The Stream, May 1: Train Derailment Spills Oil into Virginia River

An unknown quantity of crude oil spilled into the James River in Lynchburg, Va., early this morning, potentially threatening drinking water supplies downstream in Richmond, The New York Times reported. The derailment is the latest accident involving train cars carrying crude oil, an increasingly common method of transporting oil from North Dakota’s Bakken shale region.

In Utah, 105 barrels of crude oil spilled into the headwaters of Parleys Creek, a drinking water source for Salt Lake City, following the crash of an oil tanker truck, The Salt Lake Tribune reported. Authorities believe the spill will be able to be cleaned before it causes problems for drinking water.

There is no clear link between a food’s nutritional value and the effect of its production on the environment, but plant-based foods—which tend to be healthier—are generally less polluting than animal-based products, according to a new study from researchers in France, Reuters reported. The study assessed the environmental effect of foods by greenhouse gas emissions, other air pollution, and water pollution.

Drought and Floods
Water rationing may soon be imposed across the entire Caribbean island of St. Vincent due to a drought, Bloomberg News reported. Water production at several of the island’s water supply systems has been cut in half.

A state of emergency was declared in 26 Florida counties, mostly in the panhandle region, due to the worst floods in 30 years, Reuters reported. The floods were caused by a storm system that dropped as much as 0.6 meters of rain in a 24-hour period.

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