Feature Channels: Pollution

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Newswise:Video Embedded i-m-a-public-health-physician-and-scientist-and-i-m-blocking-the-path-of-an-oil-pipeline-to-protect-health
Released: 7-Aug-2020 3:50 PM EDT
I'm a public health physician and scientist and I'm blocking the path of an oil pipeline to protect health
American Thoracic Society (ATS)

As a doctor, I didn’t expect to find myself living in a tree at the age of 63, but here I am: 82 feet (25 meters) off the ground in a lovely grove of old cotton wood trees trying to stop construction on an oil pipeline.

Released: 7-Aug-2020 1:25 PM EDT
Inconsistent EPA regulations increase lead poisoning risk to kids, study finds
Brown University

Two federal environmental standards regulating lead hazards in homes and child care facilities have different maximum thresholds, a discrepancy putting more than 35,000 kids in the United States at increased risk of lead poisoning.

Released: 7-Aug-2020 11:55 AM EDT
COVID recovery choices shape future climate
University of Leeds

A post-lockdown economic recovery plan that incorporates and emphasises climate-friendly choices could help significantly in the battle against global warming, according to a new study.

Newswise: Study Finds High Levels of Toxic Pollutants in Stranded Dolphins and Whales
Released: 6-Aug-2020 3:10 PM EDT
Study Finds High Levels of Toxic Pollutants in Stranded Dolphins and Whales
Florida Atlantic University

Researchers examined toxins in tissue concentrations and pathology data from 83 stranded dolphins and whales from 2012 to 2018. They looked at 11 different animal species to test for 17 different substances. The study is the first to report on concentrations in blubber tissues of stranded cetaceans of atrazine, DEP, NPE and triclosan. It also is the first to report concentrations of toxicants in a white-beaked dolphin and in Gervais’ beaked whales.

Newswise: New Science Behind Algae-based Flip-flops
Released: 6-Aug-2020 2:35 PM EDT
New Science Behind Algae-based Flip-flops
University of California San Diego

UC San Diego researchers formulated polyurethane foams, made from algae oil, to meet commercial specifications for midsole shoes and the foot-bed of flip-flops. Their latest result, in a series of recent research publications, offers a complete solution to the plastics problem—at least for polyurethanes.

Newswise: New paper addresses mix of contaminants in Fukushima wastewater, highlights risks of dumping in  ocean
6-Aug-2020 2:00 PM EDT
New paper addresses mix of contaminants in Fukushima wastewater, highlights risks of dumping in ocean
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

Ten years after the Tohoku-oki earthquake and tsunami devastated Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant, radiation levels have fallen in all but the waters closest to the plant. But a new hazard exists and is growing every day in the number of storage tanks on land surrounding the power plant that hold contaminated wastewater.

Released: 5-Aug-2020 10:05 PM EDT
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health team leading California state study of air pollution and COVID-19
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health

UCLA Fielding School of Public Health team leading California state study of air pollution and COVID-19. A research team led by UCLA Fielding School of Public Health faculty has been awarded a contract to study connections between air pollution and the COVID-19 pandemic, officials said.

31-Jul-2020 9:00 AM EDT
Disparities in a common air pollutant are visible from space
American Chemical Society (ACS)

Researchers reporting in Environmental Science & Technology have used airplanes and a satellite to uncover disparities in nitrogen dioxide amounts in the atmosphere above Houston.

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Released: 4-Aug-2020 3:50 PM EDT
Surface clean-up technology won't solve ocean plastic problem
University of Exeter

Clean-up devices that collect waste from the ocean surface won't solve the plastic pollution problem, a new study shows.

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Released: 30-Jul-2020 5:25 PM EDT
Whale 'snot' reveals likely poor health during migration
University of New South Wales

Whale-watching season is delighting the viewing public along the east Australian coast but while it's a boon for the tourism industry, for the majestic humpback whale it's potentially a time of less optimal health.

Newswise: Forty percent of dementia cases could be prevented or delayed by targeting 12 risk factors throughout life, experts say
Released: 30-Jul-2020 12:30 PM EDT
Forty percent of dementia cases could be prevented or delayed by targeting 12 risk factors throughout life, experts say
Keck Medicine of USC

Twenty-eight world-leading dementia experts added three new risk factors in the new report — excessive alcohol intake and head injury in mid-life and air pollution in later life. These are in addition to nine factors previously identified by the commission in 2017.

