TipSheet

Report: 303 Industrial Facilities Pose High Terrorism Risk

The strategy of changing chemical processes at industrial facilities so they use less hazardous materials, and pose less of a threat from terrorism and accidents, gained little traction in the Bush administration after 9/11. But a number of organizations continue to push the idea.

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Gulf War Illness: It's Real, Afflicts About 200K Vets, Says Panel

As the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan drag on, new light has been shed on the environmental health impacts of the 1991 Gulf War. On Nov. 17, 2008, the Congressionally-mandated Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans' Illnesses released a major report which concluded that from 175,000 to 210,000 of the nearly 700,000 U.S. veterans of the first Gulf War suffer from Gulf War illness.

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Nearly 800 Dams Already Removed Across U.S.

The last vestiges of the dam-building era continue. But the era of the dam removers is well under way, as communities try to improve river habitat, restore fish migrations, or remove hazardous dams that are crumbling or no longer serve a useful purpose (though dam removal can also have potentially adverse consequences, such as the release of toxic sediments, or reductions in species that had adapted to the dam environment).

In 2008, about 60 dams were removed, according to the advocacy group American Rivers. That adds substantially to the more than 300 dams that have been removed since 1999, and about 790 dams removed in the last 100 years, according to the group's tally.

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The Really Big Ozone Story: Plants With Asthma

Most news about ground-level ozone pollution focuses on its considerable impacts to human health. But there may be a far broader and potentially bigger story: Ground-level ozone pollution significantly impairs plants' ability to absorb CO2 - which in turn exacerbates climate change, reduces agricultural yields (think: food shortages), and damages ecosystems.

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Floods and Drought in NOAA Forecast

A wet, snowy winter has set the table for spring flooding in much of the eastern US and a few western states. NOAA published a forecast on March 20, 2008, of the areas most likely to get swamped. Among the states at risk are "much of the Mississippi River basin, the Ohio River basin, the lower Missouri River basin, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, most of New York, all of New England, and portions of the West, including Colorado and Idaho."

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