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.
'Indian children play on the sloping face of a man-made mountain of mining detritus. Factory workers toil in a blizzard of white fibre with little or no protection. These are just some of the disturbing daily scenes in India where asbestos is a booming building product.'
The Martins, a Latino family who live in Maywood, California, 10 minutes from downtown Los Angeles amid a sea of heavy industry, suffered from a variety of chronic sicknesses. Test results finally showed "The Martin family had traces of eight dangerous heavy metals and 17 industrial byproducts in their bodies. Levels of arsenic, chromium, mercury, manganese and vanadium were far higher than for most Americans."
"All this month [October], the market has been saturated with pink-ribbon products sold in the name of breast cancer awareness, some with dubious ties to good health. How about some pink-certified wine? Or how about a Smith & Wesson handgun with a pink grip and engraved ribbon insignia?
"Today, the United States has begun marching millions of airline passengers through the X-ray body scanners, parting ways with countries in Europe and elsewhere that have concluded that such widespread use of even low-level radiation poses an unacceptable health risk. The government is rolling out the X-ray scanners despite having a safer alternative that the Transportation Security Administration says is also highly effective."
"The Interior Department plans to issue a proposal soon forcing companies to reveal the chemicals they use in the so-called fracking drilling process on federal lands, as the Obama administration responds to public safety concerns over the shale exploration boom."
"Maryland's highest court struck down Monday a key provision of state law that shielded owners of older rental housing from civil lawsuits -- and potentially costly payments to victims -- if they took precautions to protect children in their units from lead-paint poisoning."
"THERMAL – At one end of Avenue 54, a road slicing through some of the most fertile land in the United States, resides the California of the popular imagination: a place of Bermuda shorts, putting greens and picture-window champagne dinners overlooking the infinity pool.
"The research showed that hyperactive, anxious, aggressive and depressed behavior was more common in 3-year-old girls who were exposed in the womb to bisphenol-A than in boys of the same age. No association was seen between bisphenol-A levels during later childhood and behavior for either gender, according to the study released today by the journal Pediatrics."
"The figure is so astounding it appears to be a misprint at first glance. One in 110. That's the number of American children living with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), based on the most recently published estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)."
"The headlines have focused on Frisco, where a battery-recycling plant emits too much lead. But the dangers go far beyond Frisco’s backyard. In cities such as Dallas and Fort Worth, particles from leaded gasoline banned decades ago still contaminate the soil."
"Children's asthma-related emergency room visits rise in the San Joaquin Valley at a similar rate as fine particulate levels do -- even on days where air quality is considered in the moderate range.
That's a key finding of a yearlong study by the Central Valley Health Policy Institute at Fresno State, which examined the short-term impacts of air quality changes in Bakersfield, Fresno and Modesto.
"A government test used to measure the radiation people absorb from their cellphones might underestimate the levels to which most adults and children are exposed, according to a group of doctors and researchers whose stated mission is to promote awareness of environmental health risks they believe may be linked to cancer."
"The Earth's natural resources like food, water and forests are being depleted at an alarming speed, causing hunger, conflict, social unrest and species extinction, experts at a climate and health conference in London warned Monday."
"As legislation to limit U.S. EPA's power to regulate coal ash hits the House floor this week, environmental advocates see industry footprints all over the bill's language. They say millions of dollars spent in lobbying and campaign contributions have yielded another congressional proposal to block Obama administration environmental oversight -- and have allowed the industry to frame the debate."
"When President Obama retreated from a tougher stance on smog last month, his Environmental Protection Agency chief had formally concluded that the existing standard endangered thousands of Americans, including children and people with respiratory ailments."