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Environmental connections to public health >>

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Wednesday, November 9, 2005

This year, the New York Times reports, both farmers and the federal government are covering corn at potentially record levels. Farmers are struggling to store this year's bountiful corn harvest, even buying massive tarps to cover mountains of corn that must be left outdoors.

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Tuesday, November 8, 2005

Lead acetate, an ingredient used in personal care products such as men's hair dye, has been banned in Canada over fears of cancer and reproductive toxicity. The chemical has been banned in Europe, and California considers it a carcinogen. Canadians' products must be free of the chemical by the end of 2006.

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Monday, November 7, 2005

DuPont disclosed in its SEC filing last week that the company earns $1 billion per year in revenues from the Teflon chemical PFOA or C8. Those revenues could be in danger if EPA decides to regulate the toxic chemical as a result of the agency's lawsuit against DuPont for withholding information about the Teflon chemical's health effects.

Monday, November 7, 2005

The University of Montana has put out its annual Kids Count report for 2005, addressing child mortality, uninsurance rates, economic status and, for the first time, health care costs from environmental pollutants. Montana spends an estimated $400 million annually for kids with lead poisoning, asthma, cancer, birth defects and other disorders.

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Wednesday, November 2, 2005

In the next logical step after some grocery chains voluntarily putting mercury warnings at their seafood counters, one company is now marketing low-mercury fish to consumers worried about its neurotoxic effects on infants and children.

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Monday, October 31, 2005

Two stories from the weekend worth reading, at the Salt Lake Tribune and Living on Earth, highlight a nascent conservation movement in response to the federal government's poor Western land management strategy.

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Monday, October 31, 2005

Congress has attached an action to next year's agriculture appropriations bill that will allow synthetic ingredients to be used in manufacturing products labeled with USDA's green "organic" seal.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Prozac, antibiotics, health and beauty products, steroids, disinfectants, fire retardants, DEET, caffeine and more are increasingly being found in America's waterways.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Check out the New York Times for a rundown of the impressive environmental initiatives the nation's largest retailer is undertaking. Wal-Mart plans to double fuel economy on its delivery trucks, reduce energy use in its stores and minimize packaging.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Residents near DuPont's W.Va. Washington Works plant, where the Teflon chemical PFOA is produced, are speaking out against a landfill where the company dumped the toxic chemical.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Feeling good about donating your old computer for use by someone in another country? Then don't read Laurie J. Flynn's New York Times story about the finding that many of those donated electronics end up creating pollution, not opportunities, for people in developing nations.

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Friday, October 21, 2005

As if enough weren't wrong with Harriet Miers' Supreme Court nomination, Reuters reports that Miers spoke to several groups last spring to garner support for Sens. Specter and Leahy's ailing asbestos trust fund bill.

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Friday, October 21, 2005

 

The New York Times gets it wrong in an otherwise nice article about organic labeling of health and beauty products. Synthetic ingredients used in cosmetics are generally considered safe. The Food and Drug Administration requires that cosmetics makers make sure that their products are safe.
Thursday, October 20, 2005

Safeway and Albertsons grocery chains have new additions to the seafood counter signs warning consumers of health concerns associated with consuming fish with high levels of mercury. The signs are voluntary, but mention primarily swordfish, tilefish, king mackerel and shark, largely ignoring tuna.

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Wednesday, October 19, 2005

An FDA panel is examining possible health concerns associated with antibacterial soaps, wipes and other household products. The market is booming for these germ-killers, but home use might be creating strains resistant to both antibacterials and antibiotics. This is of particular concern to families with children, as it presents the double-edged sword of exposing children to surviving super-germs, or, on the other hand, overprotecting them in a squeaky-clean environment that prevents them from building immunity, which can lead to asthma or allergies later in life.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

The Bush administration continues to combat the country's energy problems with industry giveaways, now allowing oil and gas drilling permits on public lands to be issued without environmental reviews or citizen comment.

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Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Construction on 9,500 new oil and gas wells in western Colorado is creating erosion and runoff that's clogging towns' irrigation systems and raising cleanup costs.

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Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Grassroots opposition to proposals to fluoridate water supplies across the country are gathering community and state-level attention and support, a new piece in TIME Magazine shows.

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Thursday, October 13, 2005

Many baby and young children's products like teething rings, plastic and plush toys, clothing, and personal care products contain phthalates and fire retardants, a new study shows.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

The U.S. Forest Service has fired a 40-year employee after he filed a whistleblower complaint related to misuse of pesticides across several forests in Arizona and New Mexico. He said he was fired him because the Forest Service doesn't want controls over its pesticide use in public areas.

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