. Indiana and BP has just thrown that all away. I hope to see a number of costly lawsuits over this... hitting them in the wallet where it hurts is the only way they'll listen.

A little homework (4, Funny)

Statecraftsman (718862) | about 7 years ago | (#19861783)

Finally some numbers. Let's see...that's 20 lbs of ammonia and 62 lbs of sludge per new job per day. Yup, sounds like a bargain alright.

If I may, I'd just like to make one suggestion. Let's offer a free Hummer to any of those 80 workers who would like to take their share of waste products home each day.

Glimpse of hope growing around us (1)

DavidMarquis (1059470) | about 7 years ago | (#19861805)

Aside from all the deception our governments, here canadian, or american, or even mexican i guess, produces with our money... My only real hope is to see young poeple who get to care about the consequences of their action ( ie to dump 2 ton a day of pure industrial waste in a lake, part of what is the biggest amount of non salty water ) Everything is done to generate illusory money or more waste, in the lakes, on the road, in the air, heck even under the earth. I hope we will learn to change!!!!! But what can i do? I am only one. or am i

Re:Glimpse of hope growing around us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861879)

all we can really do is make sure we ourselves do the right thing, recycle more, carpool/ride a bike, vote against the idiots etc. beyond that, we need to start being a little more loud than we have before. I mean we are nerds after all, we have the entire internet to voice ourselves and there's plenty of us with a loud voice in the real world too- we just have to start using it.

What we're forgetting... (5, Insightful)

Aqua OS X (458522) | about 7 years ago | (#19861851)

I think we're all forgetting that BP just re-branded themselves. Now their logo is a little green and yellow sunflower, they have pictures of plants and glaciers on their website, and they run commercials featuring environmentally conscious gen X folks. This obviously means BP cares about the environment. They're most likely dumping 4,925 pounds of organic compost into Lake Michigan every day.

Are we supposed to assume BP's re-branding was a big PR stunt to make the public think they care about the environment? Phhs, No. If there is one thing I've learned, it's that energy company always have the best of intentions, even when they're shooting protesters from helicopter... shooting them with love.

There goes the beach vacation. (2, Interesting)

lancejjj (924211) | about 7 years ago | (#19861865)

Um, I think I'll stop my family's summertime Lake Michigan vacations.

The fact is that I don't think I want to boat, or have my kids play, in the water there.

Sure, maybe it'll only be so many thousand tons of crud in a bazillion gallons of water. But if anyone in my family ever came down with any disease in the next 40 years, I'd certainly feel a bit guilty.

Why Dump Ammonia? (4, Interesting)

rlp (11898) | about 7 years ago | (#19861869)

Ammonia is used as an industrial precursor. For instance it's used to make fertilizer. Why dump it in Lake Michigan rather than purifying and selling it?

Re:Why Dump Ammonia? (3, Insightful)

wolfgang_spangler (40539) | about 7 years ago | (#19861947)

Ammonia is used as an industrial precursor. For instance it's used to make fertilizer. Why dump it in Lake Michigan rather than purifying and selling it?
It is most likely cheaper.

You make an excellent point however, turning it into a marketable product or at least partnering with someone who will would cost them a bit more than dumping, but make more sense from an environmental standpoint.

Despite BP marketing and rebranding as a "green" company this shows all they are interested in. I understand companies are in business to make money, but don't lie to us telling me you care about the environment and then slap us in the face like this.

Re:Why Dump Ammonia? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862255)

The ammonia that results as a biproduct of refinement is probably too dirty to be used in agriculture or anything else. It is saturated with heavy metals that would be toxic to humans. It is the same reason a lot of sewage can't be used for fertilizer. People just dump the craziest toxic waste down the drain that the sewage is too contaminated with heavy metals. The best the waste treatment facilities can do is dry it out and ship it to a landfill.

Yeah, isn't that crazier still? Too toxic for humans to be used in agriculture so we have to just dump it in the back yard. The same is likely true of this waste. Too toxic for anything else so just dump it on the ground!

