Health

High human impact ocean areas along US West Coast revealed
May 11, 2009 10:23 AM - National Science Foundation

"Every single spot of the ocean along the West Coast," said Ben Halpern, a marine ecologist at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) at the University of California at Santa Barbara, "is affected by 10 to 15 different human activities annually." In a two-year study to document the way humans are affecting the oceans in this region, Halpern and colleagues overlaid data on the location and intensity of 25 human-derived sources of ecological stress, including climate change, commercial and recreational fishing, land-based sources of pollution and ocean-based commercial activities. With the information, they produced a composite map of the status of West Coast marine ecosystems.

Fierce California wildfire burns into fourth night
May 9, 2009 08:05 AM - Lucy Nicholson, Reuters

A California wildfire burned for a fourth day on Friday above the seaside town of Santa Barbara as firefighters battled flames that have damaged or destroyed 80 homes. Another 3,500 homes and about 100 businesses remained in immediate jeopardy from the so-called Jesusita fire, which had blackened more than 8,600 acres in the foothills above the picturesque community, according to an update by the Santa Barbara Fire Department late on Friday.

Pesticides blamed for some childhood brain cancers
May 8, 2009 10:08 AM - Heather Hamlin , Environmental Health News

A new study finds that children who live in homes where their parents use pesticides are twice as likely to develop brain cancer versus those that live in residences in which no pesticides are used. Herbicide use appeared to cause a particularly elevated risk for a certain type of cancer.

US climate change denier James Inhofe joins Al Gore in fight against soot
May 5, 2009 10:22 AM - Suzanne Goldenberg, guardian.co.uk

In a surprise U-turn, the Republican senator has put forward a bill to review the dangers of black carbon to health and the environment.

'Green' lightbulbs poison workers
May 4, 2009 10:14 AM - Michael Sheridan, Foshan, Times Online

Hundreds of factory staff are being made ill by mercury used in bulbs destined for the West

California Residents Ready to Conserve More
May 4, 2009 07:04 AM - Water & Wastewater News

A large majority of Californians are concerned about having a sufficient supply of water and are willing to do more to conserve, according to a new statewide survey released by the Save Our Water program. The Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA) and the California Department of Water Resources recently launched the program to educate Californians about the state's water challenges and encourage greater water conservation.

Women more vulnerable to tobacco carcinogens, new results show
May 3, 2009 07:01 AM - Eurekalert

Women may be more vulnerable than men to the cancer-causing effects of smoking tobacco, according to new results reported this week at the European Multidisciplinary Conference in Thoracic Oncology (EMCTO), Lugano, Switzerland. Swiss researchers studied 683 lung cancer patients who were referred to a cancer centre in St Gallen between 2000 and 2005 and found women tended to be younger when they developed the cancer, despite having smoked on average significantly less than men.

How Mercury Gets into our Seafood
May 1, 2009 04:32 PM - Editor, ENN

The US Geological Survey published a study today that describes the mechanism by which anthropogenic mercury gets into the seas and into the seafood we eat. While it has been surmised that human use and emissions of Mercury were the source of mercury in the oceans and seafood, the mechanism by which anthropogenic mercury gets there has not been known.

American Lung Association Report on Air Quality Finds Progress, But Major Cities Show Problems
May 1, 2009 07:08 AM - Editor, ENN

The American Lung Association's State of the Air 2009 report acknowledges substantial progress against air pollution in many areas of the country, but finds nearly every major city still burdened by air pollution. Sixteen cities making this year’s 25 most ozone-polluted list experienced worsened ozone (smog) problems than last year’s report found. Fifty-eight percent of people in the United States live in counties with recorded unhealthy levels of ozone air pollution, measured against the tighter standard in effect since March 2008

Potentially harmful chemicals found in forest fire smoke

Researchers have detected common plant toxins that affect human health and ecosystems in smoke from forest fires. The results from the new study also suggest that smoldering fires may produce more toxins than wildfires - a reason to keep human exposures to a minimum during controlled burns.

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