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Lynne Peeples
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Lynne Peeples is the environment and public health reporter for The Huffington Post. Before becoming a science journalist, she was a biostatistician at Harvard. E-mail her with ideas or requests: lynne.peeples@huffingtonpost.com.

Entries by Lynne Peeples

Fracking Industry Distorts Science To Deceive Public And Policymakers, Says Watchdog Group

(201) Comments | Posted February 21, 2015 | 7:30 AM

The oil and gas industry sponsors and spins research to shape the scientific debate over horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. That's the conclusion of a watchdog group's analysis of more than 130 documents distributed to policymakers by industry representatives.

"Research and statistics can be manipulated...

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The Hidden Ways Manipulated Science Harms Our Health, From Measles To Organics

(76) Comments | Posted February 11, 2015 | 7:37 AM

The current outbreak of measles, on pace to become the largest since the disease was declared eliminated in the U.S. more than a decade ago, was made possible in large part by a single black mark in the medical research literature -- a discredited 1998 study...

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Superbug Fear Meets Super Bowl With Sexy Ad For Antibiotic-Free Burger

(10) Comments | Posted January 31, 2015 | 7:30 AM

At the end of an ad set to air during Super Bowl XLIX, a scantily-clad supermodel takes a bite out of Carl's Jr.'s new "All-Natural" hamburger. Bold letters flash across the screen: No Antibiotics.

The risqué nature of the commercial has triggered some controversy, but perhaps not...

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Hormone-Mimicking Chemicals May Threaten Male Fertility, Study Warns

(21) Comments | Posted January 22, 2015 | 2:15 PM

Bisphenol A and other common estrogen-mimicking chemicals may be wreaking havoc on sperm and stymying some couples' hopes of having children, warns new research.

"We're seeing more and more guys who have low and troubling sperm counts," said Pat Hunt, a molecular biologist at Washington State University and co-author of...

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Teens Take Politicians To Court Over Climate Change

(110) Comments | Posted January 17, 2015 | 7:30 AM

For politicians who fail to act on climate change, Kelsey Juliana has a few words.

"I want to remind them that we are their employer," said Juliana, 18, a native of Eugene, Oregon, and freshman at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina. "The government works for us. If you're...

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Agent Orange-Contaminated Planes Could Have Sickened Vets After The War: Federal Report

(13) Comments | Posted January 9, 2015 | 6:54 PM

Lingering amounts of the herbicide Agent Orange aboard repurposed airplanes after the Vietnam War could have sickened military veterans, according to a new federal report.

In findings released Friday, an Institute of Medicine committee "emphatically" refutes a recurrent argument made by the U.S. Air Force and Department of...

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Rise Of Bike Trains A Win For Children's Health, Environment

(7) Comments | Posted December 22, 2014 | 5:55 PM

SEATTLE -- As the first rider in her neighborhood bicycle train, Maka Yusuf pedals nearly 4 miles and climbs more than 350 feet on the way to her elementary school. During the trip she is joined by several classmates and a handful of adult volunteers. Just a month ago, those...

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Scrap Tire Playgrounds Lighten Landfills, But Raise Cancer Fears

(27) Comments | Posted December 20, 2014 | 7:30 AM

The fire burned for nine months, billowing toxic black smoke thousands of feet above its Appalachian valley source and across five states. It would take 20 years and $12 million to clean up the remains of the tire heap.

At the time of the 1983 Rhinehart, Virginia,...

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Big-Picture Study Of Fracking Operations Suggests Even Small Chemical Exposures Pose Risks

(87) Comments | Posted December 5, 2014 | 1:56 PM

April Lane's work often brings her to Fayetteville, Arkansas, where she monitors pollution from natural gas production sites around the area's rich shale reserves. Exposure to toxins, she says, have left her with chronic headaches, nausea and a hesitancy to have more children.  

"I've decided having another baby is...

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'Little Things Matter' Exposes Big Threat To Children's Brains

(34) Comments | Posted November 20, 2014 | 7:04 PM

Tiny amounts of lead, chemical flame retardants and organophosphate pesticides, among other toxins, course through the blood of nearly every American. But just how much worry is a little poison worth?

