“Reintroduce No Child Left Inside ACt ”


 BREAKING NEWS:
BI-PARTISAN NO CHILD LEFT INSIDE ACT TO BE INTRODUCED
JOIN SENATOR REED AND CONGRESSMAN SARBANES FOR AN EXCLUSIVE UPDATE

This Thursday, July 14, Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) and Congressman John Sarbanes (D-MD) will reintroduce the No Child Left Inside Act into the 112th Congress. 

You can encourage your local media outlets to cover the bill introduction and locally effective environmental education programs by customizing the attached press release template to your organization and region.

Senator Reed and Congressman Sarbanes continue to demonstrate tremendous vision in championing this critical and historic legislation. We are grateful to them for all that they are doing to make environmental education an integral part of every American child’s education. Once again, many members of Congress have agreed to co-sponsor the NCLI Act, including Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL), whose leadership provides a critical bipartisan boost.

To celebrate this exciting next step towards our collective goal, and to hear from Senator Reed and Congressman Sarbanes about what we as a Coalition can do to support their efforts, please join a No Child Left Inside Conference Call with Mr. Reed and Mr. Sarbanes on Tuesday July 19 at
3:00pm EST.

Dial-in: 1-712-432-3066
Passcode: 354022
You may submit questions you would like the Senator and Congressman to address by emailing sbodor@cbf.org before 8:00pm EST on Monday July 18.

Our progress to date would not be possible without the commitment and passion of our 2,071 member Coalition. Thank you to each and every one of you for all you do. We have much more work ahead, but please take a moment to celebrate today!

 

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“Chromium 6 in city water health risk”


Dear Nature’s Crusaders Readers,

Take action today!

In December, Environmental Working Group (EWG) published the first national investigation of the suspected carcinogen chromium-6 — also known as hexavalent chromium — in drinking water in 35 cities around the country. Recently, Senators Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., introduced Senate Bill 79, the Protecting Pregnant Women and Children from Hexavalent Chromium Act of 2011.

The Boxer/Feinstein bill would require the Environmental Protection Agency to act within a year to set a safe limit for chromium-6 in drinking water. Your senators need to hear from you today that clean, safe drinking water is crucial.

Click here TODAY to tell your senators to co-sponsor the Protecting Pregnant Women and Children from Hexavalent Chromium Act of 2011, introduced by Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein.

EWG supporters like you submitted tap water samples from their communities. This groundbreaking, people-powered report detected chromium-6 in 31 of the 35 city water supplies tested. Even though this report stirred controversy, our findings were confirmed by a number of water utilities’ own testing. Within hours of its release, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson announced a new plan to help local utilities assess chromium-6 in drinking water nationwide. That’s a good first step. But EPA must go further.

Last week, I testified on our chromium-6 report before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, chaired by Senator Boxer. And I am going to tell you what I told them: we were heartened by and support EPA’s announcement following the release of our report and by its decision to regulate perchlorate, but it is not enough. The Protecting Pregnant Women and Children from Hexavalent Chromium Act of 2011 will make sure there is a safe legal limit on chromium-6 in drinking water.

I have had the opportunity to testify in front of Congress many times, but this was the most gratifying. I was able to stand with the EPA and others concerned with ensuring that all Americans have access to safe, clean drinking water. This hearing — and this bill — are a direct result of EWG’s research. “Keep on doing what you’re doing,” Senator Boxer said to me in her concluding comments at the hearing.

We need to keep the momentum going. I’m counting on you to help us — and everyone else who drinks water.

Click here TODAY to tell your senators to co-sponsor the Protecting Pregnant Women and Children from Hexavalent Chromium Act of 2011.

Safe, clean drinking water is vital to EWG supporters like you. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by. Take action today.

