SETAC MultiBrief
May. 30, 2013

How senators found common ground on TSCA reform
Environment & Energy Publishing
They say compromise legislation leaves nobody happy. And that's pretty much true about the surprise chemical management bill released by near-opposite Sens. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., and David Vitter, R-La. The "Chemical Safety Improvement Act of 2013" would overhaul the 1976 Toxic Substances Control Act for the first time in its history, a long-sought goal of environmental and public health advocates.More

An examination of the Gulf of Mexico dead zone
The American Prospect
To get an idea of how American coastal waters might look just before they succumb to all the degradations they have suffered these past five centuries, it would be worth taking a July trip to Mobile Bay, an Alabama inlet that feeds into the Gulf of Mexico. If the air is still and hot, an event may occur that Gulf Coast residents call a "jubilee." The bottom-dwelling flounder will be among its first victims, growing agitated as each successive gulp of water brings less and less oxygen across their gills.More

New Mexico county first in nation to ban fracking to safeguard water
Los Angeles Times
In acting to protect their water supply, the 5,000 residents of poor, conservative Mora County make it the first in the U.S. to ban fracking — hydraulic fracturing for oil. The California community closest to adopting an anti-fracking ordinance is Culver City, which includes a portion of the 1,000-acre Inglewood Oil Field. More than 1 million people live within five miles of the field, where some 1,600 wells have been drilled since 1925.More

Greek yogurt's dark side
Modern Farmer
For every three or four ounces of milk, companies can produce only one ounce of creamy Greek yogurt. The rest becomes acid whey. It's a thin, runny waste product that can't simply be dumped. Not only would that be illegal, but whey decomposition is toxic to the natural environment, robbing oxygen from streams and rivers.More

Lisa Jackson to join Apple after serving as EPA chief
The Huffington Post
Former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson will be joining Apple, CEO Tim Cook announced. The news came at All Things Digital's D11 conference in Southern Calif. Jackson will coordinate environmental practices for the company, All Things D reported.More

Wal-Mart pleads guilty to dumping hazardous waste
USA Today
Wal-Mart Stores settled a decade-long investigation into its hazardous waste practices when it pleaded guilty to criminal charges and agreed to pay $81 million, the Environmental Protection Agency said. In cases filed in Los Angeles and San Francisco, Wal-Mart pleaded guilty to six counts of violating the Clean Water Act by illegally handling and disposing of hazardous materials at its retail stores across the United States.More

Clandestine lab team called in after unknown chemicals found in Canada
CTV News
Royal Canadian Mounted Police are investigating after a possible clandestine lab or illegal chemical dump site was discovered near a town north of Regina, Saskatchewan. A resident called police after he found several dead patches of grass and some unusual chemical containers at an abandoned homestead near Strasbourg. A clandestine lab team that includes RCMP, fire, EMS and specially trained staff from the Ministry of Environment was called in.More

UK official: Humans may not be to blame for global warming
The Telegraph
Tim Yeo, the chairman of the U.K.'s Commons Energy and Climate Change committee, said he accepts the earth's temperature is increasing but said "natural phases" may be to blame. Such a suggestion sits at odds with the scientific consensus. One recent survey of 12,000 academic papers on climate change found 97 percent agree human activities are causing the planet to warm.More

Fire rages for 10 hours after Baltimore chemical freight train crash
NBC News
VideoBrief A huge fire outside Baltimore, triggered by the collision of a freight train carrying chemicals and a trash truck, raged for 10 hours before being brought under control, officials said. The blazing cars were carrying terephthalic acid and fluoroacetic acid, which Baltimore County Fire Chief John Hohman said are not toxic inhalants. However, residents were encouraged to avoid excessive exposure to the smoke.More