wind generators in LaianJuly 19, 1979: The Greek-registered tanker Atlantic Empress collided with another tanker, Aegean Princess, during a tropical storm off the Caribbean island of Trinidad. The Atlantic Empress foundered for two weeks before sinking, spilling 90 million gallons of crude in the process.

July 19, 2001: A 60-car freight train catches fire in a tunnel beneath downtown Baltimore, crippling the city for hours. The train’s cargo includes propylene glycol, which is used in antifreeze, and hydrochloric acid. Fumes and smoke force the evacuation of much of the downtown area, and a brown goo oozes out of the century-old rail tunnel.

July 19, 2010: The International Energy Agency says that China has surpassed the United States as the world’s biggest consumer of energy. At right, wind generators in Laian, China.

Photo: ZUMA Press

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