Thursday, September 30, 2010

Help your school go green!

Help your school go green!

Our nation’s schools are in trouble – and this time, it’s not the test scores.

No, this time it is the toxic chemicals lurking in schools that leave children too sick to learn. Many schools around the country are literally made out of an emerging toxic plastic of concern, polyvinyl chloride (a.k.a. PVC or vinyl). This volatile vinyl is permeating our schools, from vinyl flooring, to computers, to vinyl backpacks and other school supplies.

Two years ago Congress passed legislation banning phthalates in children's toys. While phthalates have been banned from PVC toys, they're still widespread in PVC products like flooring used in schools.

In recent years, a number of studies have found a relationship between the phthalates released by PVC building supplies and asthma in children and adults. With over 7 million children suffering from asthma which, incidentally, is the leading cause of school absenteeism, our vinyl schools endanger students' health.

Dioxin, lead and mercury are all chemicals released by the PVC lifecycle that have been linked to learning and developmental disabilities in young children. With one in six children suffering from learning disabilities, schools must be kept free of these toxins so that children can learn.

Thankfully, there is hope as it IS EASY to find alternatives to PVC. The Center for Health, Environment & Justice has just put out a brand new interactive website – This Vinyl School - to uncover all the sources of vinyl in our schools – and suggest safer alternatives. A few simple changes will protect students' health, and ability to learn.

At This Vinyl School – , you can click through a virtual animated school to identify where this dangerous plastic is hiding and find healthier products.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Top 10 toxins and how to protect your family

Top 10 toxins and how to protect your family

"What can you do to protect your family from everyday toxins? Plenty, writes USA TODAY health reporter Liz Szabo, in Fresh: Women's Health Guide, a new USA TODAY publication that hits newsstands today. (I've also contributed a feature for Fresh on how to "Be Cheap, Be Green.)"

Air Pollution Raises Risk of Sudden Cardiac Arrest: Study

Air Pollution Raises Risk of Sudden Cardiac Arrest: Study

"Rate rose even when spikes in fine particle levels were below EPA safety threshold, researchers find"

National study finds strong link between diabetes and air pollution

National study finds strong link between diabetes and air pollution

"Findings unchanged after adjustment for obesity and other diabetes risk factors

Boston, Mass. -- A national epidemiologic study finds a strong, consistent correlation between adult diabetes and particulate air pollution that persists after adjustment for other risk factors like obesity and ethnicity, report researchers from Children's Hospital Boston. The relationship was seen even at exposure levels below the current EPA safety limit."

Murphy Oil USA to Pay $1.25 Million Penalty to Resolve Clean Air Act Violations

Murphy Oil USA to Pay $1.25 Million Penalty to Resolve Clean Air Act Violations 
Company to spend additional $142 million in pollution controls at refineries in Louisiana and Wisconsin

More information on the settlement:

More information on EPA's Petroleum Refinery Initiative:

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

New Calif. law limits toxic cadmium in jewelry

New Calif. law limits toxic cadmium in jewelry

"California became the largest state to limit the toxic metal cadmium in children's jewelry on Monday, effectively creating a new national standard ahead of promised federal action."

Thank New York (in advance!) for Standing Strong

[Comment:  Amidst our activism, it's so important to remember to thank others when they take a step in the right direction.  Please take a brief moment to send an email.]

"WVE and Earthjustice recently convinced New York to force cleaning product giants to follow a state law and reveal the ingredients in their products. But the fight isn't over. The industry is strong-arming its way into talks where they'll pressure the state to weaken the disclosure requirements or delay implementation of the law.

Please take a moment to thank in advance the head of New York's environmental agency for standing strong in the face of industry pressure. This law will set a national precedent for cleaning product companies to disclose ingredients--we can't afford to have it watered down!"

Abercrombie & Fitch: Stop Spraying Toxic Fragrance!

Abercrombie & Fitch: Stop Spraying Toxic Fragrance!
"Teens, Parents, Nurses Demand Halt to Toxic Spraying in Stores"

NEWSLETTER: MCS America News - October 2010

October 2010, Volume 5, Issue 10

Entire PDF Edition:  (View, Download, and Print)


Direct Links to Articles Inside This Issue:


What in the World Are They Putting in the Water?


This Beats an Apple a Day!

Food that Prevents and Health Childhood Illnesses  


New York to Come Clean on

Chemicals in Cleaning Products  


Flu Vaccine Does Not Reduce Risk of Hospitalization  


Woman with Chemical Sensitivity Fumigated by Leon County Government  


MCS Terminology:  What's in a Name?  


Safe Clothing Options  


Patient Support & Resources


Community News  


Featured Research Studies  


Multiple Chemical Sensitivities America


Copyrighted © 2010  MCS America


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Extremely Low-Frequency Magnetic Field Decreased Calcium, Zinc and Magnesium Levels in Costa of Rat.

Extremely Low-Frequency Magnetic Field Decreased Calcium, Zinc and Magnesium Levels in Costa of Rat.

Ulku R, Akdag MZ, Erdogan S, Akkus Z, Dasdag S.  Biol Trace Elem Res. 2010 Sep 25. [Epub ahead of print]

Department of Chest Surgery, Medical School of Dicle University, Diyarbakir, Turkey.


