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Anthrax outbreak triggered by climate change sickens dozens in Arctic Circle

Arctic Cirle anthraxA 12-year-old boy in the far north of Russia has died in an outbreak of anthrax that experts believe was triggered when unusually warm weather caused the release of the bacteria.

The boy was one of 72 nomadic herders, including 41 children, hospitalised in the town of Salekhard in the Arctic Circle, after reindeer began dying en masse from anthrax.

Five adults and two other children have been diagnosed with the disease, which is known as “Siberian plague” in Russian and was last seen in the region in 1941.


Terminix offers $87M settlement to injured Delaware family

Terminix xettles caseThe parent company of pest-control giant Terminix has reached a tentative agreement to pay $87 million to a Delaware family injured by exposure to a banned pesticide during a Caribbean vacation.

Citing information from an earnings report filed Thursday by ServiceMaster Global Holdings Inc. of Memphis, Tennessee, The Philadelphia Inquirer ( ) reports that the company has agreed to pay the Esmond family $87 million. That is in addition to $3 million it has paid to cover its insurance deductible.


Deadly California Wildfire Near Big Sur Set To Explode In Size

Big Sur fire could growA deadly blaze near California’s Big Sur coast could widen to more than five times its current size and has destroyed some 60 homes, threatened hundreds of others and spurred mass evacuations, authorities said on Saturday.

The so-called Soberanes Fire, which started on July 22 and is burning just south of the oceanside town of Carmel-by-the-Sea, has roared through nearly 32,000 acres (13,000 hectares) of drought-parched chaparral, grass and timber in the Los Padres National Forest.


6 state employees criminally charged in Flint water crisis

Flint officials chargedSix state employees were criminally charged  this morning in district court in connection with the Flint water crisis.

Charged are Michigan Department of Health and Human Services workers Nancy Peeler, Corinne Miller and Robert Scott, and Michigan Department of Environmental Quality employees  Liane Shekter-Smith; Adam Rosenthal and Patrick Cook, according to testimony this morning in Flint’s district court.


Fracking wells may increase asthma attacks, study says

Fracking increases asthmaEver wondered if your asthma attacks can be tied to the fracking wells near your house? You are probably right.

Asthma patients are 1.5 to four times more likely to have asthma attacks if they live near bigger or a larger number of unconventional natural gas development wells, according to a study published Monday in the Journal of the American Medical Association Internal Medicine.


High Levels of Toxins Found in Bodies of People Living Near Fracking Sites

Toxins found in bodies near fracking sitesMany of the toxic chemicals escaping from fracking and natural gas processing sites and storage facilities may be present in much higher concentrations in the bodies of people living or working near such sites, new research has shown.

In a first-of-its-kind study combining air-monitoring methods with new biomonitoring techniques, researchers detected volatile organic compounds (VOCs) released from natural gas operations in Pavillion, Wyoming in the bodies of nearby residents at levels that were as much as 10 times that of the national averages.


Pink Snow Looks Awesome, But Is Another Climate Change Indicator

Pink snow sign of climate changeSome call it pink snow, some call it watermelon snow — and now, a new study is calling it yet another symbol of the drastic melting in the Arctic.

The appearance of the so-called pink snow, which Arctic explorers have observed for centuries, is the result of a red algae that likes to bloom in the frozen water. In a study published Wednesday in the journal Nature Communications, researchers found that those algal blooms are causing the ice to melt faster, and the algae is likely to grow more rapidly as climate change melts even more of the Arctic into the liquid water that feeds them.


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