I think this is another good reason to use non-petroleum based products and other naturally derived products. Most plastics (99.9999% are petroleum based) are pure death. Do not buy! Even if the end product isn't toxic you can be damn sure they took all the toxic biproducts and dumped them in the river.

Re:Why Dump Ammonia? (2, Insightful)

gfilion (80497) | about 7 years ago | (#19862307)

Ammonia is used as an industrial precursor. For instance it's used to make fertilizer. Why dump it in Lake Michigan rather than purifying and selling it?

TFA says:

State and federal regulators, though, agreed last month with the London-based company that there isn't enough room at the 1,400-acre site to upgrade the refinery's water treatment plant.

It's a pretty lame argument, but I guess that they don't have enough space to put an ammonia purification plant either.

more than 80 Jobs (4, Insightful)

BrynM (217883) | about 7 years ago | (#19861877)

In the long term, this will create more than 80 jobs by the time the lake becomes a giant superfund site (Hazmat jobs pay good money!). Of course, people may die from the pollution but that will only improve the jobless rate as well. Wildlife doesn't vote or contribute, so who cares if wildlife dies? C'mon, government only thinks of the long-term benefit for the people. Right?

Re:more than 80 Jobs (1)

Duhavid (677874) | about 7 years ago | (#19862127)

And with the additional deaths, there will be additional demand for
undertakers ( et al ) and ministers. Land prices will go up as
cemeteries are built ( and don't forget those jobs either ).

Stupid Canadians (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861881)

They should refine their own crude and sell it to the Americans. And keep the pollution to their half of the Great Lakes.

This sounds like a good thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19861895)

Not using mideastern oil is good. We are not getting rid of oil anytime soon, so getting us out of hotspot oil is good.

Apparently, the emissions are within both state and federal guidelines. If the legislatures want to to change these guidelines for everyone, they should do so.

Nobody is getting special treatment.

This sort of sounds like a NIMBY complaint. Just like they are doing to the windmill people in Jersey and other places. Energy will have to be produced despite the fact that someone somewhere will complain about every attempt to do anything. You think hydrogen or ethanol plants are going to be any more popular than oil crackers?

Oil is not going away soon and building processors of sludier canadian oil is good.

Some mint needs to do commemorative "quarters" (5, Funny)

hey! (33014) | about 7 years ago | (#19861907)

for "Hall of Shame" states.

Florida -- the Electoral Screwup State
Kansas -- the Science Miseducation State
Indiana -- the Environmental Rape State

Michigan is a sh*thole anyway (1, Funny)

kaufmanmoore (930593) | about 7 years ago | (#19861925)

A dirty lake to go with a dirty state.

What about the other states? (3, Interesting)

DragonPup (302885) | about 7 years ago | (#19861941)

I wonder what Michigan, Wisconsin and Illinois have to say about this hairbrained plan.

The Solution (1)

N8F8 (4562) | about 7 years ago | (#19861953)

The solution to pollution is dilution.

This will go to court (1)

stox (131684) | about 7 years ago | (#19861957)

I'm sure that the neighboring states will have something to say about this.

Re:This will go to court (1)

wolfgang_spangler (40539) | about 7 years ago | (#19862023)

I'm sure that the neighboring states will have something to say about this.
Sadly MI won't have much impact, you know...that state SURROUNDED by the lakes? Due to our inept and self-serving "leadership" of Jenny Granholm. The same Gov who also lied about wanting to protect the lakes and then wrote Nestle a free pass to yoink a ridiculous amount of water out of the lakes and divert it to wherever they want.

I don't know much about the gov of IN, but it sounds as if he/she is just as self-serving.

Re:This will go to court (1)

Xiph1980 (944189) | about 7 years ago | (#19862071)

Yeah, court will be the answer....
Grow up. You guys go to court for every fucking tiny mishap. Haven't you learned that court doesn't help jackshit?
This needs no new case. If it does come to a suit, the outcome would be that BP pays a few million, and still be pooring shit into LM.
What you need is not a new courtcase, what you need is a new government. Hell, a new government structure.