Electromagnetic field (EMF) can affect cells due to biochemical change followed by a change in level of ions trafficking through membrane. We aimed to investigate possible changes in some elements in costa of rats exposed to long-term extremely low-frequency magnetic field (ELF-MF). Rats were exposed to 100 and 500 μT ELF-MF, which are the safety standards of public and occupational exposure for 2 h/day during 10 months. At the end of the exposure period, the samples of costa were taken from the rats exposed to ELF-MF and sham. The levels of elements were measured by using atomic absorption spectrophotometry (AAS) and ultraviolet (UV) spectrophotometry. Ca levels decreased in the ELF-500 exposure group in comparison to sham group (p < 0.05). Statistically significant decrease was found in Mg levels in the ELF-500 exposure group in comparison to sham and ELF-100 exposure groups (p < 0.05). Zn levels were found to be lower in the ELF-500 exposure group than those in the sham and ELF-100 exposure groups (p < 0.05). No significant differences were determined between groups in terms of the levels of P, Cu and Fe. In conclusion, it can be maintained that long-term ELF-MF exposure can affect the chemical structure and metabolism of bone by changing the levels of some important elements such as Ca, Zn and Mg in rats.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Investors Warn Congress: Obsolete Federal Chemicals Policy Threatens Business Recovery

Investors Warn Congress: Obsolete Federal Chemicals Policy Threatens Business Recovery

"Managers of $35 billion in assets cite economic burden from chemical exposures."

International symposium on chemical pollution and environmental diseases held in Rome

International symposium on chemical pollution and environmental diseases held in Rome

"A prestigious group of international researchers, scholars, scientists and physicians met in Italy last week for a symposium on New Environmental Diseases. The event was held at the Chamber of Deputees Congress Hall, Rome, and was organized by the Association for Environmental and Chronic Toxic Injury."

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Naturopathic Doctors Writing a New Script

Naturopathic Doctors Writing a New Script

"Many people suffering from health problems often only turn to naturopathic medicine as a last resort after traditional Western medicine has failed them. After a recent decision by the provincial Health Ministry, the proverbial shoe is on the other foot.

For the first time in Canada, naturopathic doctors (NDs)--including those trained at New Westminster's Boucher Institute of Naturopathic Medicine--can also prescribe selected pharamaceutical drugs to their patients just like regular physicians do, if also only as a last resort."

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Governments and Organizations Recognizing Chemical Sensitivity

Governments and Organizations Recognizing Chemical Sensitivity
American Lung Association
American Medical Association
U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Indoor Air Pollution: An Introduction for Health Professionals (1994)
"The current consensus is that in cases of claimed or suspected MCS, complaints should not be dismissed as psychogenic, and a thorough workup is essential. Primary care givers should determine that the individual does not have an underlying physiological problem and should consider the value of consultation with allergists and other specialists." (page 20)
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
MCS Disorder and Environmental Illness as Handicaps (1992)
"The General Counsel has accepted the attached memorandums the Department's position on the issue of when Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Disorder (MCS) and Environmental Illness (EI) are "handicaps" within the meaning of subsection 802 (h) of the Fair Housing Act (the "Act"), 42 U.S. C. 3602(h), and the Department's implementing regulation, 24 C.F.R. 100.201 (1991).  In sum, MCS and EI can be associated with physical impairments which substantially impair one or more of a person's major life activities.  Thus, individuals disabled by MCS and EI can be handicapped within the meaning of the Act.  However, while MCS or EI can be handicaps under the Act, ordinary allergies generally would not be."
U.S. Department of Education
Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Policy and Resources (2001)
"MCS Is Now Recognized as a Disability.  Both the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Social Security Administration (SSA) have recognized MCS as a disabling condition. People with MCS have won several Workers Compensation cases. A recent human rights lawsuit in Pennsylvania established the right of an affected person to safe living space in subsidized housing. Both the Maryland State Legislature and New Jersey State Department of Health have commissioned studies of MCS. The NJ study provides an excellent overview of medical and legal issues related to MCS."
Social Security
DI 24515.064 Evaluation Of Specific Issues — Environmental Illness (1996)!opendocument
"In claims alleging disability due to environmental illness, it is often difficult to identify abnormal signs and laboratory findings which can be associated with the alleged symptoms. Therefore, in evaluating claims based on environmental illness, all of the claimant's symptoms, signs, and laboratory findings must be considered to determine if there is a medically determinable impairment and the impact of any impairment on the claimant's ability to work. This evaluation should be made on an individual case-by-case basis to determine if the impairment prevents substantial gainful activity."
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers For Disease Control and Prevention
Indoor Environmental Quality Policy
"Fragrance is not appropriate for a professional work environment, and the use of some products with fragrance may be detrimental to the health of workers with chemical sensitivities, allergies, asthma, and chronic headaches/migraines." (page 9)
The German Institute of Medicine
MCS, CFS, FMS: coding according to ICD-10-GM (2008)
MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivity) is classified under:
T78.4 ... Allergy, not otherwise specified;
Chapter 19 (injuries, poisoning and certain other consequences of toxic causes),
Section T66-T78 (Other and unspecified effects of external causes)

Japanese Ministry of Health
ICD10 codes: T65.9 poisoning and other unspecified substances, toxic substances, unspecified
MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivity) is classified under:
T659 … Toxic effect of unspecified substance
T659 QV58... chemical sensitivity
Government of South Australia
Disability Access Checklist Guide for Government Owned & Leased Premises (2006)


South Australia Government includes MCS in Disability Access Guidelines 2010!!

From Harry Clark at MCS News Australia:

"The South Australian Government's Department for Transport Energy and Infrastructure has completed guidelines for disability access to government buildings that include Multiple Chemical Sensitivity. 
Most Important development of International Significance. South Australia is a Global Hot Spot for MCS policy advancement. To the best of my knowledge this is the first time an Australian Government Authority has specifically included MCS in any Disability Access Guidelines. The inclusion of MCS has been resisted, although a Senate Committee in 2010 made it clear the MCS should be investigated for potential inclusion in the 2015 review of the Federal Disability Access legislation and policies.

Checklist questions include non-toxic renovating products, avoiding pesticides and toxic cleaners, and ensuring that the building is smoke and fragrance free."

