Health

Farmers Care About Trees Too
August 24, 2009 06:41 AM - Alister Doyle, Environment Correspondent, Reuters

Almost half of the world's farmland has at least 10 percent tree cover, according to a study on Monday indicating that farmers are far less destructive to carbon-storing forests than previously believed. "The area revealed in this study is twice the size of the Amazon, and shows that farmers are protecting and planting trees spontaneously," Dennis Garrity, Director General of the World Agroforestry Center in Nairobi, said in a statement.

As the Waistline Expands, the Brain Shrinks!
August 23, 2009 11:22 AM - New Scientist

BRAIN regions key to cognition are smaller in older people who are obese compared with their leaner peers, making their brains look up to 16 years older than their true age. As brain shrinkage is linked to dementia, this adds weight to the suspicion that piling on the pounds may up a person's risk of the brain condition.

California moves toward stringent chromium 6 standard for drinking water
August 21, 2009 05:28 PM - Bettina Boxall, LA Times

Proposed goal of 0.06 part per billion could force costly treatment on providers that get water from the heavy-metal-contaminated San Fernando Valley aquifer, including L.A., Burbank and Glendale.

Plastic in Oceans Leaches Chemicals
August 20, 2009 09:28 AM - Emily Sohn, Discovery News

According to a new study, plastic in the oceans can decompose in as little as a year, leaching chemical compounds into the water that may harm the health of animals and possibly even people.

Mercury Persists in Fish in Many Parts of US
August 20, 2009 06:39 AM - Roger Greenway, ENN

The U.S. Geological Survey released a study that showed mercury contamination in every fish sampled in 291 streams across the country. The work was part of the National Water-Quality Assessment Program (NAWQA) which provides an understanding of water-quality conditions such as whether conditions are getting better or worse over time and how natural features and human activities affect those conditions. Regional and national assessments are possible because of a consistent study design and uniform methods of data collection and analysis.

Not from My Back Yard? Homes Pollute
August 19, 2009 11:55 AM - Eurekalert

They say there's no place like home. But scientists are reporting some unsettling news about homes in the residential areas of California. The typical house there — and probably elsewhere in the country — is an alarming and probably underestimated source of water pollution, according to a new study reported today at the 238th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society.

Do Phosphate Oridnances Make a Difference?
August 17, 2009 03:40 PM - Roger Greenway, ENN

Phosphorus levels in the Huron River dropped an average of 28 percent after Ann Arbor adopted an ordinance in 2006 that curtailed the use of phosphorus on lawns.

Surprise, Sea Temperatures in July Hottest on Record!
August 15, 2009 07:47 AM - R. Greenway, ENN

The Earth's oceans were the warmest ever this July, according to a study released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration yesterday. The planet's ocean surface temperature was the warmest on record for July, breaking the previous high mark established in 1998 according to an analysis by NOAA's National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C. The combined average global land and ocean surface temperature for July 2009 ranked fifth-warmest since world-wide records began in 1880.

Could Catching Swine Flu Be Good For You?
August 13, 2009 09:17 AM - Robyn Meredith, Forbes via, Organic Consumers Association

SARS had a relatively high mortality rate, but it just so happened that it wasn't easy to catch. Swine flu is the opposite: easy to catch, like any seasonal flu, but with a mortality rate no higher than seasonal flu for most people.

Sewage Breeds Bigger, Faster Mosquitoes
August 11, 2009 08:20 AM - Emily Sohn, Discovery News

Add this to the list of things that make sewage stink: Mosquitoes thrive on it.

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