Beaches at risk due to the increase in atmospheric CO2

Read the full story from AAAS.

The appearance of dunes and beaches might soon be changing due to the increase in carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere, already a significant factor in the ongoing phenomena of climate change. The findings are the result of a study coordinated by the Institute for the Study of Anthropic Impacts and Sustainability in Marine Environments of the National Research Council (CNR-IAS) of Oristano, carried out in collaboration with Ca’ Foscari University of Venice. The research, published in the journal Climatic Change, analyzed the chain reaction of effects on the marine environment triggered by the rise in CO2, estimating that from now to 2100 the accumulation of sediment at the base of the Mediterranean dune systems could fall by 31%, with erosion of beaches and an increased risk of flooding. The case study analyzed by the researchers was the Bay of San Giovanni, along the Sinis peninsula in Sardinia.

New tool developed by Esri and USGS allows users to explore islands worldwide

Read the full story at Geospatial World.

A new tool that gives users the most detailed view yet of the world’s islands is now available from the USGS and Esri. And it’s as close as your computer or cellphone. The Global Islands Explorer (GIE) is an online app that can help a variety of users, from researchers to policy-makers to the interested public, to locate and access basic information on hundreds of thousands of islands across the globe.

Petition urges better technology to treat Puget Sound sewage

Read the full story from the Kitsap Sun.

An environmental group is asking Washington state regulators to require municipalities to use the latest technology to treat sewage before it’s released into Puget Sound.

Managing and Transforming Waste Streams: A Tool for Communities

The Managing and Transforming Waste Streams Tool features a table of 100 measures communities can employ to reduce waste and recover materials. By using interactive functions (sorting, searching and/or filtering), local planners can explore best practices in the form of ordinances, policies, programs, contracts, outreach & technical assistance, and infrastructure development, with the objective of creating a list of strategies tailored to their community’s needs and capabilities.

The tool also includes over 300 implementation examples from communities across the U.S., including links to local ordinances and program websites, as well as model language for amending service provider contracts or franchise agreements. The measures and implementation examples capture nuances in approaches local governments can take and illustrate opportunities to phase in more stringent practices over time.

This tool can provide decision support to:
  • municipal and tribal agency staff and decision-makers working on solid waste plan updates or zero waste plans
  • regional and state agencies coordinating waste management planning for a group of local agencies
  • other parties who are familiar with their community’s solid waste management system and interested in community-based initiatives

It was developed by a team of zero waste consultants and solid waste program managers making informed observations from hands-on work in communities, with contributions from EPA.

More protection: UN says Earth’s ozone layer is healing

Read the full story from the Associated Press.

Earth’s protective ozone layer is finally healing from damage caused by aerosol sprays and coolants, a new United Nations report said.

Minnesota has fought PFAS for years. Here’s how its plan can help Michigan.

Read the full story from Bridge.

Gov. Rick Snyder says Michigan is the nation’s leader in responding to PFAS, harmful industrial chemicals regulators are increasingly finding in Michigan waters…

Minnesota first acted on PFAS in 2002, searching for PFAS in its water and, unlike Michigan, developing drinking water standards for the chemicals. Minnesota sued 3M in 2010 and will reap hundreds of millions of dollars for cleanups through a settlement signed this year.

Minnesota officials recently gave Michigan leaders documents it accumulated during more than seven years of legal wrangling with 3M, John Linc Stine, commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and a former Minnesota Department of Health official, told Bridge Magazine this month.

Could trace PFAS levels found in metro Detroit schools, cities be dangerous?

Read the full story from WXYZ.

As trace amounts of PFAS are found in more and more Michigan communities and drinking water supplies, questions remain as to whether higher standards are needed.

A bill which would lower the legally enforceable hard limit of PFAS in public drinking water to 5 parts-per-trillion has sat in the House National Resources Committee of the Michigan Legislature for 11 months.

Since then, a report from the CDC was published for public comment that indicated the minimum level of risk is roughly six times lower than the EPA standard being used across the state.

That’s important because PFAS found in water is being treated differently by a variety of entities, and that includes schools in metro Detroit.

Ohio’s watershed moment: How to fix Lake Erie algae

Read the full story in Grist.

A high-profile effort by the state’s Republican governor, John Kasich, to tackle toxic algae is in limbo after months of contentious meetings, political infighting, and strong resistance from the state’s agricultural interests. The delays mean that his successor, Mike DeWine, another Republican, will be responsible for carrying out or discarding Kasich’s vision.

New apprenticeship for metals recycling launched in UK

Read the full story in Resource.

Sir Gerry Berragan, Chief Executive of the Institute for Apprenticeships, has launched the first apprenticeship focusing specifically on the metals recycling industry.

The Metal Recycling General Operative (MRGO) is a level 2 apprenticeship for employees of any age. A 12 to 18 month assessment, it covers a range of areas within the £7 billion UK metals recycling industry and explores the problems that those working in the field face.

Graphene takes a step towards renewable fuel

Read the full story from Science Daily.

Researchers are working to develop a method to convert water and carbon dioxide to the renewable energy of the future, using the energy from the sun and graphene applied to the surface of cubic silicon carbide. They have now taken an important step towards this goal, and developed a method that makes it possible to produce graphene with several layers in a tightly controlled process.