Part 3 of the Guide:
provides a checklist of the likelihood of low level atmosphere contaminates within the building environment, with
the objective to minimising contaminate exposure levels to persons with Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) so they are not undeservedly affected. (NOTE: A recent survey by the Department of Health that assessed the prevalence of MCS and chemical sensitivity in the South Australian community found 1% had been medically diagnosed with MCS and 16% reported chemical

Obama Admin Steps Up Pressure to Ratify Treaties on Toxics

"The Obama administration is renewing the long-running effort to win U.S. ratification of two international treaties aimed at limiting the reach of the world's most toxic chemicals."

Friday, September 24, 2010

NY town enacts tough cell tower limits

NY town enacts tough cell tower limits

"A Long Island township has imposed restrictions on the placement of new cell towers that are among the toughest in the country, and one phone company says it effectively bans new construction."

Chronic atrazine exposure caus es disruption of the spontaneous locomotor activity and alters the striatal dopaminergic system of the male Sprague-Dawley rat.

Chronic atrazine exposure caus es disruption of the spontaneous locomotor activity and alters the striatal dopaminergic system of the male Sprague-Dawley rat.
Bardullas U, Giordano M, Rodríguez VM. Neurotoxicol Teratol. 2010 Sep 15. [Epub ahead of print]
The herbicide atrazine (ATR) is widely used around the world, and is a potential toxicant of the dopaminergic systems. Nigrostriatal and mesolimbic systems are the two major dopaminergic pathways of the central nervous system; they play key roles mediating a wide array of critical motor and cognitive functions. We evaluated the effects of exposing male rats for one year to 10 mg ATR/kg B.W. on these systems using motor and cognitive tasks and measuring monoamine content in the striatum, nucleus accumbens, prefrontal cortex, and hypothalamus. ATR administration resulted in impaired motor coordination and greater spontaneous locomotor activity only after 10 to 12 months of exposure. Chronic exposure to 10 mg ATR decreased striatal dopamine, but had no effect on accumbal, hypothalamic or cortical monoamine content. Chronic ATR exposure caused discrete changes in learning tasks that involve either the striatum or the nucleus accumbens. These results indicate that chronic exposure to ATR preferentially targets the nigrostriatal dopaminergic pathway, in comparison to the other dopaminergic pathways evaluated in this study, inducing behavioral and neurochemical alterations. In order to unveil the full extent of atrazine's effects on the nervous system, other neurochemical systems should be considered in future studies.

PMID: 20850525 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

Toxicol Sci. 2010 Sep 20. [Epub ahead of print]

SKN-1/Nrf2 inhibits dopamine neuron degeneration in a Caenorhabditis elegans model of methylmercury toxicity.
Vanduyn N, Settivari R, Wong G, Nass R. Toxicol Sci. 2010 Sep 20. [Epub ahead of print]
Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN, USA.
\Methylmercury (MeHg) exposure from occupational, environmental, and food sources is a significant threat to public health. MeHg poisonings in adults may result in severe psychological and neurological deficits, and in utero exposures can confer embryonic defects and developmental delays. Recent epidemiological and vertebrate studies suggest that MeHg exposure may also contribute to dopamine (DA) neuron vulnerability and the propensity to develop Parkinson's disease (PD). In this study, we describe a Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) model of MeHg toxicity that shows that low, chronic exposure confers embryonic defects, developmental delays, decreases in brood size and animal viability, and DA neuron degeneration. Toxicant exposure results in the robust induction of the glutathione-S-transferases (GSTs) gst-4 and gst-38 that are largely dependent on the PD-associated phase II antioxidant transcription factor SKN-1/Nrf2. We also demonstrate that the expression of SKN-1, a protein previously localized to a small subset of chemosensory neurons and intestinal cells in the nematode, is also expressed in the DA neurons, and a reduction in SKN-1 gene expression increases MeHg-induced animal vulnerability and DA neuron degeneration. These studies recapitulate fundamental hallmarks of MeHg-induced mammalian toxicity, identify a key molecular regulator of toxicant-associated whole animal and DA neuron vulnerability, and suggest that the nematode will be a useful in vivo tool to identify and characterize mediators of MeHg-induced developmental and DA neuron pathologies.

PMID: 20855423 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

Parents push Healthy Schools Act to ban toxic pesticides

Parents push Healthy Schools Act to ban toxic pesticides

"Parents, teachers, and state lawmakers are urging Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to sign the Healthy Schools Act of 2010."

99 Cents Only stores caught selling toxic household products

[Comment:  Rest assured, bugs haven't returned "because DDT was banned" and they can be controlled without toxic pesticides.  No one should apply toxic pesticides to a bed where they put their face and skin and breathe all night.  Bed bugs probably haven't increased at all.  It's probably just a scare tactic and gimmick to sell pesticides.]
"EPA fines the chain a record $409,490 for dispersing dangerous, unregistered pesticides.

Common sense allows that anything toxic enough to kill bugs is toxic enough to harm you. Pesticides in the home can not only cause a buildup of residual toxins; they can easily enter your body. Short-term effects of pesticides are runny nose, headache and flu-like symptoms. Long-term effects can include cancer, as known carcinogenic ingredients exist in most pesticides."

Tackling tiredness

Tackling tiredness

"When you wake up in the morning do you wish you could stay in bed? Do you feel tired and weary with little appetite for a new day?

If so, you are not alone - an estimated one in 10 people suffers from tiredness. You may have had a good night's sleep yet you wake up feeling exhausted. The simplest tasks seem to require huge effort. You find it hard to concentrate and feel you just cannot keep up with the world."

