Environmental News Round-Up: Feminization of Males across species, right to water, the new environmental police state and more

War, Environmental Destruction, Recession: It’s Time for a Revolution – Alternet 12/10/08

Officials vow air near schools will be tested for toxics- USA Today 12/10/08

[USA Today] used a government computer model to pinpoint locations where toxic chemicals appeared to be at high levels outside schools from coast to coast.   USA TODAY subsequently took air samples near 95 schools and found elevated levels of toxic chemicals outside 64 locations.

About 1 in 9 US kids use alternative medicine (AP)  – Yahoo 12/10/08

The Incredible Shrinking Man: How Pollution is Destroying Your Genitals – Treehugger 12/9/08

Sugar Addiction is Real – Miller McCune 12/10/08

Pacific World War II Wrecks Pose Risk of Toxic Leaks – National Geographic 12/9/08 

1/5 of Coral Reefs Lost Due to Acid-Filled Oceans – National Geographic 12/9/08

How Much Does it Really Cost Us to Clean Up our Waterways from Farm Runoff – Alternet 12/9/08

Researchers looked at decreasing property values, the cost of treating drinking water and the revenue lost from impacted recreational activities.

Toxics can affect kids, adults differently – USA Today 12/7/08

Outside almost every school in the country, the model used by USA TODAY indicates the presence of at least one or two chemicals capable of causing a variety of ailments. Whether the chemicals could cause harm depends on which are in the air and at what levels.

Some chemicals, such as butadiene, are classified as known carcinogens by the federal government. Even very small amounts of butadiene can slightly increase the risk of contracting cancer; authorities usually become concerned when the levels are high, especially if people are exposed to those levels for a long time. The monitoring that led to the closure of an elementary school in Addyston, Ohio, found butadiene levels that would cause a cancer risk far higher than what Ohio considers acceptable.

Melamine may be Just the Tip of the Iceberg – Natural News 12/7/08

Fight Disease with Garlic – Natural News 12/5/08

Efficiency Is Our Best Untapped Energy Source – Alternet 12/5/08

Chemical Used on Crops could Make You Fat – Natural News 12/8/08

Bone Drugs: The Latest Skeletons in Big Pharma’s Closet  – Natural News 12/8/08

Pollution Causing Feminisation of Males Across Multiple Species – Independent, UK via Cryptogon 12/8/08

The male gender is in danger, with incalculable consequences for both humans and wildlife, startling scientific research from around the world reveals.  The research – to be detailed tomorrow in the most comprehensive report yet published – shows that a host of common chemicals is feminising males of every class of vertebrate animals, from fish to mammals, including people.
Backed by some of the world’s leading scientists, who say that it “waves a red flag” for humanity and shows that evolution itself is being disrupted, the report comes out at a particularly sensitive time for ministers. On Wednesday, Britain will lead opposition to proposed new European controls on pesticides, many of which have been found to have “gender-bending” effects.  It also follows hard on the heels of new American research which shows that baby boys born to women exposed to widespread chemicals in pregnancy are born with smaller penises and feminised genitals…
Wildlife and people have been exposed to more than 100,000 new chemicals in recent years, and the European Commission has admitted that 99 per cent of them are not adequately regulated. There is not even proper safety information on 85 per cent of them.  any have been identified as “endocrine disrupters” – or gender-benders – because they interfere with hormones. These include phthalates, used in food wrapping, cosmetics and baby powders among other applications; flame retardants in furniture and electrical goods; PCBs, a now banned group of substances still widespread in food and the environment; and many pesticides.
The report – published by the charity CHEMTrust and drawing on more than 250 scientific studies from around the world – concentrates mainly on wildlife, identifying effects in species ranging from the polar bears of the Arctic to the eland of the South African plains, and from whales in the depths of the oceans to high-flying falcons and eagles.
It concludes: “Males of species from each of the main classes of vertebrate animals (including bony fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals) have been affected by chemicals in the environment.
“Feminisation of the males of numerous vertebrate species is now a widespread occurrence. All vertebrates have similar sex hormone receptors, which have been conserved in evolution. Therefore, observations in one species may serve to highlight pollution issues of concern for other vertebrates, including humans.”…
Professor Lou Gillette of Florida University, one of the most respected academics in the field, warned that the report waved “a large red flag” at humanity. He said: “If we are seeing problems in wildlife, we can be concerned that something similar is happening to a proportion of human males”
Indeed, new research at the University of Rochester in New York state shows that boys born to mothers with raised levels of phthalates were more likely to have smaller penises and undescended testicles. They also had a shorter distance between their anus and genitalia, a classic sign of feminisation. And a study at Rotterdam’s Erasmus University showed that boys whose mothers had been exposed to PCBs grew up wanting to play with dolls and tea sets rather than with traditionally male toys.
Communities heavily polluted with gender-benders in Canada, Russia and Italy have given birth to twice as many girls than boys, which may offer a clue to the reason for a mysterious shift in sex ratios worldwide. Normally 106 boys are born for every 100 girls, but the ratio is slipping. It is calculated that 250,000 babies who would have been boys have been born as girls instead in the US and Japan alone.
And sperm counts are dropping precipitously. Studies in more than 20 countries have shown that they have dropped from 150 million per millilitre of sperm fluid to 60 million over 50 years. (Hamsters produce nearly three times as much, at 160 million.) Professor Nil Basu of Michigan University says that this adds up to “pretty compelling evidence for effects in humans”.

Smoke and Mirrors: The Subversion of the EPA. “This four-part series details how the Bush administration weakened the EPA. It installed a pliant agency chief, Stephen L. Johnson. Under him, the EPA created pro-industry regulations later thrown out by the courts. It promoted a flawed voluntary program to fight climate change. It bypassed air pollution recommendations from its own scientists to satisfy the White House.” – Metafilter 12/11/08

Skip Recycling in Georgia, Get Slapped with $500 Fine – Treehugger 12/9/08

Right Winger Paranoia that Environmentalism Is a Stealth Police State Project – Alternet 12/12/08

A wolf in sheep’s clothing, they believe environmental policies really exist to destroy Americans’ freedoms and system of government.

It’s not just a ‘right-winger’ fear.  You can now be fined in Gwinett County Georgia if you don’t recycle.  It’s a slippery slope.  Next they’ll want to fine us for breathing!

Top UN Leader Calls for Creation of the Right to Water – Alternet 12/11/08

On the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights there are strong calls to establish the right to water.

European Butterflies Threatened by Climate Change – National Geographic 12/11/08

Great Lakes In Peril: Why 40 Million People’s Drinking Water Is Threatened – Alternet 12/11/08

Invasive species, declining water levels, uncertain quality of drinking water, and pressures to divert water threaten the lakes.

Plant explosion galvanizes SE Houston neighbors – Houston Chronicle 12/10/08

For months, they’ve complained about the sickening odors wafting through their southeast Houston neighborhood from the waste-processing facility next door.

Born of fire, environmental movement still burns – CNN 12/10/08

It was one of the most surreal images in American history: A river, so fouled with industrial waste that it caught fire and burned. In June 1969, Cleveland’s Cuyahoga River become the poster child for the birth of the modern American environmental movement.

US: Court Says Shell Can’t Drill Near Alaska  – CorpWatch 11/20/08

A federal appeals court on Thursday blocked Royal Dutch Shell from drilling oil wells off Alaska’s North Slope after finding that the Interior Department had failed to conduct an environmental study before issuing the company’s drilling permit.

Coca-Cola’s Latest Environmental Scam – Alternet 12/6/08

Under fire for its mismanagement of water resources in India, Coke has gone all out to create an image of itself as a leader in water conservation.

Earth needs asteroid shield, UN told – Raw Story 12/8/08

Soon, weather victims could sue – Raw Story 12/8/08

New science shows human causes of weather, may empower victims.

Drought parches much of the U.S., may get worse – CNN 12/11/08

South Australia to Buy ‘Critical Needs’ Water – Cryptogon 12/8/08

Mystery acorn shortage baffles scientists – CNN 12/12/08

Up and down the East Coast, residents and naturalists alike have been scratching their heads this autumn over a simple question: Where are all the acorns?

US: PacifiCorp Agrees To Remove Dams – CorpWatch 11/13/08

Electric utility PacifiCorp has tentatively agreed to remove four dams from the Klamath River, in a deal that would end one of the West’s most rancorous water disputes and could serve as a settlement model for similar fights.

Exotic invaders driving out many native Texas species – Houston Chronicle 12/6/08

Mountaintop mining gets EPA boost – Raw Story 12/5/08


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Our future is what we make it, and idiot Congress and moron elected officials have proven by example that if we do nothing, we have no future.
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Simply name it “ franklynchusa ”

If you have time and room,
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With passion for our future,
Frank Lynch the Futurist
Email frank at franklynch dot org

Comment by franklynchusa

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