Toxic ‘Forever Chemicals’ in Drinking Water Leave Military Families Reeling – By Julie Turkewitz – The New York Times

By Julie Turkewitz
Feb. 22, 2019

“FOUNTAIN, Colo. — When Army Staff Sergeant Samuel Fortune returned from Iraq, his body battered by war, he assumed he’d be safe.

Then the people around him began to get sick. Neighbors complained of tumors, thyroid problems and debilitating fatigue. Soon, the Colorado health department announced an unusually high number of kidney cancers in the region. Then Mr. Fortune’s wife fell ill.

The military, it turned out, had been leaching toxic chemicals into the water for decades.

Mr. Fortune felt “stabbed in the back,” he said. “We give our lives and our bodies for our country, and our government does not live up to their end of the deal.”

That was 2016. Since then, the Defense Department has admitted that it allowed a firefighting foam to slip into at least 55 drinking water systems at military bases around the globe, sometimes for generations. This exposed tens of thousands of Americans, possibly many more, to per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances, a group of man-made chemicals known as PFAS that have been linked to cancers, immune suppression and other serious health problems.”

The All-Women Sailing Crew Trying to Save the Ocean of Plastic – Condé Nast Traveler

“An ‘Ocean Armageddon’
We are facing what the head of the United Nations Environment Programme called an “ocean Armageddon” in 2017. Every year the world produces 320 million tons of plastic—our packaging, eyeglasses, sneakers, Q-Tips, and cell phones among them. Of that, 90 percent is never recycled. If this continues, by 2050 the plastic in the ocean will outweigh the fish.
At last, a global effort to combat the crisis is making headway. This October the European Parliament approved a sweeping ban of single-use plastics across the EU. Initiatives to reduce consumption are gaining momentum, from Kenya’s ban on plastic bags to California’s legislation against plastic straws. Two-hundred and fifty major brands including Coca-Cola, Kellogg’s, and Nestle have pledged to cut all plastic waste from their operations. And activists and innovators like The Ocean Cleanup are using technology to tackle the problem; its sea-cleaning contraption is already hard at work.
But the problem is greater than we can see. While plastic doesn’t biodegrade, it does break down through sunlight, wind, and the motion of the waves into tiny fragments, microplastics, now found as far as the snow of Antarctica. This doesn’t simply have an impact on sea life and coastal communities; there are implications for every single person on the planet. Especially women—which is where eXXpedition comes in.”

Source: The All-Women Sailing Crew Trying to Save the Ocean of Plastic – Condé Nast Traveler

Floods Are Getting Worse and 2500 Chemical Sites Lie in the Water’s Path – The New York Times

By HIROKO TABUCHI, NADJA POPOVICH, BLACKI MIGLIOZZI and ANDREW W. LEHREN FEB. 6, 2018

“Anchored in flood-prone areas in every American state are more than 2,500 sites that handle toxic chemicals, a New York Times analysis of federal floodplain and industrial data shows. About 1,400 are located in areas at highest risk of flooding.As flood danger grows — the consequence of a warming climate — the risk is that there will be more toxic spills like the one that struck Baytown, Tex., where Hurricane Harvey swamped a chemicals plant, releasing lye. Or like the ones at a Florida fertilizer plant that leaked phosphoric acid and an Ohio refinery that released benzene.

More Than 2,500 Sites That Handle Toxic ChemicalsAre Located in Flood-Prone Areas Across the Country.

“But the outlook for nuclear power dismays the industry and its supporters, including some environmentalists

Henry Fountain: “But the outlook for nuclear power dismays the industry and its supporters, including some environmentalists, who point out that replacing the lost electricity from Vermont Yankee and the other recently closed reactors with power from natural gas could result in the release of as much carbon dioxide as is produced yearly by two million cars or more.
“We can’t take a carbon-free source of energy off the table,” said Carol M. Browner, a former head of the Environmental Protection Agency who is now with Nuclear Matters, an industry-backed group.”
I agree with Carol Browner.Climate change is a threat to life as we know it.

Advocates continue to argue that reactors make sense in a world fighting climate change, but the industry is sagging.
nytimes.com|By HENRY FOUNTAIN

Air pollution in Beijing is out of control.

What madness. Part of the story that humans are destroying life as we know it.

The communist government calls it Fog, not Smog.

From the Guardian.

The 21 million inhabitants of China’s capital appear to be engaged in a city-wide rehearsal for life on an inhospitable planet. Oliver Wainwright reports from Beijing
theguardian.com|By Oliver Wainwright

http://www.theguardian.com/cities/2014/dec/16/beijing-airpocalypse-city-almost-uninhabitable-pollution-china