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Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Environment Is Dead: Long Live Mother Nature


The Environment Is Dead: Long Live Mother Nature

“Environmentalism has failed” is a statement that deserves attention. It comes from famed environmentalist David Suzuki marking 50 years since Rachel Carson’s book, Silent Spring, helped spark the modern

'Faster Than We Thought': An Epitaph for Planet Earth

'Faster Than We Thought': An Epitaph for Planet Earth

Sometime later this Century, a writer will sit down and attempt to document how his or her grandparents’ generation could have all but ignored the greatest disaster humanity has ever faced.

http://www.commondreams.org/view/2012/05/23-5

Monsanto Fighting Hard to Prevent GMO Labeling


Monsanto Fighting Hard to Prevent GMO Labeling
http://www.darkgovernment.com/news/monsanto-fighting-hard-to-prevent-gmo-labeling/

Twenty years ago today, former Monsanto lawyer and present FDA deputy
commissioner Michael Taylor declared genetically engineered foods
"substantially equivalent" and declared they would not need to be labeled for
consumers.

Today is also the last day of the Money Bomb Against Monsanto Campaign, which
launched on May 1. Earlier this month, volunteers and staff from the California
Right to Know Campaign submitted nearly 1 million signed petitions from
registered voters across the state of California to county officials, to place
Right to Know Genetically Engineered Food Act on the Ballot for November 6.

This Act will require food manufacturers to identify genetically engineered
ingredients on the labels of foods sold in California.

When California voters pass this ballot initiative, the Label Genetically
Engineered Food Act will also not allow the common practice of mislabeling
genetically engineered foods as "natural" or "all natural." But the biotech
industry is not about to let this pass without a fight.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Seismic hazard: Faults discovered near Lake Tahoe could generate earthquakes ranging from 6.3 to 6.9

Seismic hazard: Faults discovered near Lake Tahoe could generate earthquakes ranging from 6.3 to 6.9

Results of a new US Geological Survey study conclude that faults west of Lake Tahoe, Calif., referred to as the Tahoe-Sierra frontal fault zone, pose a substantial increase in the seismic hazard assessment for the Lake Tahoe region of California and Nevada, and could potentially generate earthquakes with magnitudes ranging from 6.3 to 6.9.

60,000 to 100,000 dead fish wash up eastern shores of U.S. near Chesapeake Bay by The Extinction Protocol

60,000 to 100,000 dead fish wash up eastern shores of U.S. near Chesapeake Bay

Report Proves that Large Amounts of Methane are Released as the Arctic Ice Melts

Report Proves that Large Amounts of Methane are Released as the Arctic Ice Melts

Greenhouse gases are changing the atmosphere and causing more energy from the sun to be trapped here upon earth, which results in the phenomena known as global warming. CO2 is probably the most famous of the greenhouse gases, but methane is also one of the largest contributors to climate change. A new report in the journal Nature Geoscience offers some of the strongest proof that large amounts of methane are escaping from the Arctic as the ice melts.It is generally accepted that old organic material, from as far back as the last ice age, is trapped…Read more...

The Facts about Fracking Fluid and its Disposal

The Facts about Fracking Fluid and its Disposal

At a recent shale gas symposium in South Africa a question was asked “if hydraulic fracturing is so safe, why do drilling operators working in Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale Play dispose the backflow out of state in Ohio.”  The question was satirically proposed by a rather uninformed anti-fracking environmentalist. His point was to show that even a natural gas producing state wants nothing to do with the disposal of the hydraulic fluid’s flowback (chemical-laced wastewater).This discussion addresses the attendees question…Read more...

Radiation: It's just what the doctor ordered

Radiation: It's just what the doctor ordered

He's an expert on nuclear security. His wife edits articles for the Bulletin. She was home with their two-month-old baby when the doorbell rang, the dog went nuts, and the baby -- too young to roll over on his own, and protected by a pillow on the couch -- somehow ended up wailing on the floor, with the crosshatched pattern of a rattan rug imprinted on his little head. (The incident remains under investigation, but circumstantial evidence points to psycho-dog.)

Is pro-nuclear the best option for our make-or-break century?

Is pro-nuclear the best option for our make-or-break century?

