That sea salt you bought probably has microplastics in it

Congratulations to humanity for contaminating sea salt! A new study found all but one of 17 commercial sea salt brands from eight different countries contained microscopic plastic particles. Microplastic: it's what's for dinner! Read the rest

Before there was an EPA we had Tom Lehrer

A reminder of where things were headed without environmental protections. Read the rest

Colorful children's respirators make breathing poisoned air fun

The WOOBI is a sad sign of the times. It's a toylike respirator system designed for the 300 million children living in severe air pollution. Read the rest

Here's what Chinese smog does to a high-speed train

Chinese social media has been blowing up this year with images of high speed trains that have passed through heavy smog on their routes. Here's the same train when it's clean: Read the rest

Timelapse of dangerous Beijing smog rolling in

On January 2, YouTuber Chas Pope captured a noxious cloud of Beijing smog rolling toward his building.

I made this earlier today - a bank of AQI400+ smog arriving in Beijing within the space of 20 minutes. It's already gone viral on the Chinese internet, let's see what happens internationally...

Luckily, Beijing subways have the answer: your own anti-smog rebreather!

Beijing Airpocalypse Arrival (YouTube / Chas Pope) Read the rest

Beijing subway ad for an anti-smog rebreather

Bloomberg Asia journalist David Ramli tweeted this photo of a bicep-mounted anti-pollution filter for joggers, displayed on the wall of a Beijing subway station, the day after Beijing posted record pollution levels, 24X the WHO recommendations, with 24 other cities issuing red alerts. (via JWZ) Read the rest

Yoplait cup tossed in sea 40 years ago, looks brand new

ArkadiusBear posted this photo to Reddit, saying:

This thing is 40 years old. It looks like it was thrown away yesterday. When you throw away plastic, it will basically never go away, ever. IF it breaks down, it breaks down into smaller and smaller micro plastic beads. It may even end up back on your plate some day when ingested by fish.

Again, this thing is 40 years old, and it will look almost the same in another 40 years. In fact, some types plastic trash can take up to 450(!) years to decompose.

This piece of plastic, thrown into the sea in 1976, still hasn't degraded at all
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How Audi cheated emissions tests: if (steering) then (pollute)

A report in BILD am Sonntag claims that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) has uncovered the secret test that Audis were programmed to perform to determine whether to pollute like crazy or to pretend that they were low-polluting, legally compliant vehicles. Read the rest

300 Million Children Breathe Highly Toxic Air, reports UNICEF

“Almost one in seven of the world’s children, 300 million, live in areas with the most toxic levels of outdoor air pollution – six or more times higher than international guidelines” UNICEF said today, in releasing a new report on how air pollution around the world affects our most vulnerable.

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Gallery of hermit crabs with garbage shells

The hermit crab housing shortage of empty shells is forcing some crabs to use marine waste, as documented by Okinawa-based photographer Shawn M. Miller. Read the rest

Amazing video demonstrates levels of light pollution

Lost in Light is Sriram Murali's simple yet beautifully-crafted demonstration of levels of light pollution from worst to best, and how much gets lost in the night sky.

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Mumbai Beach clean-up highlights marine waste epidemic

The shocking amount of marine waste washed up on Mumbai's Versova Beach led UN Patron of the Oceans Lewis Pugh to publicize a long-term cleanup project. Mountains of garbage, mostly plastic, have been hauled away by thousands of volunteers. Read the rest

Video: Guys whose boss made them illegally dump hazardous chemicals in the desert

On March 3, a worker shot this video of him and his co-workers illegally pouring HOCUT 795-B out on the Nevada desert floor, then burning out the residue, at the insistence of their (unnamed) employer. Read the rest

Flintnation: 33 US cities caught cheating on municipal water lead tests

An independent investigation by The Guardian found 33 cities in 17 US states (including Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia, Detroit and Milwaukee) are systematically cheating on the tests to monitor lead levels in the municipal water. 21 of those cities used the same cheating techniques that led to criminal charges in the Flint water scandal. Read the rest

Leaked recording: pollution lobbyists discuss exploiting Syrian refugee crisis

A leaked recording made of a conference call hosted by the Edison Electric Institute, which lobbies for the power industry, reveals lobbyists for high pollution companies talking about how they can exploit the Syrian refugee crisis to get a rider inserted into a pending bill that would kill the EPA's Waters of the United States rule, which protects America's waterways from pollution. Read the rest

In Volkswagen emissions fraud scandal, proprietary software is the real villain

“Proprietary software is an unsafe building material. You can’t inspect it.”

Columbia University law professor Eben Moglen made that observation 5 years ago. It's timely today, as the Volkswagen emissions fraud scandal--enabled by proprietary software--worsens. Read the rest

This is how blue the skies were when Beijing banned 2.5 million cars for two weeks

In Beijing, China banned 2.5 million cars from driving for 2 weeks to get this beautiful blue sky for a World War II commemorative parade. As soon as the parade was over, the ban was lifted, and the blue vanished within 24 hours. Read the rest

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