POPs in the news

25/06/2019 -

Even in the dead of winter, Montreal firefighters are going to be hosed off before leaving the scene of a fire in an effort to reduce the amount of cancer-causing contaminants they are exposed to. The new decontamination measures come after a 2018 study from the University of Fraser Valley found that Canadian firefighters are killed by cancer about three times more often than the general population. More:


Montreal firefighters hope to prevent cancer with decontamination measures

Even in the dead of winter, Montreal firefighters are going to be hosed off before leaving the scene of a fire in an effort to reduce the amount of cancer-causing contaminants they are exposed to. The new decontamination measures come after a 2018 study from the University of Fraser Valley found that Canadian firefighters are killed by cancer about three times more often than the general population. More:

25/06/2019 -

It’s a myth that environmental regulations stifle economic productivity. Harmful chemicals cost the US $340bn a year. Look at phasing out lead in gasoline. To this day, the US receives a $200bn annual economic stimulus package each year because lead levels in children plummeted when the US Environmental Protection Agency moved to protect children. More


How banning dangerous chemicals could save the US billions

It’s a myth that environmental regulations stifle economic productivity. Harmful chemicals cost the US $340bn a year. Look at phasing out lead in gasoline. To this day, the US receives a $200bn annual economic stimulus package each year because lead levels in children plummeted when the US Environmental Protection Agency moved to protect children. More:

25/06/2019 -

From strapping zip ties on to cabinets to popping plastic covers into outlets, new parents do what they can to control their newborn’s environment. But beyond the visible, there are more obscure health concerns from additives and contaminants found in unexpected places. More:

Reducing chemical exposures at home

Flame Retardants

Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)

Pesticides


A parent's guide to avoiding potentially toxic chemicals

From strapping zip ties on to cabinets to popping plastic covers into outlets, new parents do what they can to control their newborn’s environment. But beyond the visible, there are more obscure health concerns from additives and contaminants found in unexpected places. More:

Reducing chemical exposures at home

Flame Retardants

Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)

Pesticides

20/06/2019 -

Thanks to a United Nations-led initiative, Bangladesh is finally getting rid of a huge cache of notoriously toxic and currently illegal pesticide, Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane or DDT, as it is commonly known. Thirty four years after the import of a sub-standard DDT consignment which has since been stored at Chattogram Government Medical Sub-depot (MSD), will soon be shipped out of the country and destroyed in an underground incinerator in Germany. More:


Bangladesh finally getting rid of toxic DDT

Thanks to a United Nations-led initiative, Bangladesh is finally getting rid of a huge cache of notoriously toxic and currently illegal pesticide, Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane or DDT, as it is commonly known. Thirty four years after the import of a sub-standard DDT consignment which has since been stored at Chattogram Government Medical Sub-depot (MSD), will soon be shipped out of the country and destroyed in an underground incinerator in Germany. More:

19/06/2019 -

The biosolids are put in the top 12 inches of soil to “improve and maintain productive soils and stimulate plant growth,” according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. But concerns about that practice have been elevated after 2018 testing showed two dozen of Michigan’s wastewater plants are discharging high levels of the chemicals in their liquid waste after water containing PFAS enters the system from industrial sources. That prompted questions about what remains in the solid wastes. More:


The hunt for PFAS turns to Michigan farms using human waste as fertilizer

The biosolids are put in the top 12 inches of soil to “improve and maintain productive soils and stimulate plant growth,” according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. But concerns about that practice have been elevated after 2018 testing showed two dozen of Michigan’s wastewater plants are discharging high levels of the chemicals in their liquid waste after water containing PFAS enters the system from industrial sources. That prompted questions about what remains in the solid wastes. More:

19/06/2019 -

In a paper published last month in Nature Sustainability, researchers from North America and Western Europe recommend that educators put chemistry in context by devoting more time to how the discipline affects society and the environment. More

The case of nitrogen


Researchers recommend chemistry educators focus more on environmental impacts

In a paper published last month in Nature Sustainability, researchers from North America and Western Europe recommend that educators put chemistry in context by devoting more time to how the discipline affects society and the environment. More

The case of nitrogen

18/06/2019 -

New data suggest that the safety threshold for PFOA in drinking water should be as low as .1 parts per trillion, according to the nation’s top toxicologist. Linda Birnbaum, director of the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences, cited the figure, which is 700 times lower than the safety level set by the Environmental Protection Agency, at a conference on PFAS at Northeastern University last week. More:

