Hawaii is about to ban reef-killing chemical sunscreens

May 2, 2018 by  
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Hawaii lawmakers just approved a ban on coral reef-killing chemical sunscreens. If the governor signs the bill, the state will be the first in the nation – and the world – to outlaw the products. Chemical sunscreens that contain oxybenzone and octinoxate have been shown to alter the DNA of young coral so that it isn’t able to develop properly. Yesterday, state lawmakers passed a bill that would ban sunscreens that contain oxybenzone and octinoxate. In addition to harming coral reefs, there is some evidence that these chemicals pose a danger to humans by acting as endocrine disruptors and potentially damaging human DNA. Related: Three-fourths of sunscreens don’t work as they claim and may contain harmful chemicals Opponents to the ban say that Hawaii, which already has a high incidence of skin cancer, will experience an increase in skin cancer rates. The ban won’t include prescription sunscreens that contain those ingredients, nor does it include sunscreens with physical sun blockers like zinc, so protection options will still be available. If signed into law, the ban will take effect on Jan. 1, 2021. Via Huffington Post Images via Channey and Deposit Photos

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Hawaii is about to ban reef-killing chemical sunscreens

New study finds that fracking chemicals could harm the immune system

May 2, 2018 by  
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A recent study adds to concerns over hydraulic fracturing by revealing links between exposure to fracking chemicals and damage to the immune systems of mice in utero. The study found that the mice offspring’s immune systems reacted abnormally to allergens and the flu, and the exposure lowered their ability to ward off diseases. Study lead Paige Lawrence of the University of Rochester Medical Center said in a statement , “This discovery opens up new avenues of research to identify, and someday prevent, possible adverse health effects in people living near fracking sites.” Millions of gallons of water laced with chemicals are pumped underground during fracking, to fracture rock and release fossil fuels . But many are worried that the chemicals in fracking water could contaminate groundwater , and multiple studies have reported higher disease rates in residents of fracking-dense areas. Asthma attacks and acute lymphocytic leukemia are among the ailments reported. The study, published this month in Toxicological Sciences , offers “the first evidence that chemicals found in ground water near fracking sites can impair the immune system.” Related: Interactive map reveals site of fracking accidents across the US Of around 200 chemicals found in groundwater in fracking-dense areas, 23 chemicals have been connected to reproductive and developmental defects in mice. University of Missouri School of Medicine associate professor and co-author Susan Nagel classified them as endocrine disrupters. The team added these 23 to drinking water for pregnant mice in amounts similar to what has been uncovered in groundwater close to fracking locations. They discovered offspring, especially female offspring, “had abnormal immune responses to several types of diseases later on, including an allergic disease and a type of flu. What was most striking: these mice were especially susceptible to a disease that mimics multiple sclerosis, developing symptoms significantly earlier than mice that were not exposed to the chemicals.” The study may only apply to mice at this point, but the team plans to continue their research. Lawrence said, “Our goal is to figure out if these chemicals in our water impact human health, but we first need to know what specific aspects of health to look at, so this was a good place to start.” + University of Rochester Medical Center + Toxicological Sciences Via Futurity Images via Depositphotos and greensefa on Flickr

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New study finds that fracking chemicals could harm the immune system

Why it’s time to invest in clean energy in Africa

August 19, 2015 by  
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Private-sector investment in electricity is sitting on the sidelines in Africa. Here’s how we can change that.

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Why it’s time to invest in clean energy in Africa

How Countries are Taking Early Action on Climate Before COP16

November 26, 2010 by  
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Despite low expectations across the board for next week’s UN Climate Summit, the countries most responsible for greenhouse gas emissions aren’t sitting on the sidelines waiting for a final agreement. Here’s how they’re taking action.

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How Countries are Taking Early Action on Climate Before COP16

"No Excuses" for Truck Blindspots: New Campaign to End Unnecessary Deaths

August 6, 2010 by  
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Since this image is from Transport for London all those bikes really are in the driver’s blind spot, the driver sitting on the right side of the vehicle. In the US and other countries where the driver sits on the left, the blind spot would be on the opposite side of the vehicle.

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"No Excuses" for Truck Blindspots: New Campaign to End Unnecessary Deaths

Changes in Ocean Oxygen Levels Mean Coastal Creatures Can’t Fight Illness

August 6, 2010 by  
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Photo by nukeit1 In normal conditions, marine animals are well equipped to fight off infection from the plethora of bacteria and viruses lurking in the oceans. However, that means having a hearty immune system that can react quickly if they get hurt. Researcher are finding that areas with low oxygen, such as within and around dead zones, and high carbon dioxide can wreak havoc on coastal animals’ ability to ward off disease

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Changes in Ocean Oxygen Levels Mean Coastal Creatures Can’t Fight Illness

With Spectacular Stick Sculptures by Patrick Dougherty, Art and Nature Collide (Slideshow)

August 6, 2010 by  
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Sculptor Patrick Dougherty’s “Sortie de Cave / Free At Last” (2008) at the Jardin des Arts, Chateaubourg, France. Photo credit: Charles Crie. For sculptures that start out as scrap and end up as compost, Patrick Dougherty ‘s nest-like works are intensely full of life, sprawling out across lawns , reaching into treetops, and winding up stairs.

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With Spectacular Stick Sculptures by Patrick Dougherty, Art and Nature Collide (Slideshow)

VeloMini Folding Electric Bike Brings Best of Both Worlds

August 6, 2010 by  
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Image via Velomini For urban cyclists, there’s the convenience of folding bikes that can easily fit inside an apartment, office cubicle, or subway car, and there’s also the helpful ease of electric assist bikes which can get you to work without breaking much of a sweat. There aren’t all that many bikes out there that offer both of these features, but breaking on to the scene is the Velomini, and it looks promising. …

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VeloMini Folding Electric Bike Brings Best of Both Worlds

What’s Keeping Climate Investment Out of Africa?

December 11, 2009 by  
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Trillions of dollars of investment is needed to help create a low-carbon global economy in the coming 20 years. So why is so much of this money sitting on the sidelines, especially when it comes to Africa, which is so much on the receiving end of a changing climate’s worst impacts?  

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What’s Keeping Climate Investment Out of Africa?

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