Newmarket resident: Power line electromagnetic fields a health concern

Newmarket resident: Power line electromagnetic fields a health concern

"Danielle Pappargeris had never heard of the possible effects electromagnetic fields can have on the human body until she began losing clumps of hair in the shower soon after moving in to her rented Nichols Avenue home."

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Why Your Natural, Organic Soap, Cosmetics and Other Personal Care Products May Be Bad for You

Why Your Natural, Organic Soap, Cosmetics and Other Personal Care Products May Be Bad for You

"Personal care products can contain harmful ingredients. Even some labeled 'natural' and 'organic' aren't that good for you. Here's how to find the real deal."

Confirmation studies of Soviet research on immunological effects of microwaves: Russian immunology results

Confirmation studies of Soviet research on immunological effects of microwaves: Russian immunology results

Grigoriev, Y. G., Grigoriev, O. A., Ivanov, A. A., Lyaginskaya, A. M., Merkulov, A. V., Shagina, N. B., Maltsev, V. N., Lévêque, P., Ulanova, A. M., Osipov, V. A. and Shafirkin, A. V. , Confirmation studies of Soviet research on immunological effects of microwaves: Russian immunology results. Bioelectromagnetics, n/a. doi: 10.1002/bem.20605
This paper presents the results of a replication study performed to investigate earlier Soviet studies conducted between 1974 and 1991 that showed immunological and reproductive effects of long-term low-level exposure of rats to radiofrequency (RF) electromagnetic fields. The early studies were used, in part, for developing exposure standards for the USSR population and thus it was necessary to confirm the Russian findings. In the present study, the conditions of RF exposure were made as similar as possible to those in the earlier experiments: Wistar rats were exposed in the far field to 2450 MHz continuous wave RF fields with an incident power density in the cages of 5 W/m2 for 7 h/day, 5 days/week for a total of 30 days, resulting in a whole-body SAR of 0.16 W/kg. Effects of the exposure on immunological parameters in the brain and liver of rats were evaluated using the complement fixation test (CFT), as in the original studies, and an additional test, the more modern ELISA test. Our results, using CFT and ELISA, partly confirmed the findings of the early studies and indicated possible effects from non-thermal RF exposure on autoimmune processes. The RF exposure resulted in minor increases in formation of antibodies in brain tissue extract and the exposure did not appear to be pathological. In addition, a study was conducted to replicate a previous Soviet study on effects from the injection of blood serum from RF-exposed rats on pregnancy and foetal and offspring development of rats, using a similar animal model and protocol. Our results showed the same general trends as the earlier study, suggesting possible adverse effects of the blood serum from exposed rats on pregnancy and foetal development of intact rats, however, application of these results in developing exposure standards is limited.

The Awful Disease Washington Forgot

The Awful Disease Washington Forgot

"In the end, as with so much else, the fight against disease leads to Washington. There are big diseases with big lobbies, like AIDS, Alzheimer's, cancer, diabetes and heart. Their millions of sufferers have associations and lobbies to push for federal research money and to shape its expenditure. Most have their celebrity backers, like Elizabeth Taylor for AIDS, Jerry Lewis for muscular dystrophy, and Mary Tyler Moore for diabetes.

Big lobbies mean big federal dollars, the attention of the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md., and the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta. If the disease is the kind for which a single or series of silver bullets can produce a cure, Big Pharma comes in with big funding, in the hope that it can develop a lucrative line of medicines, patentable for long-term profits.

Yet there is a vast archipelago of diseases as cruel in their impact, horrible to bear and crying out for research that is not sporadic, underfunded or, through ignorance, misdirected."

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

CFSAC Testimony

CFSAC Testimony

by P.A.N.D.O.R.A., Inc. - Patient Alliance for Neuroendocrineimmune Disorders Organization for Research & Advocacy, Inc. on Friday, September 17, 2010 at 9:24am

"As an organization that works to improve the quality of life for people with NeuroEndocrineImmune Disorders, we recommend people submit written testimony or register to give live testimony Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Advisory Committee meeting, scheduled for Oct. 13 & 14.

Since one of the topics for the meeting is "current and proposed diagnosis and treatment methods," this is a good opportunity to tell the stories of problems with accessing medical insurance, private disability and ERISA employer disability. We have heard of some terrible experiences. This is a good time to bring attention to this area that needs to be changed."

Study: Human Exposure to BPA 'Grossly Underestimated'

Study: Human Exposure to BPA 'Grossly Underestimated'

"Americans are likely to be exposed at higher levels than previously thought to bisphenol A, a compound that mimics hormones important to human development and is found in more than 90 percent of people in the United States, according to new research."

Free IAQ/Mold 101: How Clean is Clean? This Wednesday!

Attend IAQ/Mold 101: How Clean is Clean?
A Free Webinar by Pure Air Control Services!

Date: Sept. 22, 2010, Wednesday

IAQ/Mold 101 Webinar - ow Clean is Clean?"/ACAC CEU's available)
September 22, 2010
1:00pm-2:00pm (EST
Go to:

With mold an other naturally occuring inoculums present indoors, what are
their normal levels? When a remediation cleanup/sanitization project is
completed, are the new microscopic levels of pollutants acceptable? How
clean is clean?

Attendees will learn the following:

* Identify the Indoor Pollutants
* Establish Normal Levels of Indoor Pollutants
* Relationship of Air Sampling & Surface Sampling Levels
* Economical Testing Protocols

Special Note: RC's with ACAC are presently available. Certificates of
Attendance are only issued to participants that attend throughout the
duration of the presentation.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Why You Need to Detoxify 24 Hours a Day

Why You Need to Detoxify 24 Hours a Day

"I want to change what you think about detoxification.  Let me explain.  When I talk about detoxification, I don't mean making an appointment to get your colon cleansed or going on a fast. Because detoxification is not some part-time gig. Detoxification is a full-time job for your body; a natural, ongoing process that happens 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. And with all the toxins and stress in the modern world, it is a lot of work."