Presented as part of World Environment Day 2012Environment Institute members Professors Barry Brook and Corey Bradshaw (along with Ben Heard of DecarboniseSA.com and Geoff Russell [regular BNC commenter]) are taking part in an event on nuclear power and environmentalism, held by the Town of Walkerville on Saturday 9th June 2012.
We’ll come complete with some entertaining show pieces, including a geiger counter and various ‘radioactive’ samples – it should make for a highly entertaining and informative afternoon!
More details:
Mayor Heather Wright (Town of Walkerville) invites you to take part in a public conversation on the pro-nuclear power debate. Four scientific professionals and commentators offer four perspectives on a subject that still divides public opinion. Whether you are ‘for’ ‘against’ or ‘undecided’, this is your chance to hear why all these experts agree that nuclear power is not only the safest energy source but also the one with the lowest environmental footprint.
When: Saturday 9th June 2012
Time: 2pm – 4pm
Where: Walkerville Town Hall, 66 Walkerville Terrace, Gilberton SA
Tickets to this event are free, however registration by Monday 4th June are essential as seating is limited. To register go to: http://walkerville5081.eventbrite.com To submit questions before the event, please email Sonia DeNicola, sdenicola@walkerville.sa.gov.au

1,000 years of climate data confirms Australia's warming

1,000 years of climate data confirms Australia's warming

Melbourne, Australia (SPX) May 24, 2012
In the first study of its kind in Australasia, scientists have used 27 natural climate records to create the first large-scale temperature reconstruction for the region over the last 1000 years. The study was led by researchers at the University of Melbourne and used a range of natural indicators including tree rings, corals and ice cores to study Australasian temperatures over the past mi

Earth's water cycle intensifying with atmospheric warming

Earth's water cycle intensifying with atmospheric warming

Canberra, Australia (SPX) May 24, 2012
In a paper published in the journal Science, Australian scientists from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, California, reported changing patterns of salinity in the global ocean during the past 50 years, marking a clear fingerprint of climate change. Lead author, Dr Paul Durack, said that by looking at ob

Finding fingerprints in sea level rise

Finding fingerprints in sea level rise

Boston MA (SPX) May 24, 2012
It was used to help Apollo astronauts navigate in space, and has since been applied to problems as diverse as economics and weather forecasting, but Harvard scientists are now using a powerful statistical tool to not only track sea level rise over time, but to determine where the water causing the rise is coming from. As described in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNA

China to increase rainmaking efforts

China to increase rainmaking efforts

Beijing (UPI) May 23, 2012
A leading Chinese meteorologist says the country will employ more rainmaking technology and make better use of it in the next five years. Zheng Guoguang, administrator of the China Meteorological Administration, said China's use of artificial precipitation technologies lags behind the leading countries in the field by 15 to 45 percent, the state-run news agency Xinhua reported. "

Earth's water cycle intensifying with atmospheric warming

Earth's water cycle intensifying with atmospheric warming

Canberra, Australia (SPX) May 24, 2012
In a paper published in the journal Science, Australian scientists from the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, California, reported changing patterns of salinity in the global ocean during the past 50 years, marking a clear fingerprint of climate change. Lead author, Dr Paul Durack, said that by looking at ob

WHO on Fukushima doses

WHO on Fukushima doses

A preliminary report from the World Health Organisation (WHO) has estimated the radiation doses that residents of Japan have received in the year following the accident at Fukushima Daiichi. Dose rates in most Fukushima homes were comparable to reference levels for radon.

Frozen Arctic Awaits Offshore Drilling

Frozen Arctic Awaits Offshore Drilling

Broder & Krauss, New York Times
WASHINGTON "” Shortly before Thanksgiving in 2010, the leaders of the commission President Obama had appointed to investigate the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico sat down in the Oval Office to brief him.

A Pathetic Pact for Safety on the Seas

A Pathetic Pact for Safety on the Seas

Peter Brookes, New York Post
At a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing this morning, Team Obama will start its drive for ratification of the 1982 UN Law of the Sea Treaty "” or LOST.Why push for a treaty that the country rejected decades ago?

Law of the Sea Treaty Can't Wait

Law of the Sea Treaty Can't Wait

Senator John Kerry, Politico
Wednesday begins a comprehensive discussion about whether the United States should join the Law of the Sea Convention. I’ve heard from countless military officials and conservative-minded business leaders who say it’s urgent. I’ve also spoken with senators and interest groups who oppose it.

