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 senior Chinese official demanded on Tuesday that foreign embassies stop issuing air pollution readings, saying it was against the law and diplomatic conventions, in pointed criticism of a closely watched U.S. embassy index."
"YORK RIVER, Virginia -- Dying wetland trees along Virginia's coastline are evidence that rising sea levels threaten nature and humans, scientists say - and show the limits of political action amid climate change scepticism."
Two scientists say BP's aggressive efforts to subpoena e-mails related to their estimate of the oil flow rate during the 2010 Deepwater Horizon Gulf oil spill invade their privacy and threaten the integrity of the scientific deliberative process.
"In the menagerie of Craig Venter’s imagination, tiny bugs will save the world. They will be custom bugs, designer bugs -- bugs that only Venter can create. He will mix them up in his private laboratory from bits and pieces of DNA, and then he will release them into the air and the water, into smokestacks and oil spills, hospitals and factories and your house. "
Some new lines of evidence are confirming a decades-old conclusion that climate change was the key cause for the end of the ancient Harappan civilization in what is now the Indus valley of India, Pakistan, and neighboring regions.
"An advance guard of 18-wheelers is scheduled to roll into a business park in Cheyenne, Wyo., this week to unload components of a supercomputer called Yellowstone. This 1.5-quadrillion-calculations-per-second crystal ball will model future climate and forecast extreme weather."
"Earlier this month, the State University of New York at Buffalo released a report concluding that fracking is getting safer, as both industry and regulators are doing a better job. The study got plenty of coverage--the Associated Press, Forbes, WGRZ, Buffalo News--but in the week since it was released, it's been attacked for a number of flaws."
"The White House appears to be blocking Environmental Protection Agency efforts to tighten oversight of engineered nanoscale pesticides and other chemicals, according to environmental and safety advocates."
"Canada is dismantling the nation's entire ocean contaminants program as part of massive layoffs at the Department of Fisheries and Oceans."
"The ultra-conservative group's climate conference showed how far it has fallen after an internet sting and a disastrous ad."
"It was an odd choice of icon for the ultra-conservative Heartland Institute. But there he was in round glasses, beard, and halo of curls staring out from T-shirts and coffee mugs at their gathering of climate change contrarians this week, the scientist whose internet sting set Heartland on its current course of collapse.
"Like evolution, climate science has opened rifts in classrooms across the United States. Educators are lifting climate out of its narrow unit in middle school science – an effort, they hope, that will improve science literacy overall."
Budget and management problems have wracked the National Children's Study, once the most ambitious effort to document the effects of many factors -- including environmental ones -- on children's health during the entire time they are growing up.
"Quite a few of the 225 people who live in Dish, Texas, think the nation's natural gas boom is making them sick. They blame the chemicals used in gas production for health problems ranging from nosebleeds to cancer.
And the mayor of Dish, Bill Sciscoe, has a message for people who live in places where gas drilling is about to start: 'Run. Run as fast as you can. Grab up your family and your belongings, and get out.'"
"Quiet, Gordon Hempton says, is a 'think tank of the soul.' The acoustic ecologist has criss-crossed the world searching for and recording some of nature's most elusive sounds. He says the experience of silence is in danger of being lost and explains why nature's 'silence' is vital to our minds, our relationships, and the natural world as well. He walks us through those environments — from the Hoh Rain Forest to thunder in the Kalahari Desert."
"The Heartland Institute's board of directors was not consulted before the group launched an explosive billboard campaign last week, resulting in the resignation of one director and dismaying others, sources said."