Manganese in water can harm kids' IQ: study

"Children whose drinking water contains high concentrations of manganese appear to have lower IQ scores on average than children not exposed to the metallic element, researchers have found."

New Smog Proposals From EPA Draw Fire

[Comment: Hogwash!  It won't be a drain on the economy.  It will feed profits back into the economy for other industries and workers to provide the equipment and monitoring.  It's high time it was done for the health and survival of the human race.  These companies don't need to be billionaires at the expense of everyone else.  Making a profit enough to live on yes.  Any more than that is just greed at others' expense.]

"A proposed crackdown on smog by the Environmental Protection Agency is fueling resistance from businesses groups concerned about costs, Republicans who say it'll be a drag on the economy—and some heartland Democrats engaged in tough election battles this fall."

New chemical rules to have broad impact

[Comment:  It may present challenges, but it's absolutely crucial that it be done for the health and survival of the human race.]
"List of 'chemicals of concern' may be 'game changer' for producers.  The California Department of Toxic Substance Control is considering new regulations on how it monitors chemicals and how dangerous substances are defined – known as "green chemistry" – and the proposals thus far could have a significant impact on companies in California."

Natl Conversation: Comment Period Extended & Upcoming Meeting

From the National Conversation:

Work group report comment period extended through September 27!

National Conversation on Public Health and Chemical Exposures draft work group reports are available for public comment at Comments will now be accepted through Monday, September 27, 2010. Six work group reports are posted, one on each of the following cross-cutting public health and chemical exposures topics:

Visit the RESOLVE website for further instructions.

Leadership Council Meeting
The National Conversation
Leadership Council will meet Tuesday, October 5, 2010 from 9:00am – 5:00pm (EDT) at the Omni Shoreham Hotel, 2500 Calvert Street NW, Washington D.C . The Leadership Council will use this meeting to discuss key themes and recommendations to feature in the draft action agenda, drawing on draft work group reports and the results of various stakeholder and public engagement activities. The meeting will be open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis, limited by the space available. An opportunity for the public to listen to the meeting by phone will also be available. Please e-mail if you are interested in observing the meeting in person or by phone.

About the National Conversation
National Conversation is a collaborative initiative supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry through which many organizations and individuals are helping develop an action agenda for strengthening the nation's approach to protecting the public's health from harmful chemical exposures. RESOLVE, a non-profit independent consensus-building organization is facilitating the National Conversation process.

Don't forget to join the National Conversation on Facebook and Twitter.

Questions? E-mail for answers.

The National Conversation Team

Links not working? Cut and paste these into your browser:
Work Group Reports & Public Comment -
National Conversation-
Leadership Council -

Learn more >>.

Teaching Doctors About Nutrition and Diet

Teaching Doctors About Nutrition and Diet

"Within days of being accepted into medical school, I started getting asked for medical advice. Even my closest friends, who should have known better, got in on the action.

"Should I take vitamins?"
"What do you think of this diet?"
"Is yogurt good for me or not?"

Each and every time someone posed such a query, I became immediately cognizant of one thing: the big blank space in my brain. After all, even with medical school acceptance in hand, I was no more a doctor than they were."

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Buyers with hypersensitivity disorder should raise their concerns early

Buyers with hypersensitivity disorder should raise their concerns early
"For people who are seriously allergic or sensitive to common household chemicals, buying the right home is fraught with difficulty. But with a cooperative seller -- and some important protections written into the purchase contract -- the hazards can be manageable."

Free Audio on MCS/Porphyria Link from Steve Rochlitz, PhD

Free Audio on MCS/Porphyria Link from Steve Rochlitz, PhD                
RE:  Book called "PORPHYRIA:The Ultimate Cause of Common, Chronic, & Environmental Illnesses  With Breakthroughs in Diet, Supplements, and Energy Balancing"

Saturday, September 18, 2010

'Sound science' code draws fire

'Sound science' code draws fire

"Critics assail the US Department of the Interior's draft policy on scientific integrity."

Is your mattress making you sick

"In recent times, there had been many discussions cropping up in both scientific and non-scientific forums in relation to the possible effect of mattresses in relation to the human body. When one thinks about the duration that we spend on these mattresses, almost one third of our life, it is an obvious fact that mattresses can have an influence on our health as well as on our daily living."

Friday, September 17, 2010

New York To Force Household Cleaner Giants To Reveal Chemical Ingredients

"First-of-its kind disclosure cheered by health, consumer, worker, and environmental advocates"

Could estimating environmental risk soon be a click away?

"Researchers from Europe propose a new computer model to predict the risk of toxicity, persistence and bioaccumulation of new and existing chemicals. While promising, the approach has limitations."

Assessment of cytogenetic damage and oxidative stress in personnel occupationally exposed to the pulsed microwave radiation of marine radar equipment

Assessment of cytogenetic damage and oxidative stress in personnel occupationally exposed to the pulsed microwave radiation of marine radar equipment

Vera Garaj-Vrhovaca, , , Goran Gajskia, Senijo Pažaninb, Antonio Šarolićc, Ana-Marija Domijand, Dubravka Flajsd and Maja Peraicad 
International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health
Article in Press, Corrected Proof - Note to users
a Mutagenesis Unit, Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
b Department of Occupational Health, Naval Medicine Institute, 21000 Split, Croatia
c Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture, University of Split, 21000 Split, Croatia
d Toxicology Unit, Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
Received 12 April 2010;  revised 30 July 2010;  accepted 3 August 2010.  Available online 15 September 2010.

