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Posts filtered by tags: ACS Environmental Science Technology[x]


 

Burying or burning garbage boosts airborne bacteria, antibiotic resistance genes

Municipal solid waste is trash -- such as plastic, food scraps and lawn clippings -- that goes into garbage bins and doesn't get recycled. Most of this waste is buried in landfills or is incinerated. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology have shown that when disposed of in this way, municipal solid waste can be an important source of antibiotic-resistance genes in the air.
Tags: Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Pharma's potential impact on water quality

When people take medications, these drugs and their metabolites can be excreted and make their way to wastewater treatment plants. From there, the compounds can end up in waterways. Wastewater from pharmaceutical companies could start off with even larger amounts of these substances. In ACS' Environmental Science & Technology, researchers report that a single pharmaceutical manufacturing facility could be influencing the water quality of one of Europe's most important rivers.
Tags: Europe, Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Natural organic matter influences arsenic release into groundwater

Millions of people worldwide consume water contaminated with levels of arsenic that exceed those recommended by the World Health Organization. This could cause health problems, such as arsenic poisoning, cardiovascular disease and cancer. Microbes in groundwater release arsenic from sediments, and organic matter helps fuel this reaction. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology have discovered that the type of natural organic matter (NOM) influences the rate and leve...
Tags: Science, World Health Organization, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Comparing PFAS exposures in female firefighters and office workers

Firefighters have higher rates of some cancers than the general population, which might not be surprising given the many potential carcinogens they encounter while battling blazes. However, previous studies of chemical exposures in this occupation have focused almost exclusively on men. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology have compared poly- and perfluorinated substances (PFAS) in the serum of female firefighters and female office workers, finding higher levels ...
Tags: Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Prior exposure to pollutants could underlie increased diabetes risk of Indian immigrants

In 2004, the United Nations Stockholm Convention banned the production and use of many persistent organic pollutants (POPs), such as dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). However, POP production and use continue in some nations that did not ratify the treaty, including India and other South Asian countries. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology have linked high levels of DDT in Indian immigrants in the US with risk factors for...
Tags: Science, India, US, United Nations, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Exposure to air pollutants from power plants varies by race, income and geography

Many people take electricity for granted -- the power to turn on light with the flip of a switch, or keep food from spoiling with refrigeration. But generating electricity from fossil fuels exacts a toll on health and the environment. Scientists estimate that these power plant emissions cause tens of thousands of premature deaths in the US each year. Now, researchers report in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology that pollutant exposure varies with certain demographic factors.
Tags: Science, US, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Estimating the environmental impact of Bitcoin mining

As an alternative to government-issued money, the cryptocurrency Bitcoin offers relative anonymity, no sales tax and freedom from bank and government interference. But some people argue that these benefits have an enormous environmental impact, particularly with regard to Bitcoin mining -- the process used to secure the cryptocurrency. Now, researchers reporting in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology have estimated that past and future environmental impacts of Bitcoin mining could be lower t...
Tags: Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Wildfire ash could trap mercury

In the summers of 2017 and 2018, heat waves and drought conditions spawned hundreds of wildfires in the western US and in November, two more devastating wildfires broke out in California, scorching thousands of acres of forest, destroying homes and even claiming lives. Now, researchers studying ash from recent California wildfires report in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology that burned material in forests might help sequester mercury that otherwise would be released into the environment.
Tags: Science, California, US, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Automated electric taxis could help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and costs

Word on the street is that self-driving cars are the next big thing. But current vehicles emit a lot of greenhouse gases, and self-driving cars will initially come with a steep purchase price. Now, one group reports in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology, that, with a mathematical model, they've shown that self-driving, electric taxis could reduce emissions, energy use and overall costs.
Tags: Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Triclosan accumulates in toothbrushes, potentially prolonging users' exposure

In September, a ban on triclosan in over-the-counter antiseptic soaps, gels and wipes went into effect in the US. But the antibacterial ingredient is still allowed in toothpastes for its reported ability to reduce gum inflammation, plaque and cavities. Now a study in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology has found that triclosan accumulates in toothbrush bristles and elastomer parts, and is readily released when users switch toothpastes, potentially prolonging users' exposure to the compound.
Tags: Science, US, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Battling flames increases firefighters' exposure to carcinogens

The threat of getting burned by roaring flames is an obvious danger of firefighting, but other health risks are more subtle. For example, firefighters have been found to develop cancer at higher rates than the general population. Now researchers have measured how much firefighters' exposure to carcinogens and other harmful compounds increases when fighting fires. Their study, appearing in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology, also points to one possible way to reduce that exposure.
Tags: Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Cell phone data coupled with sewage testing show drug use patterns

The drugs people inhale, inject or ingest ultimately end up in some form down the toilet. So scientists have started monitoring drug use through sewage-based epidemiology. But this approach hasn't taken into account the variation in number of people who add to wastewater in a given area at a given time. Now one team reports in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology a way to account for commutes and vacations: by tracking cell phone signals.
Tags: Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Making 3-D printing safer

Within the past decade, 3-D printers have gone from bulky, expensive curiosities to compact, more affordable consumer products. At the same time, concerns have emerged that nanoparticles released from the machines during use could affect consumers' health. Now researchers report in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology a way to eliminate almost all nanoparticle emissions from some of these printers.
Tags: Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology


Replacing some old pipes can still result in lead-contaminated water

Lead in drinking water is a decades-old problem and still poses serious public health risks today. In response, utilities are replacing segments of old lead pipes that are causing the contamination. Surprisingly, researchers report in ACS' Environmental Science & Technology that although partial line replacements can decrease lead levels in tap water, concentrations spike right after line replacement and can remain elevated for months afterward.
Tags: Science, ACS Environmental Science Technology



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