Nationals ParkMarch 22, 1989: The Basel Convention is ratified. The global treaty gives some enforcement power to efforts to halt the shipping of toxic waste from wealthy countries to poor ones. But waste shipments are still widespread, particularly the dumping of toxic components from electronics.

March 22, 2001: The world's largest municipal landfill closes. Fresh Kills, a former salt marsh on New York City's Staten Island, covers 3,000 acres and rises over 200 feet high. The dump temporarily re-opens in late 2001 to receive the wreckage from the World Trade Center.

March 22, 2008: In the first baseball game at a LEED-certified facility, George Washington University beat St. Joseph's University 9-4 before a crowd of 2,000 at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. (at right). The big-league Washington Nationals open there a week later. The LEED system grades buildings on sustainability and energy efficiency. The ballpark uses recycled materials and boasts state-of-the-art systems for energy conservation and water use.

March 22, 2012:  After delighting environmentalists by killing a proposal for speedy construction of the KeystoneXL oil pipeline through Nebraska, U.S. President Barack Obama delights the energy industry by vowing to expedite another section of the same pipeline through Oklahoma.  The Keystone project would bring oil from Canada’s tar sands to the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Photo: Geoff Livingston/Flickr

This feature is compiled by Peter Dykstra, an MNN contributor and publisher of Environmental Health News and The Daily Climate.

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