Due to increased usage of microwave radiation, there are concerns of its adverse effect in today's society. Keeping this in view, study was aimed at workers occupationally exposed to pulsed microwave radiation, originating from marine radars. Electromagnetic field strength was measured at assigned marine radar frequencies (3 GHz, 5.5 GHz and 9.4 GHz) and corresponding specific absorption rate values were determined. Parameters of the comet assay and micronucleus test were studied both in the exposed workers and in corresponding unexposed subjects. Differences between mean tail intensity (0.67 vs. 1.22) and moment (0.08 vs. 0.16) as comet assay parameters and micronucleus test parameters (micronuclei, nucleoplasmic bridges and nuclear buds) were statistically significant between the two examined groups, suggesting that cytogenetic alterations occurred after microwave exposure. Concentrations of glutathione and malondialdehyde were measured spectrophotometrically and using high performance liquid chromatography. The glutathione concentration in exposed group was significantly lower than in controls (1.24 vs. 0.53) whereas the concentration of malondialdehyde was significantly higher (1.74 vs. 3.17), indicating oxidative stress
Results suggests that pulsed microwaves from working environment can be the cause of genetic and cell alterations and that oxidative stress can be one of the possible mechanisms of DNA and cell damage.

Florida County Government And Homeowners Association Force Disabled Woman with MCS Out Of Home

Florida County Government And Homeowners Association Force Disabled Woman with MCS Out Of Home
The Leon County Government in Tallahassee, FL has been collaborating with a Homeowners Association for many years to spray a woman's home and property which has been officially placed on a "No Spray List" due to her serious medical risks associated with MCS, Lupus and Environmental Illness Syndrome.  Kathy Termotto lives in Orchard Walk and has repeatedly asked the Leon County Mosquito Control Program (LCMCP) to stay far enough away from her home in order to prevent the highly toxic ANVIL from contaminating her property.

Ms. Termotto suffers from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, Lupus, as well as a very serious allergy to synthetic pyrethroids, the killing agent that is ejected into the air by the mosquito spray truck.  Her physicians and attorneys have sent letters to the Leon County Commissioners and Administration for fifteen years and yet the LCMCP continues to be called by the OWHA to spray their street – a mosquito control procedure that has been proven to be very ineffective and toxic to life and the environment.

Ms. Termotto has created an environment in her home out of medical necessity.  Every time the LCMCP truck comes down the street, the noxious insecticide aerosol that is sprayed falls on top of her property as it migrates with air movement.  After a night's street fogging the insecticide is found on her organic garden, her automobile, as well as all over her entire yard – patio, grass, shrubs, trees, etc.  The most serious problem, by far, however is when it gets into her home via the air conditioning system.  This eventuality completely destroys an environment she has painstakingly created over many years in order to preserve some degree of quality of life, as she has been unable to work outside the home since 1995 because of her disability.

The Leon County Government agreed earlier this year to grant such homeowners a one-quarter mile buffer zone to protect them from these toxic chemicals.  They then, however, mysteriously rescinded the program because the Leon County Commission Chairman was under election threat.  He collaborated with some other commissioners to quite abruptly torpedo this much more effective and safe program, which had taken fifteen years to put into place.  Ms. Termotto called this underhanded political maneuver a shocking betrayal of the many environment health advocates who had worked so hard to formulate and implement the new procedures.

"According to the Leon County Commission Meeting minutes, it was clear that Chairman Rackleff completely hijacked the agenda around this item, and then shut down debate from those well intentioned Commissioners who were adamantly opposed to chemically assaulting Leon County residents who asked not to be sprayed for health reasons", says Ms. Termotto.  "Those same commissioners saw the potential lawsuits coming because the County was essentially committing chemical trespass on individual properties, and, in some cases, committing chemical assault on the concerned residents themselves." she goes on to state with all the authority of one who has become an expert in this matter.

Ms. Termotto is the Vice President of the COALITION AGAINST CHEMICAL TRESPASS (CACT) an organization that has worked closely with CAP in Canada, which was successful in enacting legislation through the Canadian Parliament to terminate the barbaric practice of systematic, indiscriminate, wide-area spraying of residential subdivisions.  Her organization has called many county mosquito control directors over the years and she found that the LCMCP was the most seriously flawed and improperly administered of them all.  What follows is a synopsis of a formal report which was prepared by the CACT in preparation for their next presentation to the Leon County Board of Commissioners.   

"The Leon County Mosquito Control truck-spraying policy is unique among the counties of Florida, but, unfortunately, unique in a way that is so absurd that it defies human reason.  For in Leon County the decision to implement truck spraying has been taken out of the hands of the experts, the mosquito control staff, and put into the hands of the general population.  Here's how it works:  In Leon County one single person can call LCMC and request his street to be truck-sprayed.   LCMC is not required to verify the necessity of this spraying, nor does the caller have to present any evidence or testimony whatsoever of the need for this spraying.  This caller does not have to get the permission of anyone else on his street, nor are any of the unknowing residents of the street informed ahead of time about this spraying unless they have specifically asked to be notified."

"We have researched and spoken to the managers of mosquito control programs in several Florida counties, and we have failed to find a single county that has such a policy.  In every other county, the truck spraying is conducted by the mosquito control departments and not by private citizens.  In these counties truck spraying is implemented based on sound scientific data regarding the density of the mosquito populations and never on the whims of someone who just wants the county to pay for his personal pest control.  In fact, when we related the policy here in Leon County, it evoked such responses as "that is a totally reckless disbursement of pesticides", and 'that is completely irresponsible and a waste of the taxpayers money.'"

"How such an illogical policy ever came into being is beyond understanding.  However the past is the past.  In these times when it is more important than ever to protect our environment which is in such a critical state, and when it is crucial in these hard economic times to cut useless spending, we call upon our leaders to step up to the plate and completely rework the truck spraying policy in Leon County.  Our environment needs to be protected, the health of our citizens needs to be protected from indiscriminate use of dangerous insecticides, and our pockets and pocketbooks need to be protected.  Any commissioner who fails to act on this has no business being in office."