Limits We Are Reaching - Oil, Debt, and Others

Posted: 24 May 2012 07:16 AM PDT
The world is clearly reaching many limits. From peak oil to debt crises, limits seem to be dominating the headlines. What other limits are the human and natural systems reaching now?

Climate Change Could Kill 150,000 Americans This Century

Climate Change Could Kill 150,000 Americans This Century
 

GEORGE ZORNICK | A sobering new report details how extreme heat will take a serious toll on humans this century if climate change isn't slowed.

To my readers

To my readers

To my readers, I have a Middlebury College graduation to attend this weekend in Vermont with limited internet access where I am staying, so posting will be sporatic for the next few days. I will return in full force next week. Your patience is appreciated.
Michele Kearney

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Clean Water Act Turns 40: Is the Law Still Protecting Our Waters?

The Clean Water Act Turns 40: Is the Law Still Protecting Our Waters?

The Clean Water Act of 1972, one of the boldest environmental laws ever enacted, officially enters its midlife crisis years.

Latest Southern Ocean research shows continuing deep ocean change

Latest Southern Ocean research shows continuing deep ocean change

There has been a massive reduction in the amount of Antarctic bottom water found off the coast of Antarctica, new research shows.

Toxic mercury, accumulating in the Arctic, springs from a hidden source

Toxic mercury, accumulating in the Arctic, springs from a hidden source

Environmental scientists have discovered that the Arctic accumulation of mercury, a toxic element, is caused by both atmospheric forces and the flow of circumpolar rivers that carry the element north into the Arctic Ocean. While the atmospheric source was previously recognized, it now appears that twice as much mercury actually comes from the rivers. The revelation implies that concentrations of the toxin may further increase as climate change continues to modify the region's hydrological cycle and release mercury from warming Arctic soils.

Dry lands getting drier, wet getting wetter: Earth's water cycle intensifying with atmospheric warming

Dry lands getting drier, wet getting wetter: Earth's water cycle intensifying with atmospheric warming

A clear change in salinity has been detected in the world's oceans, signaling shifts and an acceleration in the global rainfall and evaporation cycle. The patterns are not uniform, with regional variations agreeing with the 'rich get richer' mechanism, where wet regions get wetter and dry regions drier.

Mercury in dolphins higher downwind of power plants

Mercury in dolphins higher downwind of power plants

A small pilot study found higher levels of toxic mercury in dolphins downwind of power plants than in captive dolphins.

Understanding Arctic Ocean's carbon cycle

Understanding Arctic Ocean's carbon cycle

Scientists have conducted a new study to measure levels of carbon at various depths in the Arctic Ocean. The study provides data that will help researchers better understand the Arctic Ocean's carbon cycle -- the pathway through which carbon enters and is used by the marine ecosystem.

Tracking atlantic bluefin tuna shows migration secrets

Tracking atlantic bluefin tuna shows migration secrets

New fish-tagging studies of young bluefin tuna in the Atlantic off New England are offering the first fishery-independent, year-round data on dispersal patterns and habitat use for the popular game fish. Miniaturized pop-up satellite tags suitable for smaller fish helped make the research possible.

