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Maine passes first PFAS biosolids ban, taking stand against forever chemicals

Maine passes first PFAS biosolids ban, taking stand against forever chemicals

Science
BANGOR, Maine, May 4 (UPI) -- Maine has become the first state to ban fertilizer using sewage sludge containing "forever chemicals" -- synthetic compounds found in items from food wrappers to carpeting that fail to break down in the environment. The move, along with a ban approved last year on all PFAS-containing products, puts Maine at the forefront of the fight against per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, which have been linked to a variety of health problems, including cancer and high cholesterol. The chemicals accumulate over decades, filtering into soil, water, plants and animals -- and eventually into people's bloodstreams. "Maine is one of the few states that is really taking this problem seriously and taking action to address the issue," Jared Hayes, a policy analyst with the Envi...
Muthoot Finance chairman MG George passes away

Muthoot Finance chairman MG George passes away

Finance
MG George Muthoot, the chairman of which is the largest gold loan NBFC in the country, passed away this evening in his New Delhi home after a fall, according to the family. The 71-year-old Muthoot was for long based in the National Capital even though his diversified group that runs over 20 businesses from gold loans to securities, realty estate to infrastructure, hospitals to hospitality and education, is headquartered in Kochi making it one of the largest business houses in the state. The company had not issued any statement till the filing of the story and its spokesperson could not be reached for confirmation. Mathai George George Muthoot was born in November 1949 in Kozhencherry in the present day Pathanamthitta district of Kerala as the son of M George Muthoot, who began the finan...
House passes $1.9T pandemic bill on near party-line vote

House passes $1.9T pandemic bill on near party-line vote

Technology
WASHINGTON -- The House approved a $ 1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill in a win for President Joe Biden, even as top Democrats tried assuring agitated progressives that they’d revive their derailed drive to boost the minimum wage.The new president’s vision for flushing cash to individuals, businesses, states and cities battered by COVID-19 passed on a near party-line 219-212 vote early Saturday. That ships the massive measure to the Senate, where Democrats seem bent on resuscitating their minimum wage push and fights could erupt over state aid and other issues.Democrats said the still-faltering economy and the half-million American lives lost demanded quick, decisive action. GOP lawmakers, they said, were out of step with a public that polling shows largely views the bill ...
Coronavirus: Biden’s $1.9tn Covid relief bill passes House vote

Coronavirus: Biden’s $1.9tn Covid relief bill passes House vote

World
Getty ImagesPresident Joe Biden's $ 1.9tn (£1.4tn) relief plan to help Americans during the Covid pandemic has been approved in the House of Representatives.The vote was along partisan lines. Two Democrats joined Republicans - who see it as too expensive - in opposing it.The bill must now go to the evenly-divided Senate, which has already blocked a key element - doubling the US minimum wage to $ 15 an hour.The package seeks to boost vaccinations and testing, and stabilise the economy.Biden's Covid stimulus plan: It costs $ 1.9tn but what's in it?Can Biden succeed in economic rescue mission?How the pandemic has changed the world economyThe cash would be extended as emergency financial aid to households, small businesses and state governments. Unemployment is close to 10%, with some 10 milli...
BA parent firm demands digital health passes to help reopen skies as it dives to £6.5bn loss

BA parent firm demands digital health passes to help reopen skies as it dives to £6.5bn loss

Business
The parent firm of British Airways has called for the introduction of digital health passes to help reopen the skies while revealing a €7.4bn (£6.5bn) annual loss as a result of coronavirus pandemic disruption.International Airlines Group (IAG) demanded a global approach, with common testing standards, as the travel industry reels from a disastrous 12 months that has largely grounded fleets and led to tens of thousands of job losses. The operating loss revealed by the company, which also includes Iberia and Aer Lingus among its stable of airlines, compares with profits of €2.6bn (£2.2bn) during 2019 - before COVID-19 struck its operations.Live COVID updates from the UK and around the world Much of the bottom line loss was blamed on a pre-tax charge of just over €3bn (£2.6bn) on fuel an...