Human Health Effects


Teflon Toxin Safety Level Should Be 700 Times Lower Than EPA Guideline

New data suggest that the safety threshold for PFOA in drinking water should be as low as .1 parts per trillion, according to the nation’s top toxicologist. Linda Birnbaum, director of the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences, cited the figure, which is 700 times lower than the safety level set by the Environmental Protection Agency, at a conference on PFAS at Northeastern University last week. More:

Human Health Effects

14/06/2019 -

One of the major uses of DDT was controlling insect outbreaks, like spruce budworm, in conifer forests across North America. Thousands of tons of the chemical were blanketed over forests using airplanes and helicopters—and a portion of it washed into the lakes. Bob Weber at The Canadian Press reports that in the province of New Brunswick alone, almost 6,300 tons of the stuff covered forests between 1952 and 1968. More:


Decades After DDT Was Banned, It Still Impacts Canadian Lakes

One of the major uses of DDT was controlling insect outbreaks, like spruce budworm, in conifer forests across North America. Thousands of tons of the chemical were blanketed over forests using airplanes and helicopters—and a portion of it washed into the lakes. Bob Weber at The Canadian Press reports that in the province of New Brunswick alone, almost 6,300 tons of the stuff covered forests between 1952 and 1968. More

12/06/2019 -

Dangerous chemicals used to create nonstick cookware and fire-fighting foams are showing up in our food. A recent analysis by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found chemical contamination of PFAS (Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) at multiple levels of the U.S. food supply chain. Here’s what they are and why health experts are concerned about them. More


What Are ‘Forever Chemicals’ And How Are They Getting in Your Food?

Dangerous chemicals used to create nonstick cookware and fire-fighting foams are showing up in our food. A recent analysis by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found chemical contamination of PFAS (Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) at multiple levels of the U.S. food supply chain. Here’s what they are and why health experts are concerned about them. More

10/06/2019 -

In the early 2000s, residents of a small, Rust Belt city called Tonawanda, New York, began noticing something strange: Over the years, it seemed, an increasing number of people were getting sick — primarily with cancer. Tonawanda’s a highly industrial city with more than 50 polluting facilities situated within a three-mile radius. It was common for the air to feel dense and to smell like gasoline. Residents wondered what toxic chemicals might be in the air and if they were making them sick. More:


Justice Through Citizen Science: How ‘Chemical Fingerprinting’ Could Change Public Health

In the early 2000s, residents of a small, Rust Belt city called Tonawanda, New York, began noticing something strange: Over the years, it seemed, an increasing number of people were getting sick — primarily with cancer. Tonawanda’s a highly industrial city with more than 50 polluting facilities situated within a three-mile radius. It was common for the air to feel dense and to smell like gasoline. Residents wondered what toxic chemicals might be in the air and if they were making them sick. More:

08/06/2019 -

A recent investigation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found evidence of a class of man-made chemicals that have been linked to cancer in numerous foods sold in mid-Atlantic grocery stores, including samples of meat, seafood, and chocolate cake. More

Regulation


The FDA Has Found Trace Amounts of a Worrying 'Forever Chemical' in Our Food

A recent investigation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found evidence of a class of man-made chemicals that have been linked to cancer in numerous foods sold in mid-Atlantic grocery stores, including samples of meat, seafood, and chocolate cake. More

Regulation

07/06/2019 -

All sewage sludge recently tested by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection was contaminated with PFAS chemicals. The state tested the sludge, solid waste that remains after the treatment of domestic and industrial water, for the presence of three “forever chemicals”: PFOA, PFOS, and PFBS. Of 44 samples taken from Maine farms and other facilities that distribute compost made from the sludge, all contained at least one of the PFAS chemicals. In all but two of the samples, the chemicals exceeded safety thresholds for sludge that Maine set early last year. More

Human Health Effects and Environmental Fate


Toxic PFAS chemicals found in Maine farms fertilized with sewage sludge

All sewage sludge recently tested by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection was contaminated with PFAS chemicals. The state tested the sludge, solid waste that remains after the treatment of domestic and industrial water, for the presence of three “forever chemicals”: PFOA, PFOS, and PFBS. Of 44 samples taken from Maine farms and other facilities that distribute compost made from the sludge, all contained at least one of the PFAS chemicals. In all but two of the samples, the chemicals exceeded safety thresholds for sludge that Maine set early last year. More

Human Health Effects and Environmental Fate

04/06/2019 -

The rules of healthy eating used to be simple, at least in theory: Consume fewer processed items, avoid sugar, and keep your meals balanced. But scientists are slowly uncovering a hidden threat that's complicating this narrative. An investigation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found evidence of a class of manmade chemicals that have been linked to cancer in numerous foods sold in mid-Atlantic grocery stores, including samples of meat, seafood, and chocolate cake. More:


