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What All Parents Need to Know About Pesticides in Produce

By Robert Coleman

Every spring the Environmental Working Group (EWG) releases our Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce™. The guide can be used by anyone trying to avoid pesticides, but it's especially important for parents to limit their children's exposures to these toxic chemicals.

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Coho spawning on the Salmon River. Bureau of Land Management Oregon and Washington / CC BY 2.0

New Farm Bill Contains Sneak Attack on the Environment With Toxic Pesticides

By Derrick Z. Jackson

If fish could wail, they would scream over the lethal powers granted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in part of the draft farm bill recently rolled out by the House Agriculture Committee. The bill, passed out of committee by Chairman Mike Conaway (R-TX) on a party-line vote last month, desperately fails farmers and low-income families. It also contains a number of sneak attacks on the environment. One such provision would allow the EPA to approve new pesticides with no assessment of their potential impact on fish and wildlife covered under the Endangered Species Act.

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Health
High manganese levels were detected last year in air around S.H. Bell's South Avenue "O" facility. Google Maps

EPA to Test Southeast Chicago Yards for Dangerous Neurotoxin

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it would start testing the soil in residential yards in Chicago's Southeast Side for the dangerous neurotoxin manganese, The Chicago Tribune reported Thursday.

The EPA will also explain the soil sampling at a community discussion from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

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Health
The relationship between Zika virus and microcephaly is one example of how climate change impacts children's health. CDC

Climate Change Could Undo Global Children’s Health Gains, Study Finds

In the past 25 years, the world has made major progress improving child health and reducing child mortality. But all that hard work could be undone by climate change, a study published in Pediatrics Tuesday warned.

Pediatricians Dr. Kevin Chan of Memorial University and Dr. Rebecca Pass Philipsborn of the Emory University School of Medicine found that 88 percent of the disease burden associated with climate change would fall on children's shoulders, CNN reported Tuesday.

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Health

One Mom’s Campaign to Save the Swimmers

By Stacy Malkan

"I want grandkids one day, so sperm is important to me because I've got three young boys," said mom, author and social media genius Leah Segedie in a video introducing her "Save the Swimmers" campaign.

"This is where my youngest rolls his eyes at me and says, 'I know Mom. Avoiding plastics can help save my swimmers, oooh kay.' But to me this is no laughing matter. Over 25 years of studies have demonstrated that these little sperm are crying out for help."

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A Palestinian man prays at Gaza's port, where the enclave's crucial fishing industry now struggles. Kaamil Ahmed / Mongabay

Gaza City Residents’ Water Problems Worsen

By Kaamil Ahmed

Red-faced and with his hair still wet, Hani Abu Amirah's grandson sobbed as he shuffled over to where she sat, looking out on the Mediterranean Sea from Gaza's Shati refugee camp.

The boy's distress stemmed from his decision to go swimming a little earlier that morning, one that incurred his father's wrath when he was yanked out of the water and beaten for disobeying orders to stay away from the sea. A year ago, that childlike act of enjoyment would have gone unnoticed but today 80 percent of Gaza's Mediterranean Sea coastline is thought to be polluted and families who used to rely on it for livelihoods and leisure now fear its waters.

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Health

Lead in Grape Juice: FDA's Proposed Limit Won't Protect Children

By Tom Neltner

On March 12, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will be leading the U.S. delegation in the Netherlands proposing that the Codex Alimentarius Commission adopt a maximum lead limit of 40 parts per billion (ppb) in grape juice. The current limit, set by Codex in the 1980s, is 50 ppb. While it's a small step in the right direction, FDA's proposal falls woefully short of adequately protecting children from lead.

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'The Dirt Cure': Why Human Health Depends on Soil Health

By Julie Wilson

Our connection to nature is sacred, dating back to the beginning of our existence. It's no wonder then that our health is intimately intertwined with the earth—from the soil beneath our feet, to the food we eat, to the water we drink and to the air that fills our lungs.

In other words, nature determines our health, upon which much of our well-being—and even our happiness—depends.

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Health

EPA Dissolves Program That Studies Effects of Chemical Exposure on Children

By Jake Johnson

As the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the leadership of Scott Pruitt moves to make it easier for big industry to dump dangerous chemicals into the nation's air and water, the agency announced late Monday that it is dissolving a program that funds studies on the effects of pollution and chemical exposure on America's children.

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