Released: 30-Jul-2020 10:30 AM EDT
Plastics, pathogens and baby formula: What’s in your shellfish?
University of California, Irvine

The first landmark study using next-generation technology to comprehensively examine contaminants in oysters in Myanmar reveals alarming findings: the widespread presence of human bacterial pathogens and human-derived microdebris materials, including plastics, kerosene, paint, talc and milk supplement powders.

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Released: 22-Jul-2020 2:50 PM EDT
Dragonflies reveal mercury pollution levels across US national parks
Dartmouth College

A citizen science program that began over a decade ago has confirmed the use of dragonflies to measure mercury pollution, according to a study in Environmental Science & Technology.

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Released: 22-Jul-2020 12:15 PM EDT
Plastics found in sea-bed sharks
University of Exeter

Microplastics have been found in the guts of sharks that live near the seabed off the UK coast.

Released: 22-Jul-2020 10:55 AM EDT
COVID-19 shutdown led to increased solar power output
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

As the Covid-19 shutdowns and stay-at-home orders brought much of the world's travel and commerce to a standstill, people around the world started noticing clearer skies as a result of lower levels of air pollution.

21-Jul-2020 6:35 PM EDT
Jet Aircraft Exhaust Linked to Preterm Births
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health

Researchers from the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health have found that pregnant women exposed to high levels of ultrafine particles from jet airplane exhaust are 14% more likely to have a preterm birth than those exposed to lower levels.

Released: 20-Jul-2020 2:10 PM EDT
Ames Lab-led research team wins a $12.8M boost from the Department of Energy to tackle plastic upcycling science
Ames Laboratory

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory will lead the Institute for Cooperative Upcycling of Plastics (iCOUP) Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC), with $12.8 million in funding over four years.

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Released: 17-Jul-2020 6:25 PM EDT
Antarctica more widely impacted by humans than previously thought
University of the Witwatersrand

Antarctica is considered one of the Earth's largest, most pristine remaining wildernesses. Yet since its formal discovery 200 years ago, the continent has seen accelerating and potentially impactful human activity.

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Released: 17-Jul-2020 1:35 PM EDT
Pesticides speed the spread of deadly waterborne pathogens
University of California, Berkeley

Widespread use of pesticides and other agrochemicals can speed the transmission of the debilitating disease schistosomiasis, while also upsetting the ecological balances in aquatic environments that prevent infections, finds a new study led by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley.

10-Jul-2020 9:00 AM EDT
Air Pollution From Wildfires Linked to Higher Death Rates in Patients with Kidney Failure
American Society of Nephrology (ASN)

• Exposure to higher amounts of fine particulate air pollution was associated with higher death rates among patients with kidney failure.

Released: 16-Jul-2020 2:50 PM EDT
COVID-19 and Air Quality: Another Perspective
SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry

Researchers at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) discovered the air quality in New York City did not improve during the New York on PAUSE order. While other studies have suggested that the levels of nitrogen dioxide and other air particles decreased during the pandemic in cities such as New Delhi and industrialized parts of northern China, the ESF team found the opposite in the Big Apple.

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Released: 16-Jul-2020 2:35 PM EDT
Fish reef domes a boon for environment, recreational fishing
University of New South Wales

In a boost for both recreational fishing and the environment, new UNSW research shows that artificial reefs can increase fish abundance in estuaries with little natural reef.

Released: 16-Jul-2020 1:45 PM EDT
COVID-19 lockdown reduced dangerous air pollutants in five Indian cities by up to 54 percent
University of Surrey

A team of 10 interdisciplinary researchers from the University of Surrey's renowned Global Centre for Clean Air Research (GCARE), including PhD students and post-doctoral researchers, have united to develop a rapid assessment of the impact COVID-19 has had on air quality.

10-Jul-2020 2:55 PM EDT
Does Eating Fish Protect Our Brains from Air Pollution?
American Academy of Neurology (AAN)

Older women who eat more than one to two servings a week of baked or broiled fish or shellfish may consume enough omega-3 fatty acids to counteract the effects of air pollution on the brain, according to a new study published in the July 15, 2020, online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Released: 15-Jul-2020 3:00 PM EDT
Survey: Most Ophthalmologists Support Efforts to Reduce Medicine’s Big Carbon Footprint
American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) and ASCRS

A just published survey of more than 1,300 U.S. cataract surgeons and nurses shows 93 percent believe that something needs to be done to reduce the excessive amount of waste produced by surgery.

