October 13, 2015

The next 100 years at Xavier University

This month in The Firm Line, I’d like to focus on some recent developments at New Orleans’ own Xavier University that I consider a huge win both for Xavier and for our city. Xavier is one of America’s 107 Historically Black Universities and Colleges, and it has…

September 22, 2015

Bees are dying, and it’s going to hurt all of us (starting with our pocketbooks)

How big is the problem? Bees are dying, whole hives of them, by the millions. These mass die-offs have been happening since about 2006. During the 12-month period ending in April, 2015, beekeepers reported losing 42.1 percent of their colonies. The normal rate of yearly loss is only 10-15 percent.

July 29, 2015

Proposed settlement in Canadian oil train derailment case

In recent years, there has been a dramatic increase in the volume of crude oil being shipped by rail from North Dakota’s Bakken Shale to oil refineries throughout the United States and Canada – and with that increase, several train derailments resulting in oil spills or explosions.

May 1, 2015

DOT announces final rule to strengthen safe transportation of flammable liquids by rail

On April 17, 2015 the Department of Transportation (DOT) issued a series of emergency orders designed to help improve the safety of transporting crude oil by rail. In its news release announcing the new orders, the DOT stated, “Immediately slowing trains to 40 mph, increasing inspections for wheels and related…