A lot, especially when considering the cumulative effects of this chemical cocktail on children, warns a video unveiled...

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Researchers Find Bed Bugs Could Carry A Deadly Disease

(15) Comments | Posted November 17, 2014 | 5:21 PM

As bed bug infestations have continued to crop up in firehouses, schools, movie theaters and homes across the country, a team of researchers is now warning that these proliferating pests could prove to be more than just an itchy, pricey nuisance.

According to a...

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Ebola's True Toll Is Still Untallied As Another Deadly Fever Looms

(33) Comments | Posted November 11, 2014 | 4:38 PM

Dr. Ross Donaldson recalls traveling around the Sierra Leone city of Kenema a decade ago, "telling people not to eat rats."

The multimammate rat, which is ubiquitous in sub-Saharan Africa, can carry a deadly hemorrhagic illness akin to Ebola, known as Lassa fever. Yet for many residents of the impoverished...

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Why Scapegoating Bats Is A Big Mistake For Human Health

(9) Comments | Posted October 31, 2014 | 3:49 PM

Even before allegations emerged that West Africa's Ebola outbreak may have originated in bats, public opinion of the animal was hardly glowing. Years as a Halloween icon cast a dark shadow over the flying mammal's reputation.

But leading experts in ecology and public health -- even Batman himself --...

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Why Some Skin Care Products And Those Thermal Receipts May Be A Troubling Combination

(20) Comments | Posted October 22, 2014 | 8:00 PM

Those little slips of paper that accumulate in our pockets and purses may do more than just document recent take-out meals, pumpkin spice lattes and shopping sprees. Receipts, according to a small study published Wednesday, could also deliver a potentially harmful rush of hormone-scrambling chemicals into our bodies....

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Groups Giving Second Thoughts To Those Little Black Crumbs On Playing Fields

(112) Comments | Posted October 16, 2014 | 6:48 PM

Massive bags of tiny black rubber crumbs, the remains of some 40,000 old tires, lined the parking lot of Kennedy Catholic High School in Burien, Washington, earlier this week. The fake dirt was all set to be unloaded onto the school's brand-new synthetic turf sports field. But Mike...

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Antibiotic Resistance Warnings Remain Unheeded, Experts Say

(11) Comments | Posted October 9, 2014 | 11:54 AM

Dr. Brad Spellberg teared up as he recalled his futile attempt to treat a twenty-something mother of two with an infection. No drugs could battle the bug attacking her body.

"She died," said Spellberg, chief medical officer for Los Angeles County and at the University of Southern California. "There was...

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Frac Sand Rush Threatens American Towns, Advocates Warn

(90) Comments | Posted September 30, 2014 | 8:30 AM

Victoria Trinko hasn't opened the windows of her Wisconsin home in two years -- for fear of the dust clouds billowing from a frac sand mine a half-mile away.

"This blowing of silica sand has not abated since the inception of the mine in 2011," Trinko, a farmer and...

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Tackling Climate Change Presents A 'Golden Opportunity' For Public Health

(27) Comments | Posted September 22, 2014 | 8:00 AM

For Carol Kelly, biking to and from work is a no-brainer: She doesn't have to deal with the notorious Seattle traffic, she can exercise without visiting the dreary gym and she saves money on gas.

And, of course, she acknowledges that her swap of a tailpipe for pedals...

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Hidden Source Of Industry Influence Threatens Toxic Chemical Regulations

(3) Comments | Posted September 18, 2014 | 4:05 PM

SEATTLE -- Dr. Raymond Neutra adopted an alternate persona as he stepped up to the podium on a sunny, late-August afternoon. Sporting a hat and a fake British accent, the respected authority on environmental health transformed into the fictitious Reginald Charlston, LL.D., of the corporate law firm Dewy, Charlston and...

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The Lead Hazard In Schools That Won't Go Away

(12) Comments | Posted September 8, 2014 | 3:29 PM

A contractor cleans up lead paint at a contaminated building in Providence, R.I., in 2006. (AP Photo/Chitose Suzuki)

Portland, Ore. —

The worn, heart-shaped rug that greeted you upon entering Angela Molloy Murphy's preschool was a reflection of the love she...

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