Great Lakes (IL IN MI MN OH WI)

"Legionnaires’ Outbreak in Flint Was Met With Silence"

Michigan officials still say they cannot conclusively link an outbreak of Legionnaire's disease to Flint’s contaminated water supply, partly because sputum cultures were not collected from patients. But the possibility of a link was raised in internal government emails as early as October 2014, and state officials did not inform the public of the outbreak until last month.

Source: NY Times, 02/23/2016

Flint Water: EPA Concerned With 'Inadequate' State And City Response

"The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has said it has serious concerns over the 'inadequate' response to the Flint toxic water crisis by both the city and Michigan officials, pointing to a lack of expert help on the ground and a failure to provide a proper water treatment plan."

Source: Guardian, 02/22/2016

"Flint Mayor Opposes No-Bid Choice To Assess City Pipes"

"LANSING — Gov. Rick Snyder and Flint Mayor Karen Weaver — already at odds over how quickly Flint's lead service lines that carry drinking water to homes should be replaced — are also split over Snyder's choice of an engineering firm that a state document says helped prepare the city before its botched switch to using Flint River water."

Source: Detroit Free Press, 02/22/2016
April 15, 2016

DEADLINE: Travel Fellowships for North American Congress for Conservation Biology

COMPASS is supporting travel fellowships for journalists to attend the Third Biennial North American Congress for Conservation Biology, July 17-20, 2016. Theme is Communicating Science for Conservation Action. Apply by Apr 15.

Maine Law Hid Threats to Public from Oil Trains

Maine passed a law in 2015 that allowed railroads to keep oil-train routing information from the public — over the governor's veto. In the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting's Pine Tree Watchdog, Dave Sherwood reports how the provision was a bait-and-switch.

Failure to Disclose Lead Threats in Drinking Water: Widespread Problem

Bad as it is, the Flint drinking water disaster is hardly uncommon. Even though the law requires authorities to tell the public of dangerous levels of lead in drinking water, they often don't.

"Michigan Legionnaires' Deaths Were Preventable, Official Says"

"Residents of Flint, Michigan, began getting gravely ill and in some cases dying in summer 2014 in one of the worst outbreaks of Legionnaires' disease in U.S. history, and a county health director says attempts to find the source were hampered when the state wouldn't request federal assistance."

Source: CNN, 02/15/2016

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