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What A Week It Was: Apocadocuments from
View By Scenario:
Species Collapse:(6)
Plague/Virus:(1)
Climate Chaos:(8)
Resource Depletion: (4)
Biology Breach:(9)
Recovery:(6)
This Week's Top Ten Very Scary Tags:
health impacts  ~ pesticide runoff  ~ oil issues  ~ wetlands  ~ carbon emissions  ~ climate impacts  ~ bird collapse  ~ endocrine disruptor  ~ ocean acidification  ~ falling fertility  ~ soil issues  



ApocaDocuments (9) for the "Biology Breach" scenario from this week
[see full week] ~ [see full Biology Breach scenario and stories]
Sun, May 25, 2008
from London Independent:
Coca-Cola to phase out use of controversial additive after DNA damage claim
"Coca-Cola, the world's biggest soft drinks company, is phasing out a controversial additive that may cause hyperactivity and DNA damage. By August, no cans of Diet Coke should contain the preservative sodium benzoate." ...


But don't things go better with sodium benzoate?

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Sun, May 25, 2008
from Chicago Tribune:
Haven for birds still harbors traces of chemical poison
"Some of Illinois' rarest and most imperiled birds return each spring to marshes on Chicago's Southeast Side, where they weave nests of loose reeds, start the season's courtship rituals and, scientists believe, resume ingesting a poison most people thought was gone a generation ago. Researchers studying the state's endangered population of black-crowned night herons reported this year that the birds contain remnants of the insecticide DDT, a contaminant popularly imagined to have faded into America's hazy chemical past, but which scientists say has lingered in a persistent form almost everywhere in the world nonetheless." ...


DDT... the poison that keeps on poisoning!

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Sat, May 24, 2008
from University of Florida via ScienceDaily:
Invasion Of Gigantic Burmese Pythons In South Florida Appears To Be Rapidly Expanding
"The invasion of gigantic Burmese pythons in South Florida appears to be rapidly expanding, according to a new report from a University of Florida researcher who’s been chasing the snakes since 2005." ...


And boy, do they have a taste for the snowbirds!

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Thu, May 22, 2008
from Associated Press:
USDA axes the sole national survey to chart pesticide use
"Consumers lost a key source of information about what's sprayed on their food on Wednesday, the last day the government published a long-standing national survey that tracks the amount of pesticides used on everything from corn to apples. Despite opposition from prominent scientists, the nation's largest farming organizations and environmental groups, the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirmed Wednesday it plans to do away the program." ...


What we don't know surely can't hurt us!

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Thu, May 22, 2008
from Chemical and Engineering News:
Groups Petition EPA To Ban Endosulfan
Widely used pesticide is an endocrine disrupter and neurotoxicant... EPA estimates that farmers use approximately 1.4 million lb of endosulfan each year in the U.S. The pesticide is used extensively on cotton, tomatoes, potatoes, and apples, but residues of it have been detected in numerous other foods, including cucumbers, green peppers, raisins, cantaloupe, spinach, and even butter, according to the petition. Endosulfan has been detected in humans and the environment, including remote areas such as the Arctic, where it is not used. ...


Let's see, which would I prefer: blemishes on my tomatoes, or blemishes in my brain function?

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Wed, May 21, 2008
from Washington Post (US):
Effects of Nanotubes May Lead to Cancer, Study Says
Microscopic, high-tech "nanotubes" that are being made for use in a wide variety of consumer products cause the same kind of damage in the body as asbestos does, according to a study in mice that is raising alarms among workplace safety experts and others. Within days of being injected into mice, the nanotubes -- which are increasingly used in electronic components, sporting goods and dozens of other products -- triggered a kind of cellular reaction that over a period of years typically leads to mesothelioma, a fatal form of cancer, researchers said. ...


Hmm. I wonder if Haliburton's involved in nanotubes too?

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Tue, May 20, 2008
from London Times:
Obesity fuels growing 'boy-boob' problem
"Obesity has been blamed for the growing problem of "boy-boobs" – cases of teenage boys with breasts so well developed that surgery is needed to reduce them. Doctors at Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool say that they are seeing dozens of teenagers every year with gynaecomastia, the condition in which males develop breasts." ...


Why have surgery? Maybe this is just a way for these lads to get in touch with their feminine side.

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Mon, May 19, 2008
from Associated Press:
Recycling options lag the compact fluorescent push
"It's a message being drummed into the heads of homeowners everywhere: Swap out those incandescent lights with longer-lasting compact fluorescent bulbs and cut your electric use. Governments, utilities, environmentalists and, of course, retailers everywhere are spreading the word. Few, however, are volunteering to collect the mercury-laced bulbs for recycling — despite what public officials and others say is a potential health hazard if the hundreds of millions of them being sold are tossed in the trash and end up in landfills and incinerators." ...


We're so good at making stuff and so bad at figuring what to do with it once we don't want it anymore.

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Mon, May 19, 2008
from Toronto Globe and Mail:
A sea of synthetic trash
"...The United Nations estimates that each square kilometre of ocean carries 13,000 pieces of debris, but this area in the north Pacific has something like 330,000 pieces per square kilometre. Now, armed with proof that the plastic is making its way into the human food chain, experts warn the existence of the garbage patch and its far-reaching implications could be just as imminent as the worldwide food shortage and the effects of global warming." ...


Perhaps refugees from regions devastated by global warming could live here.

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