Memphis City Hall (Photo: City of Memphis Community Affairs page, Facebook)

Questions linger of TVA move to relocated coal ash in Memphis

BY: - December 22, 2021

On Tuesday, Memphis city council members discussed the difficulties they’ve had getting clear answers from TVA on the agency’s decision to relocate coal ash to Southeast Memphis.  Since routine groundwater monitoring found elevated levels of arsenic in ponds situated over the Memphis Sand Aquifer, TVA officials have been under pressure to remove coal ash stored […]

Renderings of a revitalized Second Avenue, complete with sustainability features like drought resistant plants in street planters. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Environmental sustainability gains ground in Nashville redevelopment

BY: - December 13, 2021

When Nashville Mayor John Cooper gave an update Wednesday on the redevelopment of historic Second Avenue following the Christmas 2020 bombing, he talked of revitalization plans that wouldn’t have happened were it not for the incident — a making of lemonade from life’s lemons scenario. Among the improvements Cooper discussed were creation of an integrated […]

Tree trunks in the Bridgestone Firestone Centennial Wilderness Area in Sparta marked for clearcutting, despite local opposition. Photo: John Partipilo

Clearcutting plans in state wilderness area gets legal approval despite local opposition

BY: - December 6, 2021

A controversial plan by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency officials to clearcut forest in a popular hunting, hiking and recreation area in order to create habitat for Northern bobwhite quail has gotten a legal go-ahead, despite opposition from residents and local leaders in White County, a bipartisan group of lawmakers and environmental groups. The 16,000-acre […]

Gas stations with convenience stores are often the only source of grocery shopping for residents in low income neighborhoods. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Memphis City Council backs residents and rules against gas station operators

BY: - November 17, 2021

On Tuesday, Memphis City Council pushed back against gas station developers and passed a regulatory ordinance in favor of residents concerned about pollution to the city’s drinking water.   In the past several months, residents and community leaders urged city and county officials to regulate undesirable companies–including gas stations– from springing up near their neighborhoods. Over […]

Coal ash slurry left behind in a containment pond near the Tennessee Valley Authorities Kingston Fossil Plant Dec. 29, 2008 in Harriman, Tenn., after the dyke at left broke Dec. 22, 2008, unleashing a billion gallon flood of toxic sludge into the Emory River. (Photo: Greenpeace USA)

Memphis residents wage fight against TVA coal ash storage

BY: - November 15, 2021

Activist Justin J. Pearson had barely finished one environmental fight before he realized he needed to get involved in another.  Pearson, co-founder of Memphis Against the Pipeline, was a leader in a community pushback against the Byhalia Pipeline, a 49-mile oil conduit through historically Black Memphis neighborhoods. Activists said it was a prime example of […]

Andrew Byrd at the farm he owns with his wife, Marianne Menefee Byrd, on historic Holly Tree Gap in Williamson County. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Williamson County land use battle pits utility district against owners of historic farm

BY: - November 11, 2021

Holly Tree Gap is a quiet, three-mile stretch of winding road flanked by woods, meadows and horse pastures, with only a few of the spacious homes that characterize much of the rest of Williamson County along its path. But in recent weeks, a proliferation of white signs with black lettering have begun to appear, signaling […]

NOVEMBER 05: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC), and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) speak to reporters at the U.S. Capitol building as the House prepares to vote on infrastructure and spending bills, on November 5, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Allison Shelley/Getty Images)

U.S. House sends $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill to Biden for his signature

BY: and - November 6, 2021

WASHINGTON—The U.S. House cleared a $1.2 trillion physical infrastructure bill and took a major step toward passage of a landmark $1.85 trillion social spending and climate bill late Friday, following months of wrangling between Democrats’ progressive and moderate wings. The votes marked a milestone in the marathon negotiations among members of the House Democratic caucus—and […]

A partially submerged Ford F-150 sits in Trace Creek on August 23, 2021 in Waverly, Tennessee. Heavy rains caused flash flooding in the area. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)

Waverly residents still struggle to recover from flooding as local unions help out

BY: - October 27, 2021

Following devastating flooding that killed 20 people in Waverly, TN, in late August, volunteers from local unions are helping fill in the gaps in rebuilding efforts. AP News reported that 17 inches of rain fell in less than 24 hours on August 21, 2021, on the small town in Middle Tennessee and took out homes, […]

Lawmakers weigh in to oppose TWRA clearcutting

BY: and - October 25, 2021

Elected officials who occupy positions on hunting-oriented caucuses are weighing in on a controversial plan to clear hardwood trees in order to  create a grassy habitat for quail — a game bird — on popular wilderness area in White County. U.S. Congressman Jim Cooper, D-Nashville, and state Rep. Bob Freeman, D-Nashville — members, respectively, of […]

Tree trunks in the Bridgestone Firestone Centennial Wilderness Area in Sparta marked for clearcutting, despite local opposition. Photo: John Partipilo

Congressional sportsmen’s group endorses clearcutting plan

BY: - October 21, 2021

A controversial plan by state wildlife officials to raze portions of a popular recreational area in White County got a surprising stamp of approval from the Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation, a nonprofit whose mission is to support the hunting and fishing policy objectives advanced by federal and state lawmakers The endorsement came as a surprise because […]

A 2019 Memphis City Council meeting. (Photo: City of Memphis)

Memphis Sand Aquifer, Memphis’ source of drinking water, at center of growing number of disputes

BY: - October 6, 2021

The Memphis Sand Aquifer, the primary source of drinking water for Shelby County residents, is the subject of a growing number of disputes. Memphis City Councilmembers on Tuesday clashed with Tennessee Valley Authority representatives over plans to relocate coal ash to a local landfill over fears it could contaminate the aquifer. The Southern Environmental Law […]

Tree trunks in the Bridgestone Firestone Centennial Wilderness Area in Sparta marked for clearcutting, despite local opposition. Photo: John Partipilo

TWRA officials face pushback over plans to raze old-growth forests in White County

BY: - October 5, 2021

SPARTA, Tenn. — Officials with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency faced considerable pushback Monday night at a public meeting in Sparta over plans to raze old growth forest in a popular hunting and recreation area located about about halfway between Nashville and Knoxville. A standing room-only crowd of more than 200 people filled the town’s […]