Read the full story in Grist.
In Montana, the Keystone XL pipeline’s proposed path cuts underneath the Missouri River at the edge of the Fort Peck Reservation’s southwestern border. The Fort Peck Reservation is home to several bands of the Assiniboine and Sioux tribes, and a spill from the pipeline could contaminate their main source of drinking water.
Federal agencies are required by law to work with Native American tribes that might be affected by oil and gas projects. But there hasn’t been a single public hearing on the Fort Peck Reservation yet, even though the pipeline has been a source of controversy for about a decade.
There are similar stories in Virginia, New Mexico, and elsewhere across the country, according to Indian law experts tracking oil and gas projects. Tribal officials say they try to contact federal agencies and don’t hear back, or that agencies make key decisions before contacting them. Sometimes an agency sends letters asking for tribes’ input to the wrong address or never contacts them at all.
Read the full story from ARS Technica.
Science has had issues with racism from its very beginning. At best, many of the early scientists had ideas that typified the racist societies of their times. At worst, they actively participated in providing justification for that racism, a habit that reached its peak in the eugenics movement of the first half of last century. But World War II made the end point of eugenics painfully obvious, causing mainstream science to re-evaluate and reject many of its racist ideas.
But as racists have become increasingly public in the early years of this century, they’ve once again turned to science for support—and found some scientists ready to provide it. How in the world did this happen?
Angela Saini’s new book Superior provides not one but multiple answers to that question. They range from tracking how a rich segregationist helped keep race-focused biology on life support to a view into how naive scientists are still accepting society’s ideas on race despite their lack of a biological basis. The book makes for a compelling read, but it’s an especially important caution for the science-inclined, who can benefit from being forced to step back and re-examine their assumptions on race and where they came from.
Read the full story from CBS News.
As the nation plans new defenses against the more powerful storms and higher tides expected from climate change, one project stands out: an ambitious proposal to build a nearly 60-mile “spine” of concrete seawalls, earthen barriers, floating gates and steel levees on the Texas Gulf Coast.
Like other oceanfront projects, this one would protect homes, delicate ecosystems and vital infrastructure, but it also has another priority: to shield some of the crown jewels of the petroleum industry, which is blamed for contributing to global warming and now wants the federal government to build safeguards against the consequences of it.
Read the full story from Environmental Health News.
Tommy Joyce is no cinephile. The last movie he saw in a theater was the remake of “True Grit” nearly a decade ago. “I’d rather watch squirrels run in the woods” than sit through most of what appears on the big screen, he said.
But there’s a film that opened Dec. 5 at the Regal Cinemas at Grand Central Mall that’s attracting a lot of attention in his community. “Dark Waters” — a legal thriller starring Mark Ruffalo, with a script inspired by a 2016 New York Times article — tells the epic story of the DuPont corporation’s failure to inform residents of the Mid-Ohio Valley of the considerable health risks of a perfluoroalkyl substance [PFAS] called perfluorooctanoic acid, or C8, for its chain of eight carbons.
The chemical was used in DuPont’s production of Teflon and other household products at its Washington Works facility just outside Parkersburg, along the Ohio River. C8 is found in nonstick pans, waterproof clothing, stain-resistant carpets, microwave popcorn bags, fast-food wrappers and hundreds of other products. According to a 2007 study, C8 is in the blood of 99.7% of Americans. It’s called a “forever chemical” because it never fully degrades.
Read the full story in Refrigerated & Frozen Foods.
The definition of responsible sourcing has expanded beyond food safety to include issues like worker safety, animal welfare and the environment, but the definition of “supply chain” is changing too.
Read the full story from Green Tech Media.
Developers want to sell solar like Netflix. But the community solar model still has a few snags to work through.
Read the full story from Mother Nature Network.
The descendants of John Winthrop, founder of the Massachusetts Bay Colony nearly 400 years ago, recently set aside 14,000 acres along the Savannah River that will forever remain undeveloped. It’s the largest private conservation easement in South Carolina history.
Its significance, though, goes well beyond the creation of a natural bulwark against overdevelopment and forest loss.
Read the full story at BSR.
As 2019 comes to a close, we are taking a moment to look back at the news and initiatives that shaped the year. The most popular blog posts and reports BSR published this year show reader interest in a variety of topics, from collaboration to climate change, that are sure to impact sustainability strategies for the decade to come.
Read the full story in Nature.
A peer-reviewed science journal for school students is giving new life to inventions that might otherwise gather dust under the bed.
The new Canadian Science Fair Journal is the first of its kind, giving school kids as young as six a platform to publish their work, which has so far included creating new bioplastics, forest fire-detectors, and a Dyslexia-friendly reading tool.