Day: July 25, 2019

PFAS Legislation Aims to Impact Clean Water Utilities

Read the full story at JD Supra.

The United States House of Representatives has passed per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (“PFAS”) legislation as part of annual amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (“NDAA”), H.R. 2500. Two last-minute amendments carry the potential for serious consequences for clean water utilities, as the amendments would trigger liability for all PFAS chemicals under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (“CERCLA”) as hazardous substances, which could potentially impose Superfund liability for biosolids containing PFAS. In addition to CERCLA liability, the amendments would also require that all PFAS be added to the Clean Water Act (“CWA”) toxic pollutants list, require the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) to develop CWA effluent limitations for PFAS, and require pretreatment standards for PFAS.

Upcoming Intro to ECHO Webinar

Join U.S. EPA for its next Enforcement and Compliance History Online (ECHO) webinar on Tuesday, August 13, 2019, 1:30-2:30 PM Eastern Daylight Time. This webinar will provide an overview of the data in ECHO and guide users through using the site to answer environmental compliance and enforcement questions. The focus of this session will be a collection of short, step-by-step demonstrations geared toward new and infrequent users. We will demonstrate the capabilities of the ECHO Facility Search to answer questions such as: 

  • How do I search for a specific facility?
  • How do I search for facilities in my community?
  • How do I search for facilities releasing a pollutant?

Register at https://echo.epa.gov/help/training#upcoming to save your spot.

If you can’t make it, don’t worry, ECHO tutorials and recorded webinars are available at any time.

Honeybees hit by Trump budget cuts

Read the full story from CNN. The Washington Post explains why the timing on this is bad.

The US Department of Agriculture has suspended data collection for its annual Honey Bee Colonies report, citing cost cuts — a move that robs researchers and the honeybee industry of a critical tool for understanding honeybee population declines, and comes as the USDA is curtailing other research programs.

Environmental Journalism Can Help Protect Citizens in Emerging Democracies

Read the full story in the Revelator.

How does reporting on the environment promote democracy? A journalism professor describes conditions in the Republic of Georgia, where the media isn’t equipped to cover issues like pollution.

Find a tick? A new website can tell you if it’s the kind that carries Lyme disease

Read the full story at KawarthaNOW.com.

Every summer, we hear about the potential dangers of being bitten by a tick and developing Lyme disease — a potentially serious inflammatory infection.

But not every one of the 40 species of ticks in Canada carries Lyme disease so, if you find a tick, the first step is to identify what species it is.

There’s where a new website comes in. At www.etick.ca, you can submit a photo of any tick you find and get confirmation if it belongs to the species that carry Lyme bacteria. The website also includes real-time mapping of tick submissions, and a free mobile app will be launching in the fall.

Grocery chains make strides in sustainability

Read the full story in Supermarket News.

Wegmans, H-E-B, Metro tackle food and plastic waste, carbon emissions

What consumer trends will drive produce demand for the next 25 years?

Read the full story in The Packer.

The Packer’s 125th-anniversary editionis coming out later this year, and it has been fun collecting material for that publication and publishing articles from past anniversary editions.

One of the tools we used was an industry survey asking readers 11 questions about the past, present and future of the fresh produce trade. The survey is still open, and readers are welcome to weigh in with their perspectives. 

Here is one of the questions from the survey, and answers from our readers in response:

What consumer trends will drive sales and demand for produce in the next 25 years?

Kroger Calls On EPA Head To Regulate Industry Food Waste

Read the full story from Cincinnati Public Radio.

Kroger is asking the Environmental Protection Agency to set industry standards that would eliminate food waste.

The head of the EPA met with company leaders today to hear what the roadblocks are. The grocery chain says it wants to end hunger in communities it serves and eliminate waste by 2025.

New SIU graduate degree readies students for land, habitat management careers

Read the full story in the Southern Illinoisan.

A few years ago, agencies such as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and nongovernment organizations began noticing that recent Bachelor of Science graduates in wildlife management weren’t adequately trained as land or people managers, said Michael Eichholz, associate professor for the zoology degree program and director of the wildlife administration and management graduate program. Even graduate students earning Master of Science degrees typically received training focused only on research and population management, with the goal of creating wildlife population managers instead of those focused on habitat.

But that wildlife must live somewhere, and land management was being left out of the equation. In the new SIU program, students specialize in how to be natural resource lands managers, instead of focusing on the more general understanding of wildlife ecology without direction toward a specific position.

ECHA Updates Chemicals Database, Increases Visibility of Nanomaterials

Read the full story at JD Supra.

The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) announced on July 3, 2019, that several new features and improvements are now publicly available in its chemicals database, including new information in substance Infocards.  

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