Sincerely,

Ken Cook
President, EWG Action Fund

“Kids have bee project paper accepted by Royal Society”


Valid scientific research is being done by 8 to 10 year olds in london, England. To boot, a hand written elementary school science project has made it into a peer-reviewed journal from Britain’s prestigious Royal Society. The scientific organization, more than three centuries old and includes some of the world’s most eminent scientists, said the children research findings were a advance” in the field of insect color and pattern vision.
Biology Letters published a report Wednesday . The students investigated the way bumblebees see colors and patterns.Working with a neuroscientist from University College London, the children carefully documented their methodology and discussed the data they collected.
The group learned to trained bumbleees Bombus terrestris, buff-tailed bumble-bee to go to targets of different colors by giving them a sugar reward, and reported that the insects are able to learn and remember cues based on color and pattern.
The study successfully went through peer review — although its presentation was slightly unconventional.
“Scientists do experiments on monkeys, because they are similar to man, but bees could actually be close to man too,” the introduction read. The report was peppered with other amusing phrasing and diagrams drawn in colored pencil.
Scientists who commented on the kids’ report in the journal say although the experiments were modest and lacked statistical analyses, they were cleverly and correctly designed and hold their own compared to those conducted by highly trained specialists.
Laurence Maloney and Natalie Hempel wrote in commentary alongside the children’s report.
Beau Lotto, the scientist who coordinated the study, said she hoped the project could inspire people to approach science in a way that’s creative and fun.
“We like bees. Science is cool and fun because you get to do stuff that no one has ever done before,” the children concluded.

Bombus terrestris, the Buff-tailed Bumblebee or Large Earth Bumblebee is one of the most numerous bumblebee species in Europe. The queen is 2–2.7 cm long, while the workers are 1½–2 cm. The workers are characterized by their white-ended abdomens and look (apart from their yellowish bands being darker in direct comparison). The queen has a buff-white abdomen (“tail”) tip.
Resources

Excerpts courtesy of   http://yhoo.it/fDdBlg

Excerpts courtesy of  http://bit.ly/dHb7g9

Image courtesy of   http://bit.ly/ig0msw

“Polar bears thrown under the big oil bus”


Hungry polar bears need our help now.

Scientists began reporting in 2009 that shrinking Arctic sea ice is forcing some hungry male  polar bears to cannibalize bear cubs.

protect theri right to play and live free

At least seven cases of mature male polar bears eating bear cubs were spotted this year among the animals around Churchill, Man.

Ian Stirling, a retired Environment Canada biologist who specializes in the Churchill bears, calls it the highest incidence of cannibalization he has ever seen.

Stirling says evidence suggests the cubs are being killed for food, not just so the male can mate with the sow.

He says the Hudson Bay sea ice, which the bears use to get at the seals they need to fatten up for winter, isn’t appearing until weeks later than it used to.
In a melting Arctic, polar bears must travel hundreds of miles to find food or confront starvation, drowning and even cannibalism. Their pups enter the world to face collapsing dens of thinning ice and often too little food.

We need your help now to protect the polar bear.  Please take the Polar Bear Pledge to help us ensure that our children and grandchildren live in a world with polar bears

Despite publicly recognizing the disastrous impact of global warming on polar bears, Interior Secretary Salazar has not pursued policies to save them.  Worse, he’s sided with Big Oil and the Bush administration. He has continued to allow risky oil exploration in America’s Polar Bear Seas—the Chukchi and Beaufort, even though these fragile and remote seas could not withstand a fraction of the Deepwater Horizon’s spill.

Please donate what you can to help us fight to save polar bears and other endangered species?

Secretary Salazar’s determination to deprive the polar bear of needed protections wins praise from wildlife foes in Congress, such as Representative Doc Hastings (R-WA) who called polar bear protections, “excessive regulations” and from powerful oil and gas industry lobbyists.

“We welcome the administration’s decision.”Jack Gerard, President of the American Petroleum Institute.

Please take the Polar Bear Pledge today and make a holiday gift to defend polar bears in 2011.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, if current trends continue, approximately 2/3 of the world’s polar bears will be gone

Leaping for food

by 2050.  And, Secretary Salazar’s sympathies toward Big Oil and Dirty Coal are certainly setting us down that path.

Help save the polar bear and join the Endangered Species Coalition today.

Polar bears have enough threats from illegal hunting, toxic pollution and climate change. They don’t need an adversary in the Cabinet. Help us continue to pressure the Obama administration to become stewards of polar bears before it’s too late by making your holiday donation today.

Our friends at the Earth Friends Conservation Fund have given us a generous grant challenging us to raise $150,000 by the end of the year.  Your contribution will help us reach this goal and protect endangered species.