World Health Organization weighs in on Fukushima

World Health Organization weighs in on Fukushima


Today, the World Health Organization (WHO) released a preliminary estimate of the dose received by the public as a result of last March’s meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan. Nature has seen a draft of the final report, and it is mostly good news—the doses are very low, and very few cancers would be expected as a result.
Most residents of Fukushima prefecture received between 1-10 millisieverts (mSv) in the first year after the accident, according to the estimate. Those in neighbouring prefectures received between 0.1-10 mSv and the rest of Japan received between 0.1-1 mSv. These levels are well below the government’s maximum recommended dose of 20 mSv, and will cause a minimal increase in cancer risk.
The obvious question is how minimal. According to David Brenner, a radiation biophysicist at Columbia University in New York City, a dose of 5 mSv would be estimated to lead to one excess cancer per 5,000 people exposed. Given that roughly 2,000 of those 5,000 people are going to develop cancer anyway, this is a tiny increase in risk, and Brenner emphasizes that the uncertainties in his calculations are high.
There were two areas that were above the 10mSv range. In Namie town and Itate village, to the north-west of the plant, residents received between 10-50 mSv in the first year. This is because both towns were beneath a plume of fallout from the plant, but still outside the evacuation zone set up immediately after the accident. Residents in these areas remained until a few months later, when they voluntarily left at the government’s request. As a consequence, they received a higher dose of radiation.
Even the worse case scenario, 50 mSv, poses a pretty minimal risk. However, the models showed that infants living in Namie town could have gotten a higher dose to their thyroid, of between 100-200 mSv. That higher dose would be mainly due to radioactive iodine-131 blowing from the plant immediately following the accident. Brenner says a dose of 200 mSv to a female infant under a year old might mean a 1% risk of developing thyroid cancer over her lifetime (by comparison, the lifetime risk in the US is 0.02%).
It’s important to remember that the WHO numbers are based on models, and real doses would vary quite a bit. A survey of 1,080 infants and children in the area has shown no thyroid doses above 50 mSv thus far. Similarly, radiation surveys of Fukushima residents show very low doses. All of these measurements are consistent with the WHO model.
We’re going to have a much more detailed story on the doses received by civilians and the workers at the plant later today.
Image: Nature (data from: WHO/METI)

The Biofuel Greenhouse Gas Emissions Labyrinth

The Biofuel Greenhouse Gas Emissions Labyrinth

As governments roll out public policy directing increased biofuel production for all sectors of the transportation industry, serious questions around environmental sustainability still remain.Although the food versus fuel debate -- should arable land be used to grow energy crops, or food crops be used to fuel our cars instead of our bodies -- has long been a part of the biofuel story, the issue is becoming more complex.

Are Canada's oil sands to blame for rising atmospheric CO2?

Are Canada's oil sands to blame for rising atmospheric CO2?

In a recent New York Times opinion piece, NASA climate scientist James Hansen again puts forward his very compelling argument for strong action on limiting global CO2 emissions. He argues that Canadian oil sands is illustrative of an ongoing global trend to extract or mine increasingly challenging reserves of oil, gas and coal and bring them to market, a behaviour that could mean "game over for the climate".

Climate Negotiators Open a New Round

Climate Negotiators Open a New Round

A new round of climate talks opened this week in Bonn, Germany, with the ambitious goal of reaching a comprehensive legal agreement “applicable to all Parties” by 2015.Countries agreed to launch the new round last December in Durban, South Africa, as part of a package deal that also keeps the Kyoto Protocol alive, at least for now. The so-called Durban Platform negotiations offer governments the chance to consider new approaches and—one can hope—commit themselves to meaningful action.Since the start of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) 15 years ago, there’s been tension between two competing models—binding targets-and-timetables vs. voluntary pledge-and-review. And in actuality, parties have now constructed both: the first in the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, the second in the parallel framework that emerged in Copenhagen in 2009 and was further developed in Cancún and Durban. 

Bioenergy From Cleared Forests A Climate Killer

Bioenergy From Cleared Forests A Climate Killer

What are the climate-change ramifications of clearing away forests? In a finding that could influence how climatologists forecast the pace of global warming – and that strike a blow against some forms of bioenergy – UC Davis researchers say it all depends on what’s done with the wood taken out of the forests.

Is a Carbon Disaster Brewing in The Pacific Northwest?

Is a Carbon Disaster Brewing in The Pacific Northwest?

Optimists and politicians like to remind us that U.S. exports are booming. Unfortunately, so are imports.The trade deficit in March, from Calculated RiskAn increasingly large part of the "rosy" exports picture centres around our energy exports, which means coal exports. I was pleased to see Worse Than Keystone by Alyssa Battistoni, which appeared in Salon last Friday. Alyssa actually did some research, and provided some useful links, which always makes me happy.Environmentalists are focused oil and gas, but a bigger carbon disaster may be brewing…Read more...