Newswise: Study of Natural Gas Flaring Finds High Risks to Babies
13-Jul-2020 5:45 PM EDT
Study of Natural Gas Flaring Finds High Risks to Babies
UCLA Fielding School of Public Health

UCLA & USC study of natural gas flaring finds high risks to babies; researchers found exposure was associated with 50% higher odds of preterm birth compared with no exposure.

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Released: 14-Jul-2020 2:35 PM EDT
Pesticide mixtures a bigger problem than previously thought
University of Queensland

New research led by The University of Queensland has provided the first comprehensive analysis of pesticide mixtures in creeks and rivers discharging to the Great Barrier Reef.

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Released: 7-Jul-2020 1:10 PM EDT
A chemical cocktail of air pollution in Beijing, China during COVID-19 outbreak
Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences

The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) spreads rapidly around the world, and has limited people's outdoor activities substantially.

Newswise: Improving wildfire emissions model
Released: 6-Jul-2020 4:50 PM EDT
Improving wildfire emissions model
South Dakota State University

New satellite instrumentation will help researchers estimate fire emissions every half hour for the United States.

Newswise: Greenhouse gas and particulate pollution emissions drive regional drying around the globe
Released: 6-Jul-2020 11:55 AM EDT
Greenhouse gas and particulate pollution emissions drive regional drying around the globe
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Despite devastating impacts of drought on human and natural systems, the reasons why long-term regional drying occurs remain poorly understood. Research led by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) scientists have identified two signatures or “fingerprints” that explain why arid conditions are spreading worldwide, and why the Western United States has tended towards drought conditions since the 1980s while the African Sahel has recovered from its prolonged drought. The research appears in the July 6 edition of Nature Climate Change.

3-Jul-2020 9:55 AM EDT
Nitrogen Pollution Policies Around the World Lag Behind Scientific Knowledge, New Analysis Finds
New York University

National and regional policies aimed at addressing pollution fueled by nitrogen lag behind scientific knowledge of the problem, finds a new analysis by an international team of researchers.

24-Jun-2020 11:00 AM EDT
Common Fireworks Release Toxic Metals Into the Air
NYU Langone Health

Some of America’s favorite Independence Day fireworks emit lead, copper, and other toxins, a new study suggests. These metals, which are used to give fireworks their vibrant color, also damage human cells and animal lungs.

Newswise: Understanding Molecular Mechanisms of Air Pollution’s Impact on Interstitial Lung Disease is Critical to Minimizing its Effects
Released: 1-Jul-2020 8:00 AM EDT
Understanding Molecular Mechanisms of Air Pollution’s Impact on Interstitial Lung Disease is Critical to Minimizing its Effects
American Thoracic Society (ATS)

More research must be done to investigate the role of air pollution on the epigenome in patients with interstitial lung diseases (ILDs), in order to develop strategies that minimize the effects of these pollutants, according to a new article published online in the American Thoracic Society’s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

Released: 30-Jun-2020 11:50 AM EDT
For Cardiac Rehab Patients, In-Home Portable Air Cleaners Lower Fine-Particle Pollutant Exposure
Wolters Kluwer Health: Lippincott

Using an in-home portable air cleaner (PAC) can significantly reduce exposure to fine-particle air pollutants – a major risk factor for cardiovascular events in people with pre-existing heart disease, reports a pilot study in the July issue of Journal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation and Prevention. The journal is published in the Lippincott portfolio by Wolters Kluwer.

Released: 30-Jun-2020 9:35 AM EDT
NSF Grant Supports Search for Plastic Polymer That Can Be Broken Down and Reused
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI)

With the support of a grant from the National Science Foundation, chemical engineers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute aim to develop a new polymer that can replace polystyrene, a commonly used plastic that is inexpensive and easy to make — but is difficult to break down into its original components for reuse, a process called depolymerization.

Released: 29-Jun-2020 5:05 PM EDT
Atmospheric processes likely caused puzzling haze over China during COVID-19 shutdown

New research indicates that significant enhancement of secondary aerosol formed in the atmosphere via gas-to-particle conversion, together with long-lasting regional transport, may be the cause of severe haze over China despite a dramatic reduction in emissions during the COVID-19 shutdown.

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Released: 25-Jun-2020 2:55 PM EDT
Global pollution estimates reveal surprises, opportunity
Washington University in St. Louis

Using recent satellite observations, ground monitoring and computational modeling, researchers at the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis have released a survey of global pollution rates. There are a couple of surprises, for worse, but also, for better.

