User: flenvcenter Topic: Waste-Independent
Category: Disposal
Last updated: Sep 02 2014 19:50 IST RSS 2.0
 
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Plastic Bags, Nuclear Waste and a Toxic Planet 2.9.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Last week we saw California move a step closer to banning one-time use plastic bags and the Federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission legalize above ground storage of nuclear waste. What's the connection? Every once in a while I think it is useful to turn aside from the deeply rooted, but relatively straightforward problem of climate change, to the growing use of uncontrolled toxic substances in our daily economic life. The toxicity of our environment may well be more difficult to address than the problem of climate change. The use of toxics in the goods we consume is so widespread that when firefighters enter a modern home that is burning, they must wear breathing devices for protection from the toxicity of the fumes that emanate from our burning floors, appliances, and walls. Household toxics are dangerous, but nothing compared to nuclear waste. Nuclear waste is one of the most toxic substances we have ever fabricated, always bringing to mind the late Barry Commoner's common sense statement that nuclear ...
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Government Looking For Trains To Haul Radioactive Waste, But There's Nowhere For Them To Go 31.8.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
ATLANTA (AP) — The U.S. government is looking for trains to haul radioactive waste from nuclear power plants to disposal sites. Too bad those trains have nowhere to go. Putting the cart before the horse, the U.S. Department of Energy recently asked companies for ideas on how the government should get the rail cars needed to haul 150-ton casks filled with used, radioactive nuclear fuel. They won't be moving anytime soon. The latest government plans call for having an interim test storage site in 2021 and a long-term geologic depository in 2048. No one knows where those sites will be, but the Obama administration is already thinking about contracts to develop, test and certify the necessary rail equipment. U.S. Energy Department officials did not return messages seeking detailed comment. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and Department of Transportation share responsibility for regulating shipments. "We know we're going to have to do it, so you might as well do it," said James Conca, senior scientist ...
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Abandoned landfills are a big problem 29.8.2014 Environmental News Network
Abandoned landfill sites throughout the UK routinely leach polluting chemicals into rivers, say scientists. At Port Meadow alone, on the outskirts of Oxford, they estimate 27.5 tonnes of ammonium a year find their way from landfill into the River Thames. The researchers say it could be happening at thousands of sites around the UK.
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Removal of Trace Organic Chemicals and Performance of a Novel Hybrid Ultrafiltration-Osmotic Membrane Bioreactor 29.8.2014 Environmental Science & Technology: Latest Articles (ACS Publications)

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Environmental Science & Technology
DOI: 10.1021/es501051b
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How the zero-waste economy benefits everyone 28.8.2014 Business Operations | GreenBiz.com

In a truly circular economy where waste becomes nutrients, economic growth would be decoupled from environmental restraints. See who is leading the way.

