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Tag: pollution

Study: Air pollution deaths in U.S. dropped by half between 1990, 2010

Study: Air pollution deaths in U.S. dropped by half between 1990, 2010

Science
Oct. 19 (UPI) -- Over the course of two decades, from 1990 to 2000, the number of deaths attributed to air pollution has been cut in half. The new study, published Friday in the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics, is only the latest to show pollution protections have had a positive impact on humans and environmental health. Researchers at the University of North Carolina developed a model capable of estimating the number of deaths caused by air pollution each year. The statistical model relies on previous research into the health effects of air pollution. The model is populated using measurements of PM2.5 and ozone. Particulate matter measuring less than 2.5 microns across can be inhaled deep into the lungs. The pollution has been linked with a variety of human ailments, including ...
Pollution threatens the future of killer whales

Pollution threatens the future of killer whales

Science
Media playback is unsupported on your device Killer whales are in deep trouble because of persistent chemical pollution in the environment, researchers say. A new study suggests the long-term viability of more than half of the different orca groups around the globe is now in question. Some populations, such as those around the UK, the Strait of Gibraltar, off Brazil, Japan and California, are almost certainly doomed. The assessment is in Science magazine. The issue is polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs. These chemical compounds were once manufactured in vast quantities, and used in everything from plastics and paints to electrical equipment and sealants. But they are highly toxic and although banned decades ago have amassed in the environment,...
Light pollution inspires boldness in fish

Light pollution inspires boldness in fish

Science
Sept. 21 (UPI) -- Researchers in Germany found fish exposed to artificial light during the night were bolder during the day. In the lab, light pollution caused the test fish, guppies, to be more active at night. The artificial light also cause fish to emerge from their hiding places more quickly during the daytime. The fish didn't become slower or lazier as a result of the increase in nighttime activity. Researchers found the guppies' swimming speed and social behavior was unaltered by light pollution. A number of studies have documented the impacts of light pollution on animals and their ecosystems. The allure of a big city's bright lights can alter a bird's migration pattern. Light pollution can also interfere with coral's ability to spawn. For the experiment, scientists exposed three ...
Trump's rollback of pollution rules to hit coal country hard

Trump's rollback of pollution rules to hit coal country hard

Health
It's coal people like miner Steve Knotts, 62, who make West Virginia Trump Country. So it was no surprise that President Donald Trump picked the state to announce his plan rolling back Obama-era pollution controls on coal-fired power plants. Trump left one thing out of his remarks, though: northern West Virginia coal country will be ground zero for increased deaths and illnesses from the rollback on regulation of harmful emission from the nation's coal power plants. An analysis done by his own Environmental Protection Agency concludes that the plan would lead to a greater number of people here dying prematurely, and suffering health problems that they otherwise would not have, than elsewhere in the country, when compared to health impacts of the Obama plan. Knotts, a coal miner for 35 ye...
Plastic pollution: 'Stop flushing contact lenses down the loo'

Plastic pollution: 'Stop flushing contact lenses down the loo'

Science
Researchers in the US have been investigating the final journeys taken by disposable contact lenses. They found 15-20% of US users simply flick these fiddly lenses down the drain via the bathroom sink or toilet. The Arizona State University study suggests that much of the plastic material then ends up in waste water treatment plants.The lenses are consequently spread on farmland as sewage sludge, increasing plastic pollution in the environment.Around 45m people wear contacts in the US, while rates in other countries vary, with between 5 and 15% of the population in Europe using them. Over the last decade, the use of softer plastic contact lenses has grown rapidly with people using daily, weekly or monthly disposables in greater numbers than ever before. T...