Scientists Studying the Link between Fracking and Recent Earthquakes in Texas

Scientists Studying the Link between Fracking and Recent Earthquakes in Texas

Scientists from two Texas universities are looking into a pair of recent earthquakes near the Texas-Louisiana border for clues to whether they were related to underground injection of oil and gas drilling waste produced in the course of hydraulic fracturing or fracking.One of the scientists studying the two recent Texas quakes was on a team that concluded a swarm of earthquakes near Dallas in 2008 and 2009 were related to the disposal of drilling wastes, according to E&E’s Energy Wire.Cliff Frohlich, a research scientist at the University…Read more...

Where the Shale Gas Revolution Started

Where the Shale Gas Revolution Started

Alex Trembath, Breakthrough
The ongoing shale gas boom has expanded domestic energy production, pushed wholesale electricity prices to record lows, and accelerated the closure of America's aging coal plant fleet, lowering national power-sector carbon emissions. This revolution in natural gas -- unleashed by a flood of recently accessible shale gas reserves, once thought to be unrecoverable -- is the product of over 25 years of federal agencies and programs driving technology development in collaboration with private gas companies.

We Are at a Tipping Point for Biofuels

We Are at a Tipping Point for Biofuels

Margaret Ryan, AOL Energy
While the "food versus fuel" debate has grabbed headlines, biofuels technology worldwide has been accelerating down the learning curve and is at a "tipping point" for commercialization.

The Future of U.S. Climate Change Policy

The Future of U.S. Climate Change Policy

Council on Foreign Relations
The United States and the international community face a host of challenges on the domestic and international fronts as it attempts to build a more robust international climate regime. At home, progress has come to a virtual standstill after the failure of national cap-and-trade legislation. Abroad, the ultimate fate of the Kyoto protocol looms large. The United States will need to decide whether to rely on state-by-state emissions targets, participate in minilateral forums, or engage in multilateral negotiations for reducing emissions. It must also decide whether it intends to pursue...

Monday, May 21, 2012

Scientists discover new site of potential instability in West Antarctic Ice Sheet

Scientists discover new site of potential instability in West Antarctic Ice Sheet

Austin TX (SPX) May 21, 2012
Using ice-penetrating radar instruments flown on aircraft, a team of scientists from the U.S. and U.K. have uncovered a previously unknown sub-glacial basin nearly the size of New Jersey beneath the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) near the Weddell Sea. The location, shape and texture of the mile-deep basin suggest that this region of the ice sheet is at a greater risk of collapse than previously

Water Resources


Water Resources.
Clean soil and safe water / edited by Francesca F. Quercia and Dragana Vidojevic

Climate change effects on groundwater resources : a global synthesis of findings and recommendations / editors: Holger Treidel & Jose Luis Martin-Bordes, Jason J. Gurdak

The right to water : politics, governance and social struggles / edited by Farhana Sultana and Alex Loftus

Tapping water markets / Terry L. Anderson, Brandon Scarborough, and Lawrence R. Watson

Sustainability.

Sustainability.

Environmental governance and sustainability / edited by Paul Martin, Li Zhiping, Qin Tianbao, Anél du Plessis, Yves Le Bouthillier

Governance by evaluation for sustainable development : institutional capacities and learning / edited by Michal Sedlacko, André Martinuzzi

Real green : sustainability after the end of nature / Manuel Arias-Maldonado

Gulf oil spill of 2010 : liability and damage issues / Christine R. Walsh and James P. Duncan, editors


Oil Spills.

Air Emissions and Electricity Generation at U.S. Power Plants - GAO

Air Emissions and Electricity Generation at U.S. Power Plants -- GAO

Air Emissions and Electricity Generation at U.S. Power Plants (GAO-12-545R, Apr 18, 2012) found that "Older electricity generating units—those that began operating in or before 1978—provided 45 percent of electricity from fossil fuel units in 2010 but produced a disproportionate share of emissions, both in aggregate and per unit of electricity generated. Overall, in 2010 older units contributed 75 percent of sulfur dioxide emissions, 64 percent of nitrogen oxides emissions, and 54 percent of carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel units. For each unit of electricity generated, older units collectively emitted about 3.6 times as much sulfur dioxide, 2.1 times as much nitrogen oxides, and 1.3 times as much carbon dioxide as newer units.

The difference in emissions between older units and their newer counterparts may be attributed to a number of factors. First, 93 percent of the electricity produced by older fossil fuel units in 2010 was generated by coal-fired units. Compared with natural gas units, coal-fired units produced over 90 times as much sulfur dioxide, twice as much carbon dioxide and over five times as much nitrogen oxides per unit of electricity, largely because coal contains more sulfur and carbon than natural gas.

