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Weekly Environmental Updates
Millions of parasitic wasps have been released in 24 states by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in an effort to combat the emerald ash borer. The ash borer, accidentally introduced to North America in the 1990s, feeds on tree tissue and destroys its ability to move water and nutrients to branches. Ash trees in Britain and on the European continent are also threatened.
Beer made from wastewater is in the works at California's Half Moon Brewing Company. Owner Lenny Mendoca is experimenting with recycled wastewater from NASA to make a brew that will not only taste good but will conserve water in drought-stricken California. Current regulations forbid the sale of the product, but Mr. Mendoca expects the rules to change.
Three climbers have died on Mt. Everest in three days and two other climbers are missing, causing hiking officials to question the standards of some cut-rate climbing operators who may not be adequately preparing hikers. Poor equipment and inexperienced guides are being blamed by tourism officials. Exhaustion and altitude sickness are reportedly a lethal result.
Long-term exposure to air pollution has long been known to increase the risk of heart disease but only now have scientists begun to discover why. Results of a ten year study now show that air pollution increases atherosclerosis, AKA hardening of the arteries. The acceleration of atherosclerosis occurs even when air pollution exists at levels below regulatory standards.
The Environmental Working Group has issued its annual guide to sunscreens. Find out why you should avoid sunscreen with Vitamin A, reasons to be wary of high SPFs on labels, and get the latest research on the effects of sun exposure. It's all on their website, accessible at the link above.
If you missed "World Turtle Day", celebrated on May 23rd to raise awareness of our hard-shelled friends, don't despair. There's still time to educate yourself about these fascinating reptiles by visiting the attached link for some fun and little-known facts. Take your time, though...the turtles will understand.
5/27/16
Roman Hills