The FDA found 'forever chemicals' in meat, seafood, and chocolate cake sold in grocery stores. Here's how worried you should be

The rules of healthy eating used to be simple, at least in theory: Consume fewer processed items, avoid sugar, and keep your meals balanced. But scientists are slowly uncovering a hidden threat that's complicating this narrative. An investigation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found evidence of a class of manmade chemicals that have been linked to cancer in numerous foods sold in mid-Atlantic grocery stores, including samples of meat, seafood, and chocolate cake. More:

03/06/2019 -

Early puberty means a child's body begins to change into that of an adult, showing secondary sex characteristics. It is usually classified as early puberty when a child shows such characteristics before the age of eight or nine ― girls before eight and boys before nine ― which is two years earlier than average. More:


Obesity, chemical exposure speed up early puberty in children

Early puberty means a child's body begins to change into that of an adult, showing secondary sex characteristics. It is usually classified as early puberty when a child shows such characteristics before the age of eight or nine ― girls before eight and boys before nine ― which is two years earlier than average. More:

02/06/2019 -

Now, mounting evidence shows that the emergence of seemingly safer and less persistent “alternatives” to legacy PFASs may pose the same problems as their predecessors. An ineffective and broken regulatory system and weak environmental laws have done little to stymie the ever-revolving chemical treadmill that has contaminated entire communities and put public health at risk.. More:


These Chemicals Are Forever: Water Contamination from PFOA, PFOS, and other PFAS

Now, mounting evidence shows that the emergence of seemingly safer and less persistent “alternatives” to legacy PFASs may pose the same problems as their predecessors. An ineffective and broken regulatory system and weak environmental laws have done little to stymie the ever-revolving chemical treadmill that has contaminated entire communities and put public health at risk.. More:

30/05/2019 -

Per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, are everywhere. There are thousands of these synthetic compounds, which get used in all sorts of products because of their flame retardant and oil- and water-repelling properties. PFAS coat nonstick pans, water-resistant fabrics, and glossy paper. They’re also in fire-fighting foams. More:


Eco-friendly packaging could be poisoning our compost

Per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances, or PFAS, are everywhere. There are thousands of these synthetic compounds, which get used in all sorts of products because of their flame retardant and oil- and water-repelling properties. PFAS coat nonstick pans, water-resistant fabrics, and glossy paper. They’re also in fire-fighting foams. More:

30/05/2019 -

The movement to buy sustainably grown flowers is rising as many growers and florists in Australia voice their concerns about the effect chemicals have on the environment and workers' health. More:


Growers and florists urge consumers to be aware of chemical use in cut-flower industry

The movement to buy sustainably grown flowers is rising as many growers and florists in Australia voice their concerns about the effect chemicals have on the environment and workers' health. More:

29/05/2019 -

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines pesticides as any chemical substance used to regulate, prevent or destroy plants or pests – usually insects, rodents or microorganisms such as fungi and bacteria – or that acts as a nitrogen stabilizer in soil. More:


Pesticides explained: the toxic chemicals in up to 70% of produce

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines pesticides as any chemical substance used to regulate, prevent or destroy plants or pests – usually insects, rodents or microorganisms such as fungi and bacteria – or that acts as a nitrogen stabilizer in soil. More:

28/05/2019 -

The internet cheered in December when Trader Joe’s announced it would take meaningful steps towards making its packaging more sustainable. The supermarket chain outlined a plan that included reducing and eliminating excess waste, using materials that could realistically be recycled and avoiding harmful substances. It’s the last part that medical and environmental activists are keeping an eye on. More:


Food packaging is full of toxic chemicals – here's how it could affect your health

The internet cheered in December when Trader Joe’s announced it would take meaningful steps towards making its packaging more sustainable. The supermarket chain outlined a plan that included reducing and eliminating excess waste, using materials that could realistically be recycled and avoiding harmful substances. It’s the last part that medical and environmental activists are keeping an eye on. More:

24/05/2019 -

Surprising new research into dog sperm has reproductive biologists concerned about the fate of their own species. In a study, scientists found that two chemicals common in home environments damage the quality of sperm in both men and dogs. The culprits implicated are diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP), used to make new plastics more pliable, and polychlorinated biphenyl 153 (PCB153), found in older plastics and electrical equipment. More:


Sperm counts are on the decline – could plastics be to blame?

Surprising new research into dog sperm has reproductive biologists concerned about the fate of their own species. In a study, scientists found that two chemicals common in home environments damage the quality of sperm in both men and dogs. The culprits implicated are diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP), used to make new plastics more pliable, and polychlorinated biphenyl 153 (PCB153), found in older plastics and electrical equipment. More:

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