Incineration

(Half of these people represent industry. Half are environmentalists. Can't tell which ones? That's a good thing.) Should a bag of concrete be like an organic banana or a new chair made out of recycled wood and get "certified" as being responsibly-sourced, or "sustainable?" And if so, what's the criteria for making such a judgment, and who's making it? Those are the complicated questions […]

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Over the course of this blog, there have been countless "Air Pollution Linked to….." headlines. Not just diseases or illness you might associate with breathing bad air like COPD, or heart disease, or strokes, but Parkinson's, immune system breakdowns, Autism and so forth – ailments that seem to be skyrocketing even as Americans as a […]

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Even though this EcoNews article is about air poisons that result from fossil fuel production, it applies to just about any combustion source, including cement plants, manufacturing plants, vehicles, and so on. It's a pretty good top ten list, although you wonder why Dioxins and Furans got left off, since they're toxic by the gram […]

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Downwinders has been trying to get new emission limits for cement plants since the mid-1990's. We're still trying. The first real reform in those rules during the Clinton Administration were pathetically inadequate. Downwinders and other groups assisted by DC-based Earth Justice sued to get them strengthened. We won. When new rules finally emerged from EPA […]

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A new study being published in the November issue of Epidemiology concludes that even low levels of pollution from solid waste incinerators causes an increase in premature births downwind. Italian researchers examined over 21,000 births to women living within four kilometers of one of eight solid waste incinerators operating in the Emilia-Romagna region. "Each newborn […]

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For the first time in 30 years recycling rates in the UK are going down and a influx of incineration capacity is being blamed. New European Union directives favoring waste burning over recycling are now spreading throughout Great Britain and having a big impact. Landfill disposal has gone down by almost 50% in just over […]

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Carbon soot found in Particulate Matter air pollution is responsible for increasing death risks in US cities according to a new nationwide study conducted by John Hopkins, Yale and Harvard.  “Our work indicates that some constituents of PM2.5 may be more toxic than others and therefore regulating PM total mass alone may not be sufficient to […]

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According to CBS News "A new study published July 10 in The Lancet showed that even breathing low levels of air pollution for a prolonged period of time could raise risk for the often-deadly lung disease. Another study released on the same date showed that short-term exposure to most major air pollutants could increase the […]

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Seventeen years and counting – that's how long Downwinders at Risk has been fighting to get the EPA to modernize their rules for waste-burning cement plants. And we're not giving up. On Wednesday, a national coalition of environmental and community groups that included Downwinders at Risk asked a federal court to stay a decision by […]

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A funny thing happened to Dallas Morning News automobile columnist Terry Box while he was out test driving a new Dodge pick-up truck – it self-immolated and burned to ashes on the side of the road. As he writes about it, his experience is both funny and terrifying. But something he noted in how cars […]

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You know that argument you sometimes hear about how those ecologically-minded Europeans are burning everything in incinerators and cement plants, so it must be OK to do it here? Maybe not so much. In one of the most ambitious and far-ranging efforts of its kind ever attempted, the newly-published results of a 10-year study from […]

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Everything in italics and "quotation marks" below is a direct quote from the latest chapter of the ATSDR's (Agency for Disease Registry and Toxic Substances) "health consultation" on the impact of certain kinds of industrial air pollution on the local population. You should take five minutes to glance over the sentences. They've taken a better […]

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Another argument for the implementation of the Precautionary Principle.   PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) are chemicals that were used as coolants and lubricants in electrical equipment for 50 years. They were banned in the US in 1979 because of their severe toxicity. Although they're no longer manufactured, PCBs are still present in older products, such as […]

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By way of the Environmental Health News comes word of a new study looking at the effects on low-level, "ambient" levels of the toxic metal Cadmium on 5 year-olds in Bangladesh.  Although the exposure pathway in the study assumes the Cadmium is coming primarily from a diet of food grown in contaminated soil, the results […]

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For the second time in four years a state-designed clean air plan to bring safe and legal air to DFW residents has failed, missing its goal by an even wider margin than on its first try, and leaving local air quality worse than when it started. November 1st marked the official end of the eight-month […]

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It was inevitable. Like chocolate and peanut butter. Like rats and the plague. Two notoriously polluting industries find solace in each other's ability to scratch each other's dirty, irritating itches. Cement plants are always looking for ways to get paid to burn other people's garbage. It takes a lot of energy to fire a 20-foot […]

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