Health, Science, Environment

Gateway Arch - Emerald Ash Borer
3:12 pm
Mon August 1, 2011

Public asked to comment on proposal to replace hundreds of trees near Gateway Arch

An adult emerald ash borer.
(David Cappaert, Michigan State University)

The National Park Service is bracing for the possible loss of more than 900 trees near the Gateway Arch. That’s what could happen if the emerald ash borer makes it to the St. Louis area.

The emerald ash borer has killed millions of ash trees since it was accidentally introduced to the U.S. in the early 1990s.

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Science Blogging
6:35 am
Mon August 1, 2011

St. Louis blogger helps inner city youth find "on-ramp" to science

Danielle Lee has been blogging about science since 2006.
(Alecia Hoyt Photography - www.aleciahoyt.com)

The text that follows is a condensed version of a longer interview, which you can listen to above.

Science blogger Danielle Lee is on a roll.

The Memphis native recently got her Ph.D. in animal behavior at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.

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Joplin Tornado / Fungus
4:32 pm
Fri July 29, 2011

CDC: Fungus cluster after Joplin tornado a first

An image of a slide showing changes seen in a heart valve due to zygomycosis.
(via Wikimedia Commons/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

The national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says a dangerous fungus found in 13 people injured in the Joplin tornado was the first known cluster occurring after a tornado.

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Japanese Beetles
12:01 pm
Tue July 26, 2011

Japanese beetles increasingly in farm fields

A Japanese beetle.
(via Flickr/Benimoto)

The Japanese beetle has been striking Missouri and Illinois with full force, eating its way through rose bushes and tomato plants and threatening major crops like corn and soybeans.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the beetle has been an urban problem for years. But now, farmers in both Missouri and Illinois say the bugs are moving into corn and soybean fields - crops vital to both states.

Forensic Science
4:23 pm
Mon July 25, 2011

SLU conference investigates criminal deaths, forensic science

(via flickr/alancleaver_2000)

Saint Louis University is hosting a conference this week on advances in criminal death investigation and forensic science.

Conference organizer and SLU pathologist Dr. Mary Case is the chief medical examiner for St. Charles, Jefferson, and Franklin counties. Case says that this year, the biennial event has drawn about 200 participants from across the country.

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Air Pollution - Children's Health
5:01 pm
Fri July 22, 2011

SLU to study effects of air pollution on pregnant women in China

Wuhan, China.
(via Flickr/Toehk)

The Saint Louis University School of Public Health is launching a study to look at the effects of urban air pollution on pregnant women in China.

SLU epidemiologist Zhengmin Qian says the research will track the pregnancies of 100,000 women in Wuhan, a city of nine million people in central China.

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Endangered Beetle Species
11:06 am
Fri July 22, 2011

Endangered beetle may return to Mo. prairie through work with St. Louis Zoo

A female American burying beetle.
(Dan Kirk)

Updated 11:52 a.m.

The endangered American burying beetle could be making its way to a southwestern Missouri prairie.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wants to work with the St. Louis Zoo to reintroduce the colorful beetle to Wah-Kon-Tah Prairie in St. Clair and Cedar counties.

The Zoo has a population of the beetles. Zoo officials say they have not been seen in Missouri in more than two decades.

(You might remember this earlier feature from our own Véronique LaCapra on the about some dedicated supporters in St. Louis joining a nationwide effort to save the insect).

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Health-Breast Cancer
4:44 pm
Thu July 14, 2011

New project aims to decrease breast cancer deaths in north St. Louis

A woman performs a breast self-examination (BSE) to check for tumors.
(National Cancer Institute/Bill Branson)

A new project in north St. Louis aims to lower breast cancer death rates for women of color.

Washington University sociologist Sarah Gehlert says even though nationwide white women are more likely to get breast cancer, black women are about 35 percent more likely to die of the disease.

She says in St. Louis that number is closer to 60 percent.

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Missouri River - flooding
5:00 am
Mon July 11, 2011

Senators seek to improve flood control on Missouri River

Water from the Missouri River overtops a levee in Atchison County, Mo., on June 19.
(flickr/U.S. Army Corps of Engineers photo by Carlos J. Lazo)

The Missouri River Working Group is holding its first meeting on Wednesday to come up with a policy on flood control.

Missouri Senators Roy Blunt and Claire McCaskill launched the group with senators from North Dakota to look for ways to improve flood control along the Missouri River and keep this year’s flooding from happening again.

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EPA / Air Pollution
4:51 pm
Thu July 7, 2011

EPA sets new air pollution limits for coal-fired power plants

A preview of the EPA's interactive map showing how air pollution moves between states. See a link to the full map in the story below.
(EPA.gov website)

The Environmental Protection Agency has announced new limits on air pollution from coal-fired power plants. The rule aims to lower emissions from power plants in 27 states including Missouri and Illinois.

The goal is to reduce soot (fine particulates) and smog (ground-level ozone) and improve air quality downwind. (Check out this map from the EPA, a preview of which is above, to see how the new limits affect your state).

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