Ms. Termotto points out that the real problem, which has resulted in her neighborhood from such an inherently flawed policy, is the predicament in which she and her husband have found themselves with respect to their homeowners association (OWHA) for many years.  The OWHA has demonstrated a pre-meditated pattern of using the LCMCP street-spraying as a weapon against them.  When asked how so, Ms. Termotto responds that every time either she or her husband have identified the many ways that the OWHA has been in violation of the Covenants and Bylaws or, more seriously, of flagrantly breaking the Florida Laws (Statute #720 in particular) concerning the lawful governance of homeowners associations, the leadership has called for mosquito trucks to spray their entire street, including her property.

Ms. Termotto admits that such an ongoing chemical assault has been difficult to bear all these years, but the Leon County and State of Florida have only empowered these law-breaking officers and board members by supporting their illegal requests year after year.  Ms. Termotto has a file drawer of legal briefs, lawsuit documents, physician reports and letters to both the OWHA and the Leon County Government documenting years of abuse, victimization and threats to her health and life.  It has gotten her nowhere and she wonders how government can be allowed to commit such crimes against the citizenry with such impunity.

"When the Manager of Mosquito Control tells you that an OWHA officer has asked for the entire street to be sprayed, even though his property will not be, and he tells the LCMCP to spray our end of the street knowing of my extremely dangerous allergy to the insecticide spray, what other conclusion can one draw?"  As for the OWHA, she wonders out loud, "Here you have a Tallahassee Police Officer sitting on the OWHA board who allows a resident to be assaulted, as well as a State Officer who works in the Capitol Building calling for our end of the street to be sprayed knowing of my fragile condition!"  Ms. Termotto goes on to ask, "What in the world has happened to our society where the officers of the State, who are entrusted to protect us, become the very perpetrators of the crimes themselves?!"

Ms. Termotto is now consulting with her attorneys to consider the filing of criminal charges against the Leon County Administration, specific Leon County Commissioners, as well as all the various officers and board members of the OWHA who have initiated the many instances of both chemical assault and chemical trespass over the past fifteen years.  The following hyperlink connects to a letter of notification to hold personally responsible the many Leon County Commissioners and Officials who participated in these crimes against a disabled woman with Lupus and MCS who was simply trying to protect herself from a medical emergency, or worse.

In the meantime, Ms. Termotto is forced to leave her home for 3 days every time the street is sprayed.  When she does re-enter the home, she must contend with detoxifying her entire home because of how little of the insecticide can trigger a full-blown allergic response.  If left untreated, a life-threatening medical condition known as anaphylactic shock can develop, which usually requires immediate medical attention.  Ms. Termotto quite poignantly asks, "If Commissioner Rackleff's wife suffered from such an ailment, do you think his neighbors would call for the street to be sprayed.  And if they did, would the county even DARE to send out a truck."

Board of Directors
Healthcare Professionals for Clean Environment

ACTION: Urge Your Senators to Protect Children from BPA

"In September, the U.S. Senate will vote on critical legislation that will affect the safety of the food supply in our nation. Unfortunately, some Senators still need to be convinced that getting the toxic chemical bisphenol A (BPA) out of baby food and infant formula is an urgent food safety issue that should be addressed in the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2010.

Please take action today urging your Senators to support an amendment to the food safety bill, which would eliminate BPA from baby bottles, sippy cups, infant formula and baby food

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Woman with Chemical Sensitivity Fumigated by Leon County Government

Woman with Chemical Sensitivity Fumigated by Leon County Government

"After a 15 year battle to protect her property from toxic chemical trespass, Kathy Termotto breathed a sigh of relief when Leon County Commission in Florida established a one-quarter mile buffer zone to protect the health of residents who were placed on a no-spray list for mosquito control."

The Most Toxic Kids' Products

The Most Toxic Kids' Products

"New report says a clover-shaped cellphone charm and metal barrette are among the most dangerous. 
Just how ubiquitous are heavy metals like cadmium and lead in your home? According to Consumer Reports magazine, they are absolutely everywhere."

Researchers: Put public health first when regulating chemicals

Researchers: Put public health first when regulating chemicals

"Two prominent researchers studying the impact of chemicals on fish and other animals hope enough people will become educated about the issue to push for tighter environmental regulations."

C.A. Upholds Ruling That Environmental Activist Libeled Scientist

C.A. Upholds Ruling That Environmental Activist Libeled Scientist

"The Fourth District Court of Appeal yesterday affirmed a judgment in favor of a scientist who claimed that an environmental activist committed libel by accusing him of altering his conclusions in a mold toxicity study in exchange for a payoff from a conservative think tank."

Chemical Poisoning Treatment Approved for Children

Chemical Poisoning Treatment Approved for Children  
"A treatment for poisoning from pesticides and similar chemicals has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in children, nearly 50 years after it was first approved for adults."

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Australian Flight Attendant Wins Toxic Airplane Air Lawsuit

Australian Flight Attendant Wins Toxic Airplane Air Lawsuit

"A former East-West Airlines flight attendant was awarded almost $130,000 in damages from Australia's High Court, AOL Travel reports. According to Joanne Turner, she suffered long-term respiratory issues after breathing in smoke on a Sydney-to-Brisbane flight in 1992, said AOL Travel. The finding puts airplane cabin air quality in question."

Lower lead levels in jewelry show legislation can make a difference.

Lower lead levels in jewelry show legislation can make a difference.

"Consumers see fewer pieces of lead-containing jewelry - both cheap and expensive - in stores after California legislation is implemented."