Released: 24-Jun-2020 7:05 PM EDT
Foundation donates $1 million to UCI’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering
University of California, Irvine

Irvine, Calif., June 24, 2020 – The Lincoln Dynamic Foundation, created by University of California, Irvine alumnus John D. Lincoln, has made a $1 million gift to the university’s Henry Samueli School of Engineering to establish the World Institute for Sustainable Development of Materials. The new institute will advance interdisciplinary research, education and knowledge translation in an effort to innovate, evaluate and adopt technologies that utilize safer, nontoxic chemicals and materials, with the goal of mitigating environmental impacts.

Newswise: Steep NYC traffic toll would reduce gridlock, pollution
Released: 24-Jun-2020 2:50 PM EDT
Steep NYC traffic toll would reduce gridlock, pollution
Cornell University

Cornell University and the City College of New York research shows that by creating steep tolls for cars to enter Manhattan, traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions could be reduced.

Released: 24-Jun-2020 2:30 PM EDT
Wildfire smoke has immediate harmful health effects: UBC study
University of British Columbia

Exposure to wildfire smoke affects the body's respiratory and cardiovascular systems almost immediately, according to new research from the University of British Columbia's School of Population and Public Health.

Released: 23-Jun-2020 9:45 AM EDT
Study: Air pollution from fracking linked to deaths in Pennsylvania
Binghamton University, State University of New York

Approximately 20 people in Pennsylvania lost their lives during a seven-year period because of particulate matter pollution emitted by shale gas wells, according to a recent study including faculty at Binghamton University, State University of New York.

Released: 17-Jun-2020 5:40 PM EDT
Is the air getting cleaner during the COVID-19 pandemic?
University of Washington

Using air quality data from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency monitors across the U.S., a UW-led team looked for changes in two common pollutants over the course of 2020.

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Released: 17-Jun-2020 10:55 AM EDT
Half of the world's population exposed to increasing air pollution, study shows
University of Exeter

Half of the world's population is exposed to increasing air pollution, new research has shown.

Released: 17-Jun-2020 10:35 AM EDT
Penn’s Center of Excellence in Environmental Toxicology (CEET) Receives $8 Million Grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences
Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

The Center of Excellence in Environmental Toxicology (CEET) at the University of Pennsylvania received an $8 million grant, to be distributed over the next five years, from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, a renewal of its P30 Environmental Health Sciences Core Center (EHSCC) grant.

Released: 16-Jun-2020 1:40 PM EDT
Wildfires cause bird songs to change
Oxford University Press

A new study in The Auk: Ornithological Advances, published by Oxford University Press, suggests that wildfires change the types of songs sung by birds living in nearby forests.

Released: 11-Jun-2020 11:05 AM EDT
New Documentary Celebrates Clean Air Act, Highlights Communities Still Waiting for Clean Air
American University

To mark the 50th anniversary of the Clean Air Act this year, the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital (DCEFF) will host the premiere of a new documentary that highlights the dramatic reductions in air pollution that the United States has achieved since Congress passed the Clean Air Act in 1970, as well as the disparities in access to healthy air that persist in America.

Newswise: EPA Proposal to Change How It Evaluates Environmental Policy Ignores Science
Released: 5-Jun-2020 3:55 PM EDT
EPA Proposal to Change How It Evaluates Environmental Policy Ignores Science
American Thoracic Society (ATS)

The American Thoracic Society is extremely concerned with today’s announcement about changes in how the EPA evaluates the costs and benefits of environmental policy. While the details of economic analysis of environmental regulations are complex, the guiding principle is remarkably simple: compare all the costs and benefits of agency actions. The proposed changes in how costs and benefits are evaluated will sufficiently degrade the credibility of economic analysis conducted at the EPA to the point that it is no longer able to function as an objective policy analysis tool.

Newswise: Research News Tip Sheet: Story Ideas From Johns Hopkins
Released: 5-Jun-2020 10:30 AM EDT
Research News Tip Sheet: Story Ideas From Johns Hopkins
Johns Hopkins Medicine

The June 4, 2020, issue of the weekly Johns Hopkins Medicine research newsletter on topics NOT related to COVID19. Stories this week: study shows pollutant may be more hazardous than previously thought; psilocybin tampers the brain's ego center; and getting urban youth to wear bike helmets.

Released: 3-Jun-2020 5:55 AM EDT
Recycling plastics together, simple and fast
Shinshu University

Recycling plastic faces several challenges, one of which is recycling different types of plastics together, because they have varying properties, each of which need to be addressed accordingly.

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