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The Autism Epidemic and Disappearing Bees: A Common Denominator?

On a recent front page of The Salt Lake Tribune, a frightening, oversized headline read, "Highest rate in the nation, 1 in 32 Utah boys has autism." Less well publicized, another national story ran the same day: "New pesticides linked to bee population collapse." If you eat food and hope to do so a few years from now, this should be equally frightening. A common denominator may underlie both stories.

The nervous system of insects is the intended target of these insecticides. They disrupt the bees homing behavior and their ability to return to the hive, kind of like "bee autism." But insects are different than humans, right? Human and insect nerve cells share the same basic biologic infrastructure. Chemicals that interrupt electrical impulses in insect nerves will do the same to humans.

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Day after scientists hail recovery of Gulf Coast, new pictures show the real damage

Gulf Oil Spill damage two years laterThese are the shocking images of the long term damage last year's BP oil spill has done to the Gulf coastline.

Coming a day after scientists said Gulf of Mexico surface water was 'almost back to normal', these shots paint a very different picture of how wild life and fauna in the affected zones have fared a year on from the Deep Water Horizon accident.

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Blamed for Bee Collapse, Monsanto Buys Leading Bee Research Firm

Monsanto, the massive biotechnology company being blamed for contributing to the dwindling bee population, has bought up one of the leading bee collapse research organizations. Recently banned from Poland with one of the primary reasons being that the company’s genetically modified corn may be devastating the dying bee population, it is evident that Monsanto is under serious fire for their role in the downfall of the vital insects. It is therefore quite apparent why Monsanto bought one of the largest bee research firms on the planet.

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'World's Biggest Fracker' Pockets $1 Billion in Shady Deal

Aubrey McClendonIn March, I wrote a long article about the fracking boom for Rolling Stone, focusing on Chesapeake Energy, whose CEO, Aubrey McClendon proudly boasted to me, "We’re the biggest frackers in the world."

The story raised questions about the financial underpinnings of the company and suggested that today’s natural gas boom is likely to be a short-lived euphoria driven by new drilling technology and corporate greed.

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Four dollars for a gallon of water? The dream of Monsanto and other corporations wanting to privatize water

Four dollars for a gallon of gas is ridiculous enough, but $4 for a gallon of water could someday became a reality, that is if oil tycoons like T. Boone Pickens and water bottling companies have their way. Privatization of water in which companies control the public's water sources and free water is a thing of the past appears to be what Pickens and corporations such as Monsanto, Royal Dutch Shell, and Nestle are banking on to increase their vast fortunes.

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Fracking causes earthquakes, studies confirm

Two separate studies are providing insights into the earth-shaking consequences of the controversial gas extraction process known as fracking.

Both studies confirm that hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, can trigger manmade earthquakes. The process involves blasting water, sand and chemicals deep into the ground to fracture rock to obtain oil and natural gas.

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Experts: Another BP-style Gulf blowout all too possible

BP oil sp;illMuch more needs to be done to lower the risks of another offshore oil disaster like the BP blowout two years ago in the Gulf of Mexico, the presidential commission that investigated the disaster reported Tuesday in its first progress update.

The presidential oil spill commission disbanded after it finished its main report last year, but its seven members recently got together again to look back on whether their recommendations had been carried out. Many steps to prevent or sop up another oil blowout haven’t been taken.

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