American Morning

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January 5th, 2011
10:09 AM ET

Wild horse roundup triggers controversy

Editor's Note: John Zarrella concludes his four-part series "Mustang Roundup: Taking the wild out of the West" tomorrow on American Morning. Don't miss part one and part two and check out today's story below.

Kim Segal and John Zarrella

Silver Springs, Nevada (CNN) - The helicopter is on the chase. At first, you can only hear it. Then, from behind the hillside, you see a herd of wild horses running for their freedom, with the helicopter close behind.

One escapes the trap, barely. The crowd cheers.

This is the scene at the Lahontan wild horse roundup in Silver Springs, Nevada. The helicopter pilot works for the federal government. The crowd is composed mainly of activists opposed to the roundups.

More and more, the roundups are becoming showdowns between protesters and the Bureau of Land Management.


Filed under: AM Original
November 19th, 2010
08:59 AM ET

Solving world problems during a 45-minute commute

American Morning's Jim Acosta profiles a group of men on their commute to work. Here's what they had to say about solving the biggest problems facing our country:

Filed under: AM Original
October 7th, 2010
06:30 AM ET

EPA Decision Could Jolt Electrical Power Industry

By Carol Costello and Ronni Berke, CNN

(CNN) – Marcy Hughes has lived in western Pennsylvania her whole life. Her home in Beaver County is like a picture postcard: Rolling hills. Lush farmland. Great schools. Back in the 1970s, Hughes says, she listened enthusiastically as representatives for Pennsylvania Power proposed building "Little Blue Run." Sure, its purpose was a place to dispose of coal ash - the waste left over from burning coal for electricity - but, that coal ash would serve as a foundation for a man-made lake.

"They said that they were going to have it where you could swim, you could picnic - they even showed a sailboat."

Today, Little Blue Run is a 1300-acre facility, with an impoundment measuring nearly 1000 acres, and 400 feet deep in some places. FirstEnergy Corporation, the utility company that now owns Little Blue, pumps tons of coal ash and other waste into it every year.

But, you won't find any sailboats. The EPA says that coal ash contains toxic agents like arsenic, cadmium and lead, some of which are known to cause cancer. And, Little Blue is about to get bigger. FirstEnergy produces so much waste to make electricity, it wants to build an adjacent facility to store it.

Little Blue Run is one of about 600 surface impoundments in the country that contain coal ash from coal-fired power plants like FirstEnergy's Bruce Mansfield Plant in Shippingport, Pennsylvania. In addition, there are about 300 landfills containing dry waste.

The Environmental Protection Agency is now holding hearings across the country on coal ash waste. After the disastrous coal ash spill in Tennessee two years ago, the agency is considering whether to toughen regulations and classify coal-ash as "hazardous" waste. Right now it's considered ordinary garbage. The proposed changes could have an enormous financial impact on the hundreds of coal-fired power plants that produce half the nation's electricity.


Filed under: AM Original • Health • Living
October 6th, 2010
06:27 AM ET

Fighting back against bullies

(CNN) – Is it a smart idea to teach your child how to stand up to a Bully? What happens when your child continues to be a target and the Bully won’t back down? Some parents are turning to Martial Arts.

A new course called “Bullyproof” teaches children how to thwart an attack using Jiu-Jitsu techniques. The course, teaches the three T's: Talk your way out. Tell an adult. And, as the last resort, and only when attacked, Tackle the bully. Then, if the person attacks you physically, grab him in a bear hug and take him down to pin and safely hold until rescue comes. The aim is to provide self-confidence and the physical skills for self-defense. Different age groups are taught different techniques.

In the Jr. Grapplers classes the 15 essential techniques they must know in order to defend themselves if attacked. The techniques are all non-violent control tactics designed to minimize injury to the bully if used during a real fight. To keep it fun, brothers Rener and Ryron Gracie advocate positive reinforcement as opposed to nit-picking details - participation, not perfection.

We head to Gracie Jiu-Jitsu headquarters in Torrance, California to observe the class, talk to the instructors who created the program, find out why parents choose to enroll their children, and we talk to the kids about bullying and what the class has meant to them.

Filed under: AM Original • American Morning • Bullying
September 21st, 2010
08:00 AM ET

Reporter's Notebook: Weather Warriors

(CNN) – The Special Operations Weather Team (SOWT) is less a than a hundred person unit within the Air Force’s Special Operations Command. The SOWT’s deploy with the likes of Army Rangers, Navy Seals and other Special Forces into extremely hostile territory. Once on the ground, their duties encompass everything a special ops soldier regularly endures, in addition to assessing and interpreting weather and environmental conditions. The data a SOWT generates is not only vital for battlefield conditions for military deployments, but also for guiding in rescue choppers in real-time combat situations. Our Rob Marciano talks to SWOT soldiers in the second part of his original report, “Weather Warriors”.

Watch part one of Rob's special report, "Weather Warriors"

Filed under: AM Original • Military • Weather
September 21st, 2010
07:00 AM ET

Communal homeschooling on the rise

By Carol Costello and Bob Ruff, CNN

“Isabelle, you're next. What card do you need to add to 10 to get what?"
Grade schooler Isabelle Hannon is learning how to add and subtract, but not in a classroom. She’s outdoors, at a beautiful Stillwater, Oklahoma park. She and her sister, Alyssa, are being taught not by a professional teacher but by their mom. And they’re not alone. The Franklin kids are there, too, along with their mom and dad who are also acting as teachers. 
Welcome to homeschooling 2010. It’s no longer a solitary exercise for many parents: it’s communal. Many families are now sharing ideas about teaching and taking turns as teachers. In effect, they’re creating their own “shadow schools.” 

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