Category Archives: Toxics

Hot New World, Toxic Old World

In the New Yorker magazine a few weeks ago, Ian Frazier wrote about the effects of Hurricane Sandy on Staten Island. His report mixes the heartache and loss suffered by the community with the cold, wet facts of climate change and other injuries we’ve inflicted on our surroundings.  At one point, Mr. Frazier (whose nickname [...]

Me… We

I’m a me person.  It sounds egotistic; I don’t mean it that way (although an honest person could argue it’s true).  What I mean is the story of my life is mine alone. It’s true, like Alfred Tennyson’s Ulysses, I am a part of all that I have met.  I have, like most of Americans [...]

A Bit of Everything

I spent a good portion of last weekend happily skating on the Pine Street Barge Canal near my house.  It was perfect winter exercise and recreation, just what I needed to bring a healthy glow to my cheeks.  (I’m a crappy skater, but I enjoy it.)  Gliding over the rough patches near the beaver lodge, [...]

Christmas in Prison

I suppose you want to hear a Christmas story.  “It was Christmas in prison and the food was real good, we had turkey and pistols carved out of wood… ”  That John Prine song will be 40 in the New Year. Twenty years ago this month I wandered through parts of the Midwest humming that [...]

Poisoning Continues, Now with Government Approval

Twenty years ago, as a young(er) toxics campaigner, I and many others worked to limit the effects of the industrial uses of chlorine.  Short version: when we put chlorine in the front end, we get a host of pollutants out the back end that persist in the environment and cause cancer, birth defects and reproductive [...]

“Pre-Positioned Weapons of Mass Destruction”

The tenth anniversary of the 9-11 attacks is a bit more than two weeks away.  People in DC and New York were viscerally reminded of this when an earthquake – unusually strong for the east coast – rattled them Tuesday.  Although human-induced climate change may affect hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, droughts and blizzards, earthquakes remain an [...]

Drinking Dry the Sea

Consider the environmental woes that confront us. Consider drinking dry the sea. They feel about the same. Global warming, overfishing, deforestation, uncontrolled release of genetically modified material, nuclear waste. So cut it down, make it manageable. Choose a single issue – say the release of toxic chemicals into our air, soil, water and our bodies. [...]