exxon reaches $1.6M oil spill settlement
Exxon Mobil agreed Thursday to pay Montana $1.6 million in penalties over water pollution caused by a pipeline break last summer that fouled dozens of miles of shoreline along the scenic Yellowstone River. Montana Department of Environmental Quality director Richard Opper said the penalty is the largest in the agency's history. Exxon will pay $300,000 in cash and spend $1.3 million on future environmental projects, he said. Exxon also increased by 50 percent Thursday its estimate of how much crude spilled into the river July 1 near Laurel to 1,509 barrels, or more than 63,000 gallons.
Fuel delivered to iced-in city
A massive effort to pump fuel from a Russian tanker to iced-in Nome is complete, moving more than 1.3 million gallons into the city that faced a shortage after missing its last delivery. The first-of-its-kind endeavor was completed Thursday after a pumping operation that lasted more than 60 hours.
Body parts found; police investigating
First there was a head, found inside a plastic grocery bag near a popular hiking trail in the Hollywood Hills on Tuesday. Then Wednesday, one hand was found, then the other. Then two feet. The body parts offered ghastly evidence of a killing that the police said must have occurred in the past few days, and which had 100 officers combing the canyon Thursday for additional parts or clues. Officials said the parts seem to belong to a male age 40 to 60. They're hopeful the victim can be identified through fingerprints.
2 bombs explode in Northern Ireland
Two bombs planted by Irish Republican Army dissidents detonated Thursday night in the Northern Ireland city of Londonderry, but no injuries were reported as police quickly evacuated the area after phoned warnings. IRA splinter groups based in the overwhelmingly Catholic west side of Londonderry have repeatedly targeted local businesses and police stations with homemade bombs. They reject the IRA's 2005 decision to renounce violence and disarm, and insist that Northern Ireland should be ejected from the United Kingdom by force.
Dimock, Pa.: The EPA said Thursday it will deliver fresh water to four homes in a northeastern Pennsylvania village where residential water wells were tainted by a gas driller.
Pakistan: A CIA drone strike in Pakistan's tribal area Jan. 10 killed an al-Qaida operative thought to be planning attacks against the West, a U.S. official confirmed Thursday.
Seattle: An elite mountain rescue team headed up Washington's Mount Rainier on Thursday to search for four people missing several days in a vicious storm.