Monthly Archives: March 2013

Bacterial breakthrough could lead to better biological batteries

An interesting study uses bacteria to create better batteries.

By Jennifer Welsh, http://www.businessinsider.com

New research into electricity-conducting bacteria could lead to environmentally friendly “bio-batteries” that could create energy, be used as factories for biological products, or clean out heavy metals from contaminated soils.

These bacteria live off iron and heavy metals, similar to how we live off of oxygen. They use it to make energy the way we use oxygen and food to make the energy that runs our bodies. Read More

 

Linking mold to respiratory problems

By Carl Bennett, http://www.hivehealthmedia.com

Molds are rather harmless little fungi, present in every single environment, all-year round. But when they find warm and humid conditions, they tend to turn into that matter-decomposing eye sore we all know and dread. Their aspect however is probably the least important characteristic we should worry about; molds can be the cause of many health issues, ranging from itchy eyes and a runny nose to serious respiratory infections. Read More

 

Lead paint, other toxic products banned in U.S. still exported to unsuspecting customers abroad

Lead paint may be banned in the U.S., but that is not stopping some companies from exporting it to unregulated countries.

By Lynne Peeples, http://www.huffingtonpost.com

Not until Perry Gottesfeld pulled up to the front gates of Seigneurie in Cameroon did he realize the African country’s leading paint manufacturer was owned by a U.S.-based corporation.

“A big sign read PPG,” Gottesfeld, executive director of the nonprofit Occupational Knowledge International, recalled from his March 2011 visit to the factory. “We were shocked.”

The reason for the surprise: His research team had just discovered that more than 40 percent of Seigneurie house paints on the market in Cameroon contained high levels of lead, with the neurotoxic heavy metal accounting for up to half the weight of some paints. Read More

 

Asbestos-contaminated tarantula ‘could be on the loose’ in Cardiff

Straight out of an ’80s horror movie, Cardiff deals with the reveal of an “asbestos spider.”

By Simon Gaskell, http://www.walesonline.co.uk

A web of intrigue surrounds a gruesome discovery in a 19th century attic – where a large tarantula skin, potentially contaminated with asbestos, has been found.

The shock find was made during a routine survey by Cardiff asbestos specialists Kusten Vorland.

After three days in the empty house, on The Parade, in Roath, surveyor Katie Parsons-Young led her team into a pitch-black attic at 4.30pm on Tuesday. In a scene reminiscent of horror flick Arachnophobia, Katie – no fan of creepy crawlies – got the shock of her life when lifting up one of the floorboards and spotting a large, hairy leg. Read More