SETAC MultiBrief
Apr. 17, 2014

'Active cleanup' of oil spill is ended on Louisiana coast
The New York Times
The cleanup efforts on the Gulf Coast in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill have entered a new phase, with the oil company BP announcing that it is ending its "active cleanup" of Louisiana's coast almost four years after the disaster. Still, the Coast Guard stressed that a more narrow cleanup response would continue and that crews would remain on the Gulf Coast to respond to new reports of oil.More

Anadarko Petroleum to pay $5.15 billion to settle pollution case
The Washington Post
The Justice Department announced the biggest environmental cash settlement in history, securing a $5.15 billion deal with Anadarko Petroleum to clean up dozens of sites across the country and compensate more than 7,000 people living with the effects of the contamination. The agreement resolves claims stemming from the toxic legacy of one of the oil firm’s subsidiaries, Kerr-McGee, which operated a range of U.S. chemical, energy and manufacturing businesses over 85 years.More

Is California the next fracking frontier?
The Christian Science Monitor
The Monterey Shale holds more shale oil than anywhere else in the country. But environmentalists say that the Monterey can't be tapped because of the lack of water. But that issue is not what is delaying a Monterey Shale revolution. Those obstacles are tied more to the type of geological formation that exist in California. More

Cause of Lake Erie's harmful algal blooms gains more certainty
Circle of Blue
Changes in the timing and method of applying agricultural fertilizer are the primary drivers behind the increasing amounts of phosphorus entering Lake Erie and causing toxic algal blooms and a large dead zone, according to new basin-wide scientific studies. The studies, drawing on institutions from across the Great Lakes, also found that climate change is increasing the urgency of developing ways to keep fertilizers on fields and may mean that larger reductions in phosphorus will be necessary to alleviate Great Lakes algal blooms.More

Vancouver boasts an outside edge
Travel Weekly
While some cities are inevitably concrete and glass environments housing a plethora of shops, impressive museums and other indoor attractions, Vancouver is much more; in fact it's an open-air playground where, despite the sometimes inclement weather, there are opportunities for outdoor recreation everywhere.More

Evidence suggests golf course ecosystems can succeed
Nature World News
New research out of the University of Missouri suggests a viable habitat at a golf course is possible under certain conditions, and enhanced management practices may, in fact, be beneficial to ecosystems within golf courses. The study, announced in a news release by the school, focused on stream salamanders found on 10 different golf courses in the southern Appalachian region of western North Carolina.More

Conference addresses ocean threats to human health
Scripps Institute of Oceanography
Leaders from around the United States recently presented the latest findings on threats spanning from toxins in drinking water to red tides to chemicals that accumulate in human breast milk. "This conference covered many of the exciting new directions that the emerging discipline of oceans and human health is heading in the coming years," said Bradley Moore, a professor of oceanography and pharmaceutical sciences at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego and the UC San Diego Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.More

Baylor scientists aim to design safer chemicals for humans, environment
BioNews Texas
A four-university interdisciplinary team — the Molecular Design Research Network — will develop tools that help molecule designers predict toxic properties of new and existing chemicals, and modify their designs to reduce risks while maintaining their effectiveness. According to Bryan W. Brooks, Professor of environmental science and biomedical studies in Baylor University, one of the goals of this project is to leverage lessons learned from designing safer pharmaceuticals to identify attributes of industrial chemicals that could be designed to also be safer for public health and the environment. More

On ravaged tar sands lands, big challenges for reclamation
Environment 360
The mining of Canada's tar sands has destroyed large areas of sensitive wetlands in Alberta. Oil sands companies have vowed to reclaim this land, but little restoration has occurred so far and many scientists say it is virtually impossible to rebuild these complex ecosystems.More