EJToday: Top Headlines
EJToday is SEJ's selection of new and outstanding stories on environmental topics in print and on the air, updated every weekday. SEJ also offers a free e-mailed digest of the day's EJToday postings, called SEJ-beat. SEJ members are subscribed automatically, but may opt out here. Non-members may subscribe here. EJToday is also available via RSS feed. Please see Editorial Guidelines for EJToday content.
"A Luzerne County physician claims in a federal lawsuit that Pennsylvania's new oil and natural gas drilling law will force him to violate ethical rules in treating his patients."
"Four times in the past century, a new strain of flu has emerged that can spread quickly in humans. One of those strains, which emerged in 1918, killed an estimated 50 million people."
"Little progress has been made in combating many types of food-borne illnesses in recent years, according to new federal data, an outcome that food safety advocates say underscores the need to put into place the landmark food-safety bill signed by President Obama more than a year ago."
"For the first time, more than 8,000 temporary wilderness firefighters -- the men and women who battle some of the nation's most devastating fires -- will be eligible to receive federal health insurance, the White House said Tuesday."
"For a century, doctors have waged war against bacteria, using antibiotics as their weapons. But that relationship is changing as scientists become more familiar with the 100 trillion microbes that call us home — collectively known as the microbiome."
"It appears high fructose corn syrup will still be called high fructose corn syrup. On Wednesday, the Food and Drug Administration denied a petition by the Corn Refiners Assn. (filed in 2010) to allow 'corn sugar' as an alternate name for HFCS."
"In an average summer in the United States, there are 1,332 heat-related deaths. But climate change will make that number rise to 4,608 by the end of the century, according to a new report from the Natural Resources Defense Council. In total, the US can expect 150,000 deaths due to excessive heat by 2100, the report projects."
"It’s the kind of scenario that might evolve in Hollywood: A college professor detects drug-resistance genes collecting in local wetlands, where they survive for weeks and are spread far and wide by seabirds.
But the discovery of extra-hardy DNA flourishing on the edge of San Diego isn’t science fiction. It’s the result of research by David Cummings, a microbiologist at Point Loma Nazarene University.
"Two billion years ago, around the time atmospheric oxygen levels were rising, one cell engulfed another, and instead of becoming lunch, the ingestee became an Earth-changer and, eventually, a vital part of you: mitochondria."
"WASHINGTON — Federal food safety inspectors said a proposal by the Agriculture Department to expand a pilot program that allows private companies to take over the inspections at poultry plants could pose a health risk by allowing contaminated meat to reach customers.""Currently, the Agriculture Department’s Food Safety and Inspection Service inspectors are stationed along the assembly lines in poultry plants and examine the birds for blemishes, feces or visible defects before they are processed."
"Eleven environmental organizations are suing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to force it to better regulate toxic coal ash and citing recent groundwater contamination at 29 coal ash dump sites in 16 states, including two in Western Pennsylvania."