SETAC MultiBrief
Apr. 9, 2015

Butterflies fall victim to mosquito control
South Florida's butterflies have become the unintended victim of insecticide control, according to FIU researchers. A five-year study by scientists in the FIU Ecotoxicology and Risk Assessment Lab has found that exposure to naled, permethrin and dichlorvos — insecticides sprayed loyally for mosquito control — are acutely toxic with some species being more sensitive than others.More

15 before and after images that show how we're transforming the planet
Human beings have replaced nature as the dominant force shaping Earth. We've cleared away forests, dammed up mighty rivers, paved vast roads and transported thousands of species around the world. "To a large extent," two scientists recently wrote, "the future of the only place where life is known to exist is being determined by the actions of humans." More

Study reveals river algae transforming mercury at Superfund site
The Berlin Daily Sun
The results of a Dartmouth-led study of the Chlor-Alkali Superfund site reveals mercury from the site is being transformed into a more toxic form of the metal by periphyton or algal communities living on rocks. The finding adds a new way in which mercury from the old chemical plant on the Androscoggin River can enter the food chain.More

The best week of your life itinerary
Visit Utah
Think of it as Seven Days in Heaven. All of Utah's Mighty 5 national parks plus a few incredible stops along the way. It's hard to imagine so much inspiring beauty and so much outdoor adventure in one place until you see it for yourself, in a place called Southern Utah. More

Study forecasts 70 percent loss of West Canada's glaciers
The New York Times
The glaciers of the Canadian West could shrink by 70 percent by 2100, according to new research that has implications for predicting glacier loss around the world. The loss of mountain glaciers contributes to the rise in sea levels. As glaciers dwindle there could be also be pronounced effects on availability of water for aquatic creatures and for agriculture as well as water quality issues. More

Study suggests chemical used in BP oil spill cleanup capable of injuring people and wildlife
The Washington Post
When the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded on April 20, 2010, the immediate victims were clear enough. Eleven employees died in the blaze. There was also the ocean itself, suddenly covered in approximately three million barrels of crude. Birds of the sea became fatally entangled in oil scum. Dead fish floated to the surface. Dolphin populations declined. But the BP oil disaster also took another, slower toll. Thousands of men and women who had helped clean up the spill gradually became ill. Lungs began to burn. Skin began to blister. Nearly five years after the worst offshore spill in U.S. history, a new study by researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham suggests that an oil dispersant widely used during the cleanup of the BP disaster is capable of causing damage to humans and marine animals alike. More

Plowing prairies for grains: Biofuel crops replace grasslands nationwide
Science 2.0
Clearing grasslands to make way for biofuels may seem counterproductive, but University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers show in a study that crops, including the corn and soy commonly used for biofuels, expanded onto 7 million acres of new land in the U.S. over a recent four-year period, replacing millions of acres of grasslands. More

Norfolk Broads algae toxin threatened fish rescued by Environment Agency
BBC News
Hundreds of thousands of fish fleeing toxic algae on the Norfolk Broads have been rescued and moved to clean waters. Scientist are collecting water samples and dead fish from the affected area in Hickling to discover why the blooms of prymnesium parvum algae release toxins. The Environment Agency said 230,000 fish were rescued over two days. More

A common industry pollutant is turning bees into 'bumbling idiots'
Nature World News
The decline of pollinator populations, especially honeybees, has been something of an international crisis. Now, researchers are finding out exactly how some pollutants affect honeybees in a desperate bid to try to mitigate their harmful impact. Much like mercury, the heavy metal pollutant known as manganese is often seen as a necessary evil in this modern industrial age. It is used in making steel, matchsticks and even the batteries that power everyday life. More