Health, Science, Environment

Supply Chain Challenges
12:14 pm
Fri October 31, 2014

Symposium Explores Human Rights in Garment Industry

Credit Xavier / Flickr Creative Commons

International and local human rights leaders will discuss their concerns for workers in the garment industry -- from cotton seed fields to textile factories and clothing distributors -- during a day-long symposium Saturday at Washington University.

St. Louis-based Monsanto is an underwriter of the event. The company has faced criticism of its own outsourcing practices in seed-production fields.

In 2005, according to metrics provided by the company, ten percent of field workers in India who produced hybrid cotton seeds for Monsanto were under the age of 14.

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Preventing Lead Poisoning
11:02 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

City Of St. Louis, St. Louis County Receive Federal Funding For Lead Safety

Bradley Steeter of the HUD Field Office in St. Louis presents Mayor Francis Slay with a check for $2.5 million for lead hazard prevention.
Credit Camille Phillips/St. Louis Public Radio

St. Louis and St. Louis County will be able to increase efforts to reduce the number of children in the region exposed to lead, thanks to grants donated Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The city and county both received 2.5 million dollars from HUD, although $100,000 of the county’s grant is ear-marked for a separate initiative.

According to St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay, the city’s grant will be primarily used to preemptively make 180 rental units safe from lead.

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Nuclear Waste
9:15 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Missouri Environmental Group Sues Over Long-Term Risks Of Nuclear Waste

Ameren's Callaway Nuclear Reactor is the only commercial nuclear power plant in Missouri.
Credit Missouri Coalition for the Environment

The Missouri Coalition for the Environment is one of several groups filing suit against the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission to try to get the agency to address the long-term storage of nuclear waste.

That suit follows similar cases filed by the states of New York, Connecticut, and Vermont, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and the Prairie Island Indian Community in Minnesota.

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Health, Science, Environment
5:00 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Tree Removal At Arch Grounds Will Let History Take Root

The trees that are slated for removal on the Arch grounds are marked with a pink ribbon.
Credit Rebecca Smith/St. Louis Public Radio

The National Park Service will start removing 1,200 trees on the Gateway Arch grounds in earnest on Monday. 

The removal is part of a years-long project by CityArchRiver to renovate the popular tourist attraction, and it could start as early as Friday, according to the group's communications director Ryan McClure. He said the first few trees are coming down Friday to move in construction equipment.

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Cognitive Neuroscience
10:03 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

This Is Your Brain...At The Movies

Jeffrey Zacks' forthcoming book, "Flicker: Your Brain on Movies," explores how our experience watching film co-opts the mechanisms our brains evolved for understanding the real world.
Credit Oxford University Press

Movies can sometimes feel very real, bringing up emotions and even physical reactions as we watch them.

Washington University cognitive neuroscientist Jeffrey Zacks studies how the brain processes visual imagery, including what we see on film.

According to Zacks, movies hijack the parts of our brains that trigger our emotional responses and overstimulate them.

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Gun violence
5:09 pm
Mon October 27, 2014

On Track To Surpass Last Year: St. Louis Reaches 120 Homicides Over the Weekend

A file photo of a crime scene in St. Louis.
Credit Rachel Lippmann / St. Louis Public Radio

A grandmother walking home from the store with her grandchildren. An Ethiopian refugee who worked as a convenience store clerk. A brother and a sister, killed three hours apart.

With a little more than two months left in the year, the city of St. Louis has already reached 120 homicides, the total number of murders reported in all of 2013.

That’s 120 victim’s families, assailant’s families, and neighborhood blocks that will never be the same, said James Clark.

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Clean Water Act
6:44 pm
Fri October 24, 2014

EPA Approves Missouri's New Water Quality Standards, But Do They Go Far Enough?

The Current and Jacks Fork Rivers in the Missouri Ozarks are among the most pristine in the state. The U.S. EPA has recommended that Missouri designate waters with particularly diverse or rare aquatic species as "exceptional aquatic habitat," which would provide them with a higher level of protection.
Credit National Parks Service

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has signed off on a major overhaul of Missouri's water quality standards.

The state approved the new regulations in November but needed federal approval to start enforcing them.

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For the Sake of All
11:05 pm
Thu October 23, 2014

Call To Action: Improve Health By Reducing Economic Disparity, Panel Says

A graphic included in the For The Sake of All report shows the economic divide along Delmar Blvd in St. Louis.
Credit For the Sake of All

The numbers tell the story: unemployment among African Americans in St. Louis is 17.6 percent, four times that of whites.

And the unemployment rate is important because unemployment turns out to be a major factor in severe health disparities in the region, according to research by the “For the Sake of All” study.

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Pesticides
5:34 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Monsanto To Keep Selling Pesticide-Coated Seeds EPA Says Don't Help Yields ― And May Harm Bees

This blueberry bee, photographed at the Missouri Botanical Garden on Mar. 25, 2012, was the first recorded in Saint Louis since the 1930s.
Credit Ed Spevak|Saint Louis Zoo

Monsanto will continue selling soybean seeds coated with pesticides that have been linked to honey bee deaths, even though the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency found the seeds do not improve yields.

The seeds in question are treated with a class of chemicals called neonicotinoids, which are chemically similar to nicotine.

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Missouri Deer Population
9:16 pm
Mon October 20, 2014

Missouri Deer Populations Recovering After Disease Outbreaks

According to the Missouri Department of Conservation, the deer population will offer plenty of hunting opportunities this year, as numbers are recovering from disease outbreaks across the state.
Credit Noppadol Paothong, Missouri Department of Conservation

It's good news for hunters, but maybe bad news for drivers: the Missouri Department of Conservation says the state will see a pretty good deer population this year.

Many parts of the state should see a "large and healthy deer herd" this season, after years of declining populations, according to the department's Jim Low. He estimates the state has more than a million deer, offering "plenty of deer hunting opportunity out there."

Recovery from disease

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