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Lynne Peeples
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:

Entries by Lynne Peeples

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

(111) Comments | Posted October 16, 2014 | 5:48 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

(10) Comments | Posted October 9, 2014 | 10:54 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

(88) Comments | Posted September 30, 2014 | 7:30 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 | 7:00 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 | 3:05 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 | 2:29 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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デング熱の脅威がアメリカにも? 病気を広める蚊やダニが温暖化で北上中

(3) Comments | Posted September 8, 2014 | 5:12 AM


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Climate Change Threatens The Newest Prescription For Children: Time Outdoors

(68) Comments | Posted September 6, 2014 | 8:00 AM

Luisa Maria Vasquez Cruz received an unusual prescription last year from her pediatrician: Spend more time playing outside.

Dr. Robert Zarr, her pediatrician at Unity Health Care, a clinic that serves low-income and uninsured families in Washington, D.C., calls her unconventional treatment regimen a "huge success." The 9-year-old's asthma is...

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Big Coal's Plans For The Pacific Northwest Take A Major Hit

(10) Comments | Posted August 19, 2014 | 4:45 PM

Doctors, tribal leaders, business owners and concerned parents are among those cheering a potentially major blow to Big Coal.

On Monday, an Oregon state agency announced its rejection of a permit for a coal export facility on the Columbia River. The proposed Coyote Island Terminal is one of...

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Corrupt Executives Sent To Prison For Pumping Toxic Leaded Fuel Overseas

(93) Comments | Posted August 9, 2014 | 7:30 AM

On Nov. 22, 2006, Paul Jennings received an email from a fellow executive at his chemical company. "As you are aware, Indonesia was planning to go lead free in 2000," the note read. "This obviously did not happen for a number of reasons and since 1st January 2000 until the...

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The Critical Question We're Not Asking About The Ebola Outbreak

(43) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 6:39 PM

The ebola outbreak in West Africa has the world on edge: Will the virus spill into new communities? Will it cross more borders? Even oceans? How can caregivers raise the victims' chances of survival, as well as reduce their own chances of getting sick?

Some experts emphasize the...

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Feds Failing To Act On Antibiotic Resistance Despite Grave Threat, Health Advocates Warn

(176) Comments | Posted July 25, 2014 | 5:06 PM

Public health advocates are fuming over a new court ruling that they say could hasten the coming of the next pandemic.

In a 2-1 decision released Thursday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit ruled that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration need not...

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Would You Like Flame Retardants With That Couch?

(10) Comments | Posted July 21, 2014 | 4:40 PM

SEATTLE -- Most of Aimee Robinson's customers are moms. And more of them are starting to ask questions about the contents of the couches and chairs she constructs.

"I get moms crying on the phone," said Robinson, owner of the green furniture company EcoBalanza. "Their main concern is...

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Federal Support For Potent New Weedkiller Raises Fears About Children's Health

(181) Comments | Posted July 3, 2014 | 8:23 PM

In his public plea for the Environmental Protection Agency to reject registration of a potent new weedkiller, Christopher Lish of Olema, California, revisited a decades-old warning from environmental prophet Rachel Carson: "As crude a weapon as the cave man's club, the chemical barrage has been hurled against the...

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Doctors Fail To Counsel Pregnant Women On Toxic Chemical Risks

(10) Comments | Posted June 25, 2014 | 7:32 PM

When Penelope Jagessar Chaffer became pregnant, her obstetrician warned her to avoid alcohol, cigarettes and mercury-laden tuna. Dangers posed to her unborn child by industrial chemicals such as flame retardants, pesticides and plastics, however, never came up.

"No one told me anything about any of this stuff," said Jagessar Chaffer,...

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Supreme Court Decision Is A Boon For Polluters, Critics Say

(102) Comments | Posted June 10, 2014 | 3:44 PM

"Ludicrous." "Unconscionable." "A slap in the face."

A Supreme Court ruling on Monday in favor of a corporation accused of contaminating a North Carolina community has been met with words of outrage from victims and advocates.

The 7-2 vote in the case of

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Kaiser Permanente Pledges To Stop Buying Flame-Retardant Furniture

(6) Comments | Posted June 3, 2014 | 7:50 PM

The push to rid our bodies and the environment of toxic flame retardants just got a powerful boost from a major health care system, according to experts.

Kaiser Permanente, the largest U.S. nonprofit health management organization, announced Tuesday it will stop buying furniture treated with the chemicals, still common in...

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Why These Goalies Are Worried About Unknown Toxins In Artificial Turf

(8) Comments | Posted May 30, 2014 | 5:00 PM

The distinct smell of synthetic turf on a soccer field always brings back good memories for Jordan Swarthout.

"I loved playing the sport so much," said Swarthout, 22, a former stand-out goalkeeper in Sumner, Washington, and now a graduating senior at Oregon State University.

Swarthout recalls never worrying if the...

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The Stomach Bacteria That Could Prolong Your Life

(17) Comments | Posted May 21, 2014 | 6:02 PM

The best predictor of our lifelong health may well be the bacteria that live within us. Specifically, the trillions of microbes that colonize our bodies from childhood on, and outnumber our own cells 10-to-1. Autism, allergies, asthma, inflammatory bowel disease, diabetes and obesity are just a few of the conditions...

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Climate Change Will Strengthen Pests, Weaken Crops, Studies Say

(0) Comments | Posted May 9, 2014 | 7:49 AM

Count weeds and insect pests among the beneficiaries of climate change. Meanwhile, the crops we need will have fewer nutrients that make them beneficial, scientists revealed this week.

At the root of the problem: Rising carbon dioxide levels, warming temperatures and more frequent extreme weather events do not treat all...

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