How the zero-waste economy benefits everyone
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Uncontrolled Trash Burning Significantly Worsens Air Pollution 27.8.2014 Environmental News Network
Unregulated trash burning around the globe is pumping far more pollution into the atmosphere than shown by official records. A new study led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research estimates that more than 40 percent of the world's garbage is burned in such fires, emitting gases and particles that can substantially affect human health and climate change.
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Train Carrying Propane Derails Near Canadian Border, Causes Evacuation 27.8.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
WILLISTON, N.D. (AP) — A Burlington Northern Santa Fe train carrying unscented propane derailed near Canada's border with Minnesota and North Dakota early Tuesday, prompting the evacuation of about 40 people who live near the site, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said. Manitoba RCMP media relations officer Tara Seel said the RCMP responded to a train derailment in the town of Emerson at about 7:30 a.m. Tuesday. She added that no leaks were detected and no injuries were reported. Seel said the train was carrying unscented propane. BNSF spokeswoman Amy McBeth said the train was traveling from Grand Forks, North Dakota, toward Winnipeg, Manitoba, when three of its cars derailed at Emerson. She said two of the cars that derailed were carrying liquid propane gas and the third car was empty. McBeth said the cause of the accident is still being investigated. Andrew Kirking, the emergency manager of Pembina County on the North Dakota side of the border, said the train derailed about 100 yards into Canada and ...
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Trash Burning Far More Polluting Than Expected As Countries Often Fail To Report Emissions 27.8.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
NEW DELHI (AP) — Rampant trash-burning is throwing more pollution and toxic particles into the air than governments are reporting, according to a scientific study estimating more than 40 percent of the world's garbage is burned. The study published Tuesday in the journal Environmental Science and Technology attempts the first comprehensive assessment of global trash-burning data, including carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, mercury and tiny particulate matter that can dim the sun's rays or clog human lungs. "Doing this study made me realize how little information we really have about garbage burning and waste management," said lead researcher Christine Wiedinmyer of the government-funded National Center for Atmospheric Research, in Boulder, Colorado. "What's really interesting is all the toxins. We need to look further at that." It also presents the first country-by-country index of rough emissions estimates for both carbon dioxide and toxic pollutants linked to human disease, though researchers ...
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Not All Michiganders Want To Be A Dumping Ground For America's Radioactive Fracking Waste 27.8.2014 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
Michigan will take a look at its radioactive waste disposal standards after criticism grew over an out-of-state company dumping fracking byproducts in a landfill near Detroit. On Monday, Mich. Gov. Rick Snyder (R) ordered the Department of Environmental Quality to assemble a panel to review standards for disposal of waste containing low levels of Technologically Enhanced Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials (TENORM) . The panel will include experts from environmental groups, the waste disposal industry, the oil and gas industry and academia. Meanwhile, the landfill at the center of the controversy has voluntarily decided to temporarily halt disposal of oil and gas industry waste. Wayne Disposal, located about 35 miles southwest of Detroit, was due to receive a shipment of more than 30 tons of fracking waste from Pennsylvania oil and gas company Range Resources last week after the material was rejected from landfills in Pennsylvania and West Virginia , according to the Detroit Free Press. The ...
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Researchers Develop Transparent Solar Concentrator That Could Cover Windows, Electronics 24.8.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Scientists at the University of Michigan announced this week the creation of a “ transparent luminescent solar concentrator ” that could turn windows and even cellphone screens into solar-power generators. This technology could mean that one day entire skyscrapers might be able to generate solar power without blocking out light or ruining tenants' views. The material works by absorbing light in the invisible spectrum (ultraviolet and near infrared) and then re-emitting it in the infrared. The infrared light is then channeled to the edge of the clear surface, where thin strips of photovoltaic cells generate the power. Yimu Zhao, a doctoral student in chemical engineering and materials science, and Richard Lunt, assistant professor of chemical engineering and materials science, run a test in Lunt’s lab. Lunt and his team have developed a new material that can be placed over windows and create solar energy. Photo by G.L. Kohuth Because we cannot see infrared or ultraviolet light, the material remains ...
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Air Testing Lapse At New Mexico Nuclear Waste Dump Blamed On Staff Vacancy 23.8.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
By Laura Zuckerman Aug 22 (Reuters) - State regulators failed to collect air samples in the week following a radiation release at a New Mexico nuclear waste dump because of a vacancy in the office responsible for monitoring the site at the time, a state official said on Friday. The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, where drums of plutonium-tainted refuse from government nuclear weapons laboratories are buried in caverns a half a mile deep, has been closed since Feb. 14, when unsafe radiation levels were detected at the site. Preliminary findings from an investigation of the mishap suggests that at least one barrel of improperly packaged material underwent a chemical reaction underground that caused it to rupture. The leak ranks as the worst accident at the U.S. Energy Department facility since it opened in southeastern New Mexico near the town of Carlsbad in 1999. The plant, the only facility of its kind in the United States, is run under contract for the government by Nuclear Energy ...
