Health

Battle Builds Over Science Integrity in Environmental Policy

Purges of EPA science panels by Administrator Scott Pruitt are just one among many moves in an ongoing dispute over the integrity of the environmental sciences in government policymaking. The latest Issue Backgrounder takes a deep dive with a briefing on five likely battles ahead for the coming year.

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For Pruitt EPA, There Is No Bad News on Ozone Pollution

Trying to figure out the air quality in your coverage area? The EPA may not be much help. But this week's TipSheet suggests some effective work-arounds for your reporting. Get the backstory on ozone standards, tips on how to track ozone "nonattainment" for your area and learn why smog matters so much to public health.

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Reporting on Turkey, Trauma-Free

Turkeys are a favorite American food, but also a multi-billion-dollar industry with myriad environment and food safety issues, not to mention confusing consumer labelling. With Thanksgiving approaching, this week's TipSheet helps reporters carve out a bird beat, serving up story ideas, resources and more.

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"EPA: New Adviser Suggested Clean Air's 'Not Good For The Children'"

"A newly appointed member to a top U.S. EPA advisory panel suggested in 2012 that children need exposure to contaminated air to help their lungs ward off pollutants, according to a profile by a leading scientific organization."

Source: Greenwire, 11/06/2017

Amid the Fog of Policy, Reporting on Pesticide Regulation

Pesticides are a big environmental story. And under Trump, they are much in the news. But pesticide regulation, and its political, environmental and public health fallout, is an older and more complex tale. The Backgrounder explains how the rules work (and don't), and provides leads and resources for your reporting.

 
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Is There a Post-Flood “Toxic Stew” Near You?

Flooding disasters can unleash some nasty substances into the environment, whether from Superfund sites, sewage plants or petrochemical and other industrial facilities handling toxic and hazardous materials.This week's TipSheet identifies some of the biggest risks, and offers starting points for your local reporting.

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EPA Press Office Attacks Journalists à la Trump

The Trump Administration's EPA Press Office appears to have launched a personal attack on journalists for unfavorable coverage. WatchDog reports what happened when the Associated Press looked into possible pollution at Houston Superfund sites flooded by Hurricane Harvey.

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"Congress Rejects Trump Proposals to Cut Health Research Funds"

"Back in March, when President Trump released the first draft of his budget proposal for the coming fiscal year, he asked lawmakers for deep cuts to one of their favorite institutions, the National Institutes of Health — part of a broad reordering of priorities, away from science and social spending, toward defense and border security. Six months later, Congress has not only rejected the president’s N.I.H. proposal; lawmakers from both parties have joined forces to increase spending on biomedical research — and have bragged about it."

Source: NY Times, 09/12/2017

Beware Gateway Bugs Bringing Insect-Borne Disease

It's a deadly threat only fitfully reported by news media. But coverage of insect-borne diseases could be improved by environmental journalists who understand the intersection of bugs, humans and climate. A two-part Issue Backgrounder with basics, key resources and a rundown on significant illnesses brought by mosquitoes, and by ticks and other insects

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