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Elaine Shannon
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Blog Entries by Elaine Shannon

Want Some Bug-Killer With That?

Posted October 22, 2010 | 18:56:33 (EST)

If you like your fruits and vegetables with pesticides, then you'll be glad to know the conventional produce industry is boasting of a big win with the Obama administration.

An October 20 story in the online version of The Produce News -- we read it so you don't...

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Cell Phone Industry Lobby Threatens City of San Francisco

Posted June 30, 2010 | 16:46:28 (EST)

How does an industry lobby punish a city -- that's right, an entire city -- for requiring more public disclosure about the industry's products?

With money, of course. As you might expect from an industry lobby, it's all about money.

The city in the crosshairs is San Francisco, one of...

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Why Are Dispersant Chemicals Secret?

Posted May 14, 2010 | 14:19:46 (EST)

British Petroleum, Inc. has dumped more than 400,000 gallons of chemical oil dispersants into the Gulf of Mexico near the site of the undersea gusher caused by the April 20 blowout at BP's exploration well, which set fire to the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig and killed 11 workers.

By next...

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Do Na'vi Get Sunburned?

Posted March 10, 2010 | 11:16:39 (EST)

Does UVB turn them magenta? What about UVA? Is the damage noticeable, like maybe mauve, or unseen and insidious, as in humans?

Maybe the dearth of Na'vi studies, which have to be a challenge, considering we're just getting to know the lanky blue humanoids, is the reason the Federal Food...

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EPA: No More Eyes Wide Shut?

Posted January 29, 2010 | 12:10:34 (EST)

Whatever your politics, it's hard to argue with President Obama's condemnation of "Washington gimmicks that let ... us pretend we solved a problem."

Even if - especially if - you're the author of one of those gimmicks. That's not something you'd want to boast about, not in...

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What's in your water?

Posted December 22, 2009 | 11:13:54 (EST)

In the context of the ongoing climate and health care debates, one of the season's big environment stories has been tainted tap water, which was the subject of the New York Times series, "Toxic Waters", a recent Senate committee hearing, as well as the focus of...

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BPA, Other Pollutants Found in U.S. Cord Blood

Posted December 2, 2009 | 16:57:13 (EST)

Back in the 1960s and 1970s, the seismic cultural changes set in motion by Rachel Carson's Silent Spring and global mobilization around the first Earth Day spurred scientists to attempt to quantify how much pollution was getting into people. Early methods -- measuring contaminants in water, air and soil,...

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BPA Wrecks Sex, Fouls Food -- And Probably Worse

Posted November 12, 2009 | 16:01:55 (EST)

When people ask whether modern synthetics are damaging their health and endangering future generations, Topic A is nearly always bisphenol A (BPA), a synthetic estrogen, an integral component of polycarbonate plastics and epoxy resins and one of the highest volume industrial chemicals in existence.

Now a ground-breaking study released in...

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BPA and Food: We Can Fix This

Posted November 5, 2009 | 17:24:54 (EST)

The debate about controversial plastic chemical bisphenol A (BPA), a synthetic estrogen, is heating up, with warring camps hurling data like flaming darts. Sometime later this month, the federal Food and Drug Administration is expected to announce its plans for evaluating and possibly restricting contamination of BPA in infant formula...

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Smart People Butt-Dial

Posted October 29, 2009 | 15:17:00 (EST)

If you feel naked without your cell phone, and not in a good way, I'm right there with you. Me and my IPhone and my global phone, plus my old dead phone and crackberry that ought to go to recycling, and my lost phone that's probably hiding under a radiator,...

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SIGG: It's Not Easy Not Being Green

Posted September 4, 2009 | 17:55:14 (EST)

SIGG Switzerland AG's roster of stars who tote and tout its aluminum-and-synthetic water bottles reads like a A-list party at Cannes.

Cameron Diaz, Scarlett Johansson, Zac Effron , Lucy Liu, Tobey Maguire, Cindy Crawford, Heidi Klum, Jessica Alba -- and more.

How long will the...

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Can SIGG Salvage Its Brand After BPA?

Posted August 28, 2009 | 15:23:44 (EST)

Last week, Steve Wasik, chief executive officer of SIGG Switzerland, made an astonishing admission: the company's aluminum water bottles manufactured before August 2008 had been made with epoxy resin that contains bisphenol A (BPA).

"The primary reason that I am writing this letter today is because I believe that...

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Will Obama Crack Down on Rocket Fuel in Drinking Water?

Posted August 6, 2009 | 18:04:41 (EST)

Fulfilling a confirmation pledge, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) chief Lisa P. Jackson is revisiting the Bush administration's refusal to regulate rocket fuel pollution in the nation's drinking water.

Jackson's move, announced Wednesday, is being welcomed by the environmental community and children's health advocates. Perchlorate, a major component of rocket...

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Can the BPA Consumer Revolt Trump K Street?

Posted August 5, 2009 | 15:12:26 (EST)

Don't underestimate the power of a consumer revolt.

No hearings. No votes. No PAC money. No lawyers. (Yes!) No lobbying. Advertising -- Facebook and Twitter, virtual and viral. And free.

When it comes to cost, you can't beat zero.

Effective? Hey, big companies can stand to lose political allies....

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Columbia Finds NYC Air Lowers Kids' IQs

Posted July 23, 2009 | 15:14:11 (EST)

A landmark study by Columbia University's Center for Children's Environmental Health (CCCEH) has found that children exposed in the womb to urban air pollutants score significantly lower on intelligence tests than children of mothers who breathed cleaner air during their pregnancies.

The study, published July 20 in the...

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Eco-chic? Or cheap chic?

Posted July 17, 2009 | 11:44:05 (EST)

Channel Cameron Diaz, Vogue's "Queen of Green?" Scour Martha Stewart for money-saving wedding tips?

Tough call, and now you don't have to make it.

Not, at least, when you're picking up a bottle of water for the drink-holder of your...

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About BPA: Do You Feel Lucky?

Posted July 1, 2009 | 13:05:28 (EST)

Well, do you?

Clint Eastwood/Harry Callahan's pithy question rings in my head, every time I read the chemical lobby's defense of bisphenol A(BPA), a high-volume industrial plastics chemical.

Many experiments have shown that BPA, a synthetic estrogen as well as a plastics hardener, disrupts the endocrine system and...

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Yale Scientists Discover How Exposure to BPA Causes Infertility

Posted June 26, 2009 | 16:50:36 (EST)

Yale researchers may have solved a fundamental medical mystery: how bisphenol A (BPA), a ubiquitous plastics component, changes genetic chemistry and impairs fertility.

The Yale team's findings, previewed earlier this month to the Endocrine Society, a 14,000-member scientific and medical professional organization devoted to hormone system research and treatment, have...

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Thank You for Buying Our Toxic Plastic

Posted June 9, 2009 | 12:06:22 (EST)

It's 1960. Embattled tobacco industry reps, accused by the Federal Trade Commission and health groups of hawking products that kill people, retreat to a sumptuous hideaway and devise a campaign to salvage cigarettes by, among other things, targeting women.

Soon after the confab at Miami's luxe hotel Fontainbleau,...

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