BP history (1)

efceeveea (1128063) | about 7 years ago | (#19861983)

BP seems to have a history of environmental callouses, just watched a prgogram on the history channel scrutinizing them for an explosion at a factory that killed a bunch of the workers, they put the trailer for worker breaks right next to a potential explosion. Found an interesting website about it link [] link2 []


Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862111)

BP sucks. They're a bunch of two faced, decietful bastards.

hackers, crackers and thelot... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862011)

If you guys ever need some practise, pop a few shots at BP's and break their computer infrastructure, and delete a few harddrives orso...
I may live on the other side of the world, but I hate to see a big piece of nature there be ruined.
And the USA calls themselves a civilised nation. Civilised, civilian? You're not civilised. You're corporised.... :/

Doesn't Canada get any say? (1)

m0nkyman (7101) | about 7 years ago | (#19862047)

I was under the impression that there was some form of joint regulatory agency that basically said that we agreed not to piss in each others water supply....

Re:Doesn't Canada get any say? (1)

smookumy (1121273) | about 7 years ago | (#19862235)

Pff, that promise is from /the past/. We need to look to the future!

I have a solution! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862057)

Indiana sucks, there's nothing there...except 80 jobs. Everybody should move out so that it can become one large landfill.

How Much is The Environment Worth? (5, Insightful)

ewhac (5844) | about 7 years ago | (#19862073)

Okay, let's work this out. The State of Indiana is allowing the dumping of toxic crap into Lake Michigan in exchange for creating 80 jobs. Let's assume each created job has the unrealistically generous salary of $100K/year. Indiana's income tax rate is 3.4% flat. So that's $3400/year per worker, or $272K new tax revenue for the 80 jobs. The numbers get somewhat better if you take sales tax revenue into account (6%), but that's harder to quantify. Let's be generous and assume all the remaining after-tax dollars are spent in Indiana. So that's 100000 minus 3400 (state tax) minus 25000 (Fed tax and FICA) == 71600. 6% of that is $4296, times 80 is $343680. So the total new revenue to the state is a highly optimistic $615680 per year.

If you're lucky, that gets you maybe ten new police officers. And something tells me it's going to cost more than $615K to clean up the crap being spilled in lake each year. Hell, the legal fees fighting off the complaints from Wisconsin, Illinois, and Michigan -- the other three states that share the lake -- could easily be ten times that.

All in all, a dumbass move that makes absolutely no sense for the state whatsoever. I wonder who got bribed, and with how much?


Hey fuckers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#19862115)

Hey fuckers, I drink out of that lake!

Don't dump there. (1)

antdude (79039) | about 7 years ago | (#19862117)

Dump them into the company's board members and whoever else decided this.

Excellent for sushi lovers! (1)

InvisblePinkUnicorn (1126837) | about 7 years ago | (#19862141)

This should make for some interesting sushi rolls in the future! The Japanese elite will ditch the fugu pufferfish, and take their appetites to Great Lakes coastal restaurants for a real thrill!

To tell the truth (1)

iminplaya (723125) | about 7 years ago | (#19862215)

I prefer Swill [] , myself.

learn to read hippies (2, Interesting)

timmarhy (659436) | about 7 years ago | (#19862299)

"The additional sludge is the maximum allowed under federal guidelines."

they aren't exempt from anything, they merely got permision to use the maximum level allowed.

i don't see the issue unless you are planning on swimming right beside the outlet pipe. re2/online_extra.html []

people USE 2.4 billion gallons a DAY and it doesn't even make a dent in the lake, so you can imagine the bullshit tiny % of pollution a few thousand pounds makes. I'd bet money animals and humans contribute more pollution to the river in the form of urine per day.

so why don't you all try and have some perspective for once and not jump on the "omgz the evil corperation is killing the world" bandwagon.

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