The Stream, February 29: New York Community’s Drinking Water Latest To Be Contaminated

The Global Rundown

The drinking water in Hoosick Falls, New York is contaminated with a toxic chemical, raising concerns about how such chemicals are regulated –or not– in the United States. Three executives have been indicted over the 2011 disaster at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant, and emails show that state advisers in Michigan were concerned about water quality in Flint as early as 2014. The damage from global sea level rise will likely outpace sea level rise itself, a new study found. Elephants may be flown from Swaziland to the United States to relieve pressure on food supplies for other wildlife amid a severe drought. Calls by Republican presidential candidates to drastically cut the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are unrealistic, experts say.

“It reflects a lack of understanding over the US legal system, you’d have to fundamentally repeal or change all our environmental laws.” –Robert Percival, director of the environmental law program at the University of Maryland law school, on calls by Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump to cut the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. (Guardian)

By The Numbers

3 executives Number, who formerly worked for Tokyo Electric Power Co., that have been indicted for the 2011 disaster at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant. Contaminated water is still a major problem at the site. Bloomberg

18 elephants Number that could be flown to the United States from Swaziland due to a severe drought there that is destroying food supplies for wildlife. The elephants compete with endangered rhinos for food. Guardian

Science, Studies, And Reports

A sea level rise of 11 centimeters by 2050 could cost Copenhagen more than $1 billion each year without further protective measures, according to a new study by researchers at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research. The study concluded that the damage and costs of sea level rise around the world will increase at a faster rate than rising seas themselves. Reuters

On The Radar

Several communities near Hoosick Falls, New York have found that their water supplies are contaminated with perfluorooctanoic acid, a toxic chemical that is used in the making of Teflon. The contamination has sparked lawsuits and raised concerns about how the chemical is regulated. The New York Times

Advisers to Michigan Governor Rick Snyder were deeply concerned about the quality of drinking water in Flint as early as 2014, and urged state officials to revert to the city’s old water supply, newly released emails show. The state did not take action to fix the problem until the end of 2015, after researchers and doctors revealed that the city’s new water source had leached lead into the drinking water. CNN

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