Second, fewer older units have installed emissions controls, which reduce emissions by limiting their formation or capturing them after they are formed. Among coal-fired units—which produce nearly all sulfur dioxide emissions from electric power generation—approximately 26 percent of older units used controls for sulfur dioxide, compared with 63 percent of newer units. Controls for nitrogen oxide emissions were more common among all types of fossil fuel units, but these controls vary widely in their effectiveness. Among older units, 14 percent had installed selective catalytic reduction (SCR) equipment, the type of control capable of reducing the greatest amount of nitrogen oxides emissions, compared with 33 percent of newer units. In addition, approximately 38 percent of older units did not have any controls for nitrogen oxides, compared with 6 percent of newer units.

Third, lower emissions among newer units may be attributable in part to improvements in the efficiency with which newer units convert fuel into electricity. Nonetheless, older units remain an important part of the electricity generating sector, particularly in certain regions of the United States."

Fact Sheet: G-8 Action on Energy and Climate Change -- U.S. President

Fact Sheet: G-8 Action on Energy and Climate Change -- U.S. President

Fact Sheet: G-8 Action on Energy and Climate Change from the White House (May 21, 2012) is a G-8 communique that sets forth agreement over energy and environmental concerns.

America's Most Endangered Rivers for 2012 -- American Rivers

America's Most Endangered Rivers for 2012 -- American Rivers

America's Most Endangered Rivers for 2012, this report from American Rivers states that several U.S. rivers are endangered.  these are selected based upon the following criteria:
  • A major decision (that the public can help influence) in the coming year on the proposed action;
  • The significance of the river to human and natural communities;
  • The magnitude of the threat to the river and associated communities, especially in light of a changing climate
The report highlights ten rivers whose fate will be decided in the coming year, and encourages decision-makers to do the right thing for the rivers and the communities they support. It presents alternatives to proposals that would damage rivers, identifies those who make the crucial decisions, and points out opportunities for the public to take action on behalf of each listed river.

EPA's Pretense of Science: Regulating Phantom Risks -- Texas Public Policy Foundation

EPA's Pretense of Science: Regulating Phantom Risks -- Texas Public Policy Foundation

EPA's Pretense of Science: Regulating Phantom Risks -- In this report (May 2012) theTexas Public Policy Foundation found that [from the press release] "For the last three years, the EPA has justified a series of strict and incredibly expensive new air quality regulations on the assumption that even trace levels of particulate matter can accelerate death...But the science behind the EPA's new approach to assessing health risks is deeply flawed and misleads the public."

Since 2009, the EPA has attributed risk of "early death" or shortened lifespan from fine particulate matter (PM 2.5) concentrations far below the health protective national standards and even below natural levels that would occur absent human activity. The EPA is justifying the many unprecedented new regulations commonly known as the EPA train wreck on the basis of the health benefits gained from reducing these new risks from already low levels of particulate matter – a substantial portion of which is airborne dust.

The new regulations, however, target other pollutants and not PM 2.5. In the recently finalized rule to reduce mercury emission from power plants, EPA estimated 99.9 percent of the health benefits derive from coincidental reduction of particulate matter at levels far below the already conservative federal standard. Without this methodology, the cost of reducing mercury would be far higher than the benefits of further reduction of mercury.
In the report, White challenged four key assumptions at the root of the EPA's new risk-assessment methodology:
  • PM 2.5 causes early death.
  • There is no level of PM 2.5 below which risks of premature death cease.
  • The EPA's new rules are necessary to prevent hundreds of thousands of deaths.
  • Coincidental reduction of PM 2.5 is sufficient justification for new regulations designed to control other pollutants.
"The EPA's manipulation of cost-benefit analyses to project massive benefits at comparatively modest cost denies policy­makers and the public the information needed to weigh the many trade-offs involved in complex societal decisions about unacceptable risks," White said. "Economic impact does matter, and it matters to human health. Life span and health are strongly correlated with the opportunity to work and make a good income."

The report recommends amendment of the Clean Air Act to establish minimal criteria for rigorous scientific risk assessment of health effects.