Government food safety scientists report political, corporate interference

Government food safety scientists report political, corporate interference,0,7599866.story
"Nearly half of the scientists and inspectors polled at the FDA and USDA say businesses and members of Congress have intruded on their work.  Scientists and inspectors at the federal agencies responsible for food safety say they face political and corporate interference with their work, according to a survey released Monday by the Union of Concerned Scientists, a nonpartisan advocate for unbiased science in government."

Monday, September 13, 2010

How schools are dealing with a ban on synthetic pesticide use for some lawns

How schools are dealing with a ban on synthetic pesticide use for some lawns

"New state law bans synthetic bug killers on lawns at K-8 facilities

Next time a grassy schoolyard in Connecticut starts going bald from an infestation of grubs or billbugs, or crabgrass starts to supplant the turf and clover, groundskeepers will have to put some new techniques to work to combat the problems."

Valley schools to get hourly air updates

Valley schools to get hourly air updates

"Air board will give targeted, real-time data to help keep kids safe, active."

Chlorinated Pools May Increase Cancer Risk

Chlorinated Pools May Increase Cancer Risk

"A new collection of studies show a rise in blood markers associated with cancer in swimmers using chlorinated pools."

The 6+ Synthetic Fabrics You Most Want to Avoid, and Why

The 6+ Synthetic Fabrics You Most Want to Avoid, and Why

"Fabric may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about living a healthier lifestyle, but it definitely should be considered. Even many "health nuts" don't realize that synthetic fabrics are teeming with chemicals and dyes that cannot be washed out, making them a potential health hazard.

Organic, all-natural fabrics like cotton, wool and linen may be the safest options when it comes to your health."

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Poisons are not the only remedy for weeds

"California's Department of Pesticide Regulation reports that, year after year, Round Up is the number one cause of pesticide/ herbicide-induced illness and injury around that state. Round Up is also blamed for poisoning groundwater across the U.S. and beyond, as well as for contributing to a 70 percent decrease in amphibian biodiversity and a 90 percent decrease in tadpole numbers in regions where it is used heavily."

Health effects of prenatal radiation exposure.

Health effects of prenatal radiation exposure.

Williams PM, Fletcher S.  Am Fam Physician. 2010 Sep 1;82(5):488-93.
David Grant Medical Center, Travis Air Force Base, CA, USA.
Pregnant women are at risk of exposure to nonionizing and ionizing radiation resulting from necessary medical procedures, workplace exposure, and diagnostic or therapeutic interventions before the pregnancy is known.
Nonionizing radiation includes microwave, ultrasound, radio frequency, and electromagnetic waves. In utero exposure to nonionizing radiation is not associated with significant risks; therefore, ultrasonography is safe to perform during pregnancy. Ionizing radiation includes particles and electromagnetic radiation (e.g., gamma rays, x-rays). In utero exposure to ionizing radiation can be teratogenic, carcinogenic, or mutagenic.
The effects are directly related to the level of exposure and stage of fetal development. The fetus is most susceptible to radiation during organogenesis (two to seven weeks after conception) and in the early fetal period (eight to 15 weeks after conception).
Noncancer health effects have not been detected at any stage of gestation after exposure to ionizing radiation of less than 0.05 Gy (5 rad).
Spontaneous abortion, growth restriction, and mental retardation may occur at higher exposure levels.
The risk of cancer is increased regardless of the dose.
When an exposure to ionizing radiation occurs, the total fetal radiation dose should be estimated and the mother counseled about the potential risks so that she can make informed decisions about her pregnancy management.

PMID: 20822083 [PubMed - in process]

Influenza vaccine effectiveness for the elderly: a cohort study involving general practitioners from Abruzzo, Italy.

"vaccination did not significantly reduce the risk of in-hospital death, influenza or pneumonia admission."

Influenza vaccine effectiveness for the elderly: a cohort study involving general practitioners from Abruzzo, Italy.

Manzoli L, Villari P, Granchelli C, Savino A, Carunchio C, Alessandrini M, Palumbo F, De Vito C, Schioppa F, Di Stanislao F, Boccia A.  J Prev Med Hyg. 2009 Jun;50(2):109-12.
Section of Epidemiology and Public Health, University G. d'Annunzio of Chieti, Italy.

INTRODUCTION: In all Italian regions influenza vaccine is routinely administered to the elderly population. However, vaccination impact has been rarely evaluated because of the high costs of conventional cohort investigations. A promising low-cost alternative approach uses administrative discharge data to derive vaccine effectiveness indicators (hospitalizations and/or deaths) and involves General Practitioners (GPs) to document the exposure. We conducted a cohort analysis using such approach to assess influenza vaccine effectiveness and to investigate the feasibility and validity of that methodology for routine vaccine evaluation.

METHODS: During October 2006, all GPs from two Local Health Units (LHUs) were requested to indicate immunization status of all their patients in a specific form containing patient's demographic records. Immunization status information were also collected from Prevention Departments. Main outcomes were hospitalizations for influenza and/or pneumonia. Analyses were based upon random-effect logistic regression.

RESULTS: Of a total of 414 GPs assisting 103,162 elderly, 116 GPs (28%) provided data on 32,457 individuals (31.5%). The sample was representative and had an overall 66.2% vaccina-tion rate. During the first semester 2007, the hospitalization rate was low in the sample, with only 7 elderly patients admitted for influenza and 135 for pneumonia. At either bivariate or multivariate analysis, vaccination did not significantly reduce the risk of in-hospital death, influenza or pneumonia admission.

DISCUSSION: The study had minimal costs, recruited a large and representative sample size, and had no evidence of a substantial selection bias. Administrative and GP's data may be successively pooled to provide routine assessment of vaccination effectiveness.

PMID: 20099441 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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