This is a great time to become a member of the Endangered Species Coalition and take advantage of this challenge grant and contribute to the Polar Bear Pledge.

Thank you for standing with us in our fight for wildlife and wild places.

Endangered Species Coalition and Nature’s Crusaders

Images courtesy of Nature’s Crusaders library


“Conservation programs on feds. chopping block”


Funding cuts endanger critical conservation programs in the Department of Agriculture is already under siege. Every federal agency must reduce their budget by 5 percent.

Tell Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to keep conservation funding off the chopping block.

Farmers, ranchers and private landowners are the stewards of more than 70 percent of our land helping us to protect endangered species. It is critical that they are able to help us tackle our environmental and conservation challenges. The voluntary conservation programs at the Agriculture Department provide important assistance and incentives to farmers so they can invest their own time and money into protecting America’s working lands.

More not less  funding is needed.  These oasis in the farmers fields need to be increased. Now is not the time to make drastic cuts.

Tell Secretary of Agriculture Vilsack to protect conservation funding so our  children can see these endangered animals, plants and ecosystems for years to come.


Mother Nature and Care2 thank you for taking action!

Resources

Excerpts courtesy of Care2 and ThePetitionSite Team

Image courtesy of   http://bit.ly/d9SYkD

“Saving Lancaster Sound from effects of sonar testing”


A Canadian judge (Bless her.) Sunday told researchers they can’t bombard the arctic waters of Lancaster Sound with sound waves to try to learn what’s under the seabed.

Nunavut Judge Sue Cooper granted an injunction sought by parties seeking to stop the joint project of the federal natural resources department and the German Alfred Wegner Institute for Polar and Marine Research, the Toronto Sun reported. The seismic project was to have started as early as this week, the newspaper said.
The researchers intended to map the area under Lancaster Sound by bouncing sound waves off the earth below the sea.
Some of the general known effects of sound waves include:
Damage to rocket engines, hence the flood of water under the space shuttle to absorb the sound vibration at engine start.
It has been proposed as a source of cold fusion in heavy water.

It is used to atomize fuel in burners.

it is used to break up gallstones.

Can cause damage to eardrums and living tissues in vitro and in vivo.

So when scientists want to use sonar/sound waves to map Lancaster Sounds seabed without having a clue of what damage they could cause some knowing folks objected.

While two Nunavut government agencies had given their OK to go ahead with the sonic testing, some Inuit groups and environmentalists went to court, contending it could harm marine wildlife.
Judge Cooper sided with the testing opponents, saying there could be an impact on wildlife and consequently on the food supply of the nearby Inuit communities.
“On the whole of the evidence presented, I am satisfied that Inuit in the five affected communities will suffer irreparable harm if an injunction is not granted,” her decision reads.
The importance of Lancaster Sound, an arm of Baffin Bay should not be underrated. It is a major passage through the Arctic Archipelago, is 248.55 miles (400 km) long and some 62.14 miles (100 km) wide. It lies at the north end of Baffin Island and is connected to Barrow Strait on the west. As a result of the interaction of currents, the sound is rich in nutrients and supports a biologically varied community of birds, mammals and fish. At Bylot Island, which lies at its eastern end, it provides breeding grounds for some 3 million seabirds alone. The area has provided sustenance for Inuit cultures for thousands of years: ringed seals, walrus and polar bears, and Narwhals, Belugas, killer and bowhead whales. Arctic fox is trapped in almost every inlet, and arctic char is taken at the mouths of rivers.

“Thank you for protecting Mother Nature Judge Sue Cooper”

Resources

Excerpts courtesy of    http://bit.ly/axZTvaTva
Excerpts courtesy of   http://yhoo.it/cnCGDO

Image courtesy of   http://bit.ly/bDkrbi

“Safe to eat Gulf fish Feds smell test says yes”


Now,  this is the ultimate in scientific testing. the fish taken  from the Gulf are now declared “safe to get”. Why, because they smell almost fine.

Last week, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fishers (LDWF) in partnership with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), ordered an emergency reopening of commercial fishing areas closed due to the BP oil spill. Commercial fishing reopened specifically for finfish and shrimp in portions of state waters east of the Mississippi River in Orleans, St. Tammany, St. Bernard Parishes and in Plaquemines.