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Kenya Recycles E-Waste From Around The World, Keeping Pollutants Out Of Landfills 22.8.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
MACHAKOS, Kenya (AP) — In an industrial area outside Kenya's capital city, workers in hard hats and white masks take shiny new power drills to computer parts. This assembly line is not assembling, though. It is dismantling some of the estimated 50 million metric tons of hazardous electronic-waste the world generated last year. The clanking is rhythmic as the workers unscrew, detach and toss motherboards onto piles of gleaming circuitry at the East African Compliant Recycling facility. Workers wipe hard drives with magnets, shred small appliances, and bundle old cables like bales of multi-colored hay. Stacks of dingy gray computer towers — some with now-ancient floppy disk drives — cover much of one wall. The cornerstone is a cardboard box labeled "PCs for Africa." The amount of electronic waste generated globally last year is enough to fill 100 Empire State Buildings and represents more than 15 pounds (6.8 kilograms) for every living person, according to the U.N. Environmental Program. Much of that ...
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China's Coal Gas Boom Holds Climate Change Risks 22.8.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
HEXIGTEN, China (AP) — Deep in the hilly grasslands of remote Inner Mongolia, twin smoke stacks rise more than 200 feet into the sky, their steam and sulfur billowing over herds of sheep and cattle. Both day and night, the rumble of this power plant echoes across the ancient steppe, and its acrid stench travels dozens of miles away. This is the first of more than 60 coal-to-gas plants China wants to build, mostly in remote parts of the country where ethnic minorities have farmed and herded for centuries. Fired up in December, the multibillion-dollar plant bombards millions of tons of coal with water and heat to produce methane, which is piped to Beijing to generate electricity. It's part of a controversial energy revolution China hopes will help it churn out desperately needed natural gas and electricity while cleaning up the toxic skies above the country's eastern cities. However, the plants will also release vast amounts of heat-trapping carbon dioxide, even as the world struggles to curb greenhouse ...
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Clothing store’s take-back program shows how recycling can be a strategy for retailers 22.8.2014 TreeHugger
This year marks the 20th anniversary of a partnership between The Bon-Ton stores and Goodwill that has recycled millions of pounds of clothing.
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Wind Turbine Syndrome Cast Off By Courts As Developers Win Suits Filed By Disgruntled Neighbors 22.8.2014 Politics on HuffingtonPost.com
This story originally appeared on Climate Central. To wind farm opponents, wind turbine syndrome is a manifold malady triggered by acoustic pulses and other unfortunate side effects of large wind turbines. To wind farm developers, syndrome claims can mean stomach-churning marches into courtrooms and municipal hearings, where legal teams defend projects against allegations they’re responsible for everything from headaches and sleeplessness to vertigo, blurred vision, and forgetfulness. In these legal fights, the wind energy developers are winning. To the judges presiding over the cases, evidence that wind turbine syndrome exists has seemed as wispy as the cirrus clouds that can herald a stiffening breeze. The Energy and Policy Institute , a clean energy advocacy group, reviewed rulings from 49 lawsuits and similar complaints filed in five Western countries. In a report published last week , the group says it could find just one case of a court siding with neighbors who claimed wind turbines had made them ...
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Fear the falcon 21.8.2014 Current Issue
A man and his raptors take on Washington's dump scavengers.
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These Inspiring Posters Will Remind New Yorkers Why The People's Climate March Is So Important 21.8.2014 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
The organizers of what may become the largest climate-change march in history have just announced the winners of a poster design contest to promote the event in one of New York City’s most visible locations. The two winning designs, which were chosen by a panel of judges including Shepard Fairey, Barbara Kruger and Moby, will appear on one out of every 10 train cars on the New York City subway from August 25 until the People's Climate March on September 21, according to the video from the campaigning community Avaaz. The march, which is expected to include more than 750 groups and businesses, is timed to coincide with a gathering of world leaders for the 2014 United Nations Climate Summit on September 23. President Obama has already pledged to attend the summit, and the U.N. has also invited many mayors and business leaders. "In a rational world, policymakers would have heeded scientists when they first sounded the alarm 25 years ago," Bill McKibben said in a Rolling Stone article announcing the march in ...
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N-Nitrosodimethylamine Formation upon Ozonation and Identification of Precursors Source in a Municipal Wastewater Treatment Plant 19.8.2014 Environmental Science & Technology: Latest Articles (ACS Publications)

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Environmental Science & Technology
DOI: 10.1021/es5011658
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New Coal Ash Threat Identified: Toxic Dust Hurting Lungs, Hearts 7.8.2014 Truthout - All Articles
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Municipal waste could provide 12 percent of U.S. power 30.7.2014 Business Operations | GreenBiz.com

A study by Columbia University's Earth Engineering Center highlights opportunities already developed in Europe.

Municipal waste could provide 12 percent of U.S. power
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