Chelsea Green Publishing

Chelsea Green Blog

As Checks Near, Alaska Fisherfolk Resigned to Disappointment

From the Anchorage Daily News:

After a nearly 20-year wait, thousands of commercial fishermen and other plaintiffs are on the brink of collecting punitive damages for the Exxon Valdez oil spill of 1989.

The checks won’t be anything like the blockbuster payments many hoped for after a federal jury awarded them $5 billion — an amount the U.S. Supreme Court this summer cut by 90 percent.

Still, dozens of fishermen can expect checks for more than $100,000. And a few will range up to around $400,000.

As soon as today, federal Judge H. Russel Holland could clear the way for the payments, assuming he rejects a late effort from one plaintiff to re-jigger the complex plan for dividing the money.

The payout would mark the beginning of the end of an epic court case that has caused unprecedented angst among Alaskans.

But the payments are not seen as a victory among fishermen, who are still mad about the oil spill as well as the long struggle to win punitive damages from Exxon Mobil Corp.

“It’s better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick,” said William Yankee, a Prince William Sound salmon fisherman who’s on the list for nearly $58,000.

[…]

Riki Ott, a Cordova activist, is listed to receive nearly $29,000 from her past as a salmon gillnetter. These days, she’s busy promoting “Not One Drop,” the latest of her two books on the oil spill.

She said many people in Cordova, the main fishing port in Prince William Sound, are still struggling with the spill’s fallout and won’t be able to let it go until the litigation is over, the Sound’s herring return and people have “an assurance that something like this won’t ever happen again.”

“Closure is more than money,” Ott said.

Exxon Valdez claimants won’t get to keep all the money they’re listed to receive. Fees will be deducted to pay the lawyers who fought Exxon on behalf of the nearly 33,000 fishermen, cannery workers, land owners, Alaska Natives and others who claimed harm from the spill.

Claimants also will have to pay income taxes on whatever punitive damages they receive.

As part of a huge economic bailout plan passed recently, Congress included tax breaks for Exxon Valdez claimants that allow them to stretch out the tax hit over three years and put some of the money into retirement tax shelters.

Read the whole article here.


The Future Is Hopeless, So Give it Your All

The never-ending national election in the United States, the “surprise” pro-Brexit vote in the United Kingdom, climate change … the list goes on and on about how easy it can be to lose hope in the future.Like many of life’s frustrations, or overwhelmingly large topics, most people in our society find themselves somewhere on the […] Read More

How Carbon Farming Can Save the Planet

Carbon farming alone is not enough to avoid catastrophic climate change, but coupled with new economic priorities, a massive switch to clean energy, and big changes to much of the rest of the way our societies work, it offers a pathway out of destruction and a route to hope.Along the way carbon farming can also […] Read More

Look Under Your Feet for Global Soil-utions

For several years, Chelsea Green has been publishing books that look under our feet for solutions to some of the most vexing problems facing the planet – hunger, drought, degraded farmland and grasslands, damaged waterways, and much more. Those books focus on (mostly) one thing: Soil.  In 2016, we’ve published two more important books that […] Read More

Climate Change & the End of Stationarity

Just as predicting the rise of Donald Trump as a leading presidential candidate stumped even the best of political analysts (looking at you Nate “FiveThirtyEight” Silver), the advent of the Sixth Great Extinction due to climate change and an increasingly potent mix of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has completely upended how we predict the […] Read More

Use Simple Games to Better Understand Climate Change

How is it that emissions keep growing despite rising concern about the climate change they cause? It is possible to identify several reasons for the paradox, most of which lie outside the scope of The Climate Change Playbook. But one important reason is relevant here: people do not understand the behaviors of the climate system.And […] Read More
Follow us
Get every new post delivered to your inbox
Join millions of other followers
Powered By WPFruits.com