These reopenings were ordered following the completion of comprehensive testing by the NOAA in consultation with the FDA. The FDA advised that following extensive sensory testing by NOAA’s sensory experts
and analytical chemistry results, the fish samples tested from previously closed areas are safe for consumption.
Reminder: There is no test developed yet that measures the amount of dispersants in the fish. The smell test will not work as a detection tool much less a confirmatory test, because these toxic chemicals have little to no door. The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) also opened oyster areas 1, 4, and 6 last week. These areas are also east of the Mississippi River, but away from the Chandeleur Sound area.

Louisiana continues to push for the FDA to reopen crab fishing in these newly opened areas as well. Feds told the state that testing crabmeat takes longer than the tissue samples of shrimp and finfish.

On July 21, 2010, Dr. Sylvia Earle, ocean explorer-in-residence at the National Geographic Society; Dr. Carl Safina, president of Blue Ocean Institute; Dr. David Gallo, oceanographer at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution; Dr. David Guggenheim, marine biologist and conservationist; Dr. Edith Widder, president of Ocean Research & Conservation Association; and Dr. Wallace Nichols of the California Academy of Sciences reported

“Herring and whale sharks indiscriminately feed on those oil globules… In oiled areas like Louisiana’s Barataria Bay, bottom-feeders have been decimated. They said big fish like amber jacks, tuna and grouper and marine mammals are exposed to oil and dispersants by feeding on contaminated fish. Skin contact with COREXIT and oil can cause ulcers and burns to eye and mouth membranes… dispersed oil can enter the marine food chain at many points, and can bioaccumulate in animal tissue, potentially impacting marine ecosystems over many years and over a broad geographical area.”

Kevin Kleinow, an LSU professor of aquatic toxicology, said he is laying off Gulf seafood until the government releases more specifics about the testing it conducted, including exactly what species are being monitored and what levels of toxic substances are being found.
He said he is also concerned that a smell test won’t sniff out dispersants.

So picture this. Oil is still washing up daily on the beaches of these coastal areas, the shrinp, crab and oysters are bottom feeders. So if it smells fine then eat those toxins. Yumm!

Sign the Petition: Tell the FDA to Come Clean About Gulf Seafood
The safety of the Gulf’s seafood is in question because of the prolonged use of chemical dispersants on oil flowing out of the Deepwater Horizon oil well.
A study from Imperial College in London earlier this month revealed that oil spills can block the ocean’s natural ability to filter arsenic out of seawater. As these levels rise, the poison can enter the marine ecosystem and become more concentrated as it moves up the food chain. And samples of crab larvae from the area tested positive for hydrocarbons.
Consumers deserve to know the safety of the food they eat and what the FDA is doing to regulate the safety of seafood from the Gulf.

Please let your voice be heard on seafood safety. Please sign the Petition

Resources

Excerpts courtesy of   http://bit.ly/aQ9cYc

Excerpts courtesy of   http://bit.ly/cJkmOV

Excerpts courtesy of  http://bit.ly/a2pc3h

Image courtesy of   http://bit.ly/9Jmllk

“What if today you could no longer speak?”


There is a new machine that can help individuals that have lost the ability to speak talk again.

There is a new speech assist machine called the Brain-Computer Interface system that  can make communication possible again.

The Brain-Computer Interface system reads electric currents created by nerve cells talking to each other in the brain. It allows users to control a computer and communicate through e-mail, other computer-based communication systems, or synthetic speech. A multisite clinical trial for BCI is planned to begin by the end of this summer. It’s hoped that BCI will be made widely available for in-home use by people unable to communicate by other means as a result of disease or injury.

Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) is under development by researchers at the Wadsworth Center, an arm of the New York State Department of Health, in Albany, N.Y. The BCI system is made up of a small laptop computer, an amplifier, a 20-inch monitor and a cap fitted with electrodes . This brain connect up syste “reads” the electric impulses or  currents created by nerve cell activity in thedifferent oarts of the brain. The user can control the computer and communicate through e-mail, other computer-based communication systems or synthetic speech.

It has potential for use by people affected by spinal cord injuries, stroke or other diseases, Wolf and the four other people currently testing the system all have ALS. The BCI system is calibrated to the individual, and its use in anyone with advanced ALS requires a caregiver or someone else who can first put the cap containing the electrodes on the user’s head, and then start the system. From there, the user can control everything using brain signals instead of muscles, up to and including shutting down the computer.

Help us raise funds for MDA research

***Mother Nature from NC has been arrested****

by the MDA police.

Please help her post bail so she can continue her blogging work for you.

Arrested for a good cause. Please listen to my story and help me post bail. All money goes to Jerry’s Kids for camp and to further research. http://bit.ly/cTzj3e

Resources

Excerpts and Images courtesy of    http://bit.ly/dwk5Og

“Tarball stew coming to beach near you”


What are tarballs anyway?

Tarballs can be small to large chunks of crude oil and debris. They may be  dark in color congealed oil globs that stick to our feet, skin, sand, rocks, plants and soil.

(Example only tarballs depicted in image to the right.)

During the first few hours after a crude oil spill, the oil spreads into a  slick. Winds and waves tear the slick into smaller patches that are scattered over a much wider area. Weathering changes  the appearance of the oil.
First, the lighter components of the oil and methane gas mixed with it evaporates, leaving the heavier crude behind. Then some of this crude mixes with water to form an emulsion that often looks like reddish dark brown chocolate pudding. This emulsion is much thicker and stickier than the original oil. Winds, temperature, weather and waves then continue to stretch and tear the oil patches into smaller pieces, or tarballs. Hard and crusty on the outside while being soft and gooey on the inside, like a toasted marshmallow. tarballs may be as large like the one in the picture above or small coin-sized.

Tarballs are very persistent in the marine environment and if picked up by the deep ocean currents can travel long distances. The damage this goo reeks on the environment and all living tings and people is unknown.   Do not let children, animals  or pregnant women play with tarballs or on oily beaches.

Caution
If you are especially sensitive to chemicals, including the hydrocarbons found in crude oil and petroleum products avoid contact with them. They may have an allergic reaction or develop rashes even from brief contact with oil.

Contact with oil should be avoided.

If contact occurs, wash the area with soap and water, baby oil, or a widely used, safe cleaning compound such as the cleaning paste sold at auto parts stores. Avoid using solvents, gasoline, kerosene, diesel fuel, or similar products on the skin. These products, when applied to skin, present a greater health hazard than the smeared tarball itself.

Report tarball sightings

If you notice unusual numbers of tarballs on the beaches, call the U. S. Coast Guard any time at 800-424-8802.
References

Excerpts courtesy of  http://yhoo.it/9sCy3i

Excerpts courtesy of  http://bit.ly/dd39YC

Excerpts courtesy of    http://bit.ly/divjzh

Image courtesy of   http://yhoo.it/aTebiy

“Az gov. education/environment-two wrongs don’t equal a right”


AZ Governor and Legislature fails to protect the state’s  natural treasures this season.

Everything and people associated with protecting our air, resources, national and state parks  lost this legislative session.

This session seems to have been run by the most myopic state representatives in recent history. People did not work as collaborative teams,  they found few things to agree on and what was passed lead to some very poor bills moving forward.

to those of us that care about our state’s future health care for the individual as well as what he breathes, drinks and the nature parks for recreation and species preservation there was an extreme lack of support.

Neither the legislature or the governor could be counted to protect Arizona’s dwindling groundwater, rivers and streams, the state parks system or education.

The legislature passed and the governor signed a bill to weaken the state’s aquifer protection permit program, a program that institutes protective measures for groundwater rather than after-the-fact clean up. Weakening this program means that future generations will have more polluted groundwater.

More than half of our state parks could be closed by year’s end, and, without additional funding, nine more parks will likely close. These  parks include natural areas, historic places, archaeological sites and cultural resources. The state park system has suffered its most severe cuts in recent years, down from $26 million in January 2009 to possible less than $7.5 million today.

Arizonans yesterday past in an override election, an amendment to increase taxes to fund education after the legislature drained from the educational funds.

More and more Arizonan must take back the responsibility to monitor who we elect or or air, water, health, education and desert biome will become unfit to inhabit.

Resources

Excerpts courtesy of  arizona.sierraclub.org

Image courtesy of  cap-az.com

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