Pentagon will test firefighters’ blood for PFAS. But then what?

Starting this fall, the Department of Defense will test every military firefighter’s blood for a class of chemicals tied to health problems. But the testing leaves out veterans, and the results may be of little use for individuals. One of those veterans, former military firefighter Dan Casson, was surprised to be diagnosed with multiple kindsContinue reading “Pentagon will test firefighters’ blood for PFAS. But then what?”

Warming could open U.S. for more ‘murder hornets’

Reports of bugs nicknamed “murder hornets” in the United States generated a lot of buzz as well as new legislation this week — and climate change could make the problem worse. Vespa mandarinia is the scientific name for the Asian giant hornet, which measures up to 2 inches long and delivers a powerful sting. These hornetsContinue reading “Warming could open U.S. for more ‘murder hornets’”

Congress insists on returning to work, but how?

Manuel Quiñones, Bev Banks and George Cahlink, E&E News reporters The Senate is back on Capitol Hill today and the House may return next week, but leaders are still figuring out the logistics of working during the pandemic. Senators have already scheduled a series of in-person hearings, taking advantage of larger meeting rooms to secure social distancing. “IfContinue reading “Congress insists on returning to work, but how?”

Virus worries halt curbside recycling programs

Dozens of towns and cities across the country have suspended parts of their recycling programs in response to the pandemic. Curbside pickup and electronics recycling have halted in several municipalities as the novel coronavirus has made working conditions less safe and companies have prioritized regular trash pickup. Centre County, Pa., temporarily stopped curbside recycling servicesContinue reading “Virus worries halt curbside recycling programs”

Food Dumped During Pandemic Comes with an Emissions Price Tag

Videos showing floods of milk rushing down the drain circulated on social media this month, vividly illustrating the agriculture industry’s losses during the novel coronavirus pandemic. After businesses and schools closed in response to social distancing measures, large-scale farms lost their normal customers and many had to throw out food. The breakdown of those dumpedContinue reading “Food Dumped During Pandemic Comes with an Emissions Price Tag”

Firefighters: Is our chemically treated gear making us sick?

After he retired from decades of work as a firefighter, Air Force veteran Jeffrey Hermes received devastating news: He had an “aggressive” form of prostate cancer, despite no family history of the disease. Now he’s worried about his exposure to harmful chemicals from both the firefighting foam he used and the very gear he woreContinue reading “Firefighters: Is our chemically treated gear making us sick?”

How lawmakers use technology to reach constituents

Social distancing during the novel coronavirus pandemic has transformed how congressional lawmakers connect with constituencies. Senate and House offices are discovering different ways to stay in touch with community leaders and other voters. House Natural Resources Chairman Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.) is hosting conference calls with different constituencies and changing how his office addresses casework. “ObviouslyContinue reading “How lawmakers use technology to reach constituents”

'Into the unknown': Navy plans PFAS tests at Md. base

LEXINGTON PARK, Md. — Despite the Navy’s assurances, residents near an air base by the Chesapeake Bay are worried about whether chemicals are contaminating their water. The military looms large in St. Mary’s County, where Navy, Marine Corps and Army banners hang in a cafe near Naval Air Station Patuxent River and residents rely onContinue reading “'Into the unknown': Navy plans PFAS tests at Md. base”

One state’s ‘magical’ tool to fight erosion: Christmas trees

Three decades ago, a Louisiana community had an idea to combat shoreline erosion and wetland loss using the most common holiday decoration: a Christmas tree. “It was just magical” to see people in St. Charles Parish so willing to give their trees that first year to save coastal Louisiana, said Robert Thomas, who helped comeContinue reading “One state’s ‘magical’ tool to fight erosion: Christmas trees”

Boomer grandmas take up protesting for the planet

It’s not just millennials leading climate change protests — grandmothers, including film star Jane Fonda, are getting in on the action, worried about the planet becoming uninhabitable for their grandchildren. As Fonda, 81, holds her next “Fire Drill Fridays” demonstration on Capitol Hill today, other grandmothers across the country are also taking a stand. “IfContinue reading “Boomer grandmas take up protesting for the planet”