Today’s blog is the second in a series that I am writing to cover some of the most common toxic chemicals in our homes and every day environment. Today’s blog covers a class of chemicals commonly referred to as chemical flame retardants.
Green news, reflections, and stories from Ohio's leading environmental advocates.
The impacts of global warming are happening right now in Ohio’s back yard and are not something that will be felt decades from now in countries far away. Things like an increase in: ticks in southeast Ohio, the frequency and intensity of toxic algae in Lake Erie, and extreme weather are just a few of the ways Ohio is already feeling the effect of global warming.
In 2014, from the early morning (2:00 am) of Saturday, August 2 to 10:00am Monday August 4, Toledo residents were warned not to drink their tap water. A massive growth of toxic algae parked over the Collins Park Water Treatment Plant’s water intake pipe in western Lake Erie. This type of algae produces a toxin called microcystin (see the section below), which makes water unsafe for humans and animals to drink and in many cases even touch.
In a historical move that OEC has been advocating for years, the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) recently issued a new rule clarifying the reach of the Clean Water Act to ensure the protection of headwater streams across the country. For Ohio, this rule should be seen as an essential weapon to help fight the ongoing battle to protect Ohioans from water pollution. Alas, just weeks ago, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, on behalf of the Kasich Administration, filed a lawsuit in federal court to block this rule instead.
We’ve just completed a months-long, nationwide search for our next executive director. And today, we’re happy to announce that we’ve found her!
Many of us assume that the products we use in and around our homes on a daily basis are generally safe. We believe that we have adequate systems in place to provide protection from unsafe chemicals in products such as the carpet or paint in our homes, the furniture we sit on, or even the shampoo we use to wash our young babies’ hair. Unfortunately this is not so.
Although our state parks are off the chopping block, the oil and gas industry now has its sights set on local parks. Fracking lobbyists are pushing for what may be the most brazen attempt yet to force fracking on public lands down our throats.
Last week I revisited the fracking chemical fire and resulting fish kill that occurred one year ago in Monroe County. You heard some of the stories of local residents, learned about how the accident started, and gained insight into the hampered emergency response efforts. Now I’ll dig in a little deeper into the state’s response – or lack thereof – in the year following this event.
The Court held that the US EPA’s decision not to consider costs to the industry when deciding that it was “appropriate and necessary” to regulate power plants – saving thousands of lives each year in the process – was unreasonable. Needless to say, the decision is another stern reminder that more work must be done when it comes to environmental protection in the courts.
The big question lingering, to this day, is WHY these concerned families and community members were left without answers.