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Posts Tagged ‘chemical safety’

Why Community-Based Research Matters to Science and People

Guest Bogger

Lauren Richter, Doctoral Student
Department of Sociology, Northeastern University

Boston, Massachusetts

When and how does research serve people? When and how does community-based participatory research improve the “rigor, relevance and reach” of science itself? Today we are witnessing an increase in collaborative research projects that seek to address environmental and environmental health issues in polluted communities. While an academic scientist may have access to labs and facilities, a community living near an industrial-scale hog farm in North Carolina may have unique insights about the types of exposures and acute and chronic health impacts they routinely feel and observe. Read More

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New Report Illuminates the American Chemistry Council’s Efforts to Undermine the Chemical Policies that Protect Us

I always assumed that if chemicals were in use, they were safe. As a child, I’d play in the grass despite pesticide warning signs and never thought about my water bottle’s material. If there was evidence that the chemicals were harmful, we wouldn’t be allowed to use them, right? This is, of course, how it should work. But the reality is that special interests can get in the way of public health protections when it comes to our chemical policies. My new report shows just how harmful that influence can be. Read More

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Lead Poisoning: A Modern Plague among Children

Guest Bogger

Dr. Wornie Reed
Director of the Race and Social Policy Research Center

Blacksburg, VA

I am an advocate for bringing more public attention to the critical issue of childhood lead poisoning. It is the number one environmental health threat to children. Lead present in paint, dust, and soil is possibly our most significant toxic waste problem in terms of the seriousness and the extent of human health effects. Lead poisoning is more dangerous than some forms of cancer—yet it is virtually ignored by the American public. Read More

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Chemical Accidents: Speak Up for Our Right to Know What is Happening in Our Communities

In this rich and powerful democracy that is the United States, the statistics on chemical accidents are more than shocking—they should be a wake-up call.  There have been around 30,000 documented accidents per year for the last two decades at least. More than 1,000 people per year have died in these accidents. Nearly half of our population live, and one in three children in this country go to school, near the 3,400 facilities that store or use dangerous chemicals within areas described by industry as “vulnerable.”   Read More

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Fracking, Chemicals, and Our Health: EPA Considers a Hydraulic Fracturing Chemical Disclosure Rule

What’s in the water? What are the chemicals being used? Will they harm me? Or my family? Or my animals? What kind of impacts will my environment experience? These questions have been asked by countless communities since hydraulic fracturing first expanded across the country a few years ago. And during this time period, these questions have often gone unanswered because of a lack of laws to address them. But right now, the EPA has the opportunity to provide some answers. Read More

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Alabama Scientists Drive 900 Miles to Fill Information Gaps in West Virginia Water Crisis

In the early morning hours of January 16th, environmental engineering assistant professor Andrew Whelton and his research team left their University of South Alabama laboratory and drove 873 miles north. The team of researchers, including graduate students Matt Connell, Jeff Gill, Keven Kelly, and LaKia McMillan and environmental engineering professor Kevin White carried with them a van full of equipment to test drinking water for West Virginia residents affected by the January 9 chemical spill. Read More

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The Science and Democracy Connections of Chemical Safety, Trade Agreements and Money in Politics

Leading the Center for Science and Democracy at UCS gives me a great opportunity to look for connections between events that sometimes may seem separate. Over the past few months I have watched with dismay and sadness as two explosions at large industrial plants tragically took lives and injured workers, nearby residents and first responders. I had an opportunity to visit the west Louisville, KY community of Rubbertown, where industrial facilities are located surrounded by residences. There too, tragedy has struck, as accidents and chronic impacts from